Story and photo by Spc. Cody Campana
JTF Guantanamo Bay Public Affairs
Naval Station Guantanamo Bay held the GTMO Open Golf Tournament at the Lateral Hazard Golf Courseon May 4 and 5. The participants were charged a $35 participation fee for two rounds of golf, a cart rental for both days, a gift bag, and free range balls each morning.
Twenty-one residents of varying skill signed up for the individually scored tournament, which consisted of 18 holes of golf.
The Callaway scoring system used during the competition made the competition fierce, as it greatly helped less talented players compete with the seasoned golfing veterans.
“The Calloway rules are whatever you shoot, you take about five holes from it,” The Lateral Hazard greens keeper Bez Thompson said. “For example, if they shoot a 98 or an 88, then you take the two worst holes and subtract that, which would handicap their score by reducing it. [The scoring system] makes it a lot easier. If you’re a high handicapper or not that good, it will give you an advantage. Anyone has a chance to win”
The winners of the tournament received the much missed Morale, Welfare, and Recreation prizes that have become sparse during the military financial strife.
“We have a Calloway bag and a Nike bag, which is for first place,” Thompson said. “We have a water bottle, plus one of our golf shirts for the second place. Apart from that, we give everyone some caps and some t-shirts.”
Along with the prizes, the first place winners of the competition, Thomas Croad and Meredith Maneri, will have their legacy demonstrated by the rather large trophy on display at the golf course.
“The trophy is inscribed with your name and it stays on the shelf for your bragging rights,” Thompson added.