Doesn’t seem to matter if the wind blows or not, Seminole is the ultimate test that will expose any weakness in your game. Today was another rare day in beautiful Juno Beach Florida, with virtually no wind until the noon hour, and then the breezes picked up to 15-20mph for those of us with later tee times.
What makes Seminole so great is that any hole out there can get you, even the short par 4’s have a degree of difficulty where a slightly mishit shot will cause problems for even the best mid-amateurs in the country. Actually hard to believe that 72 is leading the event after a relatively calm day. It’s hard to explain how a course that is not super tight off the tee, and is about 6800 yards, can produce such high scores. But lets examine one of the holes, lets say #5 which was only playing 176 yards today into a slight right to left breeze and quartering into us. I was thinking 5 or 6 iron and decided to go with the six due to the front pin location. My shot was struck well and high, coming down close to the pin on a head spot that caused my ball to continue to roll and roll and roll until it was off the green. That bogey hurt, as it was followed by a double bogey on the famous 6th hole that Hogan claimed was his favorite par four anywhere.
I am not of the same opinion with Hogan as this hole has tortured me for 13 years now. Forget that the tee shot is a bit demanding, but even with a wedge or 9 iron to this green, I am shaking in my boots. Today I hit a horrible 9 iron in the right bunker, left my third shot in the bunker, got it out and made an ugly 6.
I was pleased to hear that Seminole will be hosting a future Walker Cup I believe in 2021, which seems like a long ways off, but really is not. This will be a fabulous venue for the Walker Cup, and will give all the players a true and tough test. The players may initially look at Seminole and wonder whats the big deal…oh my, this place is magical when it comes to punishing those that think they can conquer this place. It may wait till the 18th hole, like today when poor Nick Gilliam was even par for his round going to 18, and left the 18th green with a quadruple bogey 8 for 76. Trust me when I tell you that the 18th hole has ruined many promising rounds, as the second shot to this diabolical green needs to be hit with confidence and precision. I was not able to hit a precise second to 18, and was then lucky to make a bogey.
What I love most about this tournament is the people, like seeing Bob Ford, one of the best people in the game of golf. Bob is head golf professional at both Seminole and Oakmont CC. Bob is legendary as an ambassador of golf, and a person that you would want to know. Every year Bob stands on the first tee at Seminole from 7:30 to 12:40 and starts all the players off #1. The rest of the guys, well they are just good people to play with, to hang with, and to have as friends. I truly believe that is what amateur golf is all about, especially when we are fortunate to play at a course like Seminole. I have tried to post the scores below, but not sure how they will look with my copy and pasting talents. STAY TUNED
1 Patrick Christovich 72
11 Carlton Forrester 74 Edward Richardson 74 Roger Newsom 74 Tim Spitz 74 Tommy Brennan 74 16 Ryan Abbate 75 Keith Decker 75 Billy Williamson 75
19 Nick Gilliam 76 Robert Gregorski 76 Eoghan O’Connell 76 Gene Elliott 76 Kevin Marsh 76 Parker Smith 76 Patrick Duffy 76 Randy Haag 76
27 Michael Barbosa 77 Mark Mance 77 Jon Veneziano 77 Matt Sughrue 77 Kevin Hammer 77 Jason Edgeworth 77
33 Scott Rowe 78 John O’Donnell 78 John McClure 78
36 Dan Horner 79 John Pinkham 79 Steve White, Jr. 79 Roger Hoit 79
40 Wesley Pate 80
44 Mark Loomis 82 Bradley Shaw 82
46 Stephen Summers 83 Trip Kuehne 83
48 Christopher Reeves 84
1 Paul Simson 69 Bryan Norton 69
3 Buzz Fly 70 Chip Lutz 70
5 Randy Lewis 71 Buddy Marucci 71
7 Steve Hudson 72 Alan Fadel 72
9 Chris Lange 73 Greg Reynolds 73 Brady Exber 73 Tim Jackson 73
13 John Grace 74 Grady Brame 74 George Zahringer 74 Robert Vallis 74
17 Jimmy Dunne 75 Frank C. Ford III 75 David Nelson 75 Doug LaCrosse 75 Doug Hanzel 75
22 Patrick Tallent 76 Sam Till 76
24 Bill Argabrite 77 Kelly Miller 77 Chris Maletis 77 Mike Bodney 77 Pete Williams 77
29 Steve Smyers 78
30 Robin McCool 79 Mike Bell 79 Steve Earsley 79
33 Vinny Giles 80 Gayle Sanchez 80 Jim Holtgrieve 80 Rick Woulfe 80 Robert Lewis 80
38 Tim Miller 81
39 Tony Green 82 Jack Vardaman 82
41 Ron Carter 85
42 Hunter Nelson 86 Bill Zylstra 86
44 Tom Case WD