I started my round at 7:18 am at SilverRock Resort on hole 10. Had a good short warm up, but felt good enough about my game and round from yesterday that I felt I could still post a good enough score to make the cut. I played a practice round at SilverRock on Sunday and played well on the front but had bad memories on the back, but I was determined to not let that round get in my head and just focus on what I had to do. I got to the tee box, greeted my playing partners, and we were ready to go. All marshalls for the Golf Channel National Championship are tour directors from across the country who come and officiate the tournament. For each group they tell which tees will be played during the round as well as the local rules and how to abide by them. This morning the marshall told our group that we would be playing from the white tees. I looked at him and ask if I was also playing from the white tees. He looked at me and said, “Yes. The women in the Hogan flight play from the whites.” I proceeded to tell him that I was not playing in the Hogan flight and that I was in Jones. He said, “You are still playing from the white.” I continued to questions him and he continued to assure me that I was playing from the white tees. I took my score card wished my playing partners good luck and off we went. I hit my first tee shot of the day in the water on the right and ended up with a six on the first hole. I calmed myself and brushed it off. It felt like the entire day was full of ups and downs. Bad swings would sneak in and out of my round as well as the good and bad scores. I reached the turn and told myself that I could turn my game around and still have a decent score. A marshall was at hole #1 (my #10) and as I prepared to hit my shot the marshall told me that I was playing from the wrong tee box. I let my playing partners play first while I spoke with the marshall. He radioed in asking if the women were playing from the whites and he told me that the Marshall from that morning had a “Senior Moment” and he made a mistake. He continued to tell me that I had to continue my round playing the whites or else I would be disqualified. At that point because I was already mentally exhausted it took all I had to not break down and cry. I took a deep breath, stepped up to the tee box and bombed one down the fairway. I tried to stay patient and focus on the rest of my round. I only had two pars and two boggies the entire day. That partnered with a 7,8,9 and an 11 left me with a 57 on the front (starting on hole 10) and a 53 on the back.
Looking back on my scores for the past few days in relation to the rest of the field I am devastated. I haven’t shot scores like that in a long time and I know that I and my swing are better than what I have been showing. But, at the same time the scores that are in the lead are in the low 80’s. I have only broken 90 once and have come close a few times in the past few months. The Jones bracket is for handicaps between 16 - 19. Technically our scores should be in the high 80’s if it goes according to our handicap. I don’t think we are flighted fairly and the Golf Channel needs to do a better job at watching the handicaps and making it fair.
One thing I can take away from today is how well I handled my emotions through such a crazy round. A cut is made after three rounds and my game plan for tomorrow is to shoot at every flag, be aggressive on every hole, and continue to play fearless golf. I have nothing to loose tomorrow and everything to gain. Time for a good nights rest.
Sense of Direction
6 years ago