Friday, September 10, 2010

What would you do?: teen golfer disqualifies self and gives up medal

Sometimes doing hard things hurts...really badly. Such I believe we can assume to have been the case when Zach Nash, an accomplished 14 year old golfer from Wisconsin, disqualified himself upon discovering that he had unknowingly violated the rules.

Yahoo Sports has this to say of Zach:

Today, a classic "what would you do?" moment. Zach Nash is a 14-year-old Wisconsin kid who happens to be a fine golfer. So good, in fact, that he won a junior Wisconsin PGA tournament.

Problem was, he won it by violating -- albeit unintentionally -- one of golf's most straightforward rules. He had too many clubs in his bag. And the worst part? It was a total accident, discovered long after the fact.

Specifics: Nash's 77 won the boys' 13-14 division at the Milwaukee County Parks Tour Invitational, knocking off 31 other players. Afterward, Nash went to celebrate with one of his mentors, Chris Wood, head club pro at Rivermoor Golf Club. And that's where the troubles began.

Wood noticed an extra club in Nash's bag and pointed it out to him. Apparently, a friend of Nash's had left the club at his house, and Nash put it in his bag, not realizing it put him one over the mandatory limit of 14 clubs. Carrying an extra club is a two-stroke penalty per hole, but since Nash didn't account for those extra strokes, he signed what was, in effect, an incorrect scorecard, and thus would be disqualified from the tournament.

And from there, there really wasn't any choice. Nash called the Wisconsin PGA, explained what had happened, and sent back the medal from the tournament. WPGA officials plan to present it to the tournament's runner-up.

I can only imagine how difficult it must have been for Zach to make his decision. Rather, perhaps, I can only imagine how difficult it would have been for me to make the same decision in that situation. But, when we are fighting to make the sort of hard choice Zach had to make we would do well to remember God's promises in Proverbs 11:5-6.

3 The integrity of the upright will guide them,
      But the perversity of the unfaithful will destroy them.
       4 Riches do not profit in the day of wrath,
      But righteousness delivers from death.
       5 The righteousness of the blameless will direct[a] his way aright,
      But the wicked will fall by his own wickedness.
       6 The righteousness of the upright will deliver them,
      But the unfaithful will be caught by their lust.
       (Proverbs 11:3-6, New King James Version)
  1. Proverbs 11:5 Or make smooth or straight

The Yahoo Sports article sums it up well, saying:

Now, it's easy to go and tee off -- pun very much intended -- on golf's drop-the-hammer rules, on Wood for bringing the extra club to Nash's attention, or to Nash himself for failing to count the club. But all that misses the point. This is a story about honesty and doing what's right, even when what's right makes zero logical sense. Sure, Nash could have rationalized away keeping an extra club, but where's the honor in that?

Congrats to Nash for standing up and doing the right thing, no matter what the cost. And hopefully there are much bigger medals waiting for him down the line.

We at Rebelutionary Musings applaud Zach for his honorable decision and hope it will serve as a challenge to all Rebelutionaries to pursue righteousness and honor God, even when it doesn't necessarily make sense to the mind and logic of man.

God bless!

1 comment:

  1. Wow, that took a lot of courage. I would have a really hard time doing that if I was in the same situation!