Course: Moon Valley Country Club, Phoenix, Arizona
March 14-16 2018
Round 1 – 9:08 am Tee Time Hole 1
82 degrees and sunny
I was excited to be back playing in a professional golf tournament today. Other than January’s Phoenix Waste Management Open, there is a bit of a lull of pro-golf opportunities in the winter months here. And tournament play is always a true test of your golf game.
As a former member of Moon Valley Country Club, the course is in my comfort zone. Had a solid nine hours of sleep last night and got to the course about two hours before my tee time, so I felt rested and relaxed this morning. Got some chipping and putting in.
Hole 1 – Par 4
408 yard Par 4 dogleg right. Normally I hit driver here and play a fade off the tee. I hit driver and it went dead straight through the fairway in the longest rough on the course. For my second shot, I ended up with a terrible lie and had to keep it under a tree. I punched a 7-iron just short of the green and chipped it up to 5 feet. Par.
Hole 2 – Par 3
Playing 163 yards, I hit an 8-iron and tried to hit a fade into a front right pin. I pulled it left in the soft, wet bermudagrass rough. The chip was difficult, and I had it hit it hard enough to get it onto the putting surface. The chip rolled out to 10 feet. I read it perfectly and made it for a par.
Hole 3 and 4
Hole 3 was a par 4. I missed a birdie putt from 12 feet with a tap-in par.
The 4th is a long par 5, I hit driver left and had to punch out to lay up. Missed a 25-foot birdie putt for a tap-in par. Even Par thru 4.
Hole 5 – Par 3
Hole was playing 180 and wind started to blow a little now off the left. Hit a 6-iron and thought it was going right in the water. It carried it and now I had a chip down the hill. The chip lipped out and went to 6 feet, and lipped out the par putt for a par. Made a bogey 4.
Hole 6 – Par 4
440 yard par 4 straight away. Hit a great drive and had 110 in. Pulled my gap wedge to 30 feet left of the pin. I saw the putt and it was very quick down the hill. Made a solid stroke and it turned hard right at the end of the putt and went in for a birdie!
Hole 7 – Par 4
470 yard par 4 dogleg right. Hit a great drive and ended up in the right rough. Lie was challenging in the bermuda, and the wind was straight into me from 163 yards. I grabbed 7-iron and hit a great shot that never left the flagstick. It landed and rolled right toward the cup to 6 inches just short of the hole. Tap-in birdie.
Hole 8 – Par 5
Short par 5, 519 yards. I crushed a drive right over the bunkers and had only 147 yards left to a front pin. I was in the rough again. Hit it a little fat and ended up in the bunker short right of the green. Tough bunker shot. I had to land in the rough and hope for it to bounce on to the green, which it did. Had a 7 footer left that I rolled in for birdie.
Hole 9 – Par 4
412 yard par 4 with water on left and short of the green. I hit 4-iron off the tee and had 160 yards into a front right pin. Hit a good shot in with a 9-iron that spun back 15 feet. Had a 20-footer that I felt confident with and stroked the putt, and it fell in on the left side for another birdie. 4 birdies in a row!
Hole 10 – Par 5
Wind was blowing straight into the face off the tee. Hit a drive in the fairway on the right side and had 270 left to a back pin. Hit a great 3-wood. It just started out right of the green and stayed there. I had a challenging chip, down a huge slope, and it rolled out to 12 feet. I misread the putt and missed it for a birdie. Made a par.
Hole 11 – Par 3
Played 195 yards into the wind. I hit a 5-iron just right of the pin to 18 feet. The putt broke left more than I saw and missed it. Tap-in for a par.
Hole 12 – Par 4
Hit a huge drive to 95 yards and was left with a 60-degree wedge that landed 20 feet past and spun back to pin high about 8 feet. Misread the putt, and it broke more than I thought again. Tap-in for par.
Hole 13 – 15
Made 3 pars on the next holes: a par 5, par 4 and par 3. Had putts for birdie on each. Just didn’t hit them close enough.
Hole 16 – Par 4
Hit a huge drive on this one that was cutting toward the center of the fairway. Was left with only 166 in. Wind was behind me, so I hit a 9-iron that landed 10 feet past the pin and rolled out to 20 feet. I read the putt breaking left at the end. Made my stroke and had the speed read perfectly. It fell in on the right side for a birdie 3.
Hole 17 – Par 4
They moved the tees up to 283 yards, with water left of the hole. I decided to hit a 6-iron and pulled it left in the dirt behind a tree. I had a shot, but had to keep it low with a sand wedge. It ended up in the greenside bunker short of the green. The bunker shot rolled out to 6 feet and the par putt lipped out again. It was a bad bogey on a short par 4.
Hole 18 – Par 4
Hit another great drive down the left side. It was just in the thin bermuda rough. I had only 110 yards left and knew I had to keep it right of the pin to stay on the correct tier. It hit just short of the pin and spun all the way left to the front portion of the green. I hit a good putt, and had a 3-footer left that I made for a par 4.