Saturday, April 21, 2012

Tournament Wrap-Up from Forest Oaks

I apologize for the delay in getting this update published. Earlier in the year, I had a long delay in getting an update out because I was so frustrated that it took me a couple of days to gather my thoughts. I am excited to say that there is no such problem this time around. My game was very solid the final two rounds at Forest Oaks in the Egolf event there this week, and I was close to having another very good finish.

In the tournament's second round, I played steadily all day and had a chance to post a good score when birdies at my fifteenth and sixteenth holes got me to four under par for the round, but a sloppy finish saw me drop a shot at the par-3 eighth (my seventeenth) and miss a six-foot putt after hitting two great shots into my closing hole. In the end it was a second-round score of 69, and though I made the cut, it left me in the back of the pack heading into Friday's final round of the 54-hole event. I knew I could make up ground with a good score on Friday, though, so I set out to do just that. Unfortunately, I opened with disappointing pars at the easy tenth and eleventh holes to get my final round off to a less-than-exciting start. I continued to hit a lot of good shots, however, and seemed to give myself make-able birdie putts on every single hole. I eventually made the turn at four under par, and felt pretty good heading to the front nine. I continued to hit the ball well, but I just wasn't precise enough. Rather than hitting the ball close to the hole, I left myself a lot of 15 to 20 foot birdie putts, and I wasn't able to convert them. I did birdie the par-5 fourth hole and the par-3 eighth (my fourteenth and seventeenth) to reach six under par for the round, but I made my only sloppy swing of the day on the closing hole and hit a drive well right of the fairway into some high grass that forced me to chop the ball back out into the fairway. The closing bogey left me with a final-round 67 and a tie for 14th place finish. It was a costly error at the last hole, because one shot better would have jumped me into a large tie for 7th, but I know better than to play the "what if" game. The important thing is that I am definitely playing very well and am trending towards some really exciting results.

I feel good about my game and am happy with the progress I've made. I need to keep having good, focused practice so that I can continue to sharpen my skills and ingrain the positive feelings I am having right now. Despite a full competition schedule Monday through Friday of this week, I have done a good job of working towards my practice and fitness goals. I still have a couple of putting drills and a little bit of short game work to do this weekend, but I have had a solid week and feel great about that.

I am currently in Athens, GA, because I was hoping that I would be on my way to Valdosta, GA, to play in the Monday Qualifier for the Nationwide Tour event that is there next week. The field for the qualifier is completely full, however, and I am on a waiting list. It is not looking likely that I'll be heading that direction, so I will take off from Athens Sunday morning and head up to Charlotte for a two-day event on the Carolinas Pro Tour at a course called Rain Tree on Monday and Tuesday. The competition on that little tour is great, and I am excited to try to get back in the winner's circle. I've got to have a strong weekend of practice first, though. I'll keep you posted. Great things are coming! Thank you for following me.

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