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From the Bunker: Cole continues dominance of Calhoun County Tour

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Ty Cole watches his tee shot while playing the 2nd hole during the second round of the 2019 Sunny King Golf Classic at Cider Ridge Golf Course. (Photo by Trent Penny/The Anniston Star)

Last week the focus was on the incredible run of Gary Wigington over the last 12 years on the Calhoun County Golf Tour. This week we will talk about the dominance of Ty Cole over the last nine years.

Cole came upon the Tour in 2013 with a win at the Calhoun County Tournament and a win at Cane Creek. He only had one win — at Silver Lakes — in 2014, but began to dominate the Tour starting in 2015 with three victories. He added three more in 2016 and 2021. He had four victories in 2018 and five in 2019. He has a total of 24 victories all-time and has won Player-of-the-Year a record five times in nine years.

All this has been done on a Tour that normally has six to seven tournaments a year, and I can not count the number of times he has placed second or third in an event. His name is usually the first name golfers find as scores are posted on the first day of the tournament. If he shoots 65, they all turn away and say it’s over, and it usually is.

Cole wears his feelings on his sleeve and is a joy to watch. He booms his drives and when they trickle off to the left and get into trouble, he is a master with that second shot into the green. I have seen him go over, under and through trees with remarkable second shots and carve out birdies and pars.

He plays with such intensity and when his concentration lapses that is when a bogey will pop up. However, he is at his best from that point and seems to really hone in on his game after that bogey. He very rarely gives up the lead and when he is playing with that chip on his shoulder, his game is something to behold.

I am a fan of dynasties and being able to win year-after-year, as it is always the toughest to repeat. Maintaining that level of concentration to keep on being great time after time is something that very few teams can do, let alone individuals. Cole is one of those guys that has maintained a tradition of greatness over the last nine years and is showing no signs of slowing down.

Phillips-Estes win at Pine Hill

The team of Jimbo Phillips and Charlie Estes put together a round of 61 and took first place in the monthly senior two-man tournament at Pine Hill this week. The team of Minton/Toland fired a 62 to place second, while the team of Collins/Britt placed third with a score of 63.

R. Carter and D. Curvin won a three-way tie-breaker to take first prize in the first flight with a round of 69. The team of S. Rice/J. Vera was second and M. Miller/P.K. placed third.

The team of Calisle/Crews won a three-way tie-breaker to claim first prize in the second flight. The team of L. Carter/D. Robertson was second and Naramore/Howell was third. They all shot 73.

The next scramble is Dec. 20.

Toys for Kids

One of the great traditions in Calhoun County is the Toys for Kids Golf Classic played out at Pine Hill Country Club. The event will be held Saturday, Dec. 4, beginning at 9 a.m. The entry fee is $65 plus one unwrapped toy. The toys go to area children for Christmas.

Usually there are close to 144 players, which means 144 or more toys. Sponsorship opportunities are open as well, just contact the clubhouse.

The format is a four-person blind-draw scramble (A-B-C-D) and the first 144 players who sign up will be eligible to play.

Course news

Anniston Country Club (256-237-8412): There is a dogfight every Saturday and Sunday.

Anniston Municipal, “The Hill” (256-231-7631): A round of golf, if you walk, is only $10 during the week and $12 on weekends. Add $14 for 18 holes if you want a cart. There is a special rate in place on Mondays and Tuesdays only — just $18 for all-day golf.

Cane Creek Golf Course (256-820-9174): There is a special rate in place from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Sunday as you can play 18 holes for just $20. Dogfights are taking place on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, with registration time at 9:30 a.m. and a tee time of 10 a.m. You are invited to join fellow seniors and enjoy a round of golf and a great meal from The Cane Creek Grill.

The next City of Anniston senior two-man scramble will be held Dec. 6. The cost is $31 and covers green fees, cart rental and lunch. Tee time is 10 a.m. You must be over 50 years old, and check-in time is 9:30 a.m.

Cider Ridge Country Club (256-831-7222): Veterans — retired and active — can play for just $20 plus tax on the last Tuesday of each month. There is a monthly senior two-person scramble using tee times on the fourth Monday of each month. The cost is $35 a player and includes golf, cart and prizes. There will be a four-man scramble Dec. 17, and a two-man senior scramble Nov. 22.

Pine Hill Country Club (256-237-2633): There are several dogfights each week at Pine Hill. They are at 10 a.m. Wednesday, noon Friday and 9 a.m. Saturday. The Parking Lot Gang hosts a scramble each Thursday at 11 a.m.

The team of Nick Ledbetter, Hunter Carr and Dalton Chandler shot 14-under par to win the Weaver High School Golf Team Tournament last week. Second place went to the team of Caleb Bowen, Kenny Okins and Sean David at 10-under par. Third place went to Justin Brown, Russ Montgomery and Steve Montgomery with a score of 8-under par.

Silver Lakes (256-892-3268): The first Tuesday of each month you can play golf at Silver Lakes for no green fees. You need to have a current RTJ Trail Card for this deal. The cart fee will be $20 if you take a cart. There is a two-man senior scramble the third Tuesday of each month.

The 2021 Bring Your Old Buddy Scramble at Silver Lakes will be hosted on the Mindbreaker and Backbreaker courses on Saturday, Dec. 4 and Sunday, Dec. 5.

Indian Oaks Golf Club (256-820-4030): Course rates are $20 for 18 holes and a cart on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. It is $15 for 18 holes and a cart on Wednesday. On Saturday and Sunday, the rate is $25 for 18 holes and a cart.

Indian Oaks is closed on Monday and open from 1 p.m. to dark Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. It is open all day on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.