The Bandera Courier
Bandera Courier
Thursday December 14, 2017
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Bateman, Hill win GOB

Charles Prokop

The Champions Tour opens their season in Hawaii on a golf course with some of the most unusual hazards you will ever see. The course is built on a field of black lava. Wayward shots become lost or unplayable as the ball nestles into a fissure or ricochets into oblivion. The only saving grace is that the lava cooled long ago.
The Flying L may not have lava but its hazards can be just as deadly. Balls can easily disappear as they ricochet off an oak tree. If your wayward shot gets lucky and misses the oak trees your ball is likely to fly out of bounds. Penalty strokes for out of bounds shots add up fast and it is possible to hit the ball out of bounds on every hole at the Flying L.
Bandera resident Don Bateman avoided course hazards and scored the only point at the Jan. 11 Good Old Boys tournament. Bateman sealed his victory with a strong finish on the last four holes. Those holes often spell doom as the combination of adverse prevailing winds, threatening out of bounds fences, and fatigue take their toll. Bateman fought off the demons and took first place with his 1-point round of 86.
Banderan Max Konz made 0 points, but his 89 was good enough for second place on a tough day for golf. Konz also took the closest to the hole prize on number 12.
It's a rare day that there is no Finger in the Good Old Boys pot, and Boerne's David Finger kept the family in the money with the closest to the hole award on 2. Bandera's Gary Manning won number 17 and took medalist honors with his 83. It's rare for Manning to score out of the 70's, so his 83 is proof that conditions were difficult. Nine players turned out for the tournament.
The next week was more conducive to good golf. Roger Hill migrates between Veblen, South Dakota and Bandera so he has an advantage over us Hill Country golfers when the weather turns cool and the grass goes dormant. Hill took advantage of a balmy day at the Jan. 18 tournament and sailed into first place with a 7-point round of 87. His round featured good play on several of the toughest holes at the Flying L. He birdied number 8 and made pars on the always-difficult ninth and eighteenth.
Louis Dubose seems to be getting accustomed to retirement and the chance to spend a little more time on the links. The Bandera dentist won medalist honors with a nice round of 76, including the closest to the hole prize on 2. San Antonio's Chris Finger took third with 2 points from a 92.
Bandera and Minnesota resident Rich Koch was closest to the hole on number 12. Marty Mull is continuing to enjoy his stay in Bandera and turned in a nice round of 78. Bandera and Flying L resident Gary Manning was close behind with 79.