I put another exclamation mark on what was a great week for me with a final-round 66 (-6) in the Puerto Rico Open. My only bogies in round four came from two uncharacteristic three-putts, and otherwise, I played some beautiful golf on Sunday. I birdied five of the first eight holes, but I also sprinkled in those two disappointing three-putt bogies in that opening stretch. The first bogey came at the opening hole, and I am proud of the way that I didn't let it set the tone for the day. For the third consecutive day, I played bogey-free golf on the back nine. I converted birdies on holes 13 and 16 before finishing the tournament with a bang by smoking a three wood onto the back of the par-five 18th green from outside of 270 yards. (Sure it was downwind and it ran about 20 yards, but it was a sweet shot for me.) I two-putted from the back fringe for a closing birdie, and I left the course happy with my Sunday effort.
It was a great week overall. That final-round performance moved me up into a tie for 14th place, and after being one over par through 27 holes of the tournament, I am very pleased with that result. The thing that has me feeling the best is that I was comfortable and confident almost all week. Even as I was approaching the cut from the wrong side of the line on Friday, and when I was jockeying for every valuable position on the weekend, I rarely pressed. I simply committed to my process and enjoyed playing golf. From a mental standpoint this was my best tournament in months, and I am very excited to keep going in the correct direction in that regard. Not coincidentally, it was some of my best execution in a while as well. I can't wait to build on this week and keep moving forward.
The news from Puerto Rico is not all great. My weekend charge came up a little bit short of landing me a spot in the top ten, which would have earned a spot in this week's event in Tampa. I am currently on a flight to Orlando and will be pegging it at 8:48 tomorrow morning in the Monday Qualifier for this week's event. I know that I am playing well enough to qualify, so I am planning to earn myself a spot in the field that way.
Whether or not I get my next PGA Tour start this week, I know that I am ready to be successful at this level. I am very pleased with the tweaks to my Map Goals and I feel like my preparation in Puerto Rico was the best that I have had in a long time. From a practice standpoint, I completed all of my Map Goals except for one pesky three-footer drill that kept eluding me. All of my practice felt great and was very functional stuff. If I can maintain a great attitude and follow my Map, I know that will be successful on Tour.
I still have a lot of improving to do, but this past week was a big step in the right direction. I need to continue to focus on the process. I feel really great right now, and even though I wish I was guaranteed to get into all these events in the coming weeks, I'm just going to enjoy playing and improving. I will be ready! And I'm going to earn myself another start in this week's Monday Qualifier.
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