Oh, so, sooooooo close!

So close it’s almost painful.

Chairman of the Guilford County Board of Commissioners Skip Alston came within two inches of winning $25,000 on a hole in one shot while playing in a golf tournament for county commissioners at the annual state convention of commissioners and other county officials.

Each August, county commissioners from around North Carolina attend the annual conference – which, this year, was held in Wilmington.

“I came within two inches from winning a $25,000 hole-in-one prize from a 175-yard par 3 hole yesterday at the North Carolina County commissioners Golf tournament in Wilmington,” Alston told the Rhino Times.

The Thursday, Aug. 12 tournament was held at the Beau Rivage Golf Course in Wilmington as part of the fun activities at the conference where the commissioners and other county officials also reportedly do some serious work.

Alston, an avid golfer who can shoot in the 70s on very good days, said he felt relaxed as he teed off at the all-important par 3 hole which paid out all the money.

Because of a hill, at first, he couldn’t see how close his shot was, and another player in his group walking ahead of the cart Alston was driving, saw it first.

He exclaimed “Damn!” according to Alston.

Then Alston saw his ball – just 2 inches away from the hole and the giant payout.

“I saw it and I said ‘Man, man, man!”

Alston said that, before he took the shot, he chose a 6 iron.

“I knew with the 6 iron I could get it at least 170 yards, and all I was trying to do was get it on the green,” he said. “I knew that anything other than that was luck.”

The chairman of the county board said he was almost very, very lucky that day.

Of course, close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades – and, while Alston didn’t get 25 grand, he did get a short-lived adrenaline boost and a long-lasting dream of what could have been.

The $25,000 prize money was being funded by event sponsors, not taxpayers.