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Fairway_CY

Fairway_CY's Tournament Recaps

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I used to recap all of my rounds on here.  It was easy when I played 20 - 30 rounds a year.  Then I joined a club and played a bunch.  At that point, it became too much to recap them all.  Well... I left my club in September and I play a lot less now.  That gives me a little more time to recap the rounds I do play.  I'm going to limit the recaps to my tournament play.  I'm now entering my 5th season playing on the Golfweek Amateur Tour in Charlotte.  I've yet to find anything that comes close to rivaling it for both the competition and the camaraderie.  You see many of the same faces year-after-year and many of my closest friends have been made as a result of playing with the tour.  The last event I played was the National Championship in Hilton Head last October.  I started out in great position, posting an 83 on the 1st day to put myself in a tie for 5th place out of 228 players.  I then completely lost my game over the next 2 days and posted 97 and 109 to finish in a tie for 174th.  I was angry with myself and disgusted with my game.  I touched my clubs only 3 times over the next 2+ months to end the year because I just needed to get away.  Well... it's February which means the kickoff of the new season.  

On Saturday, February 2nd... we played our first event of the 2019 season at Carolina Lakes Golf Club in Indian Land, SC.  Below is the recap.

 

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Game Golf Link

Scorecard Link


It had definitely been way too long since the final tournament of the 2018 season and, to be honest, I was beginning to itch for some competitive golf.  I'd played so poorly leading up to this event that I had no clue what to expect.  Luckily, I had come out a few days prior to play a practice round so I had a pretty good idea of how the course was going to play. 

The big concern I had was that I just purchased a new set of irons.  I picked up a set of TaylorMade M5's with Fujikura Atmos Orange graphite shafts in them in hopes that it would help my hands since I've been dealing with some pain in a few knuckles on my right hand... and also hoping it would increase my launch angle a little bit. 

I couldn't have asked for a more ideal day to play my first round with those clubs.  February 2nd... and it was in the mid-60's with little-to-no wind.  Pretty much perfect.

So, with 114 players (30 in B Flight) on the course... I decided to arrive early for some practice time.  The first few swings were... well... they weren't good.  I slowed my tempo down and started hitting some better shots.  I hit about 50 balls on the range and then went to do some short game practice for a bit.  Following that, I spent about 15 minutes on the practice green and then relaxed a bit before we were set to go. 

My goal was an 85.  I figured that would be a good score to post for the opening round of the year... especially with new clubs and having played as poorly as I was leading up to the tournament. 

At 11:00, we were sent off to our tees.  My group started on hole 9.  Not much difficulty in that one, so... I drew a good starting tee. 


Hole 9 - Par 4 - 392 Yards

Even though the card says 392 yards, it was really only playing about 365 with the tees moved up a bit.  I've been playing a fade recently that I can't seem to get away from, so with the hole moving to the right, this really set up well for me.  I picked a target over the left edge of one of the fairway bunkers figuring if I hit the fade, I'd be in perfect position and if I hit a straight shot, I'd still be just fine.  

The ball came off with a nice fade and I carried the bunkers with no problem.  I was left with about 53 yards to the hole.  That was a perfect 'three-quarter' lob wedge for me.  I tugged it a little bit so it flew just a little longer than expected, but left me about 24 feet for birdie.  

My birdie attempt was a left-to-right curler down a slope.  The line looked good until about 5 feet from the cup then it broke off hard and ran out to about 4 feet from the hole.  I was able to make the putt coming back to open with a par.  


  ~ Even Through 1 ~


Hole 10 - Par 4 - 396 Yards

This was another hole they moved up a significant amount.  This time, the hole was playing only about 330 yards or so.  Just like the previous hole, it played a little to the right so my fade would have been perfect.  To prevent any issues with going through the fairway, I decided to hit a 3 wood off the tee.  This turned out to be a reoccurring issue for me throughout the day, but... I hit that club very poorly.  I popped it up to the right and it landed in one of the fairway bunkers on the corner of the dogleg. 

From there, I was blocked out by the corner so my only goal was to try and advance it about 150 yards or so into the fairway short of the green.  My 7 iron was just a bit thin, caught the lip and hopped forward into the next bunker.  At this point, I at least had a view of the green.  I caught my 8 iron well, but slightly heavy.  The ball ended up about 10 yards shy of the green. 

The chip I had left was not an easy one.  The pin was cut on the left side just off a slope.  I tried to bump a wedge into the slope but the ball checked up immediately and I was left with a 19 footer for bogey.  I gave it a good run... it looked good... and then it didn't.  I missed low and made the 3 footer for double.


  ~ +2 Through 2 ~


Hole 11 - Par 4 - 290 Yards

For the third straight hole, we were playing a dogleg right.  This one was not severe but you absolutely had to avoid the trouble up the right side.  A waste area well below the fairway was the only 'protection' from a hazard that ran the entire length of the hole.  The play was to bail out way left.  If you went too far left, there was a large retaining wall to help keep your ball in play... otherwise, there was no trouble over there. 

My target from the tee was the tree furthest left of the fairway.  I figured a nice fade would put me in the center of the fairway and a straight shot would funnel off the slope into the fairway.  I hit the fade and I was right in the middle.  With 64 yards to go and the pin way in the back with a hazard just beyond the green... my only thought was to play short of the hole and take a run at birdie from there.  I did not want to risk going long. 

I played a 54 degree wedge back in my stance and took another 'three-quarter' swing.  Just like on my first hole, I tugged it just slightly but because of where I was intending to hit the ball... it didn't put me in any trouble.  I was just off the left side of the green and about 12 feet shy of pin-high.  I putted from there and the ball trickled out to about 5 feet.  It was a tricky putt though, still going down the slope and I never committed to my line.  I tugged the putt just slightly and it lipped out leaving me a tap-in for bogey.


  ~ +3 Through 3 ~


Hole 12 - Par 3 - 145 Yards

Sucker pin alert!!!  This hole is always interesting because if you find yourself in the massive bunker that fronts the green and runs along the right side... you could be looking at double in a hurry.  The pin was tucked way back in the back-right corner of the green.  Going at the pin would be foolish.

Because I wasn't really warmed up yet and I didn't want to risk being short, I elected to hit a soft 7 iron instead of the normal 8 iron I'd hit from this distance.  I picked a target just left of the center of the green knowing that right was death.  I'm very glad I did because I did not give it a thorough swing which meant the ball leaked right.  It leaked so far right that I finished just 7 feet right of the pin.  That was only 1 foot outside the eventual closest-to-the-pin winner on that hole. 

There was no excuse for me to miss the birdie putt but... I did.  There was a bit of right-to-left break to the putt (or so I thought) so I played it just off the right edge.  It stayed there so I tapped in for my par.


  ~ +3 Through 4 ~


Hole 13 - Par 5 - 498 Yards

Nothing fancy here.  This hole is pretty much one of those holes that you see in front of you the whole time.  The only real trouble is the pond up the left side that begins at about 200 yards from the green.  If you hit a good drive and you're feeling it... you can get there.  Otherwise... be smart, play out to the right and take your shot at getting up & down for birdie. 

I made things difficult.  My drive was okay.  It went pretty much nowhere into the little bit of wind we did have.  I had zero shot at getting even close to the green.  Still... I was trying to get inside of wedge range so I decided to hit my 4 iron.  The trouble was, I almost missed the ball.  I topped it... and tugged it... so it trickled just inside the hazard line.

I had no real stance.  I put one foot on the only solid ground I could find in the hazard... the other was outside the hazard.  I attempted to hack a 9 iron over the corner of the pond back into the fairway... but instead, I knocked it 15 yards into the water. 

The rest of the hole was played out just to get it over with.  Drop into the rough... 5 iron out to the right of the green... pitch to 18 feet... 2 putts for triple.  


  ~ +6 Through 5 ~


Hole 14 - Par 4 - 373 Yards

This is typically the most difficult hole on the course.  It's 373 yards... but it plays like 420 because of how uphill it is.  It's also usually into the wind.  On this day, it was moved way up... so, it was only playing about 335 yards.  It was also downwind.  My target line from the tee was a dark patch near the left edge of the fairway.  I hit it solid and the ball tailed a bit and finished in the middle of the fairway.  I was left with 105 yards, but it was more than a club uphill.  The wind helped so I played it just a single club uphill.  I hit a smooth pitching wedge that pitched about 10 feet shy of the flag and settled just 4 feet left of the hole. 

It's always nice when you've left yourself a straight, 4 footer for birdie.  I made it with no issues and tallied my first tournament birdie of 2019!


  ~ +5 Through 6 ~


Hole 15 - Par 4 - 341 Yards

Another slight dogleg to the right but instead of trees on the corner, there's a pond that runs the entire length of the fairway along the right side and then beyond the green.  As with the previous holes that moved to the right... I was pretty comfortable with this tee shot.  There's a fairway bunker up the left side, so my target was the right side of that bunker.  I was playing for the fade and if I hit it straight, I was going to be fine.  I did hit the cut, though... and I found myself in the center of the fairway with about 90 yards to play. 

The pin was in a good position toward the front-left portion of the green which meant that the water was out of play unless you hit a very poor shot.  I elected to play a low, flighted gap wedge.  As had been my tendency with these shots so far on the day, I pulled it just slightly.  It was fine though and caught the back of the green leaving me 33 feet for birdie. 

My birdie attempt was pretty awful.  It was downhill and towards the water, so I really expected it to be fast.  Instead... I left my putt 5 feet short which meant a quick, ticklish putt for par.  I was able to make it and pick up a little momentum.


  ~ +5 Through 7 ~


Hole 16 - Par 3 - 158 Yards

This is a pretty intimidating hole.  There's a massive, deep bunker that fronts the green... and short of that is a pond.  The shot is all carry, but not very long.  Still... if you let it get to you, you can easily put up a big number on this hole.  The green is essentially split in half by a huge ridge.  The right side is raised up while the left side drops off a good 7+ feet or so below the level of the upper tier.  The pin was kind of on the ridge.  From the tee, there appeared to be not way to get it close. 

The play for me was to aim at the center part of the lower (left) tier and hope I hit a bit of a fade.  Unfortunately, we had a 15 minute wait at this tee.  When we arrived, the group in front of us was waiting on the tee for the group in front of them to putt out.  By the time we got to play the hole... I stiffened up a little bit and never committed to my shot selection.  This meant a low, bladed 7 iron that skipped off the bank of the pond and into the bunker. 

Luckily, my bunker game has been getting better and better.  I blasted out of there and to about 15 feet.  I was very pleased when I finally climbed out of the bunker and saw where my ball finished up.  I don't really think I could have come much closer than that.  To cap it off... I drained the 15 footer for a sand save par.


  ~ +5 Through 8 ~


Hole 17 - Par 5 - 472 Yards

If you take the aggressive line up the left side of the hole off the tee, you can easily reach this green in 2 shots.  It's uphill from the fairway to the green, but... it's a reachable hole.  I did NOT take the aggressive line, however.  In fact, I did the exact opposite and bailed out WAY right.  My ball finished just in the rough with a tough ball-above-my-feet lie.  

Instead of just punching a 5 iron up the fairway 175 yards or so... I tried to bite off a big chunk of the hole with a 3 wood from a tough lie.  It did not work out very well for me.  I kinda topped and pulled my shot and it trickled up the left side into the rough and left me 145 yards or so up the hill to the flag which was tucked up on a tiny tier at the back-left side of the green. 

I elected for more club because of how uphill the shot was and I ended up drawing it a bit with my 7 iron.  This put me in a little bowl long and left of the green.  I had truly short-sided myself.  The only play I had was to try and bump the ball into the slope shy of the green and hope it trickled down towards the hole.  I probably landed the ball a foot short of where I needed it to and the ball stuck on the fringe.  I was probably 20-25 feet from the hole at that point with a super fast, downhill putt.  I just got the ball started and let it get onto the green and watched as it stopped about a half-rotation short of dropping for par.  I settled for my tap-in bogey and moved to the 18th tee.


  ~ +6 Through 9 ~


Hole 18 - Par 4 - 387 Yards

Once more, they moved our tees up quite a bit.  I believe we were playing from about 340 yards.  This took driver out of my hand since that would have brought some OB into play for me.  There's a fairway bunker at the corner of the right-to-left dogleg which was my target.  I should have been easily able to carry that and it would have left me a 9 iron or less into the green.  I just put another horrible swing on my 3 wood and topped the ball.  It trickled out short of that fairway bunker and left me no shot at the hole.

From about 210 yards out, I just played a 5 iron out to the right of the green to give myself a good angle to the back-left pin position.  I was left with around 60 yards or so to the hole from there and the green was wide open.  Another 'three-quarter' wedge from there was tugged just slightly and grabbed immediately, leaving me just off the green. 

The only play I had was a low, running chip which I executed pretty well from the fringe of the green.  The ball took a peek at the cup but just missed the lip for par and ran out to about 5 feet.  I was able to make that coming back for a bogey.  It could have been way worse, so... I wasn't too upset by that score.


  ~ +7 Through 10 ~


Hole 1 - Par 4 - 370 Yards

This is never a tough hole but they made it even easier on us by moving the tees up to about 340 yards away.  There's a fairway bunker up the right side that's not in play from where the tees were and another bunker up the left side that was absolutely in play.  I decided to aim off the right corner of the left bunker.  I didn't catch the tee shot very solid, but it faded over the right fairway bunker and finished in the rough up the right side leaving me about 125, slightly uphill to the hole. 

Even though it was uphill... it was downwind, so it offset.  This meant I could give it a solid go with a full 9 iron.  A slight pull from that position hit the green and I was positive it was going to trickle off the left side of the green and into the fairly deep hollow leaving a next-to-impossible up and down attempt.  Instead, when I arrived... the ball had spun enough that it stayed on the green and left me a fairly easy two-putt for par.  


  ~ +7 Through 11 ~


Hole 2 - Par 4 - 368 Yards

I would say this is one of the more intimidating tee shots on the course.  Along the right side is OB and houses.  The left side is trees and a deep set of fairway bunkers.  A little too far past that on the right side is another fairway bunker.  You have very little to aim at.  Short hitters like me don't really have the option of hitting a 3 wood or something because then you leave too much into a difficult green. 

I elected to hit driver and start it at the right edge of the left bunker.  I knew that unless I absolutely mashed one, I wasn't going to reach the right bunker.  I hit a very solid drive that landed perfectly in the fairway and left me about 120 or so to a front-right pin. 

My right hand was hurting at that time and I had just put some pain relief cream on it... so my grip was a little tentative on the club.  Instead of going after a pitching wedge, I chose to hit a smooth 9 iron.  It was a little too much club, but I still hit the green.  I left a tough, 42 footer for birdie though. 

My birdie putt was quick and had a bit of left-to-right break to it.  When I first hit it... I thought it was going in.  The ball funneled toward the hole and at the last second, it moved back to the left and just missed.  An easy little tap in for par.


  ~ +7 Through 12 ~


Hole 3 - Par 5 - 563 Yards

I don't think this hole played the full yardage.  I believe we were moved up to about 530 yards or so instead.  I hit one of my weaker tee shots of the day here.  Very high off the toe.  Luckily, it hung enough that it didn't feed into the fairway bunker up the right.  It kicked off the slope of that bunker and into the fairway.  Even though I had little confidence in my 3 wood at that time... I knew I needed to hit it to give myself any shot at making birdie or better here.  I hit it solid, but the fade was way more than I wanted to see on it.  Luckily, it again caught the slope up the right side and trickled down into a flat lie and left me about 130 to the hole. 

The hole was a little downwind and the green was slightly raised.  With the ball just slightly above my feet... I aimed to the right of the pin expecting a little draw.  Instead... I pulled it again.  This time... it was a massive pull that resulted in the ball going 15 yards past the flag, way down below the back of the green. 

My only play from this position was to try and hit a high pitch that carried just onto the green.  I knew once it got on, it was going to release hard.  I committed to the shot and executed to perfection.  The ball landed just on the green.  From there, I could not see it but my playing competitors were yelling for it to slow down.  When I got up to the green... the ball was on the front portion about 18 feet away. 

Similar to the 15 footer I had drained on #16, this putt was uphill and I knew I could be aggressive with it.  From 18 feet, I played it like it was 25 feet and the ball never had a chance to miss.  I drained it for an unlikely par to keep my momentum going.


  ~ +7 Through 13 ~


Hole 4 - Par 3 - 150 Yards

This is a pretty hole and has long been one of my favorite par 3's that we play on the Golfweek Amateur Tour.  There's trouble short and left in the form of a creek.  Bailing out right is not really an option because of a steep slope that would leave an awkward stance to chip from.  This hole is pretty much hit the green... or else.

On this day, the pin was in the back-left portion of the green.  From the tee, it was 152 yards to the hole.  With the downhill slope, I would say it was playing more like 142 yards.  For me, this meant a solid 8 iron.  My aiming point on this hole was just to the right of the flag.  I'd been hitting a consistent fade for most of the day and I figured a tiny pull would have given me enough room to stay alive... a straight shot would be perfect... and a fade would find the right side of the green. 

My swing off this tee was one of my best of the day.  The contact was crisp and the flight of the ball was gorgeous.  It was high and straight.  I was worried initially that I took too much off my swing so I watched intently... but the ball landed a few feet to the right of the flag, hopped once and spun back a bit.  When we got up there, the closest-to-the-pin marker listed 9 feet.  We measured mine out at 7 feet and 1/2 an inch.  As this was towards the end of the day... I was pretty confident it would hold.  It did... and I won $120 for that shot!

One of my playing competitors was about 3 feet outside of my ball on a very similar line.  His putt drifted very little right-to-left and he sank his 10 footer for birdie.  I had the line... I just needed to make a solid stroke on the ball.  I did... and watched as it took a hard turn just at the hole to the left and lipped out!  I tapped in for what was a disappointing par. 

My misfortune turned out very well for my playing competitor though as he won 1 of 3 skins on the day that paid him $190+ for his birdie!


I now had only 4 holes left to play and I was sitting inside the money spots on the leaderboard.  The B Flight was paying out the top 5 spots and I was now in 4th place.


  ~ +7 Through 14 ~


Hole 5 - Par 4 - 389 Yards

Number 5 is the toughest rated hole on the course.  The tee shot is tough because if you hit it too far and up the left side, it can run down into a creek at the end of the fairway.  If your ball sticks up in the rough up the left, you can be blocked out.  The right side brings a lost ball into play.  On a calm day, I'd hit 3 wood here every time.  It was just a little breezy at this point though... and it was cooling off, so I went with my driver.  I picked a spot on the slope up the left side and let the ball peel off of that. 

I found a flat-ish lie on this hole which is tough to find.  It was still a little below my feet and sloping downhill, but... all-in-all, it wasn't awful.  I had 135 yards to the pin which sat on the front-middle portion of the green.  9 iron would have been short and would have brought all kinds of trouble into play.  8 iron was a little too much but was the safer option... so I went with that club.  I pured the shot and watched as it went directly at the flag.  The ball landed at probably 155 yards or so and spun back about 20 feet towards the hole.  Still... I was left with about 30 feet for birdie.

Again, I had the fortune of having a playing competitor on a very similar line to me.  Even though the putt looked like it was going to break right-to-left... his putt never really took the break and stayed out to the right of the hole.  I decided to play to the right edge of the cup and hit it exactly where I wanted.  I was positive the ball was going to drop for birdie, but with about 18 inches to left, the ball trailed a little further left than I thought and just missed what would have been a massive birdie (and would have paid a skin too).  I tapped in for my 5th consecutive par.

I believe at this point I had moved up into 3rd place with just 3 holes to go and I was just 2 strokes off the lead with 3 holes to play.


  ~ +7 Through 15 ~


Hole 6 - Par 5 - 512 Yards

I have never, ever been a fan of this hole.  There's a creek at 250 yards from the tee.  Basically, if you carry the ball 225 up the left side over the fairway bunker... your ball will find the hazard.  This meant I had to hit my 3 wood, which I was struggling with on the day.  I took aim at the right edge of that left bunker and peeled my 3 wood off of that and into the center of the fairway. 

From here, it should have been an easy hole.  I had about 315 yards left to the hole... up the hill.  For some reason, I had convinced myself that the best play was to try and hit my 3 wood again and get up to within 120 yards or so of the green.  Well... I topped the 3 wood and watched as it trickled into the creek.  I then dropped from the penalty area and hit a 5 iron to about 80 yards.

I made a mess of the hole and ultimately recorded a triple bogey.  Looking back... the play on my 2nd shot should have been a 4 iron up the right side that would have left me about 145 yards to the hole. 

I was dejected by my poor shot selection and suddenly knocked myself completely off the leaderboard with just 2 holes left.


  ~ +10 Through 16 ~


Hole 7 - Par 3 - 154 Yards

Things simply went from bad to worse at this point.  Although there is water on this hole... it shouldn't come into play if you hit a decent shot.  I believe the hole was playing 145 yards with where the pin was located, so it was a perfect 8 iron for me.  I got up on the tee still thinking about the previous hole and made probably my worst swing of the day.  I swiped at the ball and pulled my head up way too quickly.  This resulted in a thin, ugly shot that had zero chance of clearing the water. 

SPLASH!  That was my tournament right there.  I hit another from the tee (we weren't using drop zones) and pulled it just a little left.  I failed to get up and down a recorded a 2nd consecutive triple bogey.


  ~ +13 Through 17 ~


Hole 8 - Par 4 - 363 Yards

Now I was just angry.  I had a side bet going with my buddy and needed a birdie to break the number we had set (85).  I absolutely annihilated the ball from the tee here.  The fairway on this hole was wide open so, I knew taking a hard swing wouldn't hurt me unless I sliced it wildly.  Game Golf measured it at 280 yards and I was left with 84 yards to the back pin location. 

I hit my 54 degree wedge with a pretty close to full swing... but I purposely drove it in low.  It landed about 20 feet left of the flag and spun to the right a bit leaving me around 12 feet for my birdie.  The left-to-right swinger just barely missed on the high side and I was left with a tap-in for par to close out my round.


  ~ +13 Through 18 ~
 

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There really wasn't much to be said at that point.  I came into the round having played 5 rounds in 2019.  They were all over the map (101, 94, 106, 98 and 86).  I had new irons in the bag that I had hit literally the night before at Topgolf and then that morning on the range.  I had very low expectations for the day. 

To shoot an 85 with a trio of triple bogeys on the day was actually pretty damn impressive.  I won't forgive myself anytime soon for the mental error on my 16th hole but... it will be a learning experience. 

I finished in a tie for 10th place out of 30 entrants to B Flight.  I was 2 shots out of the money.  Ultimately, the winner shot an impressive 76.  I didn't have a shot to win, but... if I had held my ground on those 2 holes... I would have finished in solo 2nd on the day. 



Lessons Learned

1. Hitting the safe shot is ALWAYS going to be better than hitting the aggressive shot unless the situation absolutely calls for aggressive play.  I really hurt myself on 3 of the par 5's by trying to bite off more than I needed to.  Those 3 holes accounted for being +7 of my +13 score. 

2. I need to work on putts inside 8 feet.  I missed 4 putts from 5-7 feet on the day.  I was too tentative on those strokes.  If I had played all of them firm and to the back of the cup... I would have made each of them. 

3. My game, despite some pretty awful scoring lately, is still there.  I need to make it a focus to get out and practice more often.  Work has been busy but I can always find an hour here and there for some practice. 

The next tournament is on February 16th.  I'm still undecided on if I'm going to play it or not.  Until that point, I've got 2 nights of Topgolf League play and hopefully at least 1 round on a course somewhere to prepare.  In between... I'll be doing some putting and short game work. 

'til the next one... 

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Nice recap! 

I have a question about the "scorecard link", did you have to enter all of that information in manually about your round or is there some way it syncs up automatically with GameGolf?

Looks cool but not sure I'd want to enter all my stats into another website when GameGolf already has it.

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46 minutes ago, Fairway_CY said:

Lessons Learned

1. Hitting the safe shot is ALWAYS going to be better than hitting the aggressive shot unless the situation absolutely calls for aggressive play.  I really hurt myself on 3 of the par 5's by trying to bite off more than I needed to.  Those 3 holes accounted for being +7 of my +13 score. 

2. I need to work on putts inside 8 feet.  I missed 4 putts from 5-7 feet on the day.  I was too tentative on those strokes.  If I had played all of them firm and to the back of the cup... I would have made each of them. 

3. My game, despite some pretty awful scoring lately, is still there.  I need to make it a focus to get out and practice more often.  Work has been busy but I can always find an hour here and there for some practice. 

The next tournament is on February 16th.  I'm still undecided on if I'm going to play it or not.  Until that point, I've got 2 nights of Topgolf League play and hopefully at least 1 round on a course somewhere to prepare.  In between... I'll be doing some putting and short game work. 

'til the next one... 

I see in your achievements you have read LSW yet your "lessons learned" do not seem to show a realistic ability to analyze your game.

46 minutes ago, Fairway_CY said:

1. Hitting the safe shot is ALWAYS going to be better than hitting the aggressive shot unless the situation absolutely calls for aggressive play.  I really hurt myself on 3 of the par 5's by trying to bite off more than I needed to.  Those 3 holes accounted for being +7 of my +13 score. 

This screams that there is an issue with your ball striking. The safe shot seems to be safe because you are having difficulty hitting certain clubs. If you have to club down because you are topping your 3 wood the issue is not hitting the safe shot it's working on hitting the correct shot. Remember the closer you can get the the green the better off you are, all things considered.

 

46 minutes ago, Fairway_CY said:

2. I need to work on putts inside 8 feet.  I missed 4 putts from 5-7 feet on the day.  I was too tentative on those strokes.  If I had played all of them firm and to the back of the cup... I would have made each of them. 

Again, you have to realize it's highly unlikely you will make all those putts. PGA Tour average is a hair over 60% putts 4-8'. 

46 minutes ago, Fairway_CY said:

I'll be doing some putting and short game work. 

I think you are wrong, after reading your rather detailed recap I think your long game and ball striking costs you way more strokes than your short game and putting. 

I might pull out that copy of LSW and give it another perusal.

Edited by NM Golf

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56 minutes ago, klineka said:

Nice recap! 

I have a question about the "scorecard link", did you have to enter all of that information in manually about your round or is there some way it syncs up automatically with GameGolf?

Looks cool but not sure I'd want to enter all my stats into another website when GameGolf already has it.

Thanks!  I have to enter all the information manually but it's pretty simple for me since I write all the information on my scorecard.  It takes me maybe 75 seconds to enter my scores.
 

31 minutes ago, NM Golf said:

I see in your achievements you have read LSW yet your "lessons learned" do not seem to show a realistic ability to analyze your game.

Hmmmm... I guess I can see what you're saying based on what I posted.  That said... I disagree.  Even though I posted a detailed recap, I didn't post my thought process for each swing or any of the actual details of my practice (or rather lack of practice) leading up to the event. 
 

32 minutes ago, NM Golf said:

This screams that there is an issue with your ball striking. The safe shot seems to be safe because you are having difficulty hitting certain clubs. If you have to club down because you are topping your 3 wood the issue is not hitting the safe shot it's working on hitting the correct shot. Remember the closer you can get the the green the better off you are, all things considered.

100% there's an issue with my ball striking.  I completely lost the feeling of hitting solid shots.  Unfortunately for me... the company I was working for let go of the entire unit I was working with in September.  This resulted in taking a new job with new responsibilities and new times.  That meant less time for golf.  It's all kind of added up to where I am now with my game.  No time on the course.  No time to practice.  No ability to regain that feel I had in August and September.  

Yes... LSW says the closer I am to the green, the better off I am.  The problem was that, due to the factors listed above and the lack of practice, I wasn't capable of getting the ball as close to the green as I'd have liked.  In that situation on the 6th hole... with being in contention and knowing I was NOT hitting my 3 wood well at all... the play should have been a 4 iron to ensure I got over the creek.  It was a poor club choice.  Period.
 

43 minutes ago, NM Golf said:

Again, you have to realize it's highly unlikely you will make all those putts. PGA Tour average is a hair over 60% putts 4-8'. 

Making all of the putts is not the goal.  Making 50% of them is.  That was 2 strokes on Saturday if I made 50% of those putts.  Now, I can say it was offset by making a 15 footer and an 18 footer, but... still.  Making a bomb is unexpected.  Missing a pair of 7 footers for birdie is disappointing and frustrating.  
 

46 minutes ago, NM Golf said:

I think you are wrong, after reading your rather detailed recap I think your long game and ball striking costs you way more strokes than your short game and putting. 

Again, I agree 100% with you.  The problem is that I do not have the ability to practice my ball striking in between emails and calls and texts and request and more emails and everything else that goes on in my day.  I DO have the ability to practice putting in my office on the putting mat I've got... and I've also got the ability to practice landing pitches and chips at certain distances downstairs or outside in my back yard.  

I've got to work on what I have the ability to work on.  I get out to hit full shots at Topgolf on Tuesday nights... then I try to get to the range that 45 minutes away once a week during an extended lunch break... and then the rest of my practice is prior to any rounds I get to play.

At the end of the day... I've got to work with the game I've got.  Especially in a tournament situation.  If that means I shouldn't be hitting a 3 wood because I've been struggling with hitting it solidly or controlling it... that's what I've got to do.  That 3 wood was the wrong play for many reasons.  The biggest reason was because of the actual result, but... there was trouble left and trouble right as well.  I attempted it because I had the same shot on Monday during my practice round and I pulled it off.  

I should certainly read LSW again.  It can only help!

CY

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Very interesting update.  I'm about to start year 2 on the Golfweek Tour out here in Dallas.  Real cool bunch of guys and way less pretentious compared to the Golf Channel tour.  I will say your B flight is HUGE.  The 4-5 events I played last year, we normally hovered around 18-20 guys.  Good luck the rest of the way.

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On 2/9/2019 at 10:50 AM, ElWagonne said:

Very interesting update.  I'm about to start year 2 on the Golfweek Tour out here in Dallas.  Real cool bunch of guys and way less pretentious compared to the Golf Channel tour.  I will say your B flight is HUGE.  The 4-5 events I played last year, we normally hovered around 18-20 guys.  Good luck the rest of the way.

I've played on a few different 'tours' in the past.  None had been as involved as this one, but... they were still fun.  The problem was that the level of activity really died down at certain points.  Guys would join and have all intentions of playing out the season, then they'd struggle and give up.  We'd have some tournaments where total fields were less than 12 players.  It put a damper on things.

With the Golfweek Tour, it's year-round participation.  The best part is the National Championship in Hilton Head.  800+ players every year and it's a GREAT time to be on the island.  My family has built one of our vacations around it for the last 4 years.

Good luck out there in Dallas!  Keep me posted as to how it's going!

On 2/13/2019 at 4:04 PM, bkuehn1952 said:

I hope you have time to add to your TST Blog, too.

Hmmm... I actually forgot about that.  Maybe I can add some thoughts to that about the tournaments and my preparation!

CY

Edited by Fairway_CY

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On Saturday, February 16th... we played our second event of the 2019 season at Edgewater Golf Club in Lancaster, SC.  Below is the recap.
 

---------------------------------------------------------

Game Golf Link

Scorecard Link


I did pretty much everything I could to prepare myself for the next tournament of the 2019 season.  Despite being a pretty busy period at work, I found time to hit some balls and even played a round at another course on a Thursday afternoon when I had a chance.  Unfortunately, none of that had prepared me for the weather we ultimately experienced the day of the tournament.

Leading up to the tournament, the forecast was good... then bad... then awful... then bad... then awful... then bad again.  I made sure to get my rain gear ready for the day, grabbed some extra towels... and did all I could to prepare myself to get wet.

When I arrived at the course... the rain had stopped.  The warm-up period was fairly dry, but it was clear that the course was going to be wet.  Very, very wet, as it turned out.  Just as we were getting set to head out to our holes... it started to rain, and as it began raining again, the temperature dropped... the wind kicked up... and it got pretty ugly.  Luckily, the rain got very light as we were ready to tee off and had all but stopped by the time we hit our third hole.  Still... the course was a marsh and it made it play much longer.

I believe we had about 100 players total (24 in B Flight)... so I planned for a long, damp day.  I set my pre-round goal at 82... but that was before seeing the condition of the course.  Once our there, I figured something in the mid-80's would be a great score for me.  Beginning an easy hole... I was all set to go and at 11:10, we finally hit our first tee shots.

Hole 14 - Par 4 - 384 Yards


I had drawn a good starting hole again.  This is a pretty wide-open tee shot and there is not much trouble in the way.  With all that said... I still managed to find the woods up the left side.  I had changed my grip to be a little stronger leading up to this event and it resulted in a bit of a pull-draw off this tee.

With the course as damp as it was... lift, clean and place was the only option to get the round in.  I found myself taking advantage of that as often as possible.  In this particular instance, it was huge.  I was pretty dead where my ball had ended up, but I was able to use that one club-length advantage here to give myself a punch-out.  I found the fairway with a 6 iron through low gap in the trees and left myself 127 yards to the flag.  My 9 iron from that point was dead at the stick but hit the green and came back a few feet.

My par attempt from 13 feet dove low at the last second and I was left with a simple tap in for bogey to start my day.

 

 ~ +1 Through 1 ~

Hole 15 - Par 3 - 231 Yards

Having played here several times before, there were a trio of holes I had pegged as 'make-or-break' holes for my round.  This was one of them (the others were #10 and #18).  Even though it is very much downhill... it was dead into the wind and the pin was pushed all the way to the back of the green.  I didn't feel comfortable hitting my 3 wood from where I was so I decided to baby a driver.  I think it may be the first time in my life that I've hit a driver from a par 3 tee box, but I can't say for certain.  The swing was okay, but I pushed it a little right and it moved that way.  We all saw the ball hit the hill to the right and figured it would have stuck there.

When we got up to where the ball should have been... there was nothing to be found.  Luckily, one of my playing competitors walked down behind the green where the cartpath runs and found it sitting back there.  Again, I used the lift, clean and place option and gave myself a decent lie in the rough.  I was still 10-15 feet below the level of the green, so I just played to the right of the stick and was making sure I got the ball on the green.

The ball had landed about 10 feet short of the pin and ran out to 19 feet.  It was a fairly straight putt with a little left-to-right break at the cup.  I hit it with the perfect speed & line and watched as it dropped for an extremely unlikely par.

  ~ +1 Through 2 ~

Hole 16 - Par 4 - 411 Yards

At this tee box is where I encountered exactly how wet the course was.  As I stepped out of the cart and grabbed my driver, I turned to get on the tee box.  My first step from there, I sank ankle-deep in mud.  I was now going to be uncomfortable with muddy, wet feet the rest of the round.  I used a towel to clean off as much mud as I could before hitting my tee shot, but it was pretty pointless.

The tee shot was solid, but not very long.  I believe they had the tees moved up a bit, so that helped, but I still had 170 or so yards to the flag.  My 6 iron from the middle of the fairway was mushy and fat so the ball came up well short and right of the green.

My pitch from the rough at that point barely managed to sneak onto the green and left me almost 20 feet for par.  My putt from there was a little left of the hole and ran about 3 feet past but I was able to make that coming back for another bogey.

  ~ +2 Through 3 ~

Hole 17 - Par 5 - 429 Yards

The yardage on this hole is deceiving.  Even thought it's only 429 yards on the card... it plays longer due to being uphill.  The tee shot, for where I typically hit my shots, is daunting.  There is a bunker on the left, inside corner of the dogleg... and another on the right, outside corner.  From the tee, it looks like there is nowhere to hit the ball.  I did manage to find the fairway here though, and actually left myself only 191 yards to the flag.

The ground was exceptionally wet, and the shot was going to play uphill... but I made the decision that I'd rather be a little short than long.  With 191 being the number, it was playing more like 205.  That would be a good hybrid number for me if I caught it clean.  I pushed it a little and it never got more than hip-high, but it left me on the right side with a good angle to the pin.

From there, I was at about 47 yards.  I hit a nice, high 58 degree wedge that settled about 6 feet from the hole.  I couldn't decide whether to hit the putt soft or firm... so I compromised and ended up missing just on the low side.  It left me a 3 footer for par which I made, but I was a little disappointed in that result.

  ~ +2 Through 4 ~

Hole 18 - Par 4 - 409 Yards

Coming into this tournament, I figured this would likely be the toughest hole of the day.  It's not listed overly long, but it's uphill after the tee shot... the fairway was going to be one of the wettest out there... and it was playing into the wind.

On the tee, I took aim at the fairway bunker up the left side.  I figured I'd probably get a little fade off of that and, as long as I found the fairway, I could guarantee nothing worse than bogey.  I hit my ball on that line, but I had more fade than I wanted and the wind made it worse.  I heard it clip a tree but never saw it come down.

When we got up there, my ball was right at the base of the tree it had clipped.  Even with the lift, clean and place rule... I had no real shot to do anything but chip it out of the trees, so I did so with an 8 iron.

I was left with about 170 yards, up the hill and into the wind.  The pin was at the back-right corner of the green, so... I just wanted to cover the bunker.  I attempted to hit a 5 iron but practically whiffed.  The ball was pushed right and trickled into the weeds up the right side of the hole.  From there... I was able to get a 9 iron onto the back portion of the green.

When I FINALLY got up to the green, I saw my ball was about 20 feet away.  It was a fairly flat putt, and I really wanted to make it for my bogey but it ran over the right edge of the cup and stayed out.  That left me a tap-in for double.


  ~ +4 Through 5 ~

Hole 14 - Par 4 - 373 Yards

This is typically the most difficult hole on the course.  It's 373 yards... but it plays like 420 because of how uphill it is.  It's also usually into the wind.  On this day, it was moved way up... so, it was only playing about 335 yards.  It was also downwind.  My target line from the tee was a dark patch near the left edge of the fairway.  I hit it solid and the ball tailed a bit and finished in the middle of the fairway.  I was left with 105 yards, but it was more than a club uphill.  The wind helped so I played it just a single club uphill.  I hit a smooth pitching wedge that pitched about 10 feet shy of the flag and settled just 4 feet left of the hole.

It's always nice when you've left yourself a straight, 4 footer for birdie.  I made it with no issues and tallied my first tournament birdie of 2019!


  ~ +5 Through 6 ~

Hole 15 - Par 4 - 341 Yards

Another slight dogleg to the right but instead of trees on the corner, there's a pond that runs the entire length of the fairway along the right side and then beyond the green.  As with the previous holes that moved to the right... I was pretty comfortable with this tee shot.  There's a fairway bunker up the left side, so my target was the right side of that bunker.  I was playing for the fade and if I hit it straight, I was going to be fine.  I did hit the cut, though... and I found myself in the center of the fairway with about 90 yards to play.

The pin was in a good position toward the front-left portion of the green which meant that the water was out of play unless you hit a very poor shot.  I elected to play a low, flighted gap wedge.  As had been my tendency with these shots so far on the day, I pulled it just slightly.  It was fine though and caught the back of the green leaving me 33 feet for birdie.

My birdie attempt was pretty awful.  It was downhill and towards the water, so I really expected it to be fast.  Instead... I left my putt 5 feet short which meant a quick, ticklish putt for par.  I was able to make it and pick up a little momentum.


  ~ +5 Through 7 ~

Hole 16 - Par 3 - 158 Yards

This is a pretty intimidating hole.  There's a massive, deep bunker that fronts the green... and short of that is a pond.  The shot is all carry, but not very long.  Still... if you let it get to you, you can easily put up a big number on this hole.  The green is essentially split in half by a huge ridge.  The right side is raised up while the left side drops off a good 7+ feet or so below the level of the upper tier.  The pin was kind of on the ridge.  From the tee, there appeared to be not way to get it close.

The play for me was to aim at the center part of the lower (left) tier and hope I hit a bit of a fade.  Unfortunately, we had a 15 minute wait at this tee.  When we arrived, the group in front of us was waiting on the tee for the group in front of them to putt out.  By the time we got to play the hole... I stiffened up a little bit and never committed to my shot selection.  This meant a low, bladed 7 iron that skipped off the bank of the pond and into the bunker.

Luckily, my bunker game has been getting better and better.  I blasted out of there and to about 15 feet.  I was very pleased when I finally climbed out of the bunker and saw where my ball finished up.  I don't really think I could have come much closer than that.  To cap it off... I drained the 15 footer for a sand save par.


  ~ +5 Through 8 ~

Hole 17 - Par 5 - 472 Yards

If you take the aggressive line up the left side of the hole off the tee, you can easily reach this green in 2 shots.  It's uphill from the fairway to the green, but... it's a reachable hole.  I did NOT take the aggressive line, however.  In fact, I did the exact opposite and bailed out WAY right.  My ball finished just in the rough with a tough ball-above-my-feet lie.

Instead of just punching a 5 iron up the fairway 175 yards or so... I tried to bite off a big chunk of the hole with a 3 wood from a tough lie.  It did not work out very well for me.  I kinda topped and pulled my shot and it trickled up the left side into the rough and left me 145 yards or so up the hill to the flag which was tucked up on a tiny tier at the back-left side of the green.

I elected for more club because of how uphill the shot was and I ended up drawing it a bit with my 7 iron.  This put me in a little bowl long and left of the green.  I had truly short-sided myself.  The only play I had was to try and bump the ball into the slope shy of the green and hope it trickled down towards the hole.  I probably landed the ball a foot short of where I needed it to and the ball stuck on the fringe.  I was probably 20-25 feet from the hole at that point with a super fast, downhill putt.  I just got the ball started and let it get onto the green and watched as it stopped about a half-rotation short of dropping for par.  I settled for my tap-in bogey and moved to the 18th tee.


  ~ +6 Through 9 ~

Hole 18 - Par 4 - 387 Yards

Once more, they moved our tees up quite a bit.  I believe we were playing from about 340 yards.  This took driver out of my hand since that would have brought some OB into play for me.  There's a fairway bunker at the corner of the right-to-left dogleg which was my target.  I should have been easily able to carry that and it would have left me a 9 iron or less into the green.  I just put another horrible swing on my 3 wood and topped the ball.  It trickled out short of that fairway bunker and left me no shot at the hole.

From about 210 yards out, I just played a 5 iron out to the right of the green to give myself a good angle to the back-left pin position.  I was left with around 60 yards or so to the hole from there and the green was wide open.  Another 'three-quarter' wedge from there was tugged just slightly and grabbed immediately, leaving me just off the green.

The only play I had was a low, running chip which I executed pretty well from the fringe of the green.  The ball took a peek at the cup but just missed the lip for par and ran out to about 5 feet.  I was able to make that coming back for a bogey.  It could have been way worse, so... I wasn't too upset by that score.


  ~ +7 Through 10 ~

Hole 1 - Par 4 - 370 Yards

This is never a tough hole but they made it even easier on us by moving the tees up to about 340 yards away.  There's a fairway bunker up the right side that's not in play from where the tees were and another bunker up the left side that was absolutely in play.  I decided to aim off the right corner of the left bunker.  I didn't catch the tee shot very solid, but it faded over the right fairway bunker and finished in the rough up the right side leaving me about 125, slightly uphill to the hole.

Even though it was uphill... it was downwind, so it offset.  This meant I could give it a solid go with a full 9 iron.  A slight pull from that position hit the green and I was positive it was going to trickle off the left side of the green and into the fairly deep hollow leaving a next-to-impossible up and down attempt.  Instead, when I arrived... the ball had spun enough that it stayed on the green and left me a fairly easy two-putt for par.  


  ~ +7 Through 11 ~

Hole 2 - Par 4 - 368 Yards

I would say this is one of the more intimidating tee shots on the course.  Along the right side is OB and houses.  The left side is trees and a deep set of fairway bunkers.  A little too far past that on the right side is another fairway bunker.  You have very little to aim at.  Short hitters like me don't really have the option of hitting a 3 wood or something because then you leave too much into a difficult green.

I elected to hit driver and start it at the right edge of the left bunker.  I knew that unless I absolutely mashed one, I wasn't going to reach the right bunker.  I hit a very solid drive that landed perfectly in the fairway and left me about 120 or so to a front-right pin.

My right hand was hurting at that time and I had just put some pain relief cream on it... so my grip was a little tentative on the club.  Instead of going after a pitching wedge, I chose to hit a smooth 9 iron.  It was a little too much club, but I still hit the green.  I left a tough, 42 footer for birdie though.

My birdie putt was quick and had a bit of left-to-right break to it.  When I first hit it... I thought it was going in.  The ball funneled toward the hole and at the last second, it moved back to the left and just missed.  An easy little tap in for par.


  ~ +7 Through 12 ~

Hole 3 - Par 5 - 563 Yards

I don't think this hole played the full yardage.  I believe we were moved up to about 530 yards or so instead.  I hit one of my weaker tee shots of the day here.  Very high off the toe.  Luckily, it hung enough that it didn't feed into the fairway bunker up the right.  It kicked off the slope of that bunker and into the fairway.  Even though I had little confidence in my 3 wood at that time... I knew I needed to hit it to give myself any shot at making birdie or better here.  I hit it solid, but the fade was way more than I wanted to see on it.  Luckily, it again caught the slope up the right side and trickled down into a flat lie and left me about 130 to the hole.

The hole was a little downwind and the green was slightly raised.  With the ball just slightly above my feet... I aimed to the right of the pin expecting a little draw.  Instead... I pulled it again.  This time... it was a massive pull that resulted in the ball going 15 yards past the flag, way down below the back of the green.

My only play from this position was to try and hit a high pitch that carried just onto the green.  I knew once it got on, it was going to release hard.  I committed to the shot and executed to perfection.  The ball landed just on the green.  From there, I could not see it but my playing competitors were yelling for it to slow down.  When I got up to the green... the ball was on the front portion about 18 feet away.

Similar to the 15 footer I had drained on #16, this putt was uphill and I knew I could be aggressive with it.  From 18 feet, I played it like it was 25 feet and the ball never had a chance to miss.  I drained it for an unlikely par to keep my momentum going.


  ~ +7 Through 13 ~

Hole 4 - Par 3 - 150 Yards

This is a pretty hole and has long been one of my favorite par 3's that we play on the Golfweek Amateur Tour.  There's trouble short and left in the form of a creek.  Bailing out right is not really an option because of a steep slope that would leave an awkward stance to chip from.  This hole is pretty much hit the green... or else.

On this day, the pin was in the back-left portion of the green.  From the tee, it was 152 yards to the hole.  With the downhill slope, I would say it was playing more like 142 yards.  For me, this meant a solid 8 iron.  My aiming point on this hole was just to the right of the flag.  I'd been hitting a consistent fade for most of the day and I figured a tiny pull would have given me enough room to stay alive... a straight shot would be perfect... and a fade would find the right side of the green.

My swing off this tee was one of my best of the day.  The contact was crisp and the flight of the ball was gorgeous.  It was high and straight.  I was worried initially that I took too much off my swing so I watched intently... but the ball landed a few feet to the right of the flag, hopped once and spun back a bit.  When we got up there, the closest-to-the-pin marker listed 9 feet.  We measured mine out at 7 feet and 1/2 an inch.  As this was towards the end of the day... I was pretty confident it would hold.  It did... and I won $120 for that shot!

One of my playing competitors was about 3 feet outside of my ball on a very similar line.  His putt drifted very little right-to-left and he sank his 10 footer for birdie.  I had the line... I just needed to make a solid stroke on the ball.  I did... and watched as it took a hard turn just at the hole to the left and lipped out!  I tapped in for what was a disappointing par.

My misfortune turned out very well for my playing competitor though as he won 1 of 3 skins on the day that paid him $190+ for his birdie!

I now had only 4 holes left to play and I was sitting inside the money spots on the leaderboard.  The B Flight was paying out the top 5 spots and I was now in 4th place.


  ~ +7 Through 14 ~

Hole 5 - Par 4 - 389 Yards

Number 5 is the toughest rated hole on the course.  The tee shot is tough because if you hit it too far and up the left side, it can run down into a creek at the end of the fairway.  If your ball sticks up in the rough up the left, you can be blocked out.  The right side brings a lost ball into play.  On a calm day, I'd hit 3 wood here every time.  It was just a little breezy at this point though... and it was cooling off, so I went with my driver.  I picked a spot on the slope up the left side and let the ball peel off of that.

I found a flat-ish lie on this hole which is tough to find.  It was still a little below my feet and sloping downhill, but... all-in-all, it wasn't awful.  I had 135 yards to the pin which sat on the front-middle portion of the green.  9 iron would have been short and would have brought all kinds of trouble into play.  8 iron was a little too much but was the safer option... so I went with that club.  I pured the shot and watched as it went directly at the flag.  The ball landed at probably 155 yards or so and spun back about 20 feet towards the hole.  Still... I was left with about 30 feet for birdie.

Again, I had the fortune of having a playing competitor on a very similar line to me.  Even though the putt looked like it was going to break right-to-left... his putt never really took the break and stayed out to the right of the hole.  I decided to play to the right edge of the cup and hit it exactly where I wanted.  I was positive the ball was going to drop for birdie, but with about 18 inches to left, the ball trailed a little further left than I thought and just missed what would have been a massive birdie (and would have paid a skin too).  I tapped in for my 5th consecutive par.

I believe at this point I had moved up into 3rd place with just 3 holes to go and I was just 2 strokes off the lead with 3 holes to play.


  ~ +7 Through 15 ~

Hole 6 - Par 5 - 512 Yards

I have never, ever been a fan of this hole.  There's a creek at 250 yards from the tee.  Basically, if you carry the ball 225 up the left side over the fairway bunker... your ball will find the hazard.  This meant I had to hit my 3 wood, which I was struggling with on the day.  I took aim at the right edge of that left bunker and peeled my 3 wood off of that and into the center of the fairway.

From here, it should have been an easy hole.  I had about 315 yards left to the hole... up the hill.  For some reason, I had convinced myself that the best play was to try and hit my 3 wood again and get up to within 120 yards or so of the green.  Well... I topped the 3 wood and watched as it trickled into the creek.  I then dropped from the penalty area and hit a 5 iron to about 80 yards.

I made a mess of the hole and ultimately recorded a triple bogey.  Looking back... the play on my 2nd shot should have been a 4 iron up the right side that would have left me about 145 yards to the hole.

I was dejected by my poor shot selection and suddenly knocked myself completely off the leaderboard with just 2 holes left.


  ~ +10 Through 16 ~

Hole 7 - Par 3 - 154 Yards

Things simply went from bad to worse at this point.  Although there is water on this hole... it shouldn't come into play if you hit a decent shot.  I believe the hole was playing 145 yards with where the pin was located, so it was a perfect 8 iron for me.  I got up on the tee still thinking about the previous hole and made probably my worst swing of the day.  I swiped at the ball and pulled my head up way too quickly.  This resulted in a thin, ugly shot that had zero chance of clearing the water.

SPLASH!  That was my tournament right there.  I hit another from the tee (we weren't using drop zones) and pulled it just a little left.  I failed to get up and down a recorded a 2nd consecutive triple bogey.


  ~ +13 Through 17 ~

Hole 8 - Par 4 - 363 Yards

Now I was just angry.  I had a side bet going with my buddy and needed a birdie to break the number we had set (85).  I absolutely annihilated the ball from the tee here.  The fairway on this hole was wide open so, I knew taking a hard swing wouldn't hurt me unless I sliced it wildly.  Game Golf measured it at 280 yards and I was left with 84 yards to the back pin location.

I hit my 54 degree wedge with a pretty close to full swing... but I purposely drove it in low.  It landed about 20 feet left of the flag and spun to the right a bit leaving me around 12 feet for my birdie.  The left-to-right swinger just barely missed on the high side and I was left with a tap-in for par to close out my round.


  ~ +13 Through 18 ~

 

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There really wasn't much to be said at that point.  I came into the round having played 5 rounds in 2019.  They were all over the map (101, 94, 106, 98 and 86).  I had new irons in the bag that I had hit literally the night before at Topgolf and then that morning on the range.  I had very low expectations for the day.

To shoot an 85 with a trio of triple bogeys on the day was actually pretty damn impressive.  I won't forgive myself anytime soon for the mental error on my 16th hole but... it will be a learning experience.

I finished in a tie for 10th place out of 30 entrants to B Flight.  I was 2 shots out of the money.  Ultimately, the winner shot an impressive 76.  I didn't have a shot to win, but... if I had held my ground on those 2 holes... I would have finished in solo 2nd on the day.

Lessons Learned

1. Hitting the safe shot is ALWAYS going to be better than hitting the aggressive shot unless the situation absolutely calls for aggressive play.  I really hurt myself on 3 of the par 5's by trying to bite off more than I needed to.  Those 3 holes accounted for being +7 of my +13 score.

2. I need to work on putts inside 8 feet.  I missed 4 putts from 5-7 feet on the day.  I was too tentative on those strokes.  If I had played all of them firm and to the back of the cup... I would have made each of them.

3. My game, despite some pretty awful scoring lately, is still there.  I need to make it a focus to get out and practice more often.  Work has been busy but I can always find an hour here and there for some practice.

The next tournament is on February 16th.  I'm still undecided on if I'm going to play it or not.  Until that point, I've got 2 nights of Topgolf League play and hopefully at least 1 round on a course somewhere to prepare.  In between... I'll be doing some putting and short game work.

'til the next one... 

 

2.2.2019%2B-%2BCarolina%2BLakes%2BScorecard.png

 

Edited by Fairway_CY

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Decent playing considering the weather and course conditions.  Yes, the tough finish took some of the luster off the round but an 11.4 differential is less than a stroke different from your 10.5 index.

 

 

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