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This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 185 pages of information about The Half-Back.

The honor was West’s, and he led off for End Hole with a beautiful brassie drive that cleared the first two bunkers with room to spare.  Whipple, for the first time in the round, drove poorly, toeing his ball badly, and dropping it almost off of the course and just short of the second bunker.  West’s second drive was a loft over Halfway Bunker that fell fairly on the green and rolled within ten feet of the hole.  From there, on the next shot, he holed out very neatly in eighteen.  Whipple meanwhile had redeemed himself with a high lofting stroke that carried past the threatening dangers of Masters Bunker and back on to the course within a few yards of West’s lie.  But again skill on the putting green was wanting, and he required two strokes to make the hole.  Once more the honor was West’s, and that youth turned toward home with a short and high stroke.  The subsequent hole left the score “the like” at 22, and the seventh gave Whipple, 25, West 26.

“But here’s where Mr. West takes the lead,” confided that young gentleman to Joel as they walked to the teeing ground.  “From here to Lake Hole is four hundred and ninety-six yards, and I’m going to do it in three shots on to the green.  You watch!”

Four hundred and ninety-odd yards is nothing out of the ordinary for an older player, but to a lad of seventeen it is a creditable distance to do in three drives.  Yet that is what West did it in; and strange to relate, and greatly to that young gentleman’s surprise, Whipple duplicated the performance, and amid the excited whispers of the onlookers the two youths holed out on their next strokes; and the score still gave the odd to West—­29 to 30.

“I didn’t think he could do it,” whispered West to Joel, “and that makes it look bad for your uncle Out.  But never mind, my lad, there’s still Rocky Bunker ahead of us, and—­” West did not complete his remark, but his face took on a very determined look as he teed his ball.  The last hole was in sight, and victory hovered overhead.

Now, the distance from Lake Hole to the Home Hole is but a few yards over three hundred, and it can be accomplished comfortably in two long brassie drives.  Midway lies The Hill, a small elevation rising from about the middle of the course to the river bluff, and there falling off sheer to the beach below.  It is perhaps thirty yards across, and if the ball reaches it safely it forms an excellent place from which to make the second drive.  So both boys tried for The Hill.  Whipple landed at the foot of it, while West came plump upon the side some five yards from the summit, and his next drive took him cleanly over Rocky Bunker and to the right of the Home Green.  But Whipple summoned discretion to his aid, and instead of trying to make the green on the next drive, played short, and landed far to the right of the Bunker.  This necessitated a short approach, and by the time he had gained the green and was “made” within holing distance of the flag, the score was once more even, and the end was in sight.

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