• JUNIOR GOLFERS WERE TESTED ON TUESDAY — Mother Nature was the great equalizer and protector on Tuesday.
The wind blew and blew and blew some more, leaving nearly 140 golfers shaking their heads and holding on to their hats and visors during the first round of the Kansas Junior Amateur Tournament at Turkey Creek.
Saturday was a harbinger of things to come as the wind picked up in intensity and continued on Sunday and Monday. There was no letup on Tuesday, if anything it was stronger.
I had been asked on Monday what I thought the low score would be for Tuesday since I play the course as much as anybody around. Knowing the talent in the field, I thought 67 was there for the getting.
But while the par-70 was challenged, it was not achieved. Three golfers shot rounds of 71 to share the lead.
McPherson’s Jacob Lackey put himself in good position with a 75 and remarked to me that conditions were as tough as he’s ever seen, when you factored in the wind and speed of the greens. The Turkey Creek Turf Team did a great job with the course set-up and moved the tees up on Nos. 4 and 16 since those holes played into the howling wind and over water.
I spent a few hours at the tournament and was impressed with the positive reaction that Turkey Creek was receiving. I heard many people comment about the pristine shape of the course and how the staff was hospitable. Kansas Golf Association officials expressed nothing but pleasure with the first day.
The wind is expected to lessen today and I have no doubt with the quality of golfers in the field, par will be broken by several players (this is being posted early in the morning before much of the field has teed off). These kids simply hit the ball too far and have too much skill around the greens not to attempt an assault on the 60s.
The boys’ side of the tournament will have a reduction in the field after today and the action Thursday begins at 7:30. The course will re-open to the public at 1:00 Thursday.
• ROYALS CAN MAKE UP GROUND — The Royals are 3-1 so far on their West Coast road trip, one where they could make up some ground.
The Royals have a game today with San Francisco, then start a four-game series on Thursday with the Mike Trout-less Los Angeles Angels.
Injuries have decimated the Royals’ starting staff. But since their 7-16 start, they have gone 22-18. The keys to the resurgence have been a revitalized offense, led by Eric Hosmer and Mike Moustakas. Both are having All-Star type seasons, though Hosmer is still a bit light in the homer department. However, both are pending free agents and I believe Hosmer has a foot out the door. Moustakas, with the right deal, might be back, but both are going to be hot items at the trade deadline.
• For those regular readers of this website, I will be gone starting Thursday afternoon for my annual golf tournament in my hometown of Independence. Hopefully I’ll be back on Monday.