Saturday, November 18, 2006

Mini Report...

Golf game is hot and cold. Here's some of the hot:

I played a new course (Newport Golf Course) for free as a regular customer of (and I was able to bring three friends for free too but I only found two who could ply that day). It featured very narrow fairways lined with very tall trees and dense woods, many doglegs, and very fast, small greens. It snaked through the woods and a neighborhood so errant shots would be goners. I shot 89 which was the first time I broke 90 on a course with slope over 120. Should have done a bit better than that because the 18th has an island green that I decided to layup on (from the rough about 165 out) and I choked on a 50 yard pitch - right into the water! I came away with

7 pars
6 bogeys
4 doubles
1 triple (18th)

My plan was course management and I played safe where I needed to (3i drawing/fading nicely); sometimes at a cost of an additional stroke, but the alternative would have been much worse.

I took both kids to Green Caye last night and we played two loops. They behaved very well, taking turns hitting and putting. I shot 33 and 34 with a triple on the second loop. The best shot was on #1. It's 185 yards but we were off the back of the box and the pin was back right making the hole play about 190 - 200. I pushed my first shot OB (long and right with a cart path bounce), but my second (third w/penalty) found the green and rolled to within a few feet - I made the bogey putt to win the hole. I hit the 5i on that one. We were playing with my friend Martin and we play 0.25 per hole with greenies and birdies. We pushed the last five holes on the first loop so the hole was worth $1.25. Not the $1.25 will have any financial effect, but mentally, winning a five hole push (or losing one) is huge. That hole is the toughest on the course with water left and OB right and long. It sure would have been awesome to have birdied it. Oh well, I know I have it in me.

I played Wednesday in howling winds 25+ gusting to 40+. I clubbed up four clubs on shorter shots and three clubs on longer shots. Two loops for 36/36 - bogey golf. The thing that works well for me in the wind is working the ball. I'm more aggressive when trying to draw/fade a shot. In calm conditions, I try little draws/fades that are harder to hit and the results are less likely to be what I had in mind. I need to learn the knockdown, lower trajectory shot for windy conditions. My ball flight is very high and that puts me at a disadvantage. Martin took me for $3.75 with his natural low ball flight that gave him a pair of birdies on the second loop.

I continue to struggle on occasion with the irons. It's the same stuff all the time - looking up, swinging too hard, hitting it fat, controlling tempo. My best shots come when I slow down the takeaway and smoothly accelerate through the ball and continue to a full finish. I have to force myself to step back when I don't feel right at address. I know that will help.

My putting has been very good lately. I rerely miss inside six feet and I've been rolling in a few long ones. My distance control is generally pretty good, but once in a while I'm way off speed.

I played absolute rubbish on Thursday. Four balls in the water, several triples, I was just disgusted and thought I was burning out. The feeling went away after playing with the kids last night.

Why is it that like sex, too much golf seems to be just enough!!!



At 7:04 PM, Anonymous Nigel said...

3 balls in the water is tough...that would stick in my mind for days. I need to work on clearing my mind after bad shots

At 3:18 PM, Blogger Dan Smith said...

Hey Nigel, I enjoyed reading your post. Water has always played with my mind too. I once heard we should think of it as a large plate of glass and if we break it, we will have to pay for it. I never found that to be helpful; it just added to the stress.

At 10:02 AM, Blogger Greg said...

Houston area courses feature alot of water. The terrain is very flat and earth must be moved to raise tee boxes and greens. Since we're so close to sea level, those excavations become water hazards.


At 1:41 PM, Blogger GolfNomad said...

7 pars, 6 bogeys..good numbers..sounds like you're playing well.

At 4:26 PM, Blogger Alexis G said...

Quote: "I continue to struggle on occasion with the irons [...] I have to force myself to step back when I don't feel right at address. I know that will help."

Oh my! This is so true, I feel like I am reading myself :-)

On occasion I have a day without troubles with the irons, but most of the time, a bad hit early in the round will trigger this tension and subsequent fats you are referring to. I then need to slow down and take a longer club to fight this build up.


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