Play through? South Carolina golfers consult rule book after ball lands squarely on alligator's back
OKATIE, S.C. ( - In golf, everyone’s heard of a hole-in-one but what about a gator-in-one?
David Ksieniewicz of Okatie, South Carolina, was golfing with his family on March 5 when he found himself in quite the predicament: His shot landed perfectly on the back of a nearby alligator.
Most golfers might "play it as it lies," but Rule 16.2(a) of the official U.S. Golf Association rules gave Ksieniewicz a pass.
According to the rules, players are allowed to take a "relief" on their ball by dropping a new one in a safe and reasonable location for their next shot without taking a stroke penalty if they are interfered by "an abnormal course condition or a dangerous animal condition."
Ksieniewicz’s daughter, Kristine Robinson, posted a photo of the roughly 7-foot-long alligator resting on the course, paying no mind to the golf ball on its back.
She praised the rules, saying they are "good, because we determined that my dad David Ksieniewicz should PROBABLY consider this dangerously shanked shot UNPLAYABLE & start over."
Robinson said her dad ended up winning that day regardless of the missed play.
"We were completely stunned. I thought the gator would at least dive back into the water," she said.
Robinson explained that the golf course is part of a nature preserve. Eventually, after some onlookers startled the alligator while trying to film the incident, it swam into a nearby pond with the ball.
"People get holes-in-one all the time, this hardly ever happens," Robinson said.