Imbler golfer overcomes setback
By Raenelle Kwock
Observer Staff Writer
Imbler's Beccy Kramer has had a successful summer on the green.
Recently, she won the Grande Ronde Amateur Golf Tournament for the second straight year.
In addition, she won the La Grande Invitational, Ladies Masters and Buffalo Peak Tournament. She and husband, Ken, also won the Fairway Frolics.
She has won all these tournaments after a setback last year.
Last May 2002, she fell down and broke her left kneecap. The Imbler Elementary School fifth-grade teacher didn't know when she would be able to play again.
She couldn't put weight on it for six weeks and went through physical therapy.
By mid-July of 2002, she was swinging the club again. With her knee in a brace, she said she could not come on the ball.
She added that she had trouble with the range of motion, but it did not affect her swing.
Besides winning the tournaments, another highlight was watching the U.S. Women's Open at Pumpkin Ridge in July, she said.
Kramer was introduced to the sport when she was 8 or 9-years-old by her dad, who was an avid golfer.
"He loved the game and played whenever he could," she said.
She played and rode in the golf cart.
However, she did not take golf seriously until about seven or eight years ago when she joined the La Grande Country Club. She has an eight-handicap but it changes.
"Golf is like anything else," Kramer said. "I work on my game. I've tried to refine a few things."
She said she has concentrated on her short game.
"It takes a lot of skill and a lot of luck," she said.
She had her first hole-in-one this year on No. 6 at the La Grande Country Club using a 7-iron on a par 3.
"I just got up there and it went in," Kramer said with a laugh.
She had patiently been working on getting a hole-in-one.
"I've been waiting, and it finally happened," she said.
Her dad was a big influence in her life and on the golf course.
"With golf, you have to be patient," she said.
Kramer said her father was patient and kind.
"When I'm playing, I almost hear him talking to me in my head," she said.
Kramer said she remembers things like not swinging hard and calming down.
"I think I've met a lot of really good people playing the game," she said.
She loves the outdoors and competing against herself.
"It's a great game," she said. "I really like it."
Kramer also enjoys being around people from different towns.
"When you make one great shot ... it keeps bringing you back," she said.
Husband Ken has also taken up golf.
"He's gotten good, too," Kramer said.
She said Ken is usually on E-Bay shopping for golf clubs and balls. Her son is a pretty avid golfer, too.
Kramer has not taken private lessons and is considering taking some.
"I have a real tendency to slice the ball," she said.
She said there are so many things that can go wrong with a golf swing.
Kramer said, with a laugh, that Ken says she's too passionate about golf and if there was a fire, she'd save the golf clubs before him.
Kramer said she would save Ken first.
"I play for fun," Kramer said.