Talor Gooch gets free relief from terrifying gator that chomps down on bunker rake

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Talor Gooch gets free relief from terrifying gator that chomps down on bunker rake

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Talor Gooch gets free relief from terrifying gator that chomps down on bunker rake

Talor Gooch has his priorities in order.

During Thursday’s opening round of the Zurich Classic of New Orleans, the PGA Tour rookie, who has impressed this season, saw his second shot come to rest in a bunker at TPC Louisiana’s par-5 18th just feet from a trio of alligators. Yeah, there’s no way he was going anywhere near that.

Reports on site point out that Chesson Hadley, who was playing in the group, managed to get two of the gators to go back into the nearby pond via a bunker rake nudging. But the remaining creature wouldn’t budge.

That one remaining gator was, very understandably, still enough to keep Gooch away. And he really put it well.

“I like my life. I like it with all my limbs,” Gooch said. “So I stay away from those things.”

Yes, life and limbs are definitely a priority over one golf shot.

To bolster Gooch’s point, let’s also note that a PGA Tour rules official, Steve Carman, came over and tossed a rake at the gator to try to shoo it away. And yeah, the gator not only wasn’t scared, but its reaction was kind of terrifying…

Yikes.

But still the question remained, how would Gooch proceed with his next shot?

Carman, whose rake-throwing skills could use work, offered free relief away from the gator after unsuccessful attempts with that rake and an umbrella to scare it away. Gooch moved back in the bunker 10 yards and dropped his ball, only for it to plop down in a terrible lie.

But Gooch himself said, “I chose life over a good lie in the bunker,” which is a value system we can all probably get behind. Gooch, who had 111 yards for his third shot, blasted out short of the green, chipped up to 12 feet and made the par putt to ensure him and teammate Andrew Landry an opening 6-under 66 in best-ball.

Alternate shot was a more difficult beast Friday, as the pair fired a 74 to miss the cut by one.

But failing to make the weekend isn’t life or death, unlike trying to play a shot feet from an ominous gator.

As Gooch has his priorities straight, maybe he’s done after 36 holes … but all of his limbs are intact.

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