Golf is a cruel game.
Need proof? Look no further than former Trinity College baseball and hockey player Jay Williamson, who has been on the PGA Tour for the last 15 years.
He had always played well at the Travelers Championship at the TPC River Highlands and in 2007 he was on the cusp of his first PGA Tour win. He led the tournament and had a birdie putt to win the championship but missed and watched Hunter Mahan, playing in the final group with him, birdie the 18th hole to get into a tie with Williamson and force a playoff.
Williamson and Mahan played the final hole again in the playoff. Williamson hit a great approach shot but Mahan's was better. Williamson had a legitimate shot at birdie but his seven-foot birdie putt lipped out. Mahan knocked in his two-foot putt and grabbed the title.
The second place finish was the best for Williamson but since that tournament, he has struggled with his swing and bounced between the Nationwide and PGA Tours.
Now 44, Williamson misses his three children more and more when he is on the road and struggles with his commitment to the game.
A gracious Williamson came to Timberlin Golf Course to put on a children's clinic and entertained the dozen youngsters and a dozen more adults in attendance.
"I think we should do more of this to reach out to kids," Williamson said after signing every autograph asked of him. "It's a scary world kids are growing up in and I don't see it getting any better any time soon.
"I think we need to reach out to kids at an early age because golf is a game that can teach kids lessons about the right and wrong things to do. Any time they ask me, I will do things like this.
"It's nice to be out here and meet kids while you're on tour. I obviously miss my kids at home, I have three, and I wish they would play more but they just aren't interested in the game right now. Hopefully they will get more into it as they get older. I think that would help me in my game."
Williamson said he has good feelings about this week's tournament.
"It's just that I have good vibes here," he said. "I know I've played well here in the past so it's about executing my swing and making some putts. But, it's always nicer playing in a place where you've had success and played well before. Since I went to college here, I also get to see some friends, which is nice.
"And I made some new friends here today at Timberlin."