The game of golf is brutal. It is a rage-inducing, mind-melting, often pointless endeavor. The only thing worse than a bad round of golf is hearing about someone else’s good round of golf.
So if you are among the countless ranks of weekend hackers, or if you’re just the jealous type, read no further.
You won’t want to hear about the tale of the Bensch sisters from Broken Arrow, Oklahoma.
Erica and Lindsey Bensch play golf for the University of Central Oklahoma. On November 9th, during a practice round at Kickingbird Golf Club in Edmond, Erica, a junior, and Lindsey, a freshman, each scored a hole-in-one. Two sisters, two aces.
It happened for Erica on the 3rd hole, a 124-yard par 3. The 20-year old stepped to the tee and hit a routine gap wedge.
“When it was in the air, my coach was hollering, ‘That’s in! That’s in!’, but I wasn’t sure,” recalls Erica.
Michael Bond is the UCO women’s golf coach and he is not to be doubted. The ball landed on the green, took one hop and rolled straight home.
“It was shock,” said Erica. “I wasn’t expecting it. My heart started racing, and a couple of guys lifted me up in the air. There were lots of high fives.”
The excitement had barely died down when little sis grabbed her 8-iron on the 11th tee. Lindsey, who already had a hole-in-one to her credit, remembered exactly what she was thinking as she sent the ball toward her target, 142 yards away.
“I just wanted to hit the green and give myself a chance to make birdie.”
Lindsey’s ball fell five feet short of the pin, and hopped right into the cup. Who needs birdies?
“There was a huge celebration,” said the 19-year old Lindsey. “Everyone was yelling and I did a victory dance.”
“A lot of arm movements,” Lindsey explained. “I looked good.”
If you’re reading this, I know what you’re thinking. You’ve been taking chunks of turf out of tee boxes for eons, and never come close to a hole-in-one. That’s because, according to Golf Digest, the odds of an average golfer scoring an ace are roughly 1 in 12,750. Golf Digest also hired expert mathematician Francis Scheid who puts it this way: If you play 1,000 rounds of golf in your lifetime, you have about a 20% chance of hitting a hole-in-one and achieving golf’s holy grail.
“It didn’t sink in at first,” Lindsey said. “It wasn’t until a couple of days later that I realized how big of a deal it is.”
So are the Bensch sisters just that lucky or that good? Neither.
“I’m not lucky,” said Erica. “I’m blessed more than anything. Our relationship with God is the most important thing to both of us, and we just feel blessed.”
You can be jealous all you want, you can wrap your 6-iron around an oak tree, and you can ask, “when is it my turn?” The fact is this amazing feat couldn’t have happened to a nicer set of sisters. These are two young athletes with priorities in line and a healthy perspective. Refreshing isn’t it?
Oh, and there’s also another Bensch sister who’s still in high school. Her name is Katie, and she has a hole-in-one too. All that money spent on balls and custom clubs, when maybe all it takes to get a hole-in-one is the right last name.
Erica and Lindsey say they’d love to play on the LPGA tour and own their own course one day. Maybe they’ll name the club something like, “The Bensch Mark.” Sure sounds like a lucky…er, blessed… place to a play a round.