Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Feeling "Up" and Catching Up

The last few days I've been tired, but man, have I been excited! I know I never blogged even once during last week's event, the Fed-Ex St. Jude Classic in Memphis, but it was for different reasons than earlier in the year. Hours of weather delays made for an extremely long week, but I was focused and confident, and I enjoyed everything about last week. Okay, maybe I didn't enjoy everything about my frustrating final round, but I handled the disappointment from U.S. Open Qualifying and weather delays in stride on my way to my most productive week of the year on the PGA Tour.

I got my first taste of really being in contention on the PGA Tour last week. I opened the tournament with a nearly flawless round of 65 (-5) on Thursday. After playing the first 15 holes, I sat inside for three and a half hours before finishing the round late in the day. Then more weather on Friday meant that I would never even tee it up for my second round until Saturday morning. When I did, I was ready! I birdied the first three holes of my second round and for a long time on Saturday morning, I was alone in second place. I stumbled a bit on the back nine of my second round and posted a 68 to stand in fourth place at seven under par at the tournament's mid-way point. I did a nice job of not obsessing about my position in the field, and tried to continue playing solid golf. I played the first seven and a half holes of my third round before another weather system ended play for Saturday. As I left the course on Saturday, I had hit every fairway and all but one green in regulation, and sat at one under par for my third round. I still felt great when we resumed play on Sunday morning, but I was never quite as sharp on the final day as I had been up to that point. A pair of back-nine bogies on Sunday morning dropped me to a round-three score of 70, and, despite feeling comfortable and getting off to a solid start, I shot a final-round 73 and fell into a tie for 19th place.

That last sentence is a bit of a negative end to a great paragraph, but I feel incredibly encouraged by the whole experience in Memphis. I started to make some birdies again. I was in control of both my thoughts and my golf ball. I made a PGA Tour cut on the continental United States for the first time. :) And on top of all of that, I was in the second to last group and in second place during the final round. It was very cool, and I handled it well. And I'll be there again. And I'll be even more prepared. And it won't take me long!

I have this week off, and, as much as I know I would be ready if I were in Pinehurst for the U.S. Open, I can use this week to recharge and get ready to go again. Because of the long day of U.S. Open Qualifying last Monday and then the very long nature of last week's tournament with the weather delays, I did very little of my normal practice routine. I'm getting back into my normal habits here at home this week, but was definitely moving a little more slowly than usual that last couple mornings. I'm back on my workout and practice schedule, though, and I'm going to be prepared for a great run this Summer and Fall!

Thank you for all of the support and encouragement. This ride is about to get even more fun! Keep it here for a practice update from home and a "what's-next?" report over the weekend!


2 comments:

  1. Happy "Friday the 13th" birthday, Peter! I enjoyed watching you play so wonderfully last week. I look forward to following you for the rest of this season. Best of luck!

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  2. I commented on you May 23rd blog about improving your play on the par 3 holes. I don't know if you read these comments or not but you definitely improved your play and scores both in the Open qualifying and the St. Jude. Much better results too as a result. Keep it up. I was driving along with my wife when you were threatening in the early part of the St. Jude and we were listening to the XM Sirus radio, channel 93 which is the pro golf station.

    They were mentioning your name so often that you would have made a million right there if they had given you a dollar each time they said your name.

    It is apparent from my following you the past few years and observing the way that you score that you have the physical game required. You just need more of the mental experience and the more often you make the cut, the more mental experience you will gain.

    Keep it up and good luck in the Travelers.

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