First Posted: 4/8/2012
Steve Chabala joined an elite group on Saturday, March 24 when he hit a hole-in-one at Fox Hill Country Club in Exeter.
Using an 8-iron on the course’s 11th hole, the Shavertown resident, playing alongside club member Bob Alesczyk and Carl Dorbad, sent the ball sailing 110 yards directly into the hole.
“It was great,” said Chabala.
“I think all golfers would like to one day hit a hole-in-one. I had a couple close calls in the past, but this was my first one. I couldn’t believe it.”
Chabala didn’t realize the ball had gone in the hole until he made it to the green and saw it himself.
“I couldn’t see (the ball) from the tee. I actually thought it went off the green. Carl said he thought it went in,” said Chabala.
Chabala and his friends were excited when they arrived at the green and realized what he had done and, with good reason, according to Fox Hill’s golf pro Francis Hayes.
“It’s very rare. I forget what the odds are, but I’m sure…the odds are a thousand to one, a million to one. It’s almost like hitting the lottery,” said Hayes.
Hayes said Chabala’s was the club’s first hole-in-one of the season, and there’s no way of predicting whether or not it will be the only one this year.
“It varies from year to year,” said Hayes. “One year, we had one man who had three in one year; the next year we didn’t have any.”
Hayes himself has made a hole-in-one twice, once 15 years ago and then again two years ago. He said luck played a big part in making both of them, as it does for any golfer. He explained that a golfer needs to hit a good shot, but more than that, luck needs to be on their side to make a hole-in-one.
Luck was on Chabala’s side in late March, and Hayes said it’s a moment of which he should be proud.
“There are some people who play their whole career, 40 years, and don’t make any. It’s amazing,” said Hayes.
Chabala, who began playing golf 26 years ago, gets out to the golf course about once a week, and understands how amazing it is, but isn’t ruling out the idea of it happening again.
“I’m hopeful I could do it again,” said Chabla.