I guess I am looking for advice and/or just venting...have been playing the game for almost 5 years now and I love it...BUT I just can not for the life of me understand why I can not shoot "decent" scores. The majority of my 18 hole scores this year (as every year) have been 98-105. However, this year I also have a few 9 hole scores of 41 / 42. I am so extremely frustrated and am very close to quitting MAINLY BECAUSE I KNOW I CAN BE / AM GOOD! I know that sounds crazy coming from someone who shoots 98-105 but the best way I can sum it up is that I will be playing VERY solid and then I will have severe blow up holes (which obviously add a lot to the score card).
A year or two ago, I maybe would have said my problem is the blow up holes PLUS the fact that I mentally lose it after a blow up (+4,+5 etc on a hole) BUT honestly I have worked myself to a point where the blow up holes don't bother me and I just keep chugging along and take them for what they are - in other words, I really dont think the "mental game" is my excuse or reason I play poorly...I just randomly have terrible shots that result in penalty strokes etc.
At my local club, pretty much every time I am paired with someone I have not played with before - about 6-7 holes into the round they will make some comment to me like "I have never seen someone whose game is as erratic and up and down as yours, after the first 3-4 holes I thought you might be a pro...but then out of nowhere you hit a few shanks, chunks etc. it makes no sense" Honestly, people are baffled when they play with me at how up and down my game is.
ANOTHER good example, was earlier this year I was lucky enough to play a few holes with a PGA Tour player (long story and I would rather not say who it was) and as we were walking to the range he asked what I normally shoot, so of course I wanted to be honest so he knew what to expect and I told him "high 90s low 100s"...then moments later on the range he was watching me warm up and stopped me and started telling me how full of crap I am about shooting those scores. He said and I quote "it's literally impossible for me to believe someone who has a swing as good as you has a handicap over 10" ..."you have a swing as good or better than a lot of college golfers" . He then said, "well, if you shoot what you say then your short game must be terrible" and THATS the other crazy part of all this btw...my short game is very good - I pretty much always get up and down, chip / pitch within 3-4 feet of the hole and RARELY 3 putt. I also hole a lot of chips (often enough that its not luck). Anyways just to finish the story, when we got on the course - I easily parred the first 3 holes (pretty difficult course) which then made him bust me even more...he was laughing and saying "I knew you were full of crap!" (not in those words lol) and then it happened - I completely fell apart on the 4th hole - I think I went +4, +2, +4 on 4,5 and 6 (shanked tee shots, sliced tee shot, sliced iron and a chunk were all mixed in there etc.) (we only played six holes).
I have read some great stuff on this forum about how people who are not consistent probably do not have sound fundamentals - im scared because every lesson I have had (and I have had about 15 lessons over past 3 years btw) - the instructor has only suggested minor changes in my swing and they have all said I have a very good swing . Yes, I have had my swing video taped (by instructor) a bunch of times and I think he found it hard to coach me because...as he said "you either swing perfect or swing with a different flaw every time" - and that is true - my misses on the course are ALWAYS different...slice, pull, chunk, top etc. I rarely have the same miss except for the driver which I often slice...However if I HAD to pick the problem w my irons, I would say shank right or pull left.
I really appreciate anyone who has read all this and if anyone can give me ANY advice I would appreciate. The game is not fun when your shooting high 90s / 100s especially when you are as competitive and athletic as I am (not saying that to brag). If there is anything else I can add that might help you understand my situation better, please let me know.