I attended the Division III ECAC championship this past weekend.
And I saw a lot of quadruple bogeys. On a relatively wide open golf course. It made no sense to me. None.
This golf course was not that difficult, and the vast majority of the big scores were from two simple errors:
- Being far too aggressive at the wrong times.
- Making utterly horrible swings.
For the first, I mean stuff like this: you hit the ball in a fairway bunker, and have a 4-iron left to the green. Rather than hitting it out short and left where there's 80 yards of space and taking your chances on pitching it up on the green, I watched a player flare one right into some tall grass from which he couldn't find his ball. So, he replayed the shot… and did almost the same exact thing. He found his ball, played out short and left (throwing milkweed pods everywhere), pitched on, and two-putted.
For the second, I'm just talking about shots that are so horrible they don't even really have names. You can't do anything but stare at them as they sail 40° right, or pull-hook so violently you turn around in case it boomerangs back at you. Just get rid of those shots. Where do they even come from? How does a guy who can shoot 75 one day hit three of those shots the next day? I have no idea, but if you occasionally hit one, figure out what causes it and eliminate it immediately. You can't avoid Black Death and you can't avoid penalty strokes if you have a big miss that creeps up into your play now and then. On that point, Hank Haney is right.