WHY I SHOULD HAVE CASHED
- It was not the strongest of fields. Based on rating alone, I was on the cash line to start, and three rounds of, quite frankly, mediocre golf would have earned me some cash. (960 golf was last cash)
- My scrambles. Not that you ever really want to hang your hat on the ability to scramble on a course where nearly every hole is deucable, but I did managed quite the short game. My ability to scramble and my up-shots in general were a strength this weekend. Many of my 80′ up shots (which have been problematic in the past) were no-brainers, and I saved a lot of strokes with some well timed scrambles, particularly with my forehand.
- My putts. Sure, I missed a few in the circle (I’d estimate about 5 for the weekend), but none inside 20′, and I made a BUNCH outside the circle, probably 7 or 8. I didn’t really feel it today, and it showed (one missed putt in the circle, none from outside), but my putter definitely saved me a bunch.
WHY I DIDN’T CASH
- That’s right, somehow I went from 10th place to 13th to 19th (they paid top 18). What went wrong? A bunch of things. First: altitude. I never shoot amazingly at sea level, but I just couldn’t seem to get off the tee without my disc behaving in some weird way I didn’t expect. Add to that I had trouble off the tee in general and it led to a long weekend.
- My inability to throw an anhyzer drive. See the previous entry, but it was most readily evident off the tee. If I had to throw a long anhyzer, you could bet that I was going to griplock it into the woods off to the right. On hole 5 alone it cost me 3 strokes (would have been four were it not for an amazing scramble during round 1). Anhyzers have never been my strength, but they’ve never been this glaring a weakness before.
- Luck. I hate to attribute a bad round to luck, but there was no denying my bad breaks this weekend, specifically the final round. From my first throw of the day where I NICKED a tree that turned a drop-in deuce to a 70′ birdie bid, it didn’t get better. On hole five, I found some terrible trouble, but could get away with a bogey if I managed to execute a really tough deep-woods hyzer. And I nailed it perfectly (throwing it into some low branches and long grass). Somehow, it misses all of that and does a 30′ flare skip past the basket and into more brush, leaving me with no real putt for a bogey. Hole eight, my card all cheered for me on my drive, only to find it go OB. Three holes later, on another scramble, I throw the perfect skip shot across the hill to give me the tap in, only I get a NEGATIVE skip, leaving me a 35′, which I dink off the top. Hole 15, I throw a great drive and end up in a 4′ creek 300 feet down the fairway. I had six OBs for the tournament, and only 2 of them were the result of bad throws.
- My Ape. This was the disc I threw great on holes 5, 8, and 11, each one of which got some weird funky result, and each cost me a stroke.
- My putter. It’s not like it went dead, I only missed one putt in the circle all round, but it stopped saving me like it had on Friday and Saturday.
- Deucing holes. This may sound weird, since you WANT deuces. I got 14 on the tournament, which wasn’t nearly enough. (Even if I threw bogey-free the whole weekend, I would have only come in 6th). But what I did immediately after those 14 bogeys was a travesty. Not ONE birdie (meaning I didn’t throw back to back birdies the entire weekend), 4 bogeys, and a double-bogey. I just couldn’t sustain anything.
- I had to not suck today, and I sucked.
I’m really disappointed right now and am replaying that final round in my head over and over again. The fact is I played poorly off the tee, got some unfortunate breaks, and dropped myself out of the cash in my first tournament as a Masters player. And really, I didn’t deserve to cash, not after the final half of the tournament.