Looking for an ace? These courses are your best bet
Battle Creek, Everett Legion and Walter Hall yielded the most holes-in-one among area courses last year
And he's never had a hole-in-one.
Over the years he's watched two or three of his playing partners collect aces, he's had at least one tee shot rim the cup and he's holed out for eagle from 100-plus yards "several times."
But never a hole-in-one.
That makes Dahl, 75, a statistical oddity.
According to numbers published by Golf Digest in 2005, an average golfer can expect to collect a hole-in-one once in every 3,000 rounds. Based on those numbers, Dahl is about 28 years overdue.
"I just think a lot of it is luck," said Dahl, whose handicap has been as low as 9.3 and now stands at 16, "and I don't have any."
While Lady Luck didn't shine on Dahl in 2010, she did visit 113 other golfers in Snohomish and Island counties. An examination of the holes-in-one reported to The Herald in 2010 showed that those 113 golfers recorded 114 aces at area courses in 2010.
Battle Creek Golf Course in Marysville topped the list, yielding 15 holes-in-one, which surprised head pro Scott Basse. "Maybe we send them into the paper more often than other courses," he quipped.
That may be true, but a more likely factor is Battle Creek's nine-hole, par-3 course, which sits adjacent to the 18-hole layout. It accounted for two of the course's 15 holes-in-one.
"(Being ranked No. 1) kind of surprised me, to be honest with you," Basse said. "But we do 10-15,000 rounds a year on the par-3 course, so that makes sense."
Legion Memorial Golf Course in north Everett was next with 14 holes-in-one, half of which were recorded on the par-3, No. 16 hole (tied with No. 17 at Walter Hall Golf Course in south Everett for the most in the area).
"It's a pretty easy hole in terms of par threes," Everett Legion head pro Shayne Day said of the 16th. "Most par threes that are difficult are about 180 yards. This one, from the white tees, is only 140, so that definitely plays into it. It's (also) a very level green and most the time people are rolling the ball into the hole."
Walter Hall produced the third-highest number of holes-in-one in 2010 with 11. No. 17 accounted for seven of them.
"That par-3 probably is at a range (161 yards from the white tees) that is average for most guys," Walter Hall assistant golf professional Derrold Theon said. "And the pin placements are such that (the ball) often feeds right to the hole."
The fact Everett's two municipal courses ranked 2-3 in aces among area courses is no shock, Day said.
"We do 62,000 rounds a year here (at Legion)," he said. "versus a private course, which probably does 30-40,000 rounds. The extra 20-30,000 rounds per year, you're getting a lot more shots into that hole. As a municipality, we have cheaper rates, which means affordable golf for everybody, which is essentially why we get a lot more activity out here on a daily basis."
Also not a surprise was the fact nearly half the holes-in-one in 2010 occurred in the summer months. July led with 19, followed by June (18) and August (17).
While the sheer number of people playing golf in the summer is the obvious reason, Day noted another factor: better weather produces better golf shots. Higher temperatures allow players to use shorter, more accurate irons.
"The air is warmer, the ball is going to fly farther, whereas in the winter you are using a longer club," Day said. "In the summertime you can club down because the ball is going to fly farther and compress a little bit more."
Through the first six months of this year, 41 holes-in-one were reported to The Herald, compared to 57 at the same time last year. The 28-percent dropoff can be attributed, at least in part, to miserable weather in the spring and early summer that kept many a golfer indoors.
With skies finally clearing and temperatures rising, conditions are favorable for Dahl and others like him to resume pursuit of that elusive first ace.
Dahl came agonizingly close several years ago. His tee shot on a short, par-4 dogleg left made it all the way to the green. When Dahl and his party approached, they saw his ball sitting just three or four feet from the hole. The group waiting on next tee described how close Dahl came not only to his first hole-in-one but to a rare double eagle.
"They said it rolled right through them and lipped the cup," Dahl said.
Dahl, who retired from Burlington Northern Railroad 13 years ago, is a member of the men's club at Walter Hall and still plays 3-5 times a week, weather permitting. With each round, he moves closer -- at least statistically -- to his first hole-in-one.
"Maybe if I live long enough, I'll get one," he said with a chuckle.
|Bob Wallin||Battle Creek||1/19||3||105||PW|
|Lee Hudson||Battle Creek||3/4||3||105||9-iron|
|Dylan Minoque||Battle Creek||4/8||2||102||SW|
|Laura Nix||Battle Creek||5/13||4||89||wedge|
|Tom Thetford||Battle Creek||6/19||3||139||9-iron|
|Cal McCreary||Battle Creek||6/23||8||106||9-iron|
|Len Dupree||Battle Creek||6/25||9||139||6-iron|
|Randy Romo||Battle Creek||7/10||9||134||9-iron|
|Joseph Koznik||Battle Creek||7/31||9 (par 3)||142||5-iron|
|Mike Gaston||Battle Creek||8/3||17||155||6-iron|
|Kris Murray||Battle Creek||8/14||3||137||6-iron|
|Phil Porr||Battle Creek||8/17||3||134||9-iron|
|Bob Wallin||Battle Creek||8/19||17||144||8-iron|
|Ron Rob||Battle Creek||8/23||8||106||7-iron|
|James P. Cotton||Battle Creek||10/9||9 (par 3)||142||4-iron|
|Mike Knuckey||Blue Boy||2/21||3||127||SW|
|Charles LeConte||Blue Boy||3/6||9||128||9-iron|
|Michael Smith||Blue Boy||4/16||3||127||9-iron|
|Evan Turner||Blue Boy||6/1||3||140||PW|
|Brandon Smith||Blue Boy||6/28||9||134||9-iron|
|Troy Ottini||Blue Boy||6/29||6||300||driver|
|Seung Lee||Blue Boy||7/3||9||128||PW|
|Pete Wicken||Blue Boy||7/12||9||128||7-iron|
|Mark Crawley||Blue Boy||9/12||3||147||PW|
|Ed Pole||Blue Boy||10/3||9||128||PW|
|Mary Ann Olson||Camaloch||7/9||11||107||7-wood|
|Patrick J. Tuttle||Camaloch||7/23||13||177||3-iron|
|Geoffrey A. Matthews||Camaloch||9/24||9||159||4-iron|
|Ken Lauerman||Everett G&CC||4/23||8||110||9-iron|
|Barry Miller||Everett G&CC||5/22||8||122||PW|
|Brian Ayres||Everett G&CC||5/22||7||190||3-wood|
|Will Cox||Everett G&CC||7/17||16||264||Driver|
|Jerry Boeder||Everett G&CC||12/17||15||158||3-wood|
|Don Bechen||Flowing Lake||2/21||9||133||7-iron|
|Tom Pinon||Flowing Lake||5/24||7||144||5-iron|
|Jim Hovey||Flowing Lake||7/10||6||137||6-iron|
|Loren Wiegelt||Gleneagle||July (date NA)||16||137||NA|
|Carolyn Keith||Gleneagle||July (date NA)||4||120||NA|
|Chris Babcock||Harbour Pointe||2/13||12||148||7-iron|
|Tom Kane||Harbour Pointe||3/5||12||153||9-iron|
|Bob Kelley||Harbour Pointe||6/5||12||156||7-iron|
|Jan Walsh||Harbour Pointe||6/12||7||112||6-iron|
|Ray McCanna||Harbour Pointe||7/12||3||145||7-iron|
|Kaye Morgan||Harbour Pointe||8/9||3||90||7-iron|
|Bryan Krannitz||Harbour Pointe||8/16||12||144||8-iron|
|Greg Thompson||Harbour Pointe||9/11||7||142||7-iron|
|Richard Moloney||Harbour Pointe||10/3||16||154||8-iron|
|Bruce Baird||Kayak Point||3/14||16||145||8-iron|
|Larry Burkhart||Kayak Point||6/18||3||140||9-iron|
|Dawn Gregory||Kayak Point||8/8||3||105||8-iron|
|Gregory Ricci||Kayak Point||10/29||5||154||6-iron|
|Terry Grinaker||Kenwanda||July (date NA)||8||191||3-wood|
|Nikolay E. Sorenson||Legion||3/10||16||141||7-iron|
|Stephen A. Jones||Legion||3/11||16||141||9-iron|
|Conner Denessen||Mill Creek G&CC||9/8||9||149||8-iron|
|Dennis McMahon||Walter Hall||2/14||17||148||6-iron|
|Tony Hatziliadis||Walter Hall||4/21||6||159||6-iron|
|Howard Nelson||Walter Hall||5/12||17||161||31-hybrid|
|Gerry Solberg||Walter Hall||5/12||14||170||5-iron|
|Rockwell J. Bybee||Walter Hall||5/23||17||171||4-rescue|
|Dan Dahl||Walter Hall||6/25||17||160||5-iron|
|Robert Lightfritz||Walter Hall||7/7||17||161||7-wood|
|Skip Lucken||Walter Hall||8/13||8||168||8-iron|
|John Morrison||Walter Hall||8/26||17||170||4-iron|
|Brian Rebeschini||Walter Hall||9/1||17||161||6-iron|
|Lee Salazar||Walter Hall||10/4||8||146||8-iron|
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