Saturday, March 2, 2013

Cold in Round 3

The temperatures were downright chilly for Saturday's third round at the NGA Tour's Spring Hill Classic. Add a consistent breeze blowing at 10-15 mph, and you get a day that is cold and difficult. Those kind of conditions should give me a huge advantage, but unfortunately, my game was a bit sour at times today. I felt good heading into the round, but a bogey-bogey start put me a bit behind the eight-ball early. I stayed calm and really hit some great shots in the next few holes, but could only take advantage of them with a birdie on the reachable par-5 third where I hit two great shots onto the green and two-putted for a birdie. Another bogey at the long par-4 seventh sent me to the back nine at two over par for my round. I made a great birdie at the par-3 eleventh but followed it up with an incredibly dumb choice after missing the fairway on the reachable par-5 twelfth hole. I tried to hit a huge slice out of some trees right of the fairway, and ended up rattling around in trees left of the green before my ball fell into a hazard. I ended up with a disappointing bogey on the hole. I stayed committed to my plan the rest of the day, and recovered from a disappointing par at the par-5 fifteenth to finish par-birdie-par and post a round of 72 (+1). I am certainly disappointed that I didn't play better, but I still feel great about a lot of what I did in round 3. I fell down the leaderboard into big tie for eighth heading into the final round, but I'm just four shots behind the leader. The weather promises to be challenging again for Sunday's final round, and I am excited to see what happens when I put a solid round together!

Here's a cool story from my day. You know how I made it part of my process goals this year that I must chip-in at least ten times and must hole at least three bunker shots every three weeks. I have learned that it is really hard to make bunker shots, but in the effort to do so, I have noticed that my shots from the sand have been dancing all around the hole. I was coming off of a bogey-bogey-birdie start when I drove it in the trees on the fourth hole today. I didn't have a chance to hit in on the green from where I was, but I could squeeze it into a front bunker, and I was confident in my bunker play. I hit a perfect bunker shot that was rolling right into the middle of the hole with good speed when it somehow rattled off the flagstick and sat on the back lip. It was unbelievable that the ball didn't go in. It was hardly moving when it hit the flagstick. Oh well--I am going to hole some important bunker shots this year; I can feel it!

I'm pumped to get out there and get after it in the final round of this week's event! My game feels good, and I know great things are coming. Come back for a final-round report on Sunday evening. Thank you for keeping up with me!

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