Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Area Golf Notebook; McKay Delivers Hardest Kind of Ace

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Area Golf Notebook; McKay Delivers Hardest Kind of Ace

Article excerpt

Byline: Garry Smits

Matt McKay is young and strong, can drive a golf ball more than 300 yards and stood on the eighth tee of the Mayport Naval Station's Windy Harbor Golf Course on April 16 with a strong wind behind him.

That perfect storm resulted in one of golf's rare feats: a hole-in-one on a par-4.

McKay, 25, aced the 335-yard hole with his Ping G30 driver and a Taylor Made Project A ball that he had found on the edge of a water hazard three holes before.

Initially, McKay and his playing partners thought he had knocked his ball into the water left of the green. After expecting the worst and looking for the ball for several minutes, McKay decided to consider that the best had happened and walked over to the hole.

His ball lay nestled in the cup.

"I'm not sure you can print what I said next," said McKay, a former college baseball player and Indiana native who is a certified fitness professional by the Titleist Performance Institute. "I threw my hat in the air and jumped up and down a little. Obviously, no one is expecting that, even if they can drive a par-4 green."

McKay shot 1-under-35 on the front nine and the group was rained out after that. The USGA recognizes holes-in-one for 9-hole rounds.

McKay had made one other hole-in-one in his life, in a more conventional manner - at a par-3 hole.

"All I wanted to do was get it close to the green," he said.

McKay is a 4-handicap who took up golf after his college baseball career stalled at Ava Maria College in Naples. He returned to his home state to get his degree in applied exercise and kinesiology.

LOBB WINS AREA SENIOR EVENT

John Lobb shot a tournament-low 67 in the final round at Windsor Parke last week to win the Jacksonville Area Golf Association Senior Championship at 4-under-par 212.

Lobb began the day one shot behind David Anthony (71), who finished 1-under 215. Mike Vallencourt (72) was third at 2-over and Mike Bodney (74) was fourth at 3-over.

Vallencourt won the senior net division at 7-under 209.

David Hawkins (68) won the 36-hole super-senior gross division by nine shots at 5-under 139. Brian Sachs (72) won the grand-senior division by four shots at 2-over 146. …

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