Thursday, March 28, 2013

Steady Start at One of My Favorite Venues

The eGolf Professional Tour is at one of my very favorite courses this week--the Reserve Club at St. James Plantation. In addition to being a beautiful layout that is in immaculate condition, the Reserve Club is one of the most demanding courses I will play all year. Combine the challenging track with frigid morning temperatures and winds that rarely are calm here on the coast of North Carolina, and you have the recipe for a great test of golf.

I began the tournament at 8:20 on Wednesday morning off of the tenth tee. I could not believe that the superintendent and the tournament committee were letting us start because there was visible frost all over the golf course and practice facilities. After slipping and sliding on an ice covered driving range, I hit the tenth tee to start my tournament. I really wasn't feeling great about the way I was hitting the ball, but I knew that with a good attitude, I had the ability to take on the demanding course. I missed a short par-saving putt on my opening hole, but recovered by making a big six-footer to save par on the next. That par putt on the 11th (my 2nd) hole settled me down nicely. I made a great birdie on the long par-5 12th hole, and proceeded to play very solid golf over the next twelve holes. I rarely missed greens, and, though I stayed fairly cold with the putter, I arrived at the tee of the par-5 7th (my 16th) hole one under par for my round. I hit a great drive and was licking my chops in the fairway of the very challenging hole. I had a great plan for my second shot, and I was committed to it, but I hit my worst shot of the day and blocked a four iron well right of my target into a bunker some 50 yards from the water-guarded green. I wound up with a bogey on that hole, and suffered another bogey on the following hole. I was angry after my back-to-back bogeys, but I committed to an aggressive plan on the par-4 9th hole and executed a perfect tee shot. That tee shot set up an easy wedge onto the green where I rolled in a fifteen foot putt to end my round with a birdie. I posted a first-round score of 72 (Even par) and am in great position moving forward.

I play my second round later in the day on Thursday, and I'm confident that I will stay positive and patient and post a great round. Come back for a round-2 update Thursday evening. Thank you for keeping up with me!

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