CALDWELL — Peggy Lynn Hicks’s shot on the fourth hole of Caldwell’s Purple Sage Golf Course gave her friends goosebumps.
Hicks was participating in the Caldwell High School class of 1977 golf scramble on Aug. 11, when she pulled off a rare feat — a double eagle on the fourth hole.
“It was the most amazing thing I have ever seen in my entire life,” said Kelli Belle, one of Hicks’s scramble teammates who witnessed it. “I screamed, I hooted and hollered. All of us got goosebumps.”
A double eagle, also known as an albatross, means Hicks sank the ball in two strokes on a par-5 hole.
This is the second time Hicks has achieved a double eagle, but the first was 40 years ago.
“I’ve only done this two times in my life, and I’ve played golf most of my life,” Hicks said.
Hicks’s friends were celebrating more than she was at first, she said, because Hicks didn’t realize the ball had gone in the hole.
“I hit a good first shot, and the second shot was going toward the hole, but the chances of it going in were so slim, that you don’t really think it’s going to go in,” Hicks said.
Belle said Hicks always hits last when they play, because Hicks is so good at golf. The other players hit first, then Hicks took her first shot at the hole.
“That drive was so far and straight down the middle you could not have seen or witnessed a better drive than that,” Belle said.
Belle watched Hicks’s second shot head straight for the pin, going and going until it was on the green and eventually made it in the hole.
Hicks is no stranger to Purple Sage Golf Course. Her father, Keith Stanwood, was the golf pro at the course from 1969 to 1986, and she played the course growing up.
“We kept saying, ‘Peggy Lynn, your dad up there is watching you and grinning from ear to ear,’” Belle said.
Hicks said she also shot a hole-in-one at the course before on the fifth hole.
HOW RARE IS AN ALBATROSS?
Belle was impressed with her friend’s achievement in the tournament, but even more so when she researched how rare the albatross or double eagle is in golf.
A 2010 article from the Austin American-Statesman said the odds of getting a hole-in-one — 13,000 to 1 — are much better than a double eagle. The odds for a double eagle have been estimated to be anywhere from 6 million to 1 down to 1 million to 1.
The article also stated that one study estimated only 10 percent of golfers are capable of making it to the hole in two shots on a par-5 hole.
Double eagles are also rare for professional golfers. There have been just 36 double eagles recorded in the entire history of the LPGA Tour, according to the LPGA.