Dana RaderThe Sea Pines Resort’s newest golf instructor, Dana Rader, has been named one of the “50 Best Teachers in America” by Golf Digest. She is one of only four women to make the prestigious list.

The honor comes just months after Rader was formally inducted into the LPGA’s Teaching and Club Professional Hall of Fame — the highest honor bestowed to teaching and club pros, awarded for extraordinary service and leadership while contributing to the game of golf and the golf industry.

Hilton Head XCAFTER ANOTHER BIG WIN, HHI CROSS COUNTRY COACH STEPS DOWN

By any account, there’s no good reason why Hilton Head Island should produce more talented distance runners than any other town its size.

Sure, outdoor activities are popular here, and training in the humid environment might benefit local runners when they race elsewhere, but high humidity isn’t unique to the Lowcountry. The terrain is flat as can be — the bridges to the mainland and across Skull Creek provide the only opportunities for substantial elevation change.

Former Hilton Head Island High School star and current Texas Longhorns standout Poona Ford is among 12 finalists for the S.C. Football Hall of Fame’s Blanchard-Rogers Trophy.

The trophy is awarded annually to the most outstanding collegiate player of the year with South Carolina ties. Previous winners include Deshaun Watson in 2015 and 2016), Vic Beasley in 2014, and Tajh Boyd in 2013.

Hilton Head Island-based Professional Tennis Registry has been named the official education partner of Girls Tennis Network, a program developed by Evolve9 to help tennis coaches and facilities keep girls in the game. The program focuses on giving coaches the skills to retain young female players ages 8-12 by providing drills, games and activities delivered through the six core principles of GTN. GTN was successfully launched at the Women’s Tennis Coaching Association Conference in August in New York City. PTR and Evolve9 will offer one-day GTN workshops to PTR members throughout 2018.  

SHOOTING SPORTING CLAYS PROVIDES FUN, BUILDS SKILL

While working the sporting clays course at Spring Island Club, Christian Pollitzer has seen just about everything from experienced shooters to novices who have never held a shotgun.

One pre-teen boy was having a tough time hitting targets, so Pollitzer suggested closing his left eye. The boy’s aim improved, but then it regressed.

PROFESSIONAL CYCLIST FROM HILTON HEAD SURMOUNTS ADVERSITY

It was a stupid crash, Chris Butler recalls, a fluke pileup during the penultimate lap of the Clásica de Almería race Feb. 12 in southeastern Spain.

From that stupid crash came months of stupid luck.

The 2018 RBC Heritage Presented by Boeing is a little less than six months away, but tickets are already on sale, and, if you buy now, you might be able to save a little money.

The only annual PGA Tour tournament held in the Palmetto State, next year’s RBC Heritage runs from April 9-15 at Harbour Town Golf Links on Hilton Head Island.

Isaac McBroomProfessional Tennis Registry (PTR) has hired Isaac McBroom as director of development, after Brian Parkkonen was promoted to director of education. McBroom’s responsibilities will include scheduling and coordinating PTR certification workshops in in all 50 U.S. states each year.

Tennis Club of the Lowcountry’s Gavin Cox and Vicki Nagy teamed up to win the USTA National Mixed 60s Clay Court championship at Seabrook Island Club in early October. 

Cox and Nagy won four matches to claim the title, including a tight three-set victory in the quarterfinals. They defeated Junior Luffman and Janet Moseley 7-6 (7-3), 6-1 in the final to earn the coveted Golden Ball that accompanies winning a USTA national championship.

Bluffton native Bryson Nimmer was named the ACC Men’s Golfer of the Month for September.

The Clemson star and Hilton Head Christian Academy graduate had three top 10 finishes in national tournaments last month and has climbed to No. 9 in Golfweek’s national individual rankings.