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An American Comeback Story

19 April 2019 Views From The Booth Sports

Winchester Printers

Greetings From The Booth!

As we head into the Easter weekend, we find Shenandoah University baseball at 19-10, which by Hornet standards, is somewhat of an off-year. It says a lot about Kevin Anderson’s program (dynasty) that a 19-10 year is “down.” This year, SU features a lot of young arms who will only get better.

As of this writing, Women’s lacrosse is having an excellent season, and softball is waiting to see if they’re in the ODAC tournament.

This week I finally got to play my first round of golf of the year, as I strolled around the Rock Course at Rock Harbor Golf Club. I didn’t get to hit a bucket of balls on the range or stroke a few putts on the practice green, so my playing partner and I drove right to the first tee, where I hit the driver right down the middle, leaving only a short iron to the green. So much for warming up.

I always seem to get worse as the year goes on. I’m not sure why that is. Shouldn’t it be the other way around? My theory is that the bar of expectation is low early in the season, so there’s less pressure (self-induced) to post a good score. You don’t expect to, so you’re more relaxed. The beauty of the uncluttered mind.

Anyway, as I was playing my round of golf and my knees were popping and creaking and my back was tightening up, I started thinking about what Tiger Woods accomplished last Sunday by winning The Masters at age 43.

When I’m wrong, I’ll tell you I’m wrong. I was one of the many who thought Tiger would never win another Major tournament. I am a long-time Jack Nicklaus fan and still think his 18 Majors will never be touched. But after Sunday’s incredible win by Woods, I’m not 100 percent sure. Jack won his last Major at age 46 and Tom Watson was a short putt away from winning one in his 50’s.

Like millions, I was glued to the Masters all day on Sunday for one of the most compelling comeback stories not just in golf, but in all of sports. I’ve never cheered for Tiger much, but even I was caught up in this incredible comeback story. I have to admit that I even got a little emotional when Tiger sunk the short putt to win his fifth green jacket.

We Americans love our “hero story arcs”, don’t we? We put our sports heroes on pedestals so high that most of us would get nosebleed. Then when personal troubles and physical ailments happen, we knock them down, and then root for them to fight their way back to the top.

Tiger Woods’ fall from grace is well documented. That was self-inflicted. But I’m not sure how many of us realize that just recently, Tiger had trouble simply attending the Champion’s Dinner at Augusta, much less playing a competitive round of golf. Look at his complete list of injuries on the PGA website and you’ll see MCL, ACL, 4 back surguries, neck issues, and the list goes on. What happened Sunday is nothing short of miraculous.

Who knows if Tiger Woods will win another major? Let’s just put the 2019 Masters in a time capsule and enjoy it for what it is: A True American Comeback Story for the ages.

Until next time, FORE! And GO HORNETS!


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