Cognizant Classic in The Palm Beaches

PGA National (Champion Course)

News Tour pro makes a 17 (!) on a par 4 at the LECOM Suncoast Classic

February 14, 2019

The good news for club pro Ben DeArmond, if he's a glass-half-full type guy, is that there is no video footage of his disastrous 17 at the par-4 second at Lakewood National Golf Club. It won't live on the internet for the rest of eternity like Kevin Na's 16 at the 2011 Valero Texas Open. The bad news, of course, is that he still made a 17, spoiling his opening round at the Tour's LECOM Suncoast Classic.

And, amazingly, DeArmond's debacle pretty much occurred at the same tee box. This was not nearly the journey through the woods that Na went on at TPC San Antonio. DeArmond went full "Tin Cup," the only difference being he did it on the second hole. Not how you want to start your round, some would say:

And here is the full play-by-play a few folks on Twitter dug up from the PGA Tour app. Avert your eyes:

For those counting, it took DeArmond seven tries to just to put the ball in play, if the PGA Tour app's play-by-play is accurate. It should be noted that sometimes it can be off, and Lakewood National is a course with an ample amount of water hazards, so it's possible DeArmond kept rinsing balls or just had an extremely rough hole. But according to that play-by-play, the South Florida club pro went through every golfer's nightmare, which is struggling just to keep the ball in bounds with the driver.

DeArmond, who is playing on a sponsor's exemption, just finished his opening nine and carded a 54. All things considered, it could have been much worse:

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Had it happened on the PGA Tour, DeArmond's 17 would rank fourth all-time on the highest scores ever recorded list, a list no one wants to find themselves on. As for the Tour, it's two worse than one of the most recent high scores on the Web, Greg Eason's 15 at the 2017 Bahamas Great Exuma Classic. Eason wound up carding a 90, a score DeArmond would probably sign for right now. He needs a one-under 35 on the back nine just to break 90. As of this writing, he's made back-to-back pars (heating up!). We're pulling for ya, Ben.

UPDATE: DeArmond wound up shooting a 91 thanks to an impressive, bounce-back 37 on the back nine. Even more impressive was this quote from DeArmond after the round:

Solid message from the young club pro. Nobody would have blamed him if he withdrew after a 17, but not only did he finish the round, he finished strong.