It will be hard for me to put in words how incredible the Olympic Club Lake and Ocean courses were the past two days. The condition of the courses and the weather were in a very special treat for all of the contestants in this 100 State Amateur. I’m sure nobody predicted that a playoff at 145 (+3) would be the number to make match play with the difficulty of both courses, but with the weather perfect and the tees up on many of the tougher holes, low scoring was the tag line so far.
Now match play may be a different situation with the tees going back and the fog rolling in, conditions will revert back to the normal summer sun/fog pattern that we normally see at this time of year. As usual many of the top players didn’t make the match play portion including ALL of the former winners of this event (to long a list to mention all of them, but last years champ Scott Travers failed shooting 147).
The number of great young players increases each year, and they get younger and younger…will my experience both at the OC Lake and in match play help me tomorrow..well maybe, except I’m playing the only other Olympian to make match play Matt Hansen. Matt and I had a match in the NCGA Amateur last August in the quarterfinals that didn’t go my way. Matt is a VERY strong player and I’m looking forward to our all Olympian match tomorrow at 7:48 am.
My round today was cruising along until the 11th hole, after a very solid drive I had 140 to a back right pin. Instead of taking a safe line to the middle I took dead aim and pushed my second shot right of the green, with a bogey waiting for me (I call that an unforced error). The problem was my concentration wavered and I followed the unforced error with a complete BLUNDER by pushing a 3 metal off the 12th tee into a tree on the right that swallowed my ball…yes my ball stayed in the tree resulting in a very ugly double bogey and NOW my small cushion to make the cut was GONE…
I dug deep and played 13-18 1 under par to secure the 25th seed and advance. I hope that I’ll bring my A game tomorrow as I will need it against Matt.
The NCGA and SCGA officials and volunteers do an amazing job in running this 1st class event. They make it possible for us players to play in incredible venues and feel like we are playing for a very big title, which we are!!
The 100th California Amateur Champion will always remember this week, and how special the Olympic Club was from the great food inside to the world famous Burger at Hot Dog Bills (if you haven’t tried one yet you NEED TO!!).
More results and comments tomorrow!
Scores link below