BELOIT—Many accomplished, experienced golfers can go a lifetime on the links without sinking a hole-in-one.
Beloit’s Mike Hutchinson has two in the past six weeks.
Hutchinson, 76, notched his recent ace on Sept. 14 on the 14th hole at Krueger-Haskell Golf Course. Witnessed by his golfing buddies Steve Ferger, Gordy Hirsch, Jerry Hoey and Dave Etringer, it was the third hole-in-one in Hutchinson’s career.
The first came several years back in Panama City, Fla., with Beloit native Tom Anderson looking on.
Hutchinson only picked up the game on a regular basis 10 years ago, and understands how rare his accomplishment is.
“Just the other day at the golf course, there was a fellow that I play with, who is a really good golfer and a one year older than me,” Hutchinson said. “And he was kidding around with, talking about how he had played his whole life without getting one, and here I am getting three in 10 years and two in six weeks. A lot of the guys around here have heard about it and are talking to me recently.”
The recent shot came with a three-wood, and Hutchinson said he was the last to find out.
“By now I know these holes pretty well,” Hutchinson said. “And on 14, I usually play a fade, which means I start it out on the left side and draw it in. I knew I hit it pretty good, but I didn’t think much of it. But one of the guys in my group said to the other one that he thought he saw the ball go in. So they called out to the guys playing next to us, and they wanted to check it out, too. So we all went down to the green and sure enough, it was in there.”
Hutchinson’s previous ace came in late July on the 17th, which Hutchinson said was his home course.
“I’ll play every once in a while elsewhere, but we really enjoy playing at Krueger,” Hutchinson said. “Growing up, I played basketball and baseball, with baseball being my favorite. I played that from Little League, all the way up through high school. I learned to play (golf) around high school (age), but I didn’t really start working at it until about 10 years ago. I’ve never had any lessons or anything. Just taught myself, and it’s worked out pretty good. I enjoy playing.”