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A lot of good advice above. Couple of things I have found in my experience.

-Have fun

-Fire and Forget. Focus on the shot at hand and then forget that you hit it and focus on the next one. 

-Nerves will play a factor NOT just on the first hole. There may be a shot on the 13th hole of the round for example, that you have struggled with in the past. Don't let that affect your focus.

-Par is your friend, but bogeys don't kill you. It's the bigger number that has to be avoided.

-Playing on your home course is both a blessing and a curse. You have all the sight lines down and know where not to miss it. IMO the curse comes on the greens and using past knowledge of breaks and not focusing on what is in front of you.

Glad you are participating. Tournament golf is a different animal and with every round you will learn something new. Good Luck!!

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Looking at that leaderboard, I like your chances of staying out of DFL.  

If you haven't already, start playing everything down and holing everything out. 

Get familiar with the rules if you haven't done so.  If you have any questions about a rule, remember that you can always play a second ball and get a ruling later in the round or before you turn in your card.  Your fellow competitors most likely do not know the rules (although they may act like they do).  

Have a game plan, tell it to your caddy, and ask him to force you to stick to it.

Enjoy the nerves.  Regular golf will feel so much easier after playing tournament golf.

Good luck and keep us posted!

 

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3 Wood (16*) - :cobra-small: F8 - Aldila NV Blue 60 ( S )
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  • 1 month later...

So I have a week to go until my first ever real competition.  I have been playing almost everyday now.  What or how should I approach this last week before the competition?  Do I focus on short game?  What are the things you all do leading up to your competition?  Thanks for the help!

   Driver:  :callaway-small: Epic Flash Sub Zero Hzdrs Smoke x flex 70g

3 Wood:  :titelist-small: 917 w/ Diamana Whiteboard stiff

5 Wood : :callaway-small: Epic Flash 18* Hzdrs Smoke stiff

4 Hybrid: :callaway-small:  Apex w/Kuro Kage stiff

     Irons:  :callaway-small: 5-7  Apex forged 19 w/ Modus 120 X

                         9-A Apex Pro 19 w/ Modus 120 X

Wedges:  :callaway-small: MD5 52&56 Jaws Dynamic Gold wedge flex

    Putter: :titelist-small: Scotty Cameron Del Mar 34"

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37 minutes ago, ballplayer002003 said:

So I have a week to go until my first ever real competition.  I have been playing almost everyday now.  What or how should I approach this last week before the competition?  Do I focus on short game?  What are the things you all do leading up to your competition?  Thanks for the help!

One of the things I heard over and over this past week about guys preparing for the US Open is they stuck to their normal routines.  if they normally get to the course 1.5 hours early, that's what they did for the Open.  if they start with putting and finish with putting, that's what they did for the Open.

understanding this is your first "real" as you say competiion, and seeing you are a very good player with your index.  I wouldn't stress to much.  Maybe just focus on the short game a bit, and also get comfortable with a fail safe shot, that you can rely on off the tee if things start to go haywire.   if it's a 3 wood great, if it's a hybrid or long iron, but you can guarantee you'll get it in the fairway, then work on that a bit and don't be afraid to use it.

Good luck and Play Well!

 

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4 hours ago, ballplayer002003 said:

So I have a week to go until my first ever real competition.  I have been playing almost everyday now.  What or how should I approach this last week before the competition?  Do I focus on short game?  What are the things you all do leading up to your competition?  Thanks for the help!

If you are still in prep mode focus on what you are struggling with. Don't vary too much from what you normally do but add a little emphasis to those areas that you need improvement. Short game is never bad to focus on. I find that in tourneys the short game can make or break you. Just ask Gary Woodland, 169th in short game on the year, 1st in short game at Pebble. 

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8 minutes ago, THEZIPR23 said:

I find that in tourneys the short game can make or break you. Just ask Gary Woodland, 169th in short game on the year, 1st in short game at Pebble. 

wow, thats a real eye opener stat, probably explains why he's never closed out before after leading a tournament after 54 holes.

I echo the short game focus. I've had some rounds where the long game is very good but if you take 3 from off the green every time  you'll never get a great score.

Driver     Awaiting NEW Driver (after 10 yrs)  
4 Wood   Callaway Big Bertha Steelhead plus 4+  :callaway-small: Callaway shaft in 'Firm' flex

Hybrid     Titleist 910H 19*    :titelist-small:   Diamana ahina 'flower' shaft in 'S'

Irons         Mizuno MP18SC 4-PW   :mizuno-small:  N.S Pro Modus3 Tour 105 in 'S'

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3 hours ago, Golfspy_CG2 said:

One of the things I heard over and over this past week about guys preparing for the US Open is they stuck to their normal routines.  if they normally get to the course 1.5 hours early, that's what they did for the Open.  if they start with putting and finish with putting, that's what they did for the Open.

understanding this is your first "real" as you say competiion, and seeing you are a very good player with your index.  I wouldn't stress to much.  Maybe just focus on the short game a bit, and also get comfortable with a fail safe shot, that you can rely on off the tee if things start to go haywire.   if it's a 3 wood great, if it's a hybrid or long iron, but you can guarantee you'll get it in the fairway, then work on that a bit and don't be afraid to use it.

Good luck and Play Well!

 

I second this. Be ready to play YOUR game. Don't change too much or put too much emphasis on one part of the game - especially if you're trying to work on a weakness with the expectation that whatever miracle cure you find on the range will translate to the course on tournament day. 

Also, if you show up on the day of the tournament and don't have your best stuff. That's okay. Use whatever time you have on the range to find what works and stick with it. Don't go chasing after your swing in the middle of a tournament round.

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Driver: Mizuno ST190 9.5* Fujikura Atmos Blue 5S
Fairway Wood: Mizuno ST190 15* Fujikura Atmos Blue 6S
Hyrbrid: Mizuno CLK 19* Fujikura Speeder EVO HB
Irons: Nike Vapor Pro Combo (4-PW) Dynamic Gold Pro S300
Wedges: Bridgestone Tour B XW-1 50*, 54*, & 58* Nippon Modus 3 105
Putter: Scotty Cameron Futura 6m 33"
Ball: Bridgestone Tour B XS
Bag: 2017 Titleist Players 5 Stand Bag

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34 minutes ago, THEZIPR23 said:

If you are still in prep mode focus on what you are struggling with. Don't vary too much from what you normally do but add a little emphasis to those areas that you need improvement. Short game is never bad to focus on. I find that in tourneys the short game can make or break you. Just ask Gary Woodland, 169th in short game on the year, 1st in short game at Pebble. 

That is what my thinking has been.  I am going to treat this as "just" another round of golf at my home course.  No big deal.  

   Driver:  :callaway-small: Epic Flash Sub Zero Hzdrs Smoke x flex 70g

3 Wood:  :titelist-small: 917 w/ Diamana Whiteboard stiff

5 Wood : :callaway-small: Epic Flash 18* Hzdrs Smoke stiff

4 Hybrid: :callaway-small:  Apex w/Kuro Kage stiff

     Irons:  :callaway-small: 5-7  Apex forged 19 w/ Modus 120 X

                         9-A Apex Pro 19 w/ Modus 120 X

Wedges:  :callaway-small: MD5 52&56 Jaws Dynamic Gold wedge flex

    Putter: :titelist-small: Scotty Cameron Del Mar 34"

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Congratulations on qualifying!  Except for my JGA experience/competition, umm, back in the 60's, I don't play competitively.  I'll be interested in hearing advice from those on the forum who do so regularly.  Good luck!!

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:ping-small: G410 Irons 4-UW 

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On 5/15/2019 at 9:43 AM, Golfspy_CG2 said:

Also just curious, why isn't your buddy that is scratch playing in the event?   

just saw this...he lives in Maryland so he cannot do the Delaware Am, he did however play in the Maryland Am and I was his caddy.  He played well but missed the cut by 2 shots.  He mentally checked out on one hole and that's what did him in. 

   Driver:  :callaway-small: Epic Flash Sub Zero Hzdrs Smoke x flex 70g

3 Wood:  :titelist-small: 917 w/ Diamana Whiteboard stiff

5 Wood : :callaway-small: Epic Flash 18* Hzdrs Smoke stiff

4 Hybrid: :callaway-small:  Apex w/Kuro Kage stiff

     Irons:  :callaway-small: 5-7  Apex forged 19 w/ Modus 120 X

                         9-A Apex Pro 19 w/ Modus 120 X

Wedges:  :callaway-small: MD5 52&56 Jaws Dynamic Gold wedge flex

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So tomorrow is the first day of the Am, and I am excited.  I have been hitting balls on the range and have been playing as much as I can (dad of 3 so in between taking kids to swim practice, swim meets and working).  There are only 56 players in the field and the top 36 qualify.  This is a three day event, the first two days are to qualify, the third is a two round day.  I was able to secure a babysitter for Monday and Tuesday, I did not even bother with getting one for Wednesday.  I know some of you out there will say I should set my sights higher, but I am trying to be realistic with my first event ever.  Trust me, I will try my best to qualify but I am sure my handicap is the highest in the field.  I know I could have a good round or two and someone else could have a bad few days, that's golf, but I am in this for the experience not for the prize.  I will keep you all posted after my first round.  I have to work today at the course, and then I will go out after and get 9 holes in.  We shall see...

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   Driver:  :callaway-small: Epic Flash Sub Zero Hzdrs Smoke x flex 70g

3 Wood:  :titelist-small: 917 w/ Diamana Whiteboard stiff

5 Wood : :callaway-small: Epic Flash 18* Hzdrs Smoke stiff

4 Hybrid: :callaway-small:  Apex w/Kuro Kage stiff

     Irons:  :callaway-small: 5-7  Apex forged 19 w/ Modus 120 X

                         9-A Apex Pro 19 w/ Modus 120 X

Wedges:  :callaway-small: MD5 52&56 Jaws Dynamic Gold wedge flex

    Putter: :titelist-small: Scotty Cameron Del Mar 34"

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1 hour ago, ballplayer002003 said:

So tomorrow is the first day of the Am, and I am excited.  I have been hitting balls on the range and have been playing as much as I can (dad of 3 so in between taking kids to swim practice, swim meets and working).  There are only 56 players in the field and the top 36 qualify.  This is a three day event, the first two days are to qualify, the third is a two round day.  I was able to secure a babysitter for Monday and Tuesday, I did not even bother with getting one for Wednesday.  I know some of you out there will say I should set my sights higher, but I am trying to be realistic with my first event ever.  Trust me, I will try my best to qualify but I am sure my handicap is the highest in the field.  I know I could have a good round or two and someone else could have a bad few days, that's golf, but I am in this for the experience not for the prize.  I will keep you all posted after my first round.  I have to work today at the course, and then I will go out after and get 9 holes in.  We shall see...

Stay stress-free, enjoy the experience and have a blast! Best of luck to you out there! Cheers!!!

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3W:          :ping-small: G-Series SF TEC, set to 16*, Aldila Tour Blue ATX, 65g, stiff
5W:          :ping-small: G400 SFT, set to 19*, Aldila Tour Blue ATX, 65g, stiff
7W:         :ping-small: G410 SFT, set to 22*. Alta CB 65 Red, stiff

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Day one of the tournament is done!  I arrived an hour early and hit balls on the range, worked on chipping and putting then I went back to the range and hit 3 wood and driver.  I was very relaxed and was swinging and hitting the ball well.  I decided to walk the round (carts were available and most people rode) because I was thinking a little extra time in between shots will help calm any nerves that may pop up. 

I was first off the tee.  I was not as nervous as I thought I would be and I actually striped a 3 wood down the left side of the fairway...hit a tree and came back a bit.  I played for a cut and it just went dead straight.  I was still fine with that shot.  To be honest I was thinking that I was either going to miss the ball all together or top it.  But hey, now I am off and running.  Due to the tree, I had 180 into the green, easy shot standard 6 iron for me.  This is where I got nervous for some reason.  I hit it fat and came up about 20 yards short of the green.  Ok, easy chip...skulled over the green.  Now I have a very fast downhill chip to a front pin.  I chipped it to 2 ft and made bogey.  Not the way I wanted to start but not bad for being in this situation.  Long story short, I shot an 83 with a triple on a hole....a TRIPLE!!!!!   Not the best but certainly not the worst.  My goal is to not finish last, it was never to make the cut.  I am realistic when it comes to this.  As of today, I am tied for 51st.  There are roughly 15 guys lower than me and one guy carded a 98.  In my mind I played bad, but I am trying to find some good so my points are 83 is not a bad score for my first ever competitive round.  I putted pretty good, no three putts.  I hit irons pretty good as well.  I need to fix driver and chipping.  I sliced a lot of drives today and that is very unusual for me.  So we shall see what tomorrow brings. 

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   Driver:  :callaway-small: Epic Flash Sub Zero Hzdrs Smoke x flex 70g

3 Wood:  :titelist-small: 917 w/ Diamana Whiteboard stiff

5 Wood : :callaway-small: Epic Flash 18* Hzdrs Smoke stiff

4 Hybrid: :callaway-small:  Apex w/Kuro Kage stiff

     Irons:  :callaway-small: 5-7  Apex forged 19 w/ Modus 120 X

                         9-A Apex Pro 19 w/ Modus 120 X

Wedges:  :callaway-small: MD5 52&56 Jaws Dynamic Gold wedge flex

    Putter: :titelist-small: Scotty Cameron Del Mar 34"

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Day one of the tournament is done!  I arrived an hour early and hit balls on the range, worked on chipping and putting then I went back to the range and hit 3 wood and driver.  I was very relaxed and was swinging and hitting the ball well.  I decided to walk the round (carts were available and most people rode) because I was thinking a little extra time in between shots will help calm any nerves that may pop up. 
I was first off the tee.  I was not as nervous as I thought I would be and I actually striped a 3 wood down the left side of the fairway...hit a tree and came back a bit.  I played for a cut and it just went dead straight.  I was still fine with that shot.  To be honest I was thinking that I was either going to miss the ball all together or top it.  But hey, now I am off and running.  Due to the tree, I had 180 into the green, easy shot standard 6 iron for me.  This is where I got nervous for some reason.  I hit it fat and came up about 20 yards short of the green.  Ok, easy chip...skulled over the green.  Now I have a very fast downhill chip to a front pin.  I chipped it to 2 ft and made bogey.  Not the way I wanted to start but not bad for being in this situation.  Long story short, I shot an 83 with a triple on a hole....a TRIPLE!!!!!   Not the best but certainly not the worst.  My goal is to not finish last, it was never to make the cut.  I am realistic when it comes to this.  As of today, I am tied for 51st.  There are roughly 15 guys lower than me and one guy carded a 98.  In my mind I played bad, but I am trying to find some good so my points are 83 is not a bad score for my first ever competitive round.  I putted pretty good, no three putts.  I hit irons pretty good as well.  I need to fix driver and chipping.  I sliced a lot of drives today and that is very unusual for me.  So we shall see what tomorrow brings. 


Way to go! The first "real" round in the books feels so good. I haven't played competitively for 15 years or so but I remember the feeling - enjoy tomorrow!


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Adams 4555 19* Matrix Ozik Altus 80 S/X 42"

Ping G410 Crossover 2 Project X Even Flow Blue 85 6.0 40"

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  • 2 weeks later...

So my daughters had a swim meet last night (after day 1 tournament) which was an hour and a half away from our home.  It was hot as hell in the pool and all I wanted to do was sleep in between their events.  I didn't get home until well after 10pm...what a long day but I had to go for them. 

Day two!  

It was hard to wake up and I was feeling groggy all day.  It was hotter and windier on day 2.  Ok, lets go!!!!  Good LAWD!!!!!!  I started off bombing a 3 wood off the tee 275 down the left side of the fairway leaving me with a PW into the green.  I pulled it a bit hitting the green hole high, 2 putts and moving onto hole 2 with a par on the first!  I got this!!!  I pulled 3 wood out of the bag for the second hole (it's a dogleg right with heavy trees lining both sides of the entire hole, I can easily hit driver too far and straight to OB).  I've hit this same shot a million times!  Nope, not today...sliced a 3 wood into the trees.  Ok, I can recover from here, its a par 5 so I can still get this done.  Punch out hit the last branch of a tree and dropped straight down.  Long story short I doubled the hole.  Hole 3 is a par 3, I can recover.  Hit the right side of the green and two putted for par.  So I'm 2 over through 3.  Not disastrous in the heat and wind.  4th hole I hit the tee shot exactly where I wanted however I was figuring the wind would move the ball left to right...again....nope!  Ball went dead ass straight!  Straight into the trees again.  My only play was to shoot for the back greenside bunker.  Nailed it, only to discover I had a fried egg on the back lip of the bunker with no place to stand.  One foot in the trap one foot on the side of the hill.  I got out, had to chip back onto the green and two putted again for another bogey.  At this point I started to loose focus.  I was hot, getting mad at some of the shots I was making and I was tired.  I will spare you each hole, however I will highlight hole 9. 

Hole 9 is a par 4.  You tee off over a pond with a small creek running down the left side and OB (driving range) on the right.  This is also a dogleg right with a strong left to right breeze blowing.  My focus is gone.  I tee off and top my tee shot into the pond.  I'm 2 hitting 3 as I retee.  Blast a tee shot up over the trees and then it takes a sharp turn right.  Yup right out of bounds!  Now I am re-teeing again and blast one down the middle of the fairway.  I end up on the right side of the fairway and have to punch under some tree limbs.  I hit one of course, because why not?!  I chip short then two or three putt, I cannot remember.  What I do remember is that I posted a 10...a TEN for that hole!!!!  Never done that before!  Ever!   Guess I can say at least I didn't post an 11?  

My round didn't get much better.  After this, doubt and embarrassment filled my head.  All I wanted to do was leave as quick as possible.  I felt bad for my buddy who took a day off of work to see me fall completely apart!  I shot a 99 for the round.  Yup, you read that right.  A 99.  I've played Pinehurst 2 and Bethpage Black, both from the tips and have scored much better then I did this day on my HOME course.  

So, the good news.  After a few hours of self loathing I tried to think of some good things that I could take away.  What did I do good that day?  Well, frankly not much.  I was able to regain my focus on a few holes but it was short lived.  I hit a few good shots here and there and my putter got better on the back side.  Later that day the standings came out.  I did it.  I was not last!  I was second to last (actually I technically beat 8 other guys because they dropped out after day one).  So goal completed.  It was definitely an experience like I've never encountered before on the course.  Is competition golf for me, I'm not sure yet.  I think I will try one more time to see.  Until then...it could have been an 11.   

   Driver:  :callaway-small: Epic Flash Sub Zero Hzdrs Smoke x flex 70g

3 Wood:  :titelist-small: 917 w/ Diamana Whiteboard stiff

5 Wood : :callaway-small: Epic Flash 18* Hzdrs Smoke stiff

4 Hybrid: :callaway-small:  Apex w/Kuro Kage stiff

     Irons:  :callaway-small: 5-7  Apex forged 19 w/ Modus 120 X

                         9-A Apex Pro 19 w/ Modus 120 X

Wedges:  :callaway-small: MD5 52&56 Jaws Dynamic Gold wedge flex

    Putter: :titelist-small: Scotty Cameron Del Mar 34"

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