By Alex Myers
"Playing through" is a common occurrence at golf courses, requiring a simple two-step process: 1.) The group behind plays through; 2.) The group in front allows the group behind to pass them.
Apparently, things aren't always so simple. On Jan. 19, a brawl broke out between two groups on the 13th hole at the Golf Club at the Resort on Eagle Mountain Lake near Fort Worth, Tex. Here is the Feb. 6 story from the Dallas Star-Telegram about the fight, which ended with someone being impaled by a golf club.
It seems that when Clay Carpenter's threesome tried to play through the foursome in front of them, he was attacked with a putter that broke. After trying to fight back, he ended up falling on the broken club's shaft, puncturing the femoral artery in his right leg.
Eight months later, Carpenter and his wife, Gina, are suing the golf course for his injuries, according to the Dallas Morning News. The report says Mr. Carpenter now has limited use of his leg and still could face amputation. The course is being sued because the Carpenters claim that one of its marshals "insisted" that their group play through the group in front of them.
It will be interesting to see how the courts rule on this case and whether or not it will have any effect on how golf courses try to speed up play. Not to make light of the situation, but the most amazing part of this whole story is that an on-course marshal actually did something.