It began as an ordinary Saturday round of golf. Two friends from Snohomish County on a getaway to eastern Washington with their families last weekend, heading out for an early 18 holes.
The day ended up being anything but ordinary.
Jim Dyer of Mukilteo, a 39-year-old Boeing employee, had one of the most memorable golf rounds imaginable. In baseball terms it was the equivalent of pitching a no-hitter and hitting for the cycle, both by the same player in the same game.
Playing at the Highlander Golf Course in East Wenatchee, Dyer had a double-eagle 2 on the 472-yard, par-5 fifth hole (because his group started on the back nine, it was the 14th hole of his round). Two holes later, on the 140-yard No. 7, he dropped in his tee shot for a hole-in-one.
A pair of golf rarities, and in the space of three holes, no less. “I was stunned,” admitted Dyer. “Even the guys who were with me were stunned.”
“It was disbelief,” said Aaron Fisher of Snohomish, Dyer’s friend and playing partner. “After knowing what he’d just done 20 minutes before (with the double-eagle), and then to have him put another ball in the hole, there was a lot of high-fives and hollering. It was one of those moments in golf that you know you won’t forget.”
Holes-in-one are unusual, but hardly unique. Golfers who play for many years will often accumulate a few, and top golfers might have several. Dyer had a previous hole-in-one on the 16th hole at Everett’s Legion Memorial Golf Course.
Double-eagles are much less common. Even good golfers can play many years and maybe an entire lifetime without one.
But to have a double-eagle and a hole-in-one in the same round is off-the-charts rare. Or as Dyer put it, “I’d probably have a better chance of hitting the Lotto.”
Dyer is, by his own admission, an average golfer. He does not have an established handicap, but if he did “it would probably be around 18 or 20,” he said. “Typically on a par-72 (course) I’ll score a 90. Some days higher, some days lower. Like at Legion, most of the times I go there I walk away with 90 or maybe lower.”
“He’s a decent golfer,” Fisher said, “but he’ll post 110 sometimes.”
The funny thing is, Dyer came within a whisker of an earlier hole-in-one on the par-3 No. 18, his ninth hole of Saturday’s round. His tee shot “went past the cup and then moved (to the side), so could tell it lipped the cup,” Fisher said.
Five holes later, Dyer hit a driver off the tee and then played his 3-wood from 230 yards.
The ball landed left of the green on the fringe, but since the terrain was sloped to the right “the ball kind of leaked toward the hole and went in,” Dyer said.
He bogeyed the sixth hole and then used a 9-iron from the tee on No. 7. His ball landed on the green, took one bounce, hit the flag and disappeared in the cup.
“And at that point,” he said, “everything got the best of me. The adrenalin took over and really messed me up.”
Dyer, a 1993 graduate of Snohomish High School, closed his round with a score of 12-over-par 83. And he was fortunate to finish with the same ball he used for the double-eagle, or again for the hole-in-one.
“That’s a ball you save,” Fisher said. “Thankfully he didn’t lose it.”