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The TST Member Tournament Play Thread


David in FL

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19 hours ago, Golfingdad said:

The short of it is that the greens were the fastest, and most diabolical (read: unfair) that I've ever played.  ...  42 putts

Yikes, that is rough.

A bit off topic:

Spoiler

I've played 4 different courses in the last month in Southern California, Marine Memorial, Torrey Pines, Tecolote several times, Balboa Park several times.  They all had really fast greens except for Tecolote which just had fast greens... all based on my experience/perspective.  Have you noticed the same?  Does this have something to do with the weather in Southern California?

 

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1 hour ago, No Mulligans said:

Yikes, that is rough.

A bit off topic:

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I've played 4 different courses in the last month in Southern California, Marine Memorial, Torrey Pines, Tecolote several times, Balboa Park several times.  They all had really fast greens except for Tecolote which just had fast greens... all based on my experience/perspective.  Have you noticed the same?  Does this have something to do with the weather in Southern California?

 

My first instinct is to say no, but my father in law just told me this morning that his clubs greens are currently fast bordering on unfair as well and they've never been like that before.  So maybe it is something to do with the weather.

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10 hours ago, allenc said:

I was getting a little frustrated around 1/3 of the way through, because although I knew the greens were fast and scary I still felt like it was me.  My playing partners weren't having the same problems and they just looked at me like I was crazy as I kept putting the ball clear off the green.  Well it was partly because I was hitting it much better than them.  While they were often just short of the green on their approach, I was often above the hole (I usually play around 1/2 club extra to account for mishits), and I didn't get the memo to never EVER EVER EVER be above the hole.  They did find out on the back 9 though, and at that time I finally lightened up, and enjoyed the greens for what they were.  I just smiled as the putt that I barely touch from 40 feet almost dies at 20 feet, only to keep chugging at about 0.1mph as if it has a build in engine until it's well past the hole.  Then picks up speed again and rolls down the ridge well off the green.

I don't think it was you.  I talked to many in my division after the round that all had troubles.  After thinking about it some more, I would like another crack at the course.  Only #7 and #10, where one or two players in our group had a putt straight up the hill actually roll several feet backwards before coming to rest, were unfair.  The rest were, as you pointed out, simply a situation where you needed to know that you COULD NOT be above the hole.

The problem is that this is a resort course with $300 or so greens fees, so it's not exactly the type of place where it's feasible for people to play practice rounds and learn that stuff ahead of time.

I might play the tournament at the end of January on the south course, and if I do, I will be extra cautious and concentrate more on being below the hole than anything else.  That will be the priority in my game planning.

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8 hours ago, Golfingdad said:

I don't think it was you.  I talked to many in my division after the round that all had troubles.  After thinking about it some more, I would like another crack at the course.

Right. I meant to say once I realized it wasn't just me I stopped worrying about it and enjoyed myself a lot more. And played better 53 - 43.

As soon as the round was over I too immediately wanted another crack at it.

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  • 1 month later...

Getting ready to play another event this weekend.  I'm very excited as it's being played at a course I've wanted to play for a long time (and that was in my backyard for many years) but never had the opportunity; La Costa. :-P  I've spent a good amount of time preparing as much as one can without actually playing a practice round.  It's been a combination of google maps and online yardage book info - certainly not the same as playing there, but it'll have to do.

My latest rounds have been a couple of misses followed by one hit, so we'll have to wait and see.  Going to concentrate all of my energy on keeping the ball in play and combine that with the hope that the greens are not as difficult as my last tournament and see where that takes me.

Also going to have my dad on hand as a caddy/spectator, so that should be interesting too.

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1 hour ago, Golfingdad said:

Getting ready to play another event this weekend.  I'm very excited as it's being played at a course I've wanted to play for a long time (and that was in my backyard for many years) but never had the opportunity; La Costa. :-P  I've spent a good amount of time preparing as much as one can without actually playing a practice round.  It's been a combination of google maps and online yardage book info - certainly not the same as playing there, but it'll have to do.

My latest rounds have been a couple of misses followed by one hit, so we'll have to wait and see.  Going to concentrate all of my energy on keeping the ball in play and combine that with the hope that the greens are not as difficult as my last tournament and see where that takes me.

Also going to have my dad on hand as a caddy/spectator, so that should be interesting too.

I'm jealous, I don't have a tournament on the horizon yet.  Need to get off my ass!

What kind of event?  GCAM or something similar?  Let us know how it goes.  

:beer:

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14 minutes ago, David in FL said:

I'm jealous, I don't have a tournament on the horizon yet.  Need to get off my ass!

What kind of event?  GCAM or something similar?  Let us know how it goes.  

:beer:

Yeah, GCAM, for now.  I have my handicap technically low enough to sign up to play qualifiers for the Southern California Championships (Am, Mid Am, Publinks) and playing in those types of tournaments has basically been a goal of mine since I started taking golf seriously.  But I'd like to wait until I'm at least "comfortably" in the range, rather than just technically.  I'm actually 5.3 currently, and the limit is 5.4.  I don't want to be that guy. ;)

If I could get the cap closer to 4 than 5 and/or bring the anti-cap down such that my bad rounds were a little less, well, bad, then I think I'd be ready to give it a shot.

I will definitely let ya'll know how it goes. :beer:

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Well, today did not go quite as I envisioned it.  I did a lot of research, set what I think was a pretty good game plan, and stuck to it pretty well ... I just didn't execute.

All of my 4 iron and hybrid tee shots were pull hooks into the left rough and usually behind trees.  I started double bogey (lipped out an 18" bogey putt)-bogey-bogey-bogey-bogey (all 4 just standard miss fairway, miss green, pitch on and two putt), triple bogey.

The triple bogey was an adventure; on a 180 yard Par 3 I hooked a 6 iron into the creek but it was dry and sitting on a bed of lily pad looking weeds so I could play it.  I promptly bladed it across everything leaving myself one option, to bump and run one under a tree and across the cart path.  I succeed, but with too much juice on it, it clears the green and goes right back into the same hazard ... on another patch of greenery.  This time I get it on the green and two putt from there for a 6.

After this point, I played OK.  Not great, but OK.  A couple of double bogeys (one involving a penalty shot, one from a three putt), 3 bogeys, 2 birdies, and 4 pars.

The birdies are both worth a recounting because of how different they were.  The first was a 580 yard par 5.  A nearly perfect drive that just ended up in the left rough, followed by a solid 5 iron layup, then a gap wedge from 115 to about 18" for a kick in birdie.  The kind of hole that brings you back no matter how poorly the rest of the day went.  The second was a short, sharp dogleg left par 4 where I hooked another hybrid into the hazard.  It was a fairly dry and I found my ball sitting in a patch of weeds.  If I was in contention, I'd have probably played it safe, taken the stroke and dropped outside the hazard, but since I had nothing to lose at this point, I played it.  I got it out, but hit it pretty thin and ended up an inch off the back of a long narrow green with a front pin.  I had a 90' snake of a putt that went up and then down a ridge, that I'd likely not 2 putt 50% of the time, and somehow that putt trickled right into the center of the cup for a birdie.

All told, it added up to an 86 and was good for 10th out of 12 in my division.

The positives I take away from today are:

  1. I set a good game plan and I stuck to it.
  2. My misses were ALL left.  The right side of the course is basically non-existent the last couple of months.  As time goes by, I have to think I'll trust my swing that it's not going right and I can relax and stop forcing it left.
  3. I enjoyed myself (and my fellow competitors) despite the poor golf.
  4. Its another tournament under the belt, and even if it's not a good result, it's more experience.  I get a lot of butterflies, and I can only imagine and hope that more experience = fewer nerves.
  5. My dad joined me today as my caddy and we had a great time.

Next tournament is in another 6-8 weeks so we'll just keep on practicing and playing until then.

Can't wait!!!

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53 minutes ago, David in FL said:

Ah, don't you just love tournament play?!  

I thought I was the only one capable of shooting 86 with 2 birdies!

:beer:

It is definitely a grind.  But it's well worth it for the improvement and the sense of accomplishment on those (all too rare) occasions when I do play well. :)

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  • 2 weeks later...

Will be playing in a two ball Texas scramble tomorrow.  Last time I played with my partner we scored a 75 that netted to a 62 with the 13 strokes they gave us.

we are hoping that we score an even par this time, but it won't be easy!

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Alright, I sucked it up and signed up for my first amateur championship tournament ... the Southern California Golf Association Mid-Am.  Ever since I started taking golf seriously, one of my goals was to become good enough to start playing in "real" tournaments.  Well, I'm going to give it a shot for the first time in a few weeks.  Not the actual tournament, but rather just an 18 hole qualifier.  I don't expect to qualify, nor do I expect to even come close (this is a championship open to anybody over 25, after all, and I'm barely within the handicap cutoff) but I do expect to enjoy myself and gain some experience.  Mostly the latter. :-P

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4 minutes ago, Golfingdad said:

Alright, I sucked it up and signed up for my first amateur championship tournament ... the Southern California Golf Association Mid-Am.  Ever since I started taking golf seriously, one of my goals was to become good enough to start playing in "real" tournaments.  Well, I'm going to give it a shot for the first time in a few weeks.  Not the actual tournament, but rather just an 18 hole qualifier.  I don't expect to qualify, nor do I expect to even come close (this is a championship open to anybody over 25, after all, and I'm barely within the handicap cutoff) but I do expect to enjoy myself and gain some experience.  Mostly the latter. :-P

Good for you!

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50 minutes ago, Golfingdad said:

Alright, I sucked it up and signed up for my first amateur championship tournament ... the Southern California Golf Association Mid-Am.  Ever since I started taking golf seriously, one of my goals was to become good enough to start playing in "real" tournaments.  Well, I'm going to give it a shot for the first time in a few weeks.  Not the actual tournament, but rather just an 18 hole qualifier.  I don't expect to qualify, nor do I expect to even come close (this is a championship open to anybody over 25, after all, and I'm barely within the handicap cutoff) but I do expect to enjoy myself and gain some experience.  Mostly the latter. :-P

I hope you surprise yourself and qualify.

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5 hours ago, Golfingdad said:

Alright, I sucked it up and signed up for my first amateur championship tournament ... the Southern California Golf Association Mid-Am.  Ever since I started taking golf seriously, one of my goals was to become good enough to start playing in "real" tournaments.  Well, I'm going to give it a shot for the first time in a few weeks.  Not the actual tournament, but rather just an 18 hole qualifier.  I don't expect to qualify, nor do I expect to even come close (this is a championship open to anybody over 25, after all, and I'm barely within the handicap cutoff) but I do expect to enjoy myself and gain some experience.  Mostly the latter. :-P

Good for you!  :dance:

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14 hours ago, Golfingdad said:

Alright, I sucked it up and signed up for my first amateur championship tournament ... the Southern California Golf Association Mid-Am.  Ever since I started taking golf seriously, one of my goals was to become good enough to start playing in "real" tournaments.  Well, I'm going to give it a shot for the first time in a few weeks.  Not the actual tournament, but rather just an 18 hole qualifier.  I don't expect to qualify, nor do I expect to even come close (this is a championship open to anybody over 25, after all, and I'm barely within the handicap cutoff) but I do expect to enjoy myself and gain some experience.  Mostly the latter. :-P

Good luck! 

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16 hours ago, Golfingdad said:

Alright, I sucked it up and signed up for my first amateur championship tournament ... the Southern California Golf Association Mid-Am.  Ever since I started taking golf seriously, one of my goals was to become good enough to start playing in "real" tournaments.  Well, I'm going to give it a shot for the first time in a few weeks.  Not the actual tournament, but rather just an 18 hole qualifier.  I don't expect to qualify, nor do I expect to even come close (this is a championship open to anybody over 25, after all, and I'm barely within the handicap cutoff) but I do expect to enjoy myself and gain some experience.  Mostly the latter. :-P

You have the perfect attitude, go out relaxed and plan to enjoy the day.  Who knows, you may surprise yourself!

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  • 1 month later...
On January 25, 2016 at 4:11 PM, Golfingdad said:

I have my handicap technically low enough to sign up to play qualifiers for the Southern California Championships (Am, Mid Am, Publinks) and playing in those types of tournaments has basically been a goal of mine since I started taking golf seriously.  But I'd like to wait until I'm at least "comfortably" in the range, rather than just technically.  I'm actually 5.3 currently, and the limit is 5.4.  I don't want to be that guy. ;)

If I could get the cap closer to 4 than 5 and/or bring the anti-cap down such that my bad rounds were a little less, well, bad, then I think I'd be ready to give it a shot.

I will definitely let ya'll know how it goes. :beer:

 

On February 18, 2016 at 1:49 PM, Golfingdad said:

Alright, I sucked it up and signed up for my first amateur championship tournament ... the Southern California Golf Association Mid-Am.  Ever since I started taking golf seriously, one of my goals was to become good enough to start playing in "real" tournaments.  Well, I'm going to give it a shot for the first time in a few weeks.  Not the actual tournament, but rather just an 18 hole qualifier.  I don't expect to qualify, nor do I expect to even come close (this is a championship open to anybody over 25, after all, and I'm barely within the handicap cutoff) but I do expect to enjoy myself and gain some experience.  Mostly the latter. :-P

Well, today was the big day ... and it was a blast!  I'll get into the details in a minute, but the bottom line was that I shot 81 to finish tied for 60th (out of 90), 11 shots behind the top scores and 8 shots out of a qualifying spot.  But, who cares?  I wasn't planning on qualifying anyway, I just wanted to have some fun and learn, and I succeeded in that endeavor.

My first take - as somebody who has played a few Golf Channel tournaments that I thought were run pretty well - is how impressed I was with how well run this thing was.  First class professional deal.  It started during my practice round yesterday, there were grounds crew guys on every hole mowing, blowing leaves and grass away from the green, marking the course, etc, etc.  And the course was in perfect shape today, the greens were as firm and fast as I'd ever seen them, and the fairways and tees were pristine as well.  There were a handful of rules officials wandering the course if you ever needed a ruling - which came in quite handy for an FC on the final hole.**

I wasn't sure if I'd have more or fewer nerves than I usually do on the first tee at a typical Amtour event but it turned out about the same, and then they calmed quickly as I hit the first fairway, the first green, and then after a lag putt I left 10 feet short, I made par. :)  Missed the green on 2, couldn't get up and down, parred 3, 4 and 5 after good tee shots on all, then came my first of two big blunders on the day.  Number 6 is a short dogleg left par 4 and I pushed my tee shot nearly OB.  I didn't aim nearly enough right for my stance on the approach and I ended up in the hazard down below the green.  2 pitch shots to get on and then my only 3 putt of the day and it all adds up to a snowman. :8)

I thought "oh brother, here we go."  But three solid shots and 2 putts for par on 7 and I was feeling better.  Then on 8, I pushed my 3 wood into the trees right, and actually ended up with a pretty good sized opening, but was way back at 174 yards to the pin, which was in the narrowest part of the green.  I have absolutely no idea how it happened, because there is a knob in front of it, but somehow my 7 iron ended up 12" from the hole for a tap in birdie.  I backed that up by hitting a 6 iron to about 25' on the fringe on the next hole, and snaked that birdie putt in as well to go back to back.  Finished the front at +3 (38) even with a quad.

A bogey from the fairway bunker on 10, and then another poor 7 iron into a hazard on 11, followed by two pitches and two putts for a triple bogey 6.  Number 12 is the scariest driving hole on the course because the fairway appears narrow and there is OB all down the right ... but even after my second blow up hole of the day, I absolutely striped my drive right down the middle.  (Longest in my group on that hole, in fact ;))  I only had 198 to a pin all the way back on a 515 yard hole - so I hit it somewhere in the vicinity of 320.  5 iron to the middle of the green and two putts later, I had my third birdie of the day.  Another good drive and smart wedge (pin was tucked right above a drop off and I played to 20' right of that) lead to another par.  Squirrelly drive pulled into the hazard left on the next hole, but I scrambled for bogey from there.

15 is a 472 yard par 4 (downwind) with a bunker at 318.  Yesterday in my practice round I was in the bunker.  Today, I hit nearly the same shot but 2 yards left and 5 yards farther.  My second ~320 yard drive of the day.  Another par.  Bad tee shot on 16 lead to a bogey, then three good shots on 17 lead to another par on a par 5.  Last hole is a beast, 466 yards with water all along the right side, and the approach shot usually plays into a strong headwind.  Unfortunately, I pushed my tee shot just enough that I ended up in the water, and I couldn't get up and down with my next ball so I finished with a double.

Total stats for the day: shot 81, hit 8 fairways, 9 greens, and had 31 putts.  I made about a half dozen putts that were at least 6', and totaled roughly 100 feet of putts made for the day.  I only missed one short one, about 5' on number 6.

All in all, a great, great experience, and I can't wait to try it again.  I played with two fantastic players too - one is a plus capper who had a rough day and finished with a 76, and the other is a 3 capper who shot even par to qualify.

**Speaking of the FC, he pushed his approach on 18 so far into the water on 18 that it crossed over a little peninsula that crosses up about 50 yards from the green.  I confirmed for him that he could drop up there instead of way back where we were, 170 yards away, but what he both forgot until the rules official came over to help was that he was allowed to drop on the fairway (opposite margin of lateral hazard equidistant from hole).  Rules official had him go over there and measure the distance and he came back and found his perfect fairway lie.  He still only managed a double on the hole, but that put him at even par and he qualified.

Bottom line is I had a great, exhilarating time today, and can't wait to try another of these!

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