A great day to be a CCU fan, and many more to come

col-tbuzz-2Coastal Carolina fans had a difficult decision to make Sunday night at 8 p.m. – watch CCU alum Dustin Johnson play the final hole of the 116th US Open, or flip over to the Chanticleers making their historic debut in the College World Series. Thank goodness for Picture In Picture.

It was a good problem to have for Chants fans, who enjoyed the biggest sports day in school history. After several close calls and near-misses at major tournaments, Johnson finally got the monkey off his back. Meanwhile, the Chants continued to ride on the back of the good-luck monkey, Fiki, all the way to Omaha and a hard-fought 2-1 win over No. 1-seeded Florida.

It’s safe to say more people across America learned what a Chanticleer is on Sunday, and many may have heard of Coastal Carolina for the first time. The school was on the national stage like never before, and they left a good impression. Johnson had fans chanting his name by the end of his round, and the city of Omaha has adopted the Chants as the beloved underdog.

I get a bit sentimental when I see Coastal making a big splash on the national stage since I was covering the school’s sports programs were barely a blip on the local radar screen. I still remember when Gary Gilmore took the job at his alma mater and lived in a pop-up camper under the old baseball stadium and talked about his dream to take the Chants to Omaha. I assumed he meant for a camping trip.

But Gilmore steadily built the program from the ground up, and he appeared to hit his ceiling after struggling to take the next step over the past decade. He is the perfect example of what happens when you put your head down and keep grinding until you reach your goal. His coach of the year accolades are really the culmination of 21 years of hard work and perseverance.

The same can be said for Johnson, who has been hammering away at his chances to win a major for a decade. Longtim Coastal fans knew he had the potential to be a big-time player on the PGA Tour, and he talent has never been questioned. But golf snobs were starting to doubt his mental toughness to keep control in pressure situations, and he had a lot of bad breaks along the way.

But on Sunday he proved more than capable of handling the heat. In addition to the expected pressure of playing for a US Open title, Johnson had to deal with a rules official informing him on the 12th hole of a tight race that he might be issued a one-stroke penalty after the round. How you play with that hanging over your head, I can’t imagine. But DJ did it in style and made it a non-issue.

The Coastal baseball team got a similar bad break early in the game that, if you’ve been a CCU fan for a while, you were thinking that it would end up costing the Chants in the end. Zach Remillard’s hard shot down the right field line was ruled foul, and then overturned. But the correction wound up costing Coastal at least one run in a game where scores were precious.

There was a time when those official rulings would have been grounds for an excuse for Coastal. The sports program has a history of “woulda, coulda, shouldas”, and sometimes those can take a toll on a team that deep down inside thinks its not good enough to beat the big-name schools. But those days are gone, cast away in a single day on a national stage.

Indeed, it was a good day to be a Coastal fan. And now appears there will be even more big days in the future.

Comments

comments

Boys Hoops: Green breaks CA record; Braves beat CF

Boys Hoops: Green breaks CA record; Braves beat CFChristian Academy of Myrtle Beach junior Michael Green reached another [more]

Earnhardt clears air about interest in buying Panthers

Earnhardt clears air about interest in buying PanthersRetired NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. says he is interested [more]

CCU's Ruiz picked to play in Latin America Amateur

CCU's Ruiz picked to play in Latin America AmateurCoastal Carolina junior golfer Luis Ruiz has been selected to [more]

CAC swimmers clean up on medals at Tiger Invitational

CAC swimmers clean up on medals at Tiger InvitationalThe Coastal Aquatic Club (CAC) sent 37 swimmers to compete [more]

MB grad Sessions waived during 11th NBA season

MB grad Sessions waived during 11th NBA seasonFor the first time since his high school days at [more]

Horry/Georgetown Invite: CF, NMB, MB finish 1-2-3

Horry/Georgetown Invite: CF, NMB, MB finish 1-2-3The Carolina Forest High wrestling team captured the bi-county championship [more]

Battle at the Beach: MB makes it rain 3s; CA falls

Battle at the Beach: MB makes it rain 3s; CA fallsOn Friday night, a leaky roof forced the Myrtle Beach [more]

CCU Hoops: Coastal splits with visiting Georgia State

CCU Hoops: Coastal splits with visiting Georgia StateArtur Labinowicz scored a career, team and game-high 32 points, [more]

Hoops: Chiefs, Tigers use last-second shots for wins

Hoops: Chiefs, Tigers use last-second shots for winsNorth Myrtle Beach High's Cooper Chandler picked the right time [more]

MB Winter Bump tourney expects record crowd, field

MB Winter Bump tourney expects record crowd, fieldThe annual Myrtle Beach Winter Bump Volleyball Classic, hosted by [more]

Knaffle garners SCCAWS Player of the Year award

Knaffle garners SCCAWS Player of the Year awardSt. James High junior Smith Knaffle may need to add [more]

CCU Hoops: Chants split Sun Belt twinbill with GSU

CCU Hoops: Chants split Sun Belt twinbill with GSUJaylen Shaw moved into 13th place on the Coastal Carolina [more]

North Myrtle Beach boys, girls cruise past St. James

North Myrtle Beach boys, girls cruise past St. JamesThe North Myrtle Beach boys and girls basketball teams swept [more]

Wrestling: Locals earn top rankings; Chiefs take two

Wrestling: Locals earn top rankings; Chiefs take twoThe latest rankings were released Tuesday for SCHSL wrestling, but [more]

Boys Hoops: Socastee, Conway win region debuts

Boys Hoops: Socastee, Conway win region debutsThe Socastee High boys basketball team won a thrilling Region [more]

Girls Hoops: Seahawks knock off No. 1 Wilson

Girls Hoops: Seahawks knock off No. 1 WilsonThe Myrtle Beach High girls basketball team saw region rival [more]

CCU student-athletes post top semester in classroom

CCU student-athletes post top semester in classroom A record 264 Coastal Carolina student-athletes posted at least a [more]

Riptides make successful plunge at Polar Bear meet

Riptides make successful plunge at Polar Bear meetRiptides Racing's swimmers braved the cold weather and icy roads [more]

Local teams break ice with region rivals, reschedules

Local teams break ice with region rivals, reschedulesThe new year is only one week old and already [more]

Panthers suffer tough loss to Saints, face uncertainty

Panthers suffer tough loss to Saints, face uncertaintyThe Carolina Panthers' season ended in a heap atop sacked [more]

Ragin' Cajuns sweep CCU in Sun Belt doubleheader

Ragin' Cajuns sweep CCU in Sun Belt doubleheaderCoastal Carolina faced the top men’s basketball team in the [more]

Moglia announces return to role as CCU head coach

Moglia announces return to role as CCU head coachCoastal Carolina’s Joe Moglia announced he has been medically cleared [more]

CCU men, women see rally bids halted by Warhawks

CCU men, women see rally bids halted by WarhawksAfter trailing by as many as 21 points, Coastal Carolina [more]

Winter weather puts chill on local sports schedule

Winter weather puts chill on local sports scheduleThe winter weather didn't waste anytime scrambling the 2018 sports [more]

All That Jas: Adams nets Sun Belt weekly accolade

All That Jas: Adams nets Sun Belt weekly accoladeFor the second time this season, Jas Adams has been [more]

Boys Hoops: Green breaks CA record; Braves beat CF

Boys Hoops: Green breaks CA record; Braves beat CFChristian Academy of Myrtle Beach junior Michael Green reached another [more]

Earnhardt clears air about interest in buying Panthers

Earnhardt clears air about interest in buying PanthersRetired NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. says he is interested [more]

Comments are closed.

© 2017 Grand Strand Sports Report · RSS
Myrtle Beach Web Design
Kayaking in Myrtle Beach