Here’s another reason to thank Alice Dye.
Thursday at The Players Championship, Rory McIlroy, Phil Mickelson and Matt Kuchar pulled off a rare trifecta by each dropping birdies at the famed No. 17 island hole on the Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass.
And they did it while playing in the same morning grouping.
Giving the fans on 17 a reason to cheer.
Birdie-birdie-birdie for this @PGATOURLIVE group.
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) March 14, 2019
Alice Dye, wife of course designer Pete Dye, convinced her husband to turn the course’s penultimate hole into an island green and keep it playable at the same time.
TPC Sawgrass paid homage to her influence on the flag on No. 17 this week.
In Pete Dye’s book “Bury Me in A Pot Bunker”, written with Mark Shaw, Pete recalls the Ponte Vedra Club’s inspiration for moving toward the island green and subsequent digging out of the sandy area that became TPC Sawgrass’ 17th lake.
“At the time I didn’t really think the 17th would be all that difficult, so I sloped the back portion of the green toward the water,” he wrote. “Alice told me that if I left the green that way, she could envision the television announcers notifying the viewing audience that play in the championship was being held up because 25 foursomes were still waiting on the 17th tee for the lead player to keep his ball on the green!”
The hole has become the most recognizable, if not the most famous, hole in all of golf.
The those in the packed gallery around No. 17 Thursday were not disappointed.
They even got a surprising wreck when Marc Leishman found the water on No. 17 Thursday after a bounce from the edge for the first time after playing the hole dry 30 times in tournament play. Leishman would bogey the hole.