Focus on: Golden Tate’s golf grip

Posted Aug 20, 2013

PGA Senior player Jim Gallagher won the annual closest-to-the-pin competition that included Golden Tate and Steven Hauschka, but Tate’s ability with his cross-handed grip won him some respect.

Once Jim Gallagher and Bart Bryant got over the way Golden Tate holds a golf club, the Senior PGA players had to deal what the Seahawks’ wide receiver can do with the club despite his cross-handed grip.

Tate, using a 60-degree wedge, plopped the second on his three shots 10 feet, 4 inches from the pin on Tuesday in what has become an annual competition between two members of the Seahawks and two Senior players who are in town for the Boeing Classic this week at TCP Snoqualmie.

Tate didn’t win. Gallagher did, by putting the second of his two shots 5 feet, 10 inches from the pin that was 60 yards away on the practice field at Virginia Mason Athletic Center. But Gallagher and Bryant, who play the game for a living, were duly impressed with Tate’s cross-handed prowess.

“This was great,” Gallagher said. “I was afraid we were going to get whupped, because I’d already heard ahead of time how good they were. But Golden had to go lift weights before this, so we had a little bit of an advantage.”

Bryant, who won the PGA Senior stop in New York last week, was third (10-4), while Seahawks kicker Steven Hauschka was fourth (14-11).

“I thought I had it, but I expect the pros to do better,” Tate said. “I had a good time out there, hanging out with those guys. It was an honor to be around those guys. But this will probably be the last time I pick up a club until after the Super Bowl, hopefully.”

Gallagher is from Indianapolis, so he grew up a fan of the Chicago Bears (the Colts did not move to Indianapolis until 1984). But he said, “The Seahawks have been fun the watch the last couple years.”

Now that he has dealt with the way Tate holds a club, and what he’s capable of doing with the club, Gallagher can set his sights on the real reason he’s in town.

“It’s great to be back in Seattle and the Boeing Classic,” he said. “It’s so pretty, so it’s hard to have a bad day out there (TPC Snoqualmie). It’s just a beautiful place and they get great crowd support. So I’m looking forward to a fun week.”