Aces are Wild at Rumbling Bald

The Unthinkable Happened at Rumbling Bald

Golfer Overcomes Astronomical Odds at Apple Valley for Back-to-Back Holes-in-One

The stats are mind-blowing. Every year, around 450 million rounds of golf are played in the U.S. Doing the math, that’s about 25,000 to 30,000 rounds per course. According to the PGA of America, methods report 10-15 aces annually for a pace of one hole-in-one per 3,500 rounds.

On average, golfers play this fantastic game for 24 years before celebrating their first hole-in-one. Less than two percent of all golfers card a “1” each year, and 50 percent of those golfers are age 59 and under. The average handicap for those buying everyone a round of drinks at the 19th hole is 14. Better to be lucky than good, as they say.

So, what are the chances that an 80-year-old golfer records back-to-back holes-in-one during one round on the same golf course? Approximately one in 67 million. Yes, you are more likely to be struck by lightning twice in your life than to card two consecutive aces. But believe it or not, that’s precisely what happened at Rumbling Bald’s Apple Valley course on Sunday, July 24, 2022.

Paul Huber stepped to the tee on the par-3 third hole of our award-winning Dan Maples-designed layout. He pulled his PING 9-iron from his golf bag and took dead aim from 118 yards away. A crisp “thwack” ensued, and a few seconds later, the ball disappeared into the hole. An extended celebration was quickly underway with his playing partners – Kent Dyer, Rob Phillips, and Gary Romaine.

Then, what happened next, has quickly become the stuff of legend around Rumbling Bald and Lake Lure. Just a few minutes later, at the par-3 eighth hole, Huber again stepped to the tee, cracked a half-baked quip about making another ace, and proceeded to make another hole-in-one with his 5-hybrid from 148 yards out.

Dyer, Phillips, and Romaine had witnessed a “black swan” event few other golfers had ever seen. The last time it happened on the PGA TOUR was at the Barclays at Plainfield Country Club in Edison, N.J., at the hands of Brian Harmon. Harmon made social media waves by famously posing for a photo holding two aces from a deck of cards.

It was a particular Sunday at Rumbling Bald, a story that will stand the test of time. And as the buzz made its way around both golf courses, many celebratory drinks were consumed at Huber’s expense!

About the Author: Shane Sharp

Shane Sharp is a longtime golf writer based in Greenville, S.C. In addition to running his content marketing business, Southbound 4, he's a regular contributor to GOLF Magazine, Golf Inc., Club Management and other golf magazines and websites.