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I am about 6 weeks from the State AM qualifier. I have not played competitive golf outside club events since I was 12(now 28). I wanted to get some input form other members who have competed in State or US amateur qualifiers and maybe some advice, tips or things you have learned. I will get to play the course a few times before the qualifier. Happy golf season! 

 

-Taylor

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I am about 6 weeks from the State AM qualifier. I have not played competitive golf outside club events since I was 12(now 28). I wanted to get some input form other members who have competed in State or US amateur qualifiers and maybe some advice, tips or things you have learned. I will get to play the course a few times before the qualifier. Happy golf season! 

 

-Taylor

Treat it like every other round of golf. Same warm up. Same pre shot routine. Everything. Deep breath on the first box. 

 

The only thing I do differently, which some will disagree with me about is that I start practicing a bit in the coming month or weeks leading up to it. This is primarily because I usually only play once or twice a week and never practice though. 

 

Edit: Best of luck! It usually doesn't doesn't take a world beater of a score to qualify. Just try not to compound mistakes and make big numbers. 

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Have fun! It's golf so you're gonna have some bad shots and bad breaks. Just gotta keep a cool head when it happens

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Breathe. be conscious of your breathing.

 

This is maybe some of the best advice you will get. Seems so small but makes a huge difference when you start feeling the nerves

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The rounds are usually painfully slow. So take your time and make sure not to get rushed. Nerves will do that. And don't let one bad shot get you upset. Bad shots WILL happen. Move to the next one. And good luck!

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Remember your happy place.

 

I played one tournament in high school before the coach ran me out off the course.

 

Be tactical with your shot choices. Don't force a maybe if you have a for sure.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using MyGolfSpy

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The tournament committee should be sending you some course setup parameters. Start there and make a plan for the round as it relates to your game. In an 18 hole qualifier it is important to play from the short grass. In your practice rounds, note any severely penal trouble spots that are potential momentum killers. Most of the time, tournament hole locations will be marked with a dot of paint a day or two before the event. Talk to the pro shop about that specifically and if possible try to get in a practice round after hole locations have been marked. Find the paint dots, practice putting around them, note predominant/secondary slope and the subsequent ideal approach target.

 

The day of the event, from the time you get out of bed, slow everything down (breathing, tempo, walking pace, thought processes). If it's feasible, practice this same process before regular weekend matches and also your scheduled practice rounds so it will feel more natural on tournament day.

 

Like others have mentioned you are probably in for a 5+ hour loop so keep consuming calories and fluids throughout the round. A recent study at UCONN's Human Performance Laboratory suggested that in young men, mild dehydration (defined as 1.5% loss of normal water volume in the body) caused difficulty with mental tasks, particularly in the areas of vigilance and working memory in addition to fatigue, tension, and anxiety. Does that sound like a fun emotional profile for golf competitions?

 

Finally, savor everything about the day and remember you are competing because you enjoy it. Have fun out there regardless of the result. Play well!

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State Ams can be tough. I'm assuming you play and or practice 4-5 days a week. In short, the guys that are the "real" contenders in these events are basically Professional Amateurs. Hopefully your 3 hcp will get you in your event. And, hopefully you'll play down to a scratch or better. That's what it's going to take to seriously compete.

Best of luck.

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Most of my advice has been said above but I will add some things that I try to do. Try to play slower and slow everything down. Usually nerves cause you to play faster so slowing down gets you to your normal place. Also dont try to birdie every hole pars are your best friend. Take advantage of the holes you should like par 5's.  Most State Ams usually 72 will get you to the next stage.

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Most of my advice has been said above but I will add some things that I try to do. Try to play slower and slow everything down. Usually nerves cause you to play faster so slowing down gets you to your normal place. Also dont try to birdie every hole pars are your best friend. Take advantage of the holes you should like par 5's.  Most State Ams usually 72 will get you to the next stage.

Agree! I'd probably change that 72 to a 75-77 though. At least to qualify. Most of the time people don't light it up in the qualifiers. 72 would be almost guaranteeing a spot to me.  

 

Now to compete in the AM, par or better is gonna be needed to get anywhere close to the leader board. 

 

Edit: I have limited experience though where I know KC has played in a lot of these things. 

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I guess it depends on the State haha. I have shot 70 and not made it and I have shot 73 and made it so it depends on the day. Dont focus on a score and just make as many pars as you can add in a couple birdies and enjoy yourself. Take every tournament as a learning experience.

 

I played college and mini tour golf and then took 6 years off after joining the Navy. I took me 6 tournaments to remember all the things that worked before and actually get them to work as far as a mind set and emotions. Dont expect perfection the first time it takes awhile to control everything under pressure.

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I'll agree with KC. It all depends on field size. I've seen 72's not get in and 77's get in.

 

It will be different than playing a round with your buddies. They call you to the tee, announcing your name and town. That is fun.

 

Remember to take it one shot at a time. You will make bogeys. And remember you do not have to play perfect. No one does.

 

Just relax and enjoy it. I know I play to get the butterflies going and love that feeling.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using MyGolfSpy

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I am about 6 weeks from the State AM qualifier. I have not played competitive golf outside club events since I was 12(now 28). I wanted to get some input form other members who have competed in State or US amateur qualifiers and maybe some advice, tips or things you have learned. I will get to play the course a few times before the qualifier. Happy golf season!

 

-Taylor

TBHambone27, great post and good on yah for asking. As a guy who played college golf and state Am events here are my thoughts.

1. Qualifiers are 18 one-hole matches against the course. It is inevitable that you will make a couple bogies, but as a low hdcp you should make at least one birdie per side. But take each hole one-at-a-time.

2. A couple practice rounds is good. First one I would use just to get details about the layout and where any hazards might impact you. Use it to gather yardages to targets as well. Take the second practice round seriously and have your caddie come play the course with you so they get a feel.

3. Have a caddie, playing without draining energy carrying a bag makes a HUGE difference. You can spend more energy on shot selection and execution. Plus they can take care of yardage and club cleaning, divot fixing, bunker raking, etc.

4. Make sure you take proper gear with you for the weather.

5. Make sure you bring "good" snacks that have some protein and lots of carbs. I like Cliff Bars, granola bars, beef jerky, and healthier protein bars without a lot of fillers. Also, highly recommend a banana at the turn. Get a vitamin water of some sorts to have as well.

6. Practice with a purpose and know what your miss is. A two-way miss is deadly in tourney play.

7. On tourney day, keep things to your normal routine but also I would recommend starting with some fun. I always throw a ball with my caddy in the parking lot to warm up.

8. Just remember that nerves are normal and if you do get the shakes a little bit then please remember two things. The "see the field scene" from Bagger Vance and Tin Cup's words of wisdom. 👍👍👍

Cheers

- Burk

 

Sent from my Sprint LG G5 mobile device

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Schedule more tournaments this summer. After such a long layoff it might be tough. Don't get discouraged and use it for experience.

 

I'd look at state and usga mid-ams. We are same age and I've had success at this level because it gets me away from the high level D1 college players and blue chip high school prospects. Sure there are a couple Professional Amateurs with no show jobs, but a lot more ordinary players with jobs and families.

 

Have fun and good luck!

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using MyGolfSpy

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I guess it depends on the State haha. I have shot 70 and not made it and I have shot 73 and made it so it depends on the day. Dont focus on a score and just make as many pars as you can add in a couple birdies and enjoy yourself. Take every tournament as a learning experience.

 

I played college and mini tour golf and then took 6 years off after joining the Navy. I took me 6 tournaments to remember all the things that worked before and actually get them to work as far as a mind set and emotions. Dont expect perfection the first time it takes awhile to control everything under pressure.

I know you had played in a bunch in California and places like that so I figured the scores would be much lower in a place like that where the population is higher as well. Same for Illinois with Jacustom. The smaller states generally don't have as low qualifying scores for the most part though. I wonder which states are hardest to qualify for? Time to do some research and maybe start a new thread :) 

 

I'd guess Alabama will have lower scores than MS by a little bit but I doubt that it gets below par to qualify though. But I've not played in state am there, so I'm not sure.

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I know you had played in a bunch in California and places like that so I figured the scores would be much lower in a place like that where the population is higher as well. Same for Illinois with Jacustom. The smaller states generally don't have as low qualifying scores for the most part though. I wonder which states are hardest to qualify for? Time to do some research and maybe start a new thread :)

 

I'd guess Alabama will have lower scores than MS by a little bit but I doubt that it gets below par to qualify though. But I've not played in state am there, so I'm not sure.

I can only speak for Illinois but the state qualifiers are based on field size. If it's a full field (90) golfers the you'll get in with 76-77 for 18 holes. If it's less you need to shoot 73 or under. It all depends on field size here in Illinois.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using MyGolfSpy

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I can only speak for Illinois but the state qualifiers are based on field size. If it's a full field (90) golfers the you'll get in with 76-77 for 18 holes. If it's less you need to shoot 73 or under. It all depends on field size here in Illinois.

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Its field size for us as well. But the larger qualifiers usually have the best players too so it evens it out. Usually 74-77 will get you through. Although i saw a 79 get you in at 1 a few years back.
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