, Port Arthur, Texas


July 30, 2013

West golf notepad: Stroud dealing with injury to left heel

PORT ARTHUR —     A somewhat baffling injury to the area of his left heel has altered Chris Stroud’s plans to take part in the Port Arthur Sertoma Club Bryan Jackson Benefit Tournament Friday, as well as his preparation for next week’s PGA Championship. Stroud, who nearly withdrew before missing the cut at last week’s Canadian Open, has been told by PGA Tour medical personnel to ice the foot on a regular basis and kept weight off of it as much as possible.

    “What’s weird is I really don’t know how it happened,” he said. “On our vacation to Destin, Fla., a couple of weeks ago, I spent a lot of time wearing flip flops and the center of my left foot started hurting. Then I played the next week in Mississippi and it was really wet and squishy and it kept bothering me. I’ve been walking with a limp for a couple of weeks. It was really throbbing on Monday. It hurts to push back into that part of the heel. It feels like somebody is sticking a knife in there.

    “The tour guys last week in Canada checked me out and said it’s nothing serious, that nothing is torn, but it’s painful to walk on. They told me to use plenty of ice and stay off the foot as much as possible. They said to give it five or six days of complete rest, that if you want to be 100 percent don’t keep irritating it. At this point, I’m looking at going to Sea Island, Ga., on Saturday for a couple of days preparation, then I’ll head up to the PGA.

    “I’m disappointed I won’t be able to make it over for Bryan’s tournament. I think a lot of him and am praying for his recovery.”

    Stroud, who is having the best season of professional career, had made seven consecutive cuts before missing by two shots in the Canadian Open. He’s posted four tops 10s in his last 10 starts, a run that sent him soaring to 40th on the money list  ($1,477,809.50) and to 39th in Fed Ex Cup points.

    With the PGA Championship coming up, followed shortly thereafter by the Fed Ex playoffs, he’s in position to have a truly special season. Among the carrots still dangling are a spot in the Masters if he finishes in the final top 30 in Fed Ex Cup points.

    It would be truly unfortunate if he gets tripped up by what seems to be a minor injury.

    CHIP SHOTS: PN-G’s Braden Bailey continued to build on an impressive resume with a strong showing in last week’s David Toms AJGA tournament in Shreveport last week. After stumbling to a 78 in the first round, Bailey closed 73-68 to finish at 219 and tie for fourth. His 141 over the final 36 holes beat everybody in the field, and his closing 68 was the second low round of the day. In four AJGA events this year, the PN-G junior has placed 4th, 5th, 6th and T27. Next big event for Bailey — the Texas State Junior Championship — starts today at Horseshoe Bay . . . In the final round of Texas 4A state championship this past May in Austin, Bailey was paired with Scottie Scheffler of Dallas High Park. Scheffler, who will be a senior this year, fired a final-round 64, highlighted by a hole-in-one, to win his second consecutive 4A individual title and lead the Scots to a second straight team title. Bailey shot 68 and finished T7. Last week, while Bailey was playing well in Shreveport, Scheffler won the USGA Junior Amateur in Truckee, Calif. At the rate Bailey’s game is improving, it’s not hard to imagine those two battling for the 4A championship next spring . . . Bayou Din assistant pro John Allen committed the cardinal sin as far as a hole in one last week. Allen recorded his second ace while playing alone. He sank a 4-iron on the 203-yard, 8th hole on the Links Course. Oh, well, he didn’t have to spend a lot of money buying drinks . . . All systems are go for the Sertoma Club Bryan Jackson Benefit Friday at Belle Oaks. The 36-team field for the 3-man scramble has been filled for a couple of weeks, raffle tickets are selling well and those who participate are guaranteed to have plenty to eat and drink throughout the day. Among the latest collectibles for the post-tournament auction are a football autographed by Texas A&M’s Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel and a football signed by Houston Texans defensive coordinator Wade Phillips. The prize auction item is an autographed PGA Tour golf bag from Chris Stroud. Anyone who can’t be at Belle Oaks for the live auction Friday afternoon, can place a bid on Stroud’s bag by calling Babe Zaharias pro Ed Campbell at 722-8286 . . .  Hunter Huff of Nederland shot 77, then won a sudden death playoff with Jarrod Brown of Groves to take Boys 16-18 in the Southern Texas PGA Junior Tour stop at Wildwood. Thaine Tillie of Nederland finished a stroke back at 78. Other winners were Seth Morgan of Lumberton, who shot his first ever under par round of 71 in Boys 13-15, Lauren Hale of Buna (108 in Girls 16-18) and Railie Guidry of Groves (113 in Girls 13-15) . . . The team of Joe Gongora, Don MacNeil, Harry Green and Malcom Tiller won the Babe Zaharias DogFight with 21 points. Second with 18 points was the team of Steve Picou, Randy Becker, Jim Cooper and James Moore. Closest to the hole winners were Richard Sibley (No. 2), Adam Noel (No. 7) and Picou (No. 15) . . . The Senior Game at The Babe, played in a two-ball handicapped format, saw the team of Don MacNeil, Malcolm Tiller, Keith Rocha and Ben Thornton win with 14 points. On the back, the team of Rick Pritchett, Paul Duplantis, Paul Bourgeois and Bill Jones prevailed with 13 points. Closest to the pin winners were Mark Petry (No. 2), Gene Noble (No. 7), and Larry Rogers (No. 12, No. 15) . . . The Super Saturday Game at The Babe was played in a two-ball format. The foursome  of Brett Yellot, Gene Rountree, Thad Borne and Richard Sibley swept, posting minus 5 on the front and minus 6 on the back . . . In the Senior 50 Plus Game at The Babe, also played in a two-ball format, the team of Bill Hammond, Larry Johnson, Billy Thillet and Pete Reobroi took the front in minus 7. On the back, minus 4 won for the team of Steve Picou, Ricky Melancon, Alex Espinosa and Marc Petry . . . Glenn LeBlanc finished plus 4 to win the Monday Seniors at Belle Oaks. Billy Taylor was second at plus 2 and Larry Guidry finished third at minus 1. In the Friday Seniors at Belle Oaks, Twyman Ash finished at plus 5. Ron Somerville was second at plus 4, followed by Barry Jackson and Rufus Mier at plus 3. Taylor won closest to the pin on No. 8.

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