Kalani Simpson

Wilson’s small mistake
has big cost

THE calls kept coming. "What happened to Dean Wilson? How did he DQ?"

And then came the answer, and then the realization, and then the ache in the gut.

He forgot to sign his scorecard.

And the reaction was always the same.


Oh, no.

If it's any consolation to the local boy PGA Tour pro -- and it isn't -- everyone who heard the news felt it with him.

Everyone who'd done something similar. Anyone who'd felt that sinking feeling before.

Anyone who could imagine seeing something so big slip away thanks to something so small. Anyone who'd known he'd blown it.

He forgot to sign his scorecard.

And that just threw everything away.

It shouldn't have, but this is golf, a game that prides itself on manini stuff like this. And so this tournament, where he'd played so well -- gone. His first-day 9-under 63 -- as if it never happened.

It's over.




His season had started so well. He'd made money in his hometown Sony Open in Hawaii, snuck in and made the cut. He opened this Buick Invitational on fire Thursday at Torrey Pines.

He was up there with the game's greats. He started with a Cinderella run.

But then came fog and postponement and delay. He had a few more holes left to play yesterday, before moving on to the third round. It was crazy. It threw everybody off.

He was on the south course, finishing up on 9, the hole farthest from the clubhouse. Who knew what was on his mind? Probably just getting back to the locker room, getting ready to tee it up again. He was in the money round again, 6 under, tied for 16th.

If he played well the rest of the weekend, this could be it. At long last this just might be the break he's needed. After Japan and Q-school and waiting lists, this just might be his big chance.

His card was on the table, and he was out of the trailer and gone.


Oh, no.

It was crazy. Tournament officials were scrambling, doing the math, finding the cut. Everything was behind schedule. The third round had to start. All the results were coming in.

The card was there. Wilson's name was not.

Kaneohe's Dean Wilson Hawaii finished his second round at 7 under par but failed to sign his scorecard and was disqualified.

A rules official was called in. A ruling made.

And those who had the call, saw the card, had the same reaction we all did, when the realization hit.


Oh, no.

But that's golf. That's it. It's sad, but it's true. No argument, that's the worst part. He'd blown it, but not by playing badly. This matters, in golf. This is sacred, in golf. He'd forgotten, he'd rushed. He'd thrown it away.

Oh, no.

How he felt when he heard the news, we don't know. But then again, yes, yes, we do.

An Associated Press reporter asked if he'd ever done this before, forgotten the most basic habit, neglected to dot the period that comes at the end of every round:

" 'First time as a pro,' Wilson said as he cleaned out his locker."

As he cleaned out his locker. It's a sentence that says everything.

It's an image that breaks your heart.

So once again he's a journeyman, out there working for a break. He'd had one in his hands but now it's gone.

Another chance he'll never see again. The Thursday of his career taken away with one non-stroke of a pen.

So close.

This can't happen. Signing a card is such a habit -- and with so many cautionary tales looming overhead -- you can't imagine anyone would ever forget.

A PGA Tour official said it happens once a year.

It shouldn't be that once a year someone feels like this.

But there it was, on the Internet: Dean Wilson, DQ. And so people called the paper and got the answer, and when they heard it they all said the same thing.


Oh, no.

See the Columnists section for some past articles.

Kalani Simpson can be reached at ksimpson@starbulletin.com

E-mail to Sports Desk


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