Better Newspaper Contest

2013 Award Winners

Hoosier State Press Association - The Indiana Publisher - Better Newspaper Contest

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 43 of 67

Division 4 Best Sports Commentary/Category 13 First place David Vantress The Goshen News Comments: Your style of writing is inviting to the reader to join in and share your story. Very well-done. Second place Brian Harmon Daily Reporter (Greenfield) Comments: Cheerleading article, spot on. I really like the way you take on subjects and do not back down. You write what others think, and your readers identify with that. Third place Bob Johnson Daily Journal (Franklin) Comments: Love the attack of an issue you are really concerned about. Did not try to justify the discrepancies. Best Editorial Cartoonist/Category 14 See Page 67 for all divisions. Page 44 An 80th birthday to remember By David Vantress The Goshen News For golfers, there's no greater high than achieving the Holy Grail of one of the most frustrating yet rewarding sports ever invented: A hole-in-one. Many of us – especially the garden-variety weekend hackers club, of which I consider myself a platinum member – labor our entire lives without achieving this particular piece of sports Nirvana. Others are good enough – or lucky enough, or some combination of both – to achieve the feat more than once. But most of us would be pleased as punch to do it once. Just once. Tom Yoder, the Goshen News' gardening columnist, has been playing golf since he was 22. He took up the sport in 1954. Yoder celebrated his 80th birthday with his usual Tuesday activity: A round of golf with friends. Yoder is a member of a group of golfers who call themselves the "Sodbusters." The group hits a different local course each Tuesday. As birthdays go, Yoder's 80th will be a memorable one: He finally got that elusive ace. It came on the par-3, 105-yard fourth hole at Juday Creek Golf Course in Granger. Yoder recorded the hole-in-one with a sand wedge. At first glance, Yoder thought he had overshot the green. But a walk over the green – and a glance into the cup by one of Yoder's playing partners that day – revealed the truth. "There it was, right there in the cup," Yoder said earlier this week. "I couldn't believe it." But, believe it Yoder did. After all, the proof was right there in front of his eyes. Earl Taylor of Goshen and Van Young of Syracuse were witnesses. Yoder plays 3-4 times a week, including the regular Tuesday Sodbusters outings. And, like many other golfers, Yoder's hole-in-one is the payoff for a lifetime of effort. "I've been close a few times," Yoder said. "A foot or two here and there." For many of us, "It was THAT close"– the golfer's equivalent of the fisherman's "It was THIS big" – has to suffice. Not so any more for Tom. I've had two near misses: A 7-iron on the par-3 15th hole at Noble Hawk Golf Links in Kendallville in late October 2007, that cleared the water and landed about two feet from the cup. I absorbed the disappointment quickly and tapped in for my first-ever birdie on a par-3. My second brush with duffer golf heaven came on a recent trip to Treetops, a northern Michigan golf resort, with a sportswriter friend – someone who's about at my same level when it comes to golf skills, or the lack thereof. For us, good shots are something to be celebrated with a fist bump, a highfive, or – on extremely rare occasions – the double high-five combined with that hip-bump thing basketball players seem to be fond of these days. It had been nearly five years since my last decent par-3 tee shot, so I guess I was due for another one. A 180-yard 8-iron landed about a foot from the cup – good for a tap-in for birdie, and yes, the double high-five and hip bump – the latter part of which we both regretted immediately, and thankfully was not recorded for posterity. Those are the moments that keep the average amateur golfer coming back for more. Congratulations, Tom, on a truly great feat – and may the golf gods keep smiling on you.

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of Better Newspaper Contest - 2013 Award Winners