, Port Arthur, Texas


July 23, 2013

West golf notepad: Jackson wastes no time tackling The Palms

PORT ARTHUR — Bryan Jackson was literally on the grounds Monday at The Palms at Pleasure Island, jumping head first into his new job as superintendent at both The Palms and Belle Oaks Golf Club for the Port Arthur Renaissance group.

    “I spent the whole day out there, a lot of it on my hands and knees looking for sprinkler heads around the greens on the front nine,” Jackson said. “The good news is I found them all. Now I’ve got to do the same thing on the back nine. Man, there is a major task ahead of us out here. But I am so excited about where we’re headed.”

    There’s been quite a bit of good news for Jackson of late, although that could be tempered somewhat by the news he gets in late August after chemo treatments have been completed for his latest battle with cancer. Radiation has helped relieve a problem spot in his back, but the bigger issue is in areas at the top of his diaphragm, below his right lung and on his fifth rib on the right side.

    “For the most part, I’m doing pretty well,” he said on Tuesday. “I have good days and bad days. After working in the sun most of the day Monday, I got to feeling pretty queasy. But I woke up feeling great today. Dealing with chemo can just be crazy. But I have a lot of people pulling for me and praying for me and that’s helping me stay upbeat and positive.”

    Helping to uplift his spirits is how quickly the Port Arthur Sertoma Club’s Aug. 2 Bryan Jackson Benefit Tournament filled up. Babe Zaharias pro Ed Campbell, who is spearheading the event, said Tuesday that he’s well over the 36-team limit and is putting late comers on a waiting list. That’ a rarity for a tournament in Southeast Texas these days.

    All proceeds from the tournament will go toward helping offset Jackson’s mounting medical bills. In addition to money brought in from entry fees, revenue will be generated from the auctioning of a golf bag used by Chris Stroud on the PGA Tour, and raffle items that include a diamond pendant valued at $3,500 from Dana’s Custom Jewelry, a Crawfish Cooker valued at $1,000 and a Callaway tour golf bag valued at $400.

    Additional proceeds are expected from a silent auction and hole signs. Anyone interested in bidding on the Stroud golf bag should call Campbell at 722-8286. Campbell also requests that anyone wishing to donate an item for the silent auction phone him.

    One of the interesting dynamics of the tournament is the fact it’s taking place less than two weeks after the Renaissance Group, which has no ties to the recently closed Renaissance Hospital in Groves, took over the operation of Belle Oaks from Jerry Braxton and Bryan Phelps. Braxton and Phelps, as they did in the past, were waiving all play and cart fees to maximize tournament revenue.

    Renaissance, as you would expect, quickly agreed to do the same thing.

    Jackson, meanwhile, is totally focused on important projects at The Palms like spraying, getting the greens ready to sprig and having the watering system up and running as soon as possible. The plan is for Champions Turf Farms out of Houston to be on site in August to get started on planting the greens.

    “The greens are the top priority,” Jackson said. “It’s important for them to be able to mature through the winter.”

    Renaissance had originally hoped to have The Palms ready for play by mid November. Numerous roadblocks have made that less and less likely.

    “I just don’t think it’s realistic,” Jackson said. “The worst thing we can do is open too early. That happened out there in the beginning. I was pushed to open the course before it was ready and it opened in mediocre shape. I think next spring is a lot more practical. I just think it’s so important to do this right. This golf course can be a real showpiece for Southeast Texas.”

    CHIP SHOTS: His fourth top 10 finish of the year in the Sanderson Farms Championship earned Chris Stroud $75,000 and moved him from No. 36 to No. 34 in Fed Ex Cup points. But he actually dropped from No. 37 to No. 38 on the money list because of bigger winnings of other players in the British Open. Stroud is playing in this week’s Canadian Open, then is taking next week off and may be at Belle Oaks to play a role in the Jackson fundraising tournament . . . Karlei Hemler, who will be a freshman at PN-G this fall, ran away from the field in Girls 12-14 at the Mizuno/USSSA Junior National golf Championship last week. Hemler shot rounds of 83-77-78 for a 54-hole total of 238 over Champions Gate in Orlando, Fla . . . Jarrod Brown of Groves fired an even par 72 to Monday to win Boys 16-18 in the Southern Texas PGA Junior Tour event at Belle Oaks Monday. Two of Brown’s former PN-G teammates, Tyler Rawson and Brandon Soileau, and Lumberton’s Jeff Rountree tied for second with 73s. Other winners included Tyler Ford of Lumberton (74 in Boys 13-15), Mattie Griffin of Beach City (76 in Girls 16-18) and Kassidy Chance of Magnolia (90 in Girls 13-15) . . . Charles Huckaby of Port Neches scored a rare eagle 2 on the par 4, 18th at Babe Zaharias. Huckaby holed his second shot from 75 yards with an 8-iron. Witnesses were Cody Metts, Ryan Thompson and Thomas Lemire . . . In the Senior 50 Plus Game at Babe Zaharias, played in a two-ball format, the team of Jim Mercer, Larry Johnson, Gene Hardy and Pete Reobroi won with minus 2. The back was won in minus two by the foursome of Tony Trevino, Ron Theriot, Alex Espinosa and Gene Noble . . . The Babe Zaharias DogFight was played in a flighted two-man scramble. Steve Picou-Adam Noel won 1st Flight with a 68, Rick Pritchett-Jim Cooper prevailed in 2nd Flight with a 73 and Harry Green-Paul Bourgeous took 3rd Flight with a 75. Closest to the pin winners were Noel (No. 2), Don MacNeil (No. 7), Picou (No. 12) and Larry Johnson (No. 15) . . . The Senior Game at The Babe was also played in a two-person scramble. Rick Pritchett-Harrell Guidry won 1st Flight with a 67, there was a tie between Roger Baumer-Larry Rogers and Bob Byerly-Charles Leard with 73s in 2nd Flight and Guy Van Cleave-Ben Thornton captured 3rd Flight with a 77. Closest to the pin winners were Bob Moore (No. 2), Robert Lynch (No. 7), Baumer (No. 12) and Guidry (No. 15) . . . The Super Saturday Game at The Babe was played in a 2-ball format. On the front, the team of Craig Fontenot, Alex Espinoza, Ivory Hatch and Charles Leard won with minus 4. On the back, Adam Noel, Gene Rountree, Cole Lee and Steve Cameron finished first with minus 2 . . . Rufus Mier finished pus 5 to win the Friday Seniors at Belle Oaks. Jimmy Jackson placed second at plus 4 and Ron Somerville was third at plus 3. Jackson was the closest to the pin winner on No. 15/

    Golf news should be e-mailed to or faxed to 724-6854.










Text Only
  • Trophy stab 1.jpg WEST COLUMN: Bum Phillips trophy an impressive piece of work

    There was lots of excitement around the Port Arthur News this week, with the long-awaited delivery of the magnificent Bum Phillips trophy that will be presented annually to the winner of the Nederland-Port Neches-Groves football game.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • Ned 13U Babe Ruth wins

    It was a much better day Saturday for the Nederland 13U Babe Ruth team compared to Friday.

    July 26, 2014

  • MOORE COLUMN: Flounder dream started in Bridge City

    The first flounder that grabbed my attention lived in what is now the Lower Neches Wildlife Management Area in Bridge City. 

    July 26, 2014

  • ESTRADA COLUMN: PED update /Key injuries with contrasting outcomes

    The results of Saturday night’s UFC on Fox: Lawler vs. Brown event were not available as of the time of this writing. It will be covered in a future column.

    July 26, 2014

  • TODORA COLUMN: Hermsen rattles racks in Monday Seniors League at Max Bowl

    Mondays Seniors League had some nice scores this past week. Rick Hermsen started with a 263, finished with a 270 and fit in a 212 in the middle for a nice 745.

    July 26, 2014

  • Nederland 13U Babe Ruth loses 9-0

    The Nederland 13U Babe Ruth team lost 9-0 Friday to Bryant.

    July 25, 2014

  • Bassmaster Elites are coming back

    The Bassmaster Elite Series returns to Southeast Texas in March 2015 to fish out of Orange.
    The announcement was made last week, ahead of Bassmaster’s official tournament schedule announcement and the buzz is already strong in Southeast Texas and beyond.
    I was in Orlando, Fla. attending the ICAST (fishing trade) show and talked with a number of top anglers including Kevin VanDam, Mike Iaconelli and Shaw Grigsby who said it was no surprise they would return considering the massive turnout for the weigh-ins and that the area welcomed them in a very special way.
    It’s far too early to speculate anything like who the top contenders will be or how the fishing will be but there are some things to keep in mind and to look for over the next few months and into the event itself.
    • Prefishing-There is a pre-fishing cutoff that usually extends to right before the Bassmaster Classic and I fully expect most of the anglers in the Elites to come back and prefish.
    Last go-round probably 2/3 of the field fished the area but this time I expect that to be just about everyone. Many of the anglers that did not pre-fish told me they expected to have a lot of water to fish but the sheer volume and diversity was almost overwhelming.
    Beginning probably in the early fall we will see many anglers fishing local waters to get a better idea on how to approach the area.
    • East to West Runs-The Elite anglers fished far and wide but I expect even more running next go-round. After launching from the Simmons Drive Boat Ramp in Orange angler Bill Lowen ran down the Intracoastal, across Galveston Bay and fished in the Clear Lake area and placed in the top 12. The more adventurous anglers will try super long runs, in my opinion, even longer than last time to try and score on big fish. The Intracoastal Canal system makes that possible.
    • Sabine River -Very few of the anglers actually fished in the Sabine River despite the event being called the “Sabine River Challenge”. I think that will change with more anglers running as far north as they can to find pockets of fish that receive little pressure and perhaps a four or five-pounder to push them over the top.
    • Bigger Turnout-Last year some 34,000 people attended the event which set a Bassmaster record for an Elite event.
     It was broken a couple of weeks later in New York but I fully expect the 2015 tournament to draw 40,000 plus. The reason they are coming back is not for the stellar fishing because while we have lots of bass, everyone knows our fishery cannot compare to Toledo Bend for example.
    The support from the public however was amazing and that is what is bringing the top anglers on the planet to fish our area.
    We will have the very best coverage of the event beginning now and leading up to it with exclusive interviews with all of the top pros with not only their thoughts on the big event but with unique tips on how you can catch more fish.
    It’s an exciting time and I look forward to bringing you special coverage on a special event.
    (To contact Chester Moore, e-mail him at You can hear him on “Moore Outdoors” Fridays from 6-7 p.m. on Newstalk AM 560 KLVI or online at or watch him on “God’ Outdoors with Chester Moore” Saturdays at 10 a.m. on

    July 23, 2014

  • Mid County knocked out of tournament

    The Mid County 16-18 Babe Ruth squad’s run to the World Series is over.

    July 22, 2014

  • West golf notepad: West duo claims title in Texas Father-Son

    July 22, 2014

  • Mid County sets up championship series with Tri County

    The Southwest Regional Babe Ruth championship series is set and yes the hometown Mid County squad will be there to play.

    July 21, 2014

From the Fieldhouse blog