Gallagher column: Eidson reels in another win
So, how will Rowan Amateur champion Ronnie Eidson celebrate Sunday’s 2-up victory over David Boger at Corbin Hills Golf Club?
“I’m going fishing,” he announced.
He deserves to. After winning the 30th event, named after former Post sports editor Horace Billings, maybe it’s time for a little relaxation in his bass boat. It hasn’t been out in the water but twice all summer.
Eidson has been too busy to fish. Four days a week, the 55-year-old golf addict has been on a course somewhere, hitting 100 to 200 balls.
It has paid off. Eidson is 2-for-2 in his quest for the Rowan County Triple Crown. He recently won the Rowan Masters tournament at the Warrior Golf Club, and now this. That leaves the biggie ó the Labor Day tournament at the Country Club of Salisbury.
But don’t worry about Eidson feeling any heat to win his third in a row.
“Aw, I don’t feel pressure playing this,” he chuckled as beads of sweat rolled down his face. “I play for fun. If I play well, I play well. If I don’t, I don’t.”
Count on Eidson playing well come September. He has emerged as one of the county’s best golfers over the past few years. And believe this, there are some good ones around. He had to beat big names Mallory McDaniel, Gary Miller and Glenn Dixon in the three matches leading up to the championship round.
“Anybody can beat you on a given day,” Eidson said. “You’ve got to get the breaks. And I’ve been lucky. I’ve gotten the breaks.”
Eidson’s humble “aw-shucks” approach endears him to other local golfers. Not taking himself too seriously comes from getting involved in the game later than most. He didn’t start whacking the little white ball around until the age of 30.
“I was playing a lot of softball,” Eidson laughed. “I had to work at (golf) quite a bit. I wanted to put a lot of softball swing into it. That doesn’t work so well.”
“And so many of my friends were playing golf, I eventually had to join the crowd.”
He became a straight shooter and a good putter.
“I don’t miss a lot of fairways,” Eidson noted. “I put a lot of time in putting.”
Twenty-five years after he started picking up the clubs on a regular basis, he has joined another crowd ó the elite group of Rowan County golfers like Miller and McDaniel, both Dorsetts ó Keith and Michael, the Dixons, Stan Honeycutt, Randy Bingham, Dusty Holder, Richard Cobb … the list goes on and on.
How does Eidson feel about being in the elite class of local golfers? Why, he downplays it, of course.
“I don’t feel like I’m in the elite group,” he said. “I feel I’ve just had a couple of good weeks of play.”
Good enough that Eidson is putting down the clubs for a while. There’s a fishing pole and a bass boat waiting for him.
Contact Ronnie Gallagher at 704-797-4287 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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