Archive for July, 2014

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7/21/14

The Vineyard Golf Course 6,531 Yards Par 70 (Blue: 71.0/126)

Score: 69(-1) FW: 12/14 GIR: 12/18 Putts: 29 Up/Down: 7/8 Sand Save: 0/0 Penalties: 0

My 2nd under par round!! Feels great to validate my first under par round a few weeks ago and I’m happy about how mentally focused I stayed all day.  Golf is a funny game, even though I played really well last week too, my range sessions on Thursday and Sunday night this week were terrible in my opinion.  I just couldn’t feel comfortable and wasn’t hitting many shots out the center of the face.  I was getting really frustrated with myself, as I always seem to do on the range as of late.  I see how well I’m hitting it and scoring when I’m playing rounds, but for some reason I can’t stay consistent and repeat it on the range.  Don’t get me wrong, I would much rather have it be the way it is than the other way around, but it is slightly frustrating.

Anyway, needless to say, I didn’t have a lot of confidence in my ball striking going into my round today.  I just wanted to focus on the mental aspect of my game, making sure that I went through my pre shot routine on ever shot, visualized my target and how I wanted the shot to come off and try to play unconscious golf.  I tend to get extremely mechanical on the range a lot of the time, but when I’m on the course, I’m just trying to play without any conscious thought and it really does free up my swing.  I’ve been working a lot of my mental side lately and the idea of acceptance of outcomes.

I had it at 3 under with no bogeys through the first 13 holes, but bogeyed the 14th from the fairway with only a SW in hand and 3 putted 17 for a bogey after missed a 2ft par putt.  So Disappointing finish, but I played really great and I’m happy that I could keep it at under for the round!

7/22/14

Oaks North Executive Par 60 South/North 56.8/89 3,608 Yards

Score: 58(-2) FW: 3/6 GIR: 10/18 Putts: 26 Up/Down: 7/10 Sand Saves: 1/1 Penalties: 0

Played Oaks North today, finished at 2 under 58 for the day.  I hit my irons well all day, but my putting and driving were way off.  Missed a bunch of great birdie opportunities, that’s nothing new, but I basically hooked every one of the 6 tee shots with 3 or 5 woods on the par 4s.  I seem to have lost it off the tee today where that has been a big bright spot for my game over the last 2 months consistently, so that is kind of scary.  I still ended up getting an eagle on one of the par 4s on the back, I pulled the drive, but chipped it in from right of the green!  Back to back rounds I have chipped one in, yesterday I chipped in for a birdie at the 5th and today for eagle.

I’m still missing way too many short putts, ones that are pretty straight too.  My ball is just not starting off on line and the troubling thing it is a 2 way miss, some I’ll push others I’ll pull…I need to fix this fast before my tournament in 3 weeks.

7/23/14

Woods Valley Golf Club Par 72 6,670 Yards 72.2/131

Score: 79(+7) FW: 7/14 GIR: 11/18 Putts: 36 Up/Down: 2/7 Sand Saves: 0/0 Penalties: 2

Got a couple friends together and we decided to go up to Woods Valley again and play this challenging course.  I played absolutely terrible, just did not feel comfortable all day with my stance, grip, alignment or putting.  Shot a (+7) 79 with 4 3-putts!! That’s right, FOUR 3-putts, all less than 3 ft misses.  I’ve been trying to work on my mental game and stay as positive as I can, but I just can’t when I’m missing seemingly every 3 ft putt I look at.  Despite poor shot making and putting, I was only 3 over after 9 holes, but then I promptly 3 putted the 10th from about 20ft and then 3 putted for par on the par 5 11th after hitting 2 quality shots and being only 15ft for eagle!!  That just broke me mentally and I was basically done for the rest of the round

Despite the real bad day, I’m going to keep believing in myself and working hard.  I’m focused on playing well and trying to shoot an under par round at the Palm Springs tournament in mid August.  I need to keep working to improve my mental and short game if I’m going to make that happen.  Probably won’t be able to play again until Monday, so I have 4 days to practice and improve from Wednesdays round.

7/14/14

The Vineyard Golf Course 6,531 Yards Par 70 (Blue: 71.0/126)

Score: 70(E) FW: 12/14 GIR: 13/18 Putts: 33 Up/Down: 3/6 Sand Save: 0/1 Penalties: 0

One of my best ball striking rounds of my life today and it should have been my 2nd under par round, but I blew it by 3 putting the par 5 15th for par after sticking it about 15 ft for eagle…ridiculous!!!  I drove it great all day, 12 out of 14 fairways is the most I’ve ever had.  Gave me some great opportunities to hit it close, finished with 13GIR, should have been a bit better, but missed a couple wedges.  Was only 3 of 6 on up and downs because I missed a bunch of putts again.  Hit two of my best shots ever on the 551 yard Par 5 15th…I’ve never gotten to that green in two before as it always plays into the wind and it’s slightly uphill, but today I absolutely bombed a drive down the middle, 316.  Had 235 uphill and into the wind, took a 5 wood and hit a perfect shot, landed high and soft right at the flag and stopped 15ft for eagle!  A pretty straight putt also, little left to the right slightly uphill, I don’t know what happened mentally, but I botched it and left it a good 5ft short! Obviously I lipped out my next putt to 3 putt for par after having hit back to back great shots.  I was proud of myself for what I did on the next hole however, hardest hole on the course and I hit a 300 yard 3 wood down the middle and then an 8iron to about 6 inches!  A great bounce back tap-in birdie, but I still finished at Even for the round.  Should have been at least 1-under, but because I 3 putted the par 5, I have to live with my sadness.     

7/15/14

Oaks North Executive Par 60 South/North 56.8/89 3,608 Yards

Score: 60(E) FW: 4/6 GIR: 13/18 Putts: 32 Up/Down: 2/5 Sand Saves: 0/1 Penalties: 0

They were having the Junior Worlds over at Oaks North today for the 7-8 age group.  Saw some very talented youngsters, but I decided to play a little too so I didn’t watch much.  Ended up shooting an even par 60, ball striking continued to be very solid, but my putting continues to be a struggle.  I missed so many 6-12 foot birdie putts, just having zero confidence in my stroke right now…I need to fix this, I’m letting so many opportunities go to waste.  On a good note, I hit another awesome 5 wood to about 12ft for eagle on one of the par 4s, but lipped out the eagle.  At least I didn’t 3 putt it like the day before!  I’ll figure out this putting soon, I’m going to keep working on it.

7/16/14

The Vineyard Golf Course 6,531 Yards Par 70 (Blue: 71.0/126)

Score: 75(+5) FW: 9/14 GIR: 11/18 Putts: 31 Up/Down: 2/5 Sand Save: 0/1 Penalties: 1

A putting struggle on the front 9 missed three consecutive 4ft or less putts on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th holes…not a fun way to start out.  Hit it into the hazard on the par 3 6th and took a double bogey.  Was (+5) after 6 holes today, but played well the rest of the way to finish at only +5 for the round.  Not my best ball striking round, but still had overall solid numbers.  Started to figure out my putting near the end, so I decided to keep going and play another 9 holes before dark.

9 Holes

Score: 33(-2) FW: 5/7 GIR: 9/9 Putts: 16 Up/Down: 0/0 Sand Save: 0/0 Penalties: 0

A great way to end the night, was playing quick and maybe that actually helped me, shot a (-2) over this quick front 9 holes!  Was hitting driver actually on most holes and drove it real well and hit all 9 greens.  Found a little something in my putting setup that seemed to work and I made a couple nice birdie putts and some good par putts.  Feels good to get this under par score in to end the day, feeling good going into tomorrow.

golf-course11I’ve been playing alright in the few weeks following my first under par round…not as great as I would like, but still solid golf.  My ball striking has been close to the same, but my putting and chipping has been spotty.  If I’m making the 3-6 footers that day then I will score low, but even when I’m not, I’m still breaking 80.  I had a close call for another under par round the other day, but finished with a +1 total round. (-1) on the front, (+2) on the back.  Had another 9 holes under par at the carmel highlands shooting a back 9 of (-1), but a front 9 of (+5)!  So yea, I’ve still got the game to shoot another under par round, maybe I’m putting a little bit of added pressure on myself to do it again to prove to myself that it wasn’t a fluke.  I want to get at least one more under par round before the palm springs tournament in 6 weeks, just going to keep trying to get a little better each day and the scores will take care of themselves.

Here are my stats for my last 6 rounds since my last post:

6/30/14

The Vineyard Golf Course 6,531 Yards Par 70 (Blue: 71.0/126)

Score: 77 (+7) FW: 7/14 GIR: 9/18 Putts: 32 Up/Down: 2/6 Sand Save: 0/3 Penalties: 1

My first round since my under par on this same course and I shot a disappointing +7.  I was just a little bit off from the tee on this day and I found a total of 5 fairway bunkers!  Never hit it in that many fairway bunkers before in a single round and I found 3 green side bunkers as well (0/3 in saves).  Still hit 50% of FW’s and Green’s, but it was a struggle of a day.

7/2/14

 The Vineyard Golf Course 6,531 Yards Par 70 (Blue: 71.0/126)

Score: 71 (+1) FW: 9/14 GIR: 10/18 Putts: 30 Up/Down: 5/7 Sand Save: 0/1 Penalties: 0

I thought that this might be my 2nd under par round, but it was not to be.  Shot a solid -1 on the front 9, but 2 over on the back.  Couldn’t convert a lot of makeable birdie opportunities down the stretch.  Had an eagle on the par 5 9th hole, which was cool, but actually had a bogey on the drivable par 4 7th, which I almost never do anymore.  I did throw a 3 putt in there as well, but either way, a very solid round that I was happy with.

7/3/14

The Crossings at Carlsbad 6,835 Yards Par 72 (Black: 72.6/132)

Score: 79 (+7) FW: 8/14 GIR: 11/18 Putts: 36 Up/Down: 1/5 Sand Save: 0/1 Penalties: 3

My friend had a couple free rounds at the Crossings in Carlsbad, a beautiful semi private club and gave me an invite.  It was so much fun, I’ve always wanted to play this course, but it is so expensive.  An extremely challenging track with multiple undulations on just about every green and with no course knowledge, it’s difficult to know where to hit it into a lot of blind greens.  I actually played much better than my score would indicate, was only +2 going into the final 5 holes, but then I fell apart.  Had 3 penalties, and a 3 putt, very disappointing ending to the round, as I played really well all day.  Played from the tips as I always do and at 6,835yards it’s one of the longest courses around this area.  Also couldn’t make any putts, I hit it really well, but 2 putted every hole except one 3 putt and one 1 putt…not good.

7/5/14

Carmel Highlands Golf Resort 6,428 Yards Par 72 (Blue: 71.4/129)

Score: 76 (+4) FW: 9/14 GIR: 9/18 Putts: 31 Up/Down: 3/9 Sand Save: 0/0 Penalties: 1

Honestly, I hit the ball well enough on this day, that I should have shot about +1 at the worst!  Missed two less than 3 footers on the first and 3rd holes, was green side in 2 on the par 5 6th, before sculling it out of a bunker that was basically concrete into a hazard and making bogey.  Had about 3 or 4 other putts that decided to lip out or die across the hole…a very frustrating round.  On a positive note after a horrible +5 41 on the front 9, I shot a (-1) on the back with a streak of birdies on 15, 16 and 17, before a bogey on 18 from only 70 yards out.

7/7/14

The Vineyard Golf Course 6,531 Yards Par 70 (Blue: 71.0/126)

Score: 75 (+5) FW: 8/14 GIR: 11/18 Putts: 33 Up/Down: 3/5 Sand Save: 0/1 Penalties: 0

Started off playing well, birding the difficult #1 hole and shooting even par 35 on the front 9, but the back 9 was a different story however.  Always difficult, the back 9 at Vineyard got the best of me…shot a disappointing +5 40, with a lot of not so good shots.  Sculled one out of the green side bunker at #13 and ended up taking a double bogey 6.  I’ve done that 2 rounds in a row because of tightly compacted sand, I keep trying to play it like a normal bunker shot, but the bounce of the club just skips off the hard dirt and sculls it.  I know now that I need to play it with a lot steeper angle of attack and a more square face…cost me the last 2 rounds.

7/9/14

The Vineyard Golf Course 6,531 Yards Par 70 (Blue: 71.0/126)

Score: 73(+3) FW: 9/14 GIR: 9/18 Putts: 28 Up/Down: 4/6 Sand Save: 0/3 Penalties: 1

A solid round of golf today, missed a few birdies coming down the stretch that I thought for sure were in when they were rolling toward the cup, but nothing wanted to drop.  I only had 28 putts today, was making a lot of putts for par, but continued to struggle out of the sand.  Had one that was buried in the lip, so I don’t expect to get that up and down, but I hit another one to about 2 and a half feet on #14 and missed the putt!  I hit a lot of solid golf shots over my last 6 holes today, so I’m feeling good for the rest of the week going forward.

I had my ups and downs over my last 6 rounds, but I feel overall I continued to strike the ball really well.  I’m now consistently hitting about 50% or more of the fairways each round now and that feels great because I have been working hard in that area of my game.  On these last 6 rounds, I was 50/84 in FW’s, just about 60%!  Just about 3 or 4 months ago, I was only hitting about 30-40% of FW’s on average, so it feels good to see this progress.  It’s giving me a lot more opportunities and my scores reflect that.  The one negative I take from these past 6 rounds is my sand game. I was 0 for 9 on sand saves, but I’d say about 5 of the 9 I hit within 10ft, but missed every putt.  It’s frustrating to not convert a couple saves from the sand and it’s getting to the point where I can’t remember the last time I did…so that’s not good!