Match Play: Also Seen & heard at Dove Mountain

2013-02-24T00:00:00Z Match Play: Also Seen & heard at Dove MountainDaniel Berk Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
February 24, 2013 12:00 am  • 

The Walters show

About 150 members of the First Tee program were treated to a special show Saturday morning at the Golf Club at Dove Mountain.

Dennis Walters, who tours the country performing trick shots, put on an hour-long special for First Tee members. First Tee is a program established by the Conquistadores to develop junior golf, especially for the underprivileged. The event was free for First Tee's 1,500 members. If they signed up, they were given free passes to the golf tournament along with a box lunch.

Walters was an aspiring PGA Tour golfer when he was involved in a golf cart accident in 1974 and was paralyzed from the waist down.

He re-learned how to play golf, hitting shots from a makeshift sideways golf seat on a golf cart.

He now tours with his dog, Bucky, performing his routine.

It included hitting a ball off a yo-yo and using a gavel on the bottom of a shaft rather than a club. His finale, which we liked the best, was called the "machine gun trick." There, his assistant set up two golf shafts, tilted them down and set a cardboard base.

He then rolled five balls in a row down the shaft onto the cardboard and Walters teed off.

Walters is one of 11 honorary PGA Tour members. The exclusive group includes three former Presidents: Gerald Ford, Dwight D. Eisenhower and George H.W. Bush.

Walters also was awarded the Distinguished Service Award, which has been handed out to Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer, among others.

Tweet of the day

"I'd like to thank everyone for their support this week. You've all been amazing. Just beaten by the better player today. #onwardsandupwards."

Shane Lowry (@ShaneLowryGolf). Lowry, the No. 64 overall seed, advanced to the third round but was beaten by Graeme McDowell 3 and 2.

Quotable

"Well, that's the wrong hole."

NBC announcer Dan Hicks, a Sabino High grad, after Graeme McDowell's chip on the 15th hole landed on a sprinkler head outside the green.

Cacti on the course - beware

We saw at least two golfers on Saturday picking cactus needles out of their skin.

The first was Robert Garrigus, who was plucking them from his left arm on the 10th hole. Later in the day, Steve Stricker, on the 11th hole, ran into the same problem.

Stricker was pricked on the back of his leg and spent a few minutes getting the needles out.

Both players were in the desert because of errant shots. The lesson here: Keep the ball on the fairway.

Amazin' Americans

Five Americans - Robert Garrigus, Matt Kuchar, Webb Simpson, Hunter Mahan and Steve Stricker - played in Saturday's quarterfinals.

It's the first time in 10 years that many have made it through.

Tiger Woods, Scott Hoch, Jay Haas, David Toms and Jerry Kelly made it in 2003.

A quick look back at how Americans have fared in that span:

Year Americans in quarters

2012 Three

2011 Four

2010 Two

2009 Two

2008 Four

2007 One

2006 Four

2005 Three

2004 Four

The big number

7,791

Total yardage at The Golf Club at Dove Mountain, the longest course on the PGA Tour.

Another quotable

"It's not in Puerto Rico or Mexico. This is a World Golf Championship, and it's all good things."

Robert Garrigus, on the confidence he'll carry from advancing to the quarterfinals. Garrigus lost to Kuchar 3 and 2.

On StarNet: Recap the week of golf at Dove Mountain at azstarnet.com/sports/golf

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