A HEARTBREAK TO END THE SEASON, BUT ALWAYS A HEARTWARMING EXPERIENCE

How do you prepare for a one day qualifier for the right to play in the USGA Four ball championship knowing that about 60 teams will compete for only 2 spots. On Wednesday my partner (Jason Anthony) and I went to battle the elements and tough conditions at Poppy Hills after a huge rain storm just dumped a couple inches of rain on the course.

We both are nursing serious injuries, mine is only a bad left ankle that requires surgery on Dec 11th and a wrenched back as a result of how I need to swing a golf club without going to my left side. Jason has a severely messed up wrist, two bad knee’s and my god he’s only 36.

Nobody wants to read about two guys with injuries, especially when on Thursday they will receive NCGA Player of the Year, and NCGA Senior Player of the year. So I won’t mention the aches and pains anymore. But what I will attempt to describe is two guys on a mission, trying to fabricate whatever game we could muster up.

In the tougher conditions, you never know what kind of score will punch their ticket into the main event, and with this being the 6th USGA Four Ball Qualifier, and our worst finish being 2nd runner-up, we feel like we belong. After a great start with a birdie on the first hole at Poppy, a 540 yard par five, where Jason made a very nice 10 foot putt for birdie. We then rolled off 6 pars in a row, and badly needing a spark. On the tough downhill 8th hole, I was able to finally time my arm swing and properly hit a 7 iron to 6 feet from the hole. With eyes shut as I took the putter back, I was thrilled when I didn’t feel a jolting flinch at impact, and knew that it had a chance. In it went to move us to -2 thru 8 holes, and probably off the pace we needed.

Poppy Hills 9th hole is a very reachable uphill 520 yard par 5, with the pin in the very back, it was not a certain birdie hole. After we both hit good drives, Jason hit a decent rescue onto the very front of the green leaving himself a 120 foot putt up the hill. I hit my 17 degree fairway medal hooking left and into the greenside bunker with about a 40 yard shot that I needed to carry about 20 yards. My bunker play is not my forte, however on this occasion I hit an acceptable shot to about 20 feet. Jason was unable to hit his uphill putt hard enough and it ended up about 18 feet short, leaving a low probability of making what was left. I again stood over my putt, not knowing if I was going to go EYES OPEN OR EYES CLOSED, and at the last moment as the putter was going back I closed my eyes and made decent contact with the putt. I opened my eyes and saw the ball rolling on a decent line and then disappear into the cup. Now at -3 through 9 holes we were back within striking distance of a score we thought might sneak in.

Back on the old #1 hole at Poppy and now the very tough 10th hole we again both hit good drives and followed it up with decent iron shots. I went first from 30 feet and with eyes open this time gave my putt a serious GACK, whatever that is. I got it to 3 feet however giving Jason a good run at his. We picked a good line and Jason knocked his birdie putt right in the middle to give us three birdies in a row, and not at -4 through 10 holes an even better chance. Onto the 11th hole, par three playing 175 over the left bunker, Jason hit a nice shot to 15 feet right of the pin, and I decided to go flag hunting. That didn’t work out to well as a I had my 7 iron hooded and hooked it way left of the green, leaving Jason all alone to lag his birdie putt down the hill for a par.

The tough 12th hole was playing into the wind, and after 2 great tee shots, again I went left of the green, leaving Jason with a decision to go straight at the pin or head safely left of it. He went straight at it, and uncharacteristically the shot pulled back 5 feet leaving Jason a 15 foot uphill birdie putt. We misread that one, and went to the par 5 13th hole needing a birdie. There we both had long birdie putts, mine was yipped again, leaving Jason with an uphill 20 footer that he buried in the center of the cup, getting us to -5 with 5 holes to play.

The tee was back on #14 making it about 440 into the wind. We both hit our drives down the right side, mine leaving me 225 into the breeze which I then deposited into the right bunker. Jason hit a brilliant shot into the wind about 20 feet left of the hole pin high. Here was one of those putts that you’ll never forget, basically a straight putt, rolling perfect into the hole with just inches left, hit something to make it start to roll funny, and then still going into the left center of the cup hit something again and decided to graze the left center of the cup and not go in. All 5 of us (including our playing partners and my caddie) stood there for a few seconds with our mouths open. I said I’ve seen thousands of putts in my life that I thoughts were going in, BUT NEVER ONE LIKE THIS.

On we went to make 3 more pars, just missing birdie on 17, we were desperate for something big to happen on the 18th hole, a downwind reachable par 5. After two good drives, we both knocked our shots on the green, but again this was a different Poppy Hills with the rain, the balls were hitting and stopping. Jason had a 90 foot eagle putt, and I had an 80 footer. Jason went first and knocked his putt 18 feet past the hole, so now the pressure was on me to convert at least a close putt to ensure a birdie for the team and get us to -6 on the day. I had to keep writing about gacked putts, but this was the worst one of the day, from 80 feet, I left my eagle putt 20 feet short. I was embarrassed and in disbelief that I could hit a putt so poorly. My birdie attempt was better and to further torture me, it grazed the low side of the cup. I was SICK thinking we came all this way, just to miss on the last hole like we have done on three other occasions in this qualifier.

But the true champion that Jason Anthony is, he pored his uphill 18 footer in the hole, gave a fist pump and gave us life to see if -6 would get us again into this amazing event. When we reached the scoreboard we noticed a number of 66’s and one 64, leaving us in second for the time being.

We went up stairs sat down and had some lunch, watched the scores online, and when finished we went down to wait for the last group to come in. We heard a scream of joy coming from the 18th hole and I just figured someone made an eagle to shoot 2 or 3 under par. Boy was I ever wrong. The final group, two lads from Utah that I was not familiar with, finished birdie, birdie, par, eagle to shoot 63 and drop us to first alternate.

Jason and I are so numb to these occurrences having finished 2nd 3 of the past 4 years in the NCGA Four ball at Spyglass where each time we thought we had finally won the event, only to have some team ham and egg a -6 on the back nine at Spyglass. So we are used to this happening, and in golf it happens more and more with how deep the talent pool is. It’s just life, and we’ll wait for many months sitting on the first alternate spot with very little chance of getting into this amazing event. In a few days I will be 61, and at 61 you have limited opportunities in these types of situations. But in the end, going to battle with Jason with not our best bodies, we still are quite proud of how we played, and certainly Jason with a 68 on his own ball is my hero, and my most favorite partner I’ve ever had a privilege to play with. My other past partners are also some of the best amateurs in the world, with names like Chip Lutz, Darryl Donovan, Bob Blomberg, Gary Vanier, Aly Trompais and many others that made playing in better ball events a real treat for me.

Now its off to surgery on Wednesday, I have never been put under, so I am already having major trepidation and some anxiety. Hopefully I will wake to a fixed ankle and a chance to continue doing what I love most, playing the game that has given me so many opportunities to meet the greatest people on the planet. Sorry about the typos and grammatical errors, as I needed to just rip through this:)

I will write after surgery, and meanwhile I wish everyone the most merriest holiday season ever, god bless, and stay tuned.

Jason Anthony NCGA PLAYER OF THE YEAR and Randy Haag NCGA SENIOR PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Acceptance speech, important for everyone to support Youth of Course and the First Tee

LONG JOURNEY OF THREE WEEKS OF GOLF FROM LA to San Luis Obispo ending in Costa Rica

I am writing this post while on a 7 hour flight back from Costa Rica. How was the experience? It was long and grueling, playing 5 completely different courses with different grasses and conditions.

I had written a long draft post about the California State Senior at Wilshire CC, but decided not to post it. I have the utmost respect for the SCGA, and I will never write anything that undermines what they do for the game of amateur golf. The challenge that the SCGA faces is getting top venues to host their events. Wilshire is considered by many to be a very good test of the game. However for me, it was a miserable place to play golf. The greens had been punched two weeks prior and did not come back very well. They were fast, but not true. The course is short, so its defense is undulating fast greens, and multiple fairway bunkers on most every hole. I guess the course did not suit me well.

Nobody likes to hear excuses of why someone didn’t play well, and when someone asks “what did you shoot” the fact is 75% really don’t care and the other 20% wish you’d shot higher, leaving perhaps 5% that do care. You are playing against the best senior amateurs in the State and they all have EGO, and want to stack up well against their peers.

I had absolutely no game at Wilshire, and missed the cut with rounds of 75-80 after being runner-up 3 of the past 5 years. I did nothing well, and was happy to not have to play the course again a third day. I did not hear one player say anything good about their experience at Wilshire. And the truth is they didn’t even treat us very well there. I have to laugh, they wouldn’t let you take a cart to the driving range which was about 400 yards away. With my bad ankle that extra walking was not welcomed. At the player meals you had to give them your name before they would issue you a plate. My god really?

The crazy thing about that was all the wasted food that was brought out when I was the last person eating after the last tee time on Tuesday. They completely restocked the whole Buffett when nobody was left to eat. Maybe I am just a bitter poor sport, that hates to lose, and playing shitty on a short course that should be taken down, is just not acceptable regardless of the conditions, everyone has to play it, and I did not do a very good job mentally of grinding it out like the other top players did. Totally my bad!!

But when the winning score is +2 over par ( a hearty Congrats to Hall of Famer Casey Boyns) then something is wrong, as opposed to an under par total at The Preserve which technically is WAY more difficult than Wilshire. The players I spoke to ALL said they couldn’t understand how the course could be in such poor shape for a major championship. Obviously the club didn’t care as they punched the greens two weeks prior to the event, but in the end, they did give us access to their course when the majority of the top courses in So. Cal do not, so for that, THANK YOU Wilshire CC.

I’m sure that someone perhaps from the SCGA will read this and take offense, but if you read what I have written very carefully, everything is exactly the way it is, nothing is exaggerated at all.

The good news is I got to leave after two excruciating rounds, and head to San Luis Obispo to a course that was in amazing shape with greens running close to 15. Mike Rowley knows how to run a first class event, and he’s been doing it for over 20 years. He attracts players like Fred Couples, John Daly, Loren Roberts, Kenny Perry, Bob Ford and many other tour winners like major winner Larry Mize . Its a two day pro/scratch that has everything you could ever want in an event. I’ve know Mike for over 20 years now, he’s a class act, runs a great company, and really cares about the game of golf.

His global company Straight Down, is now launching a new line of very cool golf shoes. With my $150 gift certificate I got a pair and wore them in Costa Rica. I must say I love em, and would highly recommend you try a pair!

My partner in the event is one of the most liked guys I’ve ever known. Now almost 5 Years as Director of Golf at the Olympic Club, Will Hutter has made a significant contribution to our club. Getting to play and hang with him for the weekend was awesome. We battled hard, but suffered my first career team triple bogey on the tough downhill par three 14th hole. I will spare you the details. I hope to play in this event as long as Mike and Will will have me. At Mike’s house on Saturday night for a small dinner gathering, I was able to corner Loren Roberts and ask him about what makes him putt so great. To be honest I cannot remember exactly what he said, other than match you speed with a line that you feel is best for that putt, that’s all you can control.

Off to Costa Rica on a red eye after driving back home Sunday night to do laundry, repack and head to the airport. What the hell was I thinking with an injured ankle that requires surgery on Dec 18th to now fly to Costa Rica for another 6 rounds of golf. 

I’m thinking when you’re 60, you start thinking about how many more years will I be able to keep doing this, as opposed to being 25 and thinking you’ll live forever and time is on your side. Since the event was a WAGR points event, I wanted to play to see if I could make up for my missed cut on the State Senior that will ultimately hurt my world ranking (currently 7th in the WAGR for 55+) 

The bottom line in Costa Rica was I went from greens running 15 to 5. The grass and green speeds in Costa Rica are the slowest I have ever experienced anywhere in the world. Honestly when you have the YIPS, and you need to put a hit on a putt, you are going to struggle mightily and I did. In round one, I hit so many quality shot, only to three putt and walk off with yet another bogey. The first course we played was Costa Rica CC, its nine holes you play twice from different tees, and one different green. The first hole is a par three up a steep hill plays 140 and 160. In both rounds I hit really good shots within 20 feet and walked off with a bogey and a four putt double bogey 5. 

I shot a cool 80 on a 6,000 yard course. I played better the next day at a longer course to move up a bit. Heading into the final round I knew that I actually would hurt my WAGR ranking if I did not finish 3rd or better. I entered the final round tied for 5th after rounds of 80-74. The last course also located in San Jose Costa Rica was the best of the three courses. It was called Cariari Country Club a 6500 yard course that played more like 7200 yards, very tight and tough. I was too far behind to win the event, but knew that 3rd was possible. I got off to a good start, then bleed out a few bogeys.

Coming to the last hole I knew I was in the hunt for 3rd, and with a made 4 foot slider for par on the 18th hole, I accomplished my goal of 3rd, with the champion at age 15 and second place finisher all of 18. I was low senior, but most importantly I notched a few WAGR points to hopefully maintain my 7th position, as now the top 15 senior amateurs in the world are exempt into the USGA Senior Amateur.

San Jose Costa Rica is not a place you want to visit. It felt dangerous, the traffic was horrific, and its not beautiful like the Costa Rica coastline. If this event in the future would be at a Seaside venue I would return, but I have seen San Jose for the last time other than driving out of it from the airport.

Back home tonight so I can share with you my scathing letter I am sending to the Board at Helius Medical. I have never seen a company make so many mistakes. In my next Post I will give you a longer apology for those of you that took my suggestion and bought shares of this company. But remember the device does work, and they will one day have a major uptick I believe.

STAY TUNED

LIVING WITH THE YIPS

Its been a tough and long 5 years living with the Yips. You cannot win BIG events with the Yips. The Yips have a way of escalating in and during big events, all self inflicted. So what is the cure, the answer to eliminating or at least getting them to subside long enough to compete.

I’ve tried different putters, different grips, putting with my eyes closed, partially closed, looking at a spot ahead of my line, looking at the hole. None of these have worked. I switched to faceOn putting in 1996 when my Yips were so bad I couldn’t make a 2 foot putt. Golf was not fun, and I was either going to leave the game I love, or find something that worked.

I found Sidesaddle putting, and for 15 glorious years some considered me to be the best putter they ever saw. I felt so confident that I could make any putt of any length. But the real winner for me was my distance control was crazy good. I rarely ever three putted any greens, even when out 60, 70, 80 and 90 feet away.

I mainly used a Jack Koski putter called so easy, it was very light and had a solid face. After it ran its course I found the STX side saddle putter to be ever more to my liking. But in 2014 on one certain putt, there was a BOMB that went off in my right hand, and to this date have not been able to find a cure for it.

Yes I can still win tournaments, but not the really big ones. I was able to get to the Final match in the Crump Cup two years ago, and just needed two putts on the 18th hole from 25 feet to win, and was unable to get that done.

More on this topic in my next post tomorrow, I am flying from El Salvador back to SFO from playing in the Costa Rica amateur.

STAY TUNED

WHY THE WAGR MATTERS NOW

Ending the point season and securing the Northern California Senior Player of the year award is really nice and a great honor. But honestly I feel that Mark Morgan had a better year. He again for the second year in a row beat me on the last hole (36th) of the NCGA Valley Amateur. He beat me in the NCGA Senior Amateur at Poppy Hills, and was a serious threat to win every event he played in, along with qualifying for the US Senior Open, his first professional major.

Ok, I’m not here to write about Mark, but he was more deserving than me, but just didn’t have the opportunity to play in enough events to get it done. In the end, we both had to play in the last point event of the year…….the TRACY CITY, on a course that is split by highway 5 heading to LA in the middle of nowhere. I won’t say anything negative about the course, it was just we both needed to play to have a chance at NCGA Senior Player of the Year.

The tournament did not go well for me, after being even par with three holes to go on day one, I went double bogey, bogey, and a 10 on the last hole. Mark standing on the 36th tee box had a one shot lead, and a par on the last hole would have secured him player of the year. He unfortunately made a double bogey. I was actually disappointed for him, and had rather he made par and won both the event and the title this year. He deserved it!

Finally a world ranking matters when you are a senior golfer, that means over 55 years of age. This past year the USGA starting exempting the top 15 ranked Senior amateurs off the WAGR. It was how I avoided the tough qualifier to get into this years event.

Despite needing ankle surgery scheduled for December 18th, I have three WAGR events before I go under the knife. This week is the California State Senior Amateur, followed my next week I will fly to Costa Rica for their Championship in San Jose which carries WAGR points. I’ll end the season with an event in Florida the Dixie Senior Amateur.

My current ranking is 7th in the Senior Amateur World, but that can change quickly as events fall off that you did well in. Its a 104 week window for your events to count. This is a motivator to play in events that now count in the WAGR ranking, meaning they must be at least 54 holes, no 36 hole events count. So all the 36 hole events I play in need to be re-thought.

I’ll be giving updates on my progress on the STATE SENIOR AMATEUR, as I am paired with Senior super-star Jeff Wilson. You can also follow live scoring Monday – Wednesday this week at http://www.ncga.or

Get healthy, quit eating crap, workout 5 days a week, and play the best golf of your life!!

STAY TUNED

INCREASE YOUR CLUBHEAD SPEED 3-10 MPH BY DOING THIS 5 MINUTES A DAY

I sound like some kind of add with that title. BUT I do not accept any money for anything I write about on this blog. I’ve been given some side saddle putters to review and that’s it.

Additionally I haven’t tried to expand my readership in hopes to monetize what I write here. I write to you what I 100% think, feel, and believe in right or wrong. And yes I can be VERY wrong sometimes!!

But I am not wrong about increasing your clubbed speed, because I have added 4 mph of additional speed and I just started using this technique. Go too http://www.superspeedgolf.com to learn more about this excellent method. Those I know that are using this, love it, and have had great success.

They have training video on the best way to utilize the different colored clubs to train with, so I do not need to provide you with training and videos. The also have some great golf warm up stretches that everyone should be incorporating into their pre-golf routine. The 3-10 mph increase in your clubbed speed equates to 10-30 additional yards, which can be a game changer. Don’t let the winter off season bring you clubhead speed down.

More later on the race for NCGA Senior Player of the year.

Stay tuned

I

USGA SENIOR AMATEUR, NCGA SENIOR AMATEUR

2019 is the first year that the USGA is using the WAGR to exempt the top 15 ranked senior in the world into the USGA Senior Amateur. Finally this ranking becomes relevant for senior golfers (over the age of 55).

I followed my ranking closely as the USGA Senior Amateur qualifier was in San Diego the day after I returned from Scotland to play in the Senior Amateur there. Once the entry deadline date is established, that is the date they look for the top 15 ranked players. I was jostling between 7th and 12th, with tournaments from 2 years prior falling off, with new events being added. So you really don’t ever know if your going up the list or down relative to the other guys and what’s going on with them.

I was holding my breath as the last day for entries came July 11th and was thrilled to see that I held on at #12 in the world and would not need to travel down to San Diego to play in a 80 man for 5 spot qualifier, especially with my bad ankle.

I had the craziest week in North Carolina at Old Chatham. I was thinking that my ankle was going to be my main issue, but on Thursday during my practice round I started to hiccup and at first I thought nothing about it, until they didn’t stop. I went back to the hotel and started doing research on all the best ways to stop the hiccups. I spent a sleepless night, and finally on Friday afternoon (after I decided not to play my last practice round) I went to the UNC emergency room. Instead of going to an Urgent care facility I thought a University hospital would be able to treat my hiccups better.

WOW I was wrong. There were 100 people in the waiting room when I arrived at 3pm. 5 times I was called in for various test, including chest X-ray, blood, EKG, etc OMG I was there until 10:00 PM waiting to be seen my a doctor. In the mean time I texted my buddy DOC McD in SF who is a rock star emergency room doc, and he responded right back saying “only you Randy, this could only happen to you” as well as he sent me the three possible drugs they would give me to hopefully stop the hiccups.

After another hour waiting on my ER bed, a doc shows up and seems to be confused as what to do about my chronic hiccups, and after another hour decides to give me one of the drugs that was on the list provided by my doc friend in SF.

I took the pills and waited to see if the hiccups would stop, they didn’t and I pushed my call button many times to see if someone would come to give me the next drug on the list. Nobody responded so I walked out into their bullpen to find the nurses and doctors all eating and talking. I was pissed!!

Finally the supervisor doctor came to speak to me, now its 1:00 AM and I tee off at 8:10 am the next morning in the first qualifying round. She said to go back and get some rest if I can, and hopefully the hiccups will subside for a while. I left at 1:20 am and finally on the drive back to my hotel the hiccups stopped.

I got a little rest, and was hopeful that the hiccups would stay away as my esophagus was so sore from the contractions I could barely stand it any longer. Unfortunately after playing 15 solid holes at even par, the hiccups returned with a vengeance on the 17th tee box. I was finishing on the 8th and 9th holes, both birdie holes. But with my hiccups hitting me hard every 5 seconds I had an additional challenge just beyond a tough golf course.

I ended up making bogey on the last two holes and finished with a 74. At lunch while trying to eat between the hiccups I got some advice from a fellow competitor the eat a large scoop on Peanut Butter, that it would coat my esophagus and perhaps stop the hiccups. In the mens locker room there was a huge plate of peanut butter and crackers, I took a huge scoop of peanut butter and headed to my car.

As I was driving out of the driveway the hiccups did stop, but not for long. back at my hotel they started up again making ever so more hopeless and exhausted and disappointed. I decided to go to a movie once they again stopped, hoping I would not disturb everyone in the theatre if they started up again, as they are VERY loud once going.

I cannot believe I am writing about this, but you’ll never know how horrible the chronic hiccups are unless you’ve had this happen to you. What I realized was that something I ate on Wednesday evening gave me bad acid reflux, and the cause of my hiccups was that acid reflux igniting my esophagus into a spasm. I was able to get a prescription for my acid reflux which in turn calmed my hiccups down.

After another 74 on Sunday I was the 23rd qualifier (64 qualify for match play out of the 156 players) I drew a match with an old nemesis Bob Kearny from Houston. Bob had years ago beaten me in back to back years in the quarter finals of the USGA Mid Amateur championship. Bob is a very good player and a VERY good putter.

I hate to report that during my match with Bob, the putting yips were at their all time peak performance. I missed 3 footer after 3 footer, and saw my ship sinking rapidly as Bob kept making every putt under 20 feet that he had. Championship golf is won with good putting first and foremost. After all the golf over the weekend and dealing with the hiccups it was too much for me to get re-focused and a quick exit from match play resulted.

But honestly I was unsure that I was even going to play in the event with my ankle in such bad shape. Not in a million years did I think that my main challenge was going to be the hiccups. I left quickly after my defeat to get back home to see about rehabbing my body.

The NCGA Senior at Poppy Hills was a similar disappointment as I held a one shot lead going into the final round, after rounds of 69,73. The ankle was holding up ok, but on the last day there was no way I could transfer my weight to my left side. All ugly arm swings, resulting in an ugly 78 and a T7th finish. My buddy Mike Rowley played solid and birdied the final hole to win the event. I was super happy for him, and if I couldn’t win, I was glad it was him.

Coming up- the battle for NCGA Senior Player of the year, it comes down to the final tournament of the year, the Tracy City

Stay tuned

PLAYING INJURED -Chapter 3

It’s been such a challenge try to compete at the highest level in senior amateur golf, or any golf for that matter with an injury. I wasn’t even sure I wanted to write about it at all.

The trip back from the UK was uneventful other than having to haul a lot of luggage to the airport from my hotel at the airport, and then finding the right check in lane. The Edinburgh airport is not the easiest to navigate and when your limping its even more challenging.

I was super happy to be heading home, but knew that I was unable to rest as the next tournament was coming up on Monday, the NCGA Valley Amateur which would have huge points towards player of the year. Knowing I would be tired upon my arrival back to San Francisco on Saturday, the last thing I wanted to do was play a practice round on Sunday. I have never played Oakdale Country Club, and knew that it would be nice, but I heard a bit tricky.

So off to Oakdale in the Central Valley I went early Monday morning to play a course I had no idea how to play or to mentally prepare for. My body was a bit beaten up with the travels back to the States, but wanted to give this my best and try to maintain a lead in the Senior Player of the Year standings (sadly that’s what we play for as amateurs).

I’m going to fast forward and spare you the details of my two rounds there, but I will tell you that I came to the 36th hole again tied with Mark Morgan for the lead, with a 5 shot cushion over those is 3rd. The same event a year earlier Mark and I also stood tied on the 18th and final hole. Last year I had a six iron into the par 5 finishing hole at Winchester CC only to rope hook it up on the hill and make a nasty bogey.

I was determined not to let something like that happen again. Mark had been making all these BOMB putts all day from off the greens, I was hoping it was perhaps my turn. But in the end, I hit a memorable 9 iron to 5 feet, while Mark sucked his shot off the green and down 6 feet off the green. I felt pretty comfortable that I would prevail this time. That was until Mark again from 40 feet and off the green drained a long put under intense pressure to put the heat back on me. My delicate 5 footer had a foot of break, and I did not hit a good putt. And again Mark was victorious.

My ankle seemed to hold up okay with the brace I had on it, and I was grateful that we were able to take golf carts right out onto the fairway to our balls.

THE NEXT FEW TOURNAMENTS BECAME MORE PAINFUL

I had all the majors now coming up, the US SENIOR AMATEUR, THE NCGA SENIOR MATCH PLAY, THE NCGA SENIOR STROKE PLAY, and a chance to outlast Jeff Wilson and Mark Morgan for Senior NCGA Player of the Year.

I was going to give you the blow by blow in each of them, but have decided not to. My next event was the NCGA Match Play at Spyglass Hill (one of my all time favorite courses) I won three matches to get to the semi-finals and a match with my good friend Scott Anderson, however that morning my ankle was so bad I called Scott and informed him I couldn’t play and needed someone from the hotel to help me to my car.

Now it was time for an MRI and Xray, which I drove 3 hours back home and directly to my doctors office and then straight to an offsite MRI office to get this ankle looked at. I was not surprised when told I have a bone sticking into my Achilles that was creating the pain and inflammation. I asked the doctor is I would be able to play golf, up next was the USGA Senior Amateur in North Carolina. He said you can try, but its going to be a challenge.

Up next, the USGA SENIOR AMATEUR

STAY TUNED