November 3, 2023 at 11:45 a.m.
Dodge-Point Golfers Shoot Their Age.
Pictured here are 8 out of 11 golfers at Dodge-Point Country Club who shot their age or better this past golf season. Left to right are: Jerry Schlimgen (78), Bobby Clark (77), Denny Rundle (74), Bill Fisher (76), Joe Meudt (75), Terry Tredinnik (74), Bruce Daggett (73), and Dale Chellevold (73). Missing are Charlie O’Rourke (80), Pete Botts and Tom Johnston (both 74).
By John Dalton
To quote the late, great Arnold Palmer, “Golf is deceptively simple and endlessly complicated. It satisfies the soul and frustrates the intellect. It is at the same time rewarding and maddening. It is without doubt the greatest game mankind has ever invented.”
Talk to anyone who plays the game and I think they would all agree with that statement. There is nothing more satisfying than making a birdie on one hole, only to knock one in the water on the next hole and make double bogey. One step forward, two steps back. Thus, rewarding and maddening!
Sitting at the 19th hole, golfers will tell you many memorable moment’s they’ve had playing the game through the years. They will remember the 3-iron shot 30 years ago they hit for a tap in birdie to win a match, but can’t remember something they did two days ago.
So, breaking 90, 80, or 70 for the first time is a big deal in golf! Making a hole-in-one, or scoring an eagle are other memorable examples most golfers never forget. But one moment that few attain, is shooting an 18-hole score equal to or less than one’s age on a regulation, full-length, 18-hole course. As comedian Bob Hope once said, “I’ll shoot my age if I have to live to be 105!”
At Dodge Point Country Club this past 2023 golf season, 11 members reached this milestone, (and others) which to say, is quite remarkable! As golf writer Lucius Riccio once wrote, “The rarity of this achievement is that it comes later in life, and it is to be savored.”
Bruce Daggett is 73 years old and he hit that milestone this past summer. And it wasn’t easy as he eyed down a 10 foot putt on the last hole to shoot a 73. “Yeah I knew I had to make the putt and it was nerve-wracking to say the least. But I just bared down and it rolled in!”
77 year old golfer Bobby Clark shot 77 this year as well, but was not aware of his age and score at the time. “I just realized it after the fact, which was probably a good thing or I may have missed the last putt!’
Because as a golfer, when just trying to make a must made, 3-foot putt to win a $2 Nassau against your buddies, the thinking and nerves seem to get in the way more often than not, making the putt more difficult!
But then there’s long time member Jerry Schlimgen who turned 78 this year who not only shot his age this past season but said, “I’ve shot my age at least once ever since I turned 70. That’s quite a feat!” This past year he shot 78 twice and 77 once saying that with his 77 he double bogeyed 17 and birdied 18 for the score.
Not only that, Schlimgen has had 4 holes-in-one in his lifetime as well, on four different courses. According to Golf Digest, an amateur golfer’s chance of an ace is 12,500 to 1! ‘But that’s just luck,’ said Schlimgen. Daggett agreed, ‘getting a ‘hole-in-one’ is an accident!”
Not to be outdone there’s Terry Tredinnik. He’s had 5 holes-in-one throughout his golf career! Who does that? I asked. “The hole-in-one I had on September 1st, 2018 during the Sunday Calcutta on hole 4 was the most rewarding. Not to mention the 8 Eagle 2’s on par fours over the years,” Tredinnik said.
For Tredinnick, those accomplishments alone are outstanding. As for shooting his age, “Last year I shot 73 on my 73rd birthday and this year when I was still 73. And when I turned 74 this year, I shot a 72,” he said. Does anyone see a trend here? The older these gentlemen get, the better their scores are becoming.
Now one caveat, all these guys play many rounds of golf in a year and their handicaps range from 10 to 15. Bill Fisher plays at least 80 rounds a year and he just turned 76 this past year. “But I’ve never had a hole-in-one in all the years I’ve been playing, but I shot 70 eleven times this year!”
3 people not in the photo definitely need mention as well. Charlie O’Rourke is 80 years old and more often than not either shoots his age or better on a consistent basis. Pete Botts and Tom Johnston, both 74, have shot their age or better this past season.
74 year old Denny Rundle plays so much he has a daily 12:26 tee time Monday – Friday! He, too, has had 3 career holes-in-one and this year shot even par 70 as well. He said, “so many guys shot their age this year I’m thinking of starting a ‘shoot your age’ tournament next summer.” So, stay tuned for that potential development.
Joe Meudt is 75 years old and this past summer shot a 73. Was he nervous coming down the stretch of his round? “I knew where I was at with my score and really didn’t feel any pressure standing on the 18th tee box,” he said.
And finally there’s Dale Chellevold who shot his age this past summer, a 73. “Everything was going good that day, particularly my short game,” he said. “I’ve never had a hole-in-one, but I did get an albatross (3 under par or double eagle) on the 15th hole at Deer Valley!” The funny thing about that is he had just purchased the 4 wood he hit it with that day from their golf shop. The odds of getting an albatross? According to the Professional Golf Association, those odds are about 1 in 6,000,000! Well done Dale!
As a golfer myself, I’ve had the privilege to play with most of these guys over the years. They are a great bunch of guys that share many stories and laughs, but when it comes down to their golf games, they are serious about it.
And it says a lot about them. To shoot your age, you have to be old, be in good shape, be healthy, and play a lot of golf. For those of us who haven’t shot their age yet, it could happen. Using another Bob Hope line, “I went to play golf to try and shoot my age, but I shot my weight instead!”
But as golf enthusiast Ben Berkley once wrote, “Fact is, that is the beauty of golf. No need to rush. Enjoy the fresh air, the beautiful lakes and flowers and pristine settings. Take it all in. Live for today. And remember, like your golf score, age is just a number.”
Congratulations gentlemen on all your golfing achievements through the years, and many, many more to come!