Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Boys Basketball Sectionals Tonight

At North Daviess tonight, the Jug Rox take on Vincennes Rivet in the first game starting at 6. Since all my kids graduated from Shoals, I say Go, Jug Rox! The second game has the Cougars of North Daviess going against the Barr Reeve Vikings. Since my grandchildren are going to North Daviess schools, I say Go, Cougars! On Friday, the Loogootee Lions take on the Washington Cardinals (in the first game?), and since I am a resident of Loogootee (my mail comes through the Loogoootee Post Office), I say Go, Lions! That's four teams getting my support. Better throw some support towards the Vikings since our house is located in Barr Township and the neighborhood youngsters go to Barr Reeve. That leaves the Cardinals, the Catholics. Hmmm, don't know about the connection there. Any suggestions? You know I support them all and hope for games as even and as exciting as the ones the girls have put on in recent weeks.

Hey. I'm heading out to the golf course. The sun is shining, the wind is calmed down a bit, and the birds are making spring-like noises.

Monday, February 26, 2007

The Swede Takes the Trophy

Diane, with Swedish blood running through her veins, cheered the triumph of her fellow Swede, Henrik Stenson, after it was all over and done with and I told her the results. And I cheer the results as well. NBC made a go of it and I found myself watching more of the match than I had expected to. The Buckeye/Badger game was just around the corner over at CBS and it ended up being a whale of a game with the Buckeyes prevailing, using a standard weapon of theirs, the blocked shot, to thwart the Badgers last attempt to steal one from the OSU home arena. But mostly I was at NBC enjoying the back and forth nature of the competition and listening to the prattle of the commentators. No real gripping moment, lots of not so good shots, errant drives, fairway shots into bunkers, missed sand saves, missed putts, but still enjoyable. The course was sterling - would love to play it someday (next life maybe).

And while all that was happening, Fred Funk, the little old guy, over 50 in any case, the straight shooter who hits it more like you and me - short and straight (?), was winning down in Mexico. Cheers.

Yesterday at the course: windy, cool and wet. Not a whole lot of golfing.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Girls Basketball

Congratulations to the Wood Memorial Trojans - they beat the Northeast Dubois Jeeps and head to Indy for the state championship against Oregon-Davis. Go Trojans!

Match Play

So it's now down to two: Jason Sobel at espn.com is trying to make the case for watching these two excellent golfers

MARANA, Ariz. -- I know, I know. Geoff Ogilvy is playing Henrik Stenson in the WGC-Accenture Match Play final and you don't care. Or you care, but not enough to watch. Or you care enough to watch, but not enough to watch 36 holes. read more here.

But in the end I can't tell whether he's talking with tongue in cheek or not. He didn't convince me to tune in, but I will, at least for some of it, maybe as background as I do other things. I was hoping for a semi final match between TW and Charlie Howell - that would have been fun to watch - Tiger may have even treated him like a human being during the match, given their friendship, real friendship. But maybe not. A more perfect final match? TW and, hmmm, Jim Furek would have been more than okay; but Phil Mickelson a more ideal choice. You know that Phil would be all smiles going around the course, and you know that Tiger would be anything but until the outcome had been decided. Could have been fun, and something NBC would have given, oh, five minutes of free advertising? better make that an hour, rather than the Geoff and Henrik show.

Other options: how about the Buckeyes and the Badgers on a competing network? I'll be watching some of each.

Hey - I'm writing from the golf course where it is a little cool, a little windy, but very playable. Rains maybe later.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Inclement weather, Offseason and Books

Windy and cool this morning so I'm here at the dining table rather than at the golf course. After commenting on the woes of TW last night, the balance of the evening and part of this morning was spent in finishing Bao Dinh's The Sorrow of War (Loogootee Public Library got it for me - thank you, Mary). This book is the ramblings of a Vietnam soldier and deals with, pay attention now, the sorrow of war. The protagonist is a youngster who spends his youth, as many Vietnamese did, fighting the American War. It's a tale of the horrors of war, of lost youth and of lost love. Powerful and engaging, and well worth the time and effort if you are at all interested in the Vietnam Experience.

One of the nicest things about working in a seasonal business is the chance to catch up on stuff and things in the offseason. Both Diane and I revel in the opportunity to catch up on our reading, to explore different worlds and perspectives from a host of different authors. Diane, for the most part, covers the fictional side of the universe, the imaginary and created side, while I handle the non-fictional, the real world so to speak. The book mentioned above is an exception for me though it blends in nicely and offers an emotional side to the many 'real' books I've read on Vietnam. A necessary exception and one that Diane would probalby say I need to make more often.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Magic in earlier times

By the way, while I was going to and from Bloomington on Thursday (a supply run), I was going over those sports magicians from the last 25 to 30 years and wondering who were the similar magic players from the 60's and the 70's. My memory provided me with no ready answers though it did offer some possibilities: Wilt Chamberlain who was dominant but for the most part unable to help his teams win championships in the '60's. Bill Russell was so good and his teams won, both in college and at the pro level. Julius Erving was a superstar during the 70's and was a joy to watch. Jack Nicklaus? I was not a big golf fan during those years; certainly he was dominant and a winner. Two or three teams might qualify: Stengel's Yankees; Wooden's Bruins; and Auerbach's Celtics. All winners. I know I am leaving much out here, and given a few more trips to Bloomington, or maybe a little help from you all, a whole host of other superstars could get their due right here. For now, enough. Got to go commiserate some more on TW's loss.

Update June 1st 12:25am:

Mystery Golfers - from left to right, top to bottom:

1.Jim Murphy
2. Diane Bird
3. Pam Byron
4. Vic Wallace
5. Junior Byron
6. Clyde Wake
7. Bob Norris10. Allen Swayze
8. Charlie Sheetz
9. Morris Cornelius

Oh Nooooooooooooo... Tiger out!

It's only Friday evening and I just read the report. Aussie ends Wood's winning streak!
What a horrible turn of events and I was already looking forward to tomorrow and Sunday. Darn. Not that I won't watch some of it but the drama is gone. No more 8th straight win. No more of that Tiger magic, at least for another week or two. I hope the boys left can make it entertaining. Darn. Such a disappointment. Tiger, oh Tiger... Okay, so it's not going to be Tiger. Any idea, guys? Only 16 players left. I'm rooting for the low seed left in the tournament - Stephen Ames, a #10. But either of the #9's left would be acceptable as well. Dang it, Tiger; it was just a 4' putt. Jeesh.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Match Play, Tiger and Good Business

Remember August 27, 1995? It was a Sunday and I was home at our house in the woods on the Lost River. Television had two of the networks covering golf events; on one, CBS I think, the PGA was having another Sunday afternoon showdown; the other, NBC is my recollection, two young men were playing for the 95th US Golf Amateur championship in a match play event. One of them was Tiger Woods and he and that other young man (I can't find his name - anybody remember?) played 36 holes that day. And yes Tiger had to come from behind, had to make miracle shots on and off the green, and did win the championship. For five hours I was riveted to the little screen, coming away enthralled with the magic of the young Tiger.

Today Tiger Woods and 63 other super golfers started this year's WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship (go here for the brackets after play today). I'm rooting for Tiger Woods and yes I know he has won more than his share of tournaments - but, as I'm sure you would agree, this isn't a equal share business. I root for Tiger for the same reason I rooted for Michael Jordan in the '90's and Larry and Magic in the '80's: because of the magic these men brought to their games.

But there is another reason, a more practical one: Tiger is good, has been good, for the golf business around the world and right here in Loogootee. Just ask the television people - if Tiger is playing on Sunday, guess what? Viewing is up.

Hey! We did open up today and golfers did get to chase a golf ball around our wet but quickly drying out fairways and greens. Still carts on paths and you'll likely go home with a little mud on your pants. But nonetheless awfully nice to be out under the sun with friends hooting and hollering about pop-ups and toppers, slices and hooks, irons that won't get the ball to the green and putters that can't get the same ball to the cup. Golf. What a game.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Course Conditions - the big melt

Just got back from the golf course - the big melt continues! We still have pockets of snow, lots of puddles, and ice still in the cups (yes I did try to plant the flagsticks, to no avail). We will open for play tomorrow though I expect conditions will be very wet and sloppy and carts on paths only. Nonetheless, sunshine and temperatures in the fifties is expected and that is golf weather.

Diane and I had breakfast at The Cabin with Jim and Wilma Bateman. Among a host of topics, we did talk briefly about the new Lakeview Community League and different possibilities for that league. At this early stage in its formulation, the team configurations will be in one of several categories: relational (parent/grandparent with child/grandchild); couple; female/female; and male/male. Play during the season (probably mid May to the end of August) will be anytime during the week, something which gives participants plenty of latitude. These are early thoughts and ideas, all of which will be firmed up in the next couple of weeks. So look for the grand announcement of the forthcoming Lakeview Community League.

Note: We have for rent a Datrek Hard Case Travel Cover at the clubhouse. I purchased it just before Diane and I went to Palm Springs for a week with our daughter Danielle and her family in January. The hard cover is the taller variety, 68 or 69 inches, and easily accommodates the newer longer drivers.

Did you know that on this date in... 1977 - Judy Rankin wins the Orange Blossom Classic by five strokes over Joyce Kazmierski. (from golfonline). I think Judy is one of the best golf announcers in the business. Anybody know what she is doing now? Anybody find out the answer to yesterday's question, the one about Phil and TW?

Monday, February 19, 2007

In the meantime...

While waiting for the weather to improve, more than a few golfers took in the Girls' Regional Basketball games played at the North Daviess gym on Saturday. A few of the notables present: Rex and Shirley Hudson, Ken Hudson, Wayne Pearl, Jim and Greg Bateman, Eric and Mike Bird. For the record, the Wood Memorial Trojans bested the Bloomfield Cardinals in a thriller that was not decided till Wood Memorial's long and lanky center, Kaiti Cochren, sank a free throw, after missing the first one, to put her team up by four with about four seconds to go. All three games were thrillers, with the outcomes in question right down to the final minutes, if not seconds. From hoosierauthority.com:

16. North Daviess
Game 1 – No. 1 Bloomfield 36, North Daviess 32
Game 2 – No. 12 Oakland City Wood Memorial 60, Attica 56
Championship – No. 12 Oakland City Wood Memorial 51, No. 1 Bloomfield 47

The Winners are...

KAHUKU, Hawaii (AP) -- Paula Creamer won the LPGA Tour's season-opening SBS Open on Saturday for her first victory since 2005, handling the whipping wind to hold off Julieta Granada by a stroke.

...the youngsters are at it again on the Ladies' Tour. Hats off to Paula Creamer, she of the sterling start in her first year, and the not so sterling second year. But what about Julieta Granada! She nows adds a second place finish to go along with her first place trophy in her last two LPGA events. Wow!

and the men:

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Charles Howell III felt his heart leap when he realized only 3 feet of green stood between him and an improbable playoff victory against Phil Mickelson in the Nissan Open.

...he made the short putt in a 3 hole playoff that saw the winner best good old Phil in the short game that included two beautiful chips and a dicey putt. Hats off to the young man who has been piling up second place finishes like it was the thing to do.

...Phil Mickelson's 15 wins on the West Coast - fast start indeed. A question: how many of those were events without that guy with the initials TW?

Sunday, February 18, 2007

New Option for Lakeview Golfers

Sunday February 18, 2007

Hey! Something new in the works here at lakeview golf course: a web log, or blog, for news and comments on happenings at lakeview golf course and other places in the immediate environs. at the moment, we are seeing the last remnants of a brutal cold spell, one that has kept us winter golfers locked inside with books, movies, sports and other stuff on teevee, along with wives, husbands and other family members. are we ready to get on with the rest of our lives? like our favorite pasttime - golf? i think so. looks like the next several days will give us all the opportunity to get out and swing those clubs once again.

for starters in this new effort, i want to post a few pictures of guys who have brightened my golfing days on many occasions. as the year goes on, i hope to post other pictures as well, maybe even throwing in a little bio of the person being featured. please join with me and add ur own comments to this new thing on the golflakeview block. the above pictures, taken on one of those playable days in december of 2006, are of loogootee's jack lents (who happens to be my neighbor as well) and bloomfield's rex hudson, he of the many acquaintances and friends around all of indiana.