Archive for the ‘The Masters’ Category

Junior Golf: Why The Masters Is Important For Your Junior Golfer

In today’s Wednesday Waggle we will take a look at this week’s PGA tournament and offer some input as to why The Masters is very important for your son/daughter.

photocredit:golfdigest.com


There are more reasons than this space allows as to the importance of The Masters to your son and the rest of your family, in fact to all sports fans everywhere. Let’s hit some highlights.
1st, it’s the first men’s major championship of each year and the field will include many of the best players in the world. That alone should make it very important.

2nd, Augusta National Golf Club, the permanent Masters venue in Augusta, Georgia, is one of the most beautiful places anywhere. Amazingly gorgeous flowers are blooming all over the course and the fairways, greens, traps, hazards, paths, every square inch seems to be perfectly manicured. We look forward to every minute of TV coverage so we can enjoy this visual feast.

3rd, The Masters is loaded with great traditions. From the ceremonial opening tee shots, done for years by the legendary Big Three of Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player. With Arnold’s passing last September, Jack and Gary will do this year’s shots. And then there’s the awarding of the renowned green jacket to the winner on Sunday afternoon and any number of traditions occurring in between.

4th, the golf is great! The players will tell you that this is one of the toughest courses they play. The greens are lightning fast. The undulating and rolling fairways, much more so than the TV cameras show, almost never leave a flat lie and stance for the next shot. Water and traps are just begging for golf balls to enter them. And even with all this there are players shooting under par. Wow!

5th, tickets to this event are widely known as possibly the toughest ticket in all of sports. Just having an opportunity to be a patron, as the fans at ANGC are referred to, is a rare situation. Go for it!

photocredit:pinterest

So what does this mean to your youngster? Hopefully he’ll dream more and bigger dreams. I mean every pro playing in this event dreamed about it as a kid and probably as a pro too until getting his 1st invitation to play in The Masters! Heck, I’ve dreamed about being a patron and that’s tough enough!The sheer beauty, pageantry, traditions and excellent golf should end up being more than enough to get your kiddo revved up.
So Parents, your action is to make sure you TiVo the tournament. Thursday and Friday are on ESPN and Saturday and Sunday are on CBS. We always record 2.5 hours beyond the scheduled Sunday end time to allow for possible playoffs.
See you on #1 tee excited about The Masters… Sam

Junior Golf: 3 Lessons From The Thrilling Final Round Of The Masters

In today’s Monday Mulligan we will take a look at 1 of the most exciting days ever in a professional golf tournament. There were so many incredible happenings that the announcers were peddling as fast as they could just to try to keep up!m

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photocredit:jennleforge.com

Here are some things Linda and I hope you will review with the junior golfer in your family:
Predictions are only worth so much. With a star-studded leaderboard, the announcers were discussing possible outcomes from Sunday’s play. While Sergio Garcia and Justin Rose, in the final group were serious contenders, most of the talk was about Jordan Spieth and Rickie Fowler in the next to last pairing. The analysts expected great things from these 2 young guns as each was on a roll and playing well. Sergio on the other hand, was playing in his 61st major and had never won. Justin Rose, with a seriously strong pedigree was given due respect as a possible green jacket winner as were several others in the field. Again, most of the talk was about how Jordan and Rickie were primed to make runs at the title. Perhaps you know the results. Sergio beat Justin on the 1st playoff hole. Jordan shot 75. Rickie shot 76. So much for predictions!
Sir Nick hasn’t seen everything. When Russell Henley jarred-holed out his 185-yard approach shot on #5 for an eagle it was a flag-rattling sight. The ball entered the cup on the fly, no bounces. Yes, this has been seen many times previously by all of us. The ball, however, upon entering the hole, actually damaged some turf around the edge of the hole and broke off a piece of the cup, rendering it in need of repair, and of the course, the turf needed to be fixed as well. By rule, a player cannot do these tasks. They must be done by course staff under the auspices of rules officials. So, staff were quickly brought in, the broken tin cup was removed, the turf repaired and a new cup was cut, by rule within the proper distance from the original cup and play was resumed. Sir Nick commented that in all his time around golf and golf tournaments, he had never seen this situation. Very fascinating and interesting stuff!
A very young fan can take home a once-in-a-lifetime memory from The Masters. Matt Kuchar got on a roll on the back 9. On the par 3 16th, he stepped up and hit a 7-iron. The shot looked good in the air, but Matt could only see the flag, not the cup, from the tee box. The thundering roar of the crowd told him his shot had gone in for an ace. What a thrill for all the fans and, of course, Matt. But the biggest thrill, at least for 1 little fan, was yet to come. Kuchar walked up, acknowledged the crowd, pulled his ball from the cup, wiped it off and signed it. As he exited the green he handed the ball to 1 of the youngest golf fans in sight. How old was he? Don’t know but he obviously knew something about golf because he was absolutely elated when Kuchar handed him the autographed ball. What a beautiful gesture by a true gentleman and he gave that boy a treasured memory! That’s what our sport is about! Be sure to check out the link above, it’s worth it!

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photocredit:cnn

There were so many special moments yesterday, there is no way to do them justice here, so let’s wrap up and congratulate Sergio on a great victory!

See you on #1 tee ready to make some memories… Sam

Junior Golf: Your Junior Golfer Is Not Immune

In today’s Friday Flop Shot we will address the fact that your junior golfer is not immune to her environment, friends, family and life in general. There was a big shakeup at The Masters this week because no one is immune, no one is bulletproof.

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Dubai Golf

Things happen in life. They happen to all of us and your daughter is no exception. Good things, bad things, beneficial things, inconvenient things, there are a ton of things that can occur in one’s life.

Surely as Dustin Johnson was going down the wooden stairs in his stocking feet, it never crossed his mind that he might slip and fall and have to WD, withdraw, from the 1st men’s major of the year, The Masters. As you likely have heard, he did fall on his elbow and on the left side of his back. Yesterday just before his tee time, he decided he could not compete and withdrew. The physical pain is nothing compared to his mental anguish of the whole situation.

DJ, currently ranked men’s World #1, is generally regarded as being the most athletic guy on the PGA Tour and is in amazing shape, physically. So how does this happen to a DJ? Simply this walking down the stairs was such a nothing kind of everyday event that it seems DJ was on auto-pilot just going down a set of stairs. Boom, a slip and he’s out of the tournament. Wow!

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photocredit:theguardian

So what impact does this have on the field? Well, their 1st reaction was probably something like, “He’s in such great shape, how did that happen to him?” Next thought, “Now I have a better chance to win because I don’t have to beat the World#1.” And final dose of reality, “Man, I need to be careful. That can happen to anyone at any time.”

What is the lesson for your daughter and your household? Please make her aware that she is not immune to injury. Things happen around the house. She could slip on a wet sidewalk. Awareness helps. With S3 we also asked him to limit, as in not play at all, in pickup team sports games like basketball and soccer. All it takes is 1 injury to a finger, hand, wrist, knee, ankle or foot and the junior golf schedule is put on hold. Depending on the severity of the injury, your girl might never recover well enough to play competitive golf again.

True story. S3 was playing in a college golf tournament and 1 of his group members dads was at the event. As we dads visited during the round he told me how his son had won just about every event in their home state the previous year. His boy was on fire! However his son also dearly loved wakeboarding and refused to give it up. Yes, that’s right, the son had a horrific fall, injured his back and his golf game never recovered. So instead of winning golf tournaments, it was all he could do to break 80. A tough life lesson!

Your girl does need time away from golf. As much as she may love the game, both practicing and playing, she needs a break. Balance in life is important. As you are helping her just be a kid, encourage her in directions that give her an opportunity to have fun, fun with reduced risks.

See you on #1 tee injury-free… Sam

Junior Golf: Why The Masters Is Important For Your Junior Golfer

In today’s Wednesday Waggle we will take a look at this week’s PGA tournament and offer some input as to why The Masters is very important for your son/daughter.

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photocredit:golfdigest.com

There are more reasons than this space allows as to the importance of The Masters to your son and the rest of your family, in fact to all sports fans everywhere. Let’s hit some highlights.

1st, it’s the first men’s major championship of each year and the field will include many of the best players in the world. That alone should make it very important.
2nd, Augusta National Golf Club, the permanent Masters venue in Augusta, Georgia, is one of the most beautiful places anywhere. Amazingly gorgeous flowers are blooming all over the course and the fairways, greens, traps, hazards, paths, every square inch seems to be perfectly manicured. We look forward to every minute of TV coverage so we can enjoy this visual feast.
3rd, The Masters is loaded with great traditions. From the ceremonial opening tee shots, done for years by the legendary Big Three of Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player. With Arnold’s passing last September, Jack and Gary will do this year’s shots. And then there’s the awarding of the renowned green jacket to the winner on Sunday afternoon and any number of traditions occurring in between.
4th, the golf is great! The players will tell you that this is one of the toughest courses they play. The greens are lightning fast. The undulating and rolling fairways, much more so than the TV cameras show, almost never leave a flat lie and stance for the next shot. Water and traps are just begging for golf balls to enter them. And even with all this there are players shooting under par. Wow!
5th, tickets to this event are widely known as possibly the toughest ticket in all of sports. Just having an opportunity to be a patron, as the fans at ANGC are referred to, is a rare situation. Go for it!

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photocredit:pinterest

So what does this mean to your youngster? Hopefully he’ll dream more and bigger dreams. I mean every pro playing in this event dreamed about it as a kid and probably as a pro too until getting his 1st invitation to play in The Masters! Heck, I’ve dreamed about being a patron and that’s tough enough!The sheer beauty, pageantry, traditions and excellent golf should end up being more than enough to get your kiddo revved up.

So Parents, your action is to make sure you TiVo the tournament. Thursday and Friday are on ESPN and Saturday and Sunday are on CBS. We always record 2.5 hours beyond the scheduled Sunday end time to allow for possible playoffs.

See you on #1 tee excited about The Masters… Sam

Junior Golf: Golf Happens

In this Monday Mulligan we will look at a phrase that was most recently used last Friday at the Masters, but has undoubtedly been voiced many times previously, particularly when poor results are involved. (photo jennleforge.com)img_0135-1

After having high expectations coming into the 1st major of 2016, Ricky Fowler failed to break 80 on Friday and ended up missing the cut. His initial brief explanation of his 1st 2 rounds was,
“Golf Happens”, a phrase used to describe an extraordinary happening during a round of golf.
Certainly it can be used in a positive reference as for instance, Linda, S3 and I witnessed our 2nd Double Eagle during a college tournament last Monday. Linda and I were parked at #18 green, a par 5 easily reachable in 2 shots for these talented young men. One of S3’s playing partners, Javier, hit his 2nd shot, it landed just left of the center of the green and rolled straight down a ridge and entered the middle of the cup at the perfect speed. What a thrill! And Javier, not quite able to see the hole, learned about his great shot by osmosis. So in this case, in a positive vain, “Golf Happened”. It was an unexpected and unusual occurrence.

This other side of the “Golf Happens/Happened” coin is the unflattering side. And with a ton of tough golf and higher than normal scores for many of the world’s top players, the most shocking “GH” of the weekend was Jordan Spieth’s disastrous final 9 holes. After having a 5-shot lead on the 10th tee, Jordan ended up T-2, 3shots behind the winner. Jordan gave up 8 shots in his last 9 holes, a horrible collapse. Our family is big Jordan fans and we are not being negative. Parents we want you to understand that there will be times that your son will have a terrible hole or maybe a couple and hopefully not a complete 9 hole stretch. (Danny Willett golfweek.com)image

Let’s give Danny Willett some credit as 5-under during the final round at Augusta is a great score, but he had to be as shocked, although likely a bit more pleasantly shocked than everybody else, as he watched Jordan’s performance on the back 9. Danny was in the right place at the right time.

Make no mistake, this 5-shot lead and tournament was Jordan’s to lose and he did. There may be a bunch of folks trying to get into the intricacies of what happened to Jordan’s mental state, or lack of, during this time and I’ll leave that to the pros. As a parent I can tell you that he basically lost his confidence, his trust in his swing. When that happens to S3, sometimes with irons/approach shots, his ball ends up short and right. Sound familiar?

So as we ask ourselves, how does Jordan, after making 4 birdies in a row on holes 6-9, totally lose it on the next 9 holes? Dad and Mom please get this, golf is a tough sport and the mental part is 90% of the game. As tough as the pros are mentally, they are still subject to the frailties of the human mind. And your junior golfer is even more mentally fragile.

1 poor shot may throw your son off his game. The winning part and the toughest part is how quickly can he forget that poor shot and hit a great shot? Your boy might get mad and anger always wins and he may carry that emotion for several holes, which he will probably play poorly, enough to ruin his round, before recovering and starting to play well again. The pros get mad, yes they do, but they deal with it better than the rest of us.

Always encourage your junior golfer, especially after a poor shot or a 3-putt. A big smile, yes 1 he can see and a strong thumb’s up are all he needs! We want the positive “Golf Happens”!

See your on #1 tee looking confident with your swing… Sam

Junior Golf : Are You Watching?

imageHappy Friday Flop Shot to you as Linda and I ask, are you watching, as in are you watching The Masters, the PGA men’s 1st major tournament which ends Sunday?

Please, as we previously mentioned, set your TiVo and record this event. The lessons and insights for your daughter, yes even though this is a men’s tournament, are invaluable and some are unique to this venue. (photo by offcoursegolf.com)

Tee shots on the 1st hole of any golf tournament can be nerve-wracking, but even 6-time Masters winner Jack Nicklaus admitted that his 1st shot at Augusta was always intimidating. Why is it so? The consensus seems to be that players just want so much to win The Masters as many regard it as the holy grail of all golf tournaments.

Yesterday had a couple of difficult moments, those where your daughter can see that crazy things happen to every golfer, even the best players in the world. Ernie Els, legendary nice guy, make that great guy, 7-putted #1. Folks, in all the junior and college golf that I have personally watched, a 5-putt is the most I can recall. S3 has had 1 4-putt and those dreaded 3-putts are something all golfers want to eliminate. Having a round with no 3-putts is always a goal. Ernie finished with an 80, 8 over par, playing his last 17 holes in 2-over, not bad.

2009 Masters winner Angel Cabrera had a 9 on the par 5 15th hole, 4 over on 1 hole. Now if you ever wondered about the mental toughness of athletes at this highest skill level, he immediately put that previous hole out of his mind and shot birdie, par, birdie on his final 3 holes, using 9 shots total for all 3 holes. Mom and Dad, that’s what champions do! So Angel finished at 73, 1 over par, better than the field average, with a 9! Learning moment here. (Angel Cabrera photo PGA.com)image

There is a cut after today’s round so everyone will be focusing on playing well enough to play on the weekend. There are a few previous winners flirting with that cut line so they’ll need to step it up today. Jordan Spieth played a beautiful round yesterday shooting a leading score of 66, 6 under par. It was a very breezy day Thursday, but as Sir Nick Faldo said, “Jordan played like there was no wind at all, putting his shots in the right places”. And as Sir Nick, 3-time Masters winner also stated, “Augusta National is all about putting your shots in the correct positions. Just being a few feet off in the wrong direction can leave you no real chance to hit a good next shot”. This is because this is cumulative in a way. In other words, if the tee shot is out of position, then it is difficult, if not impossible, to put your next shot in position, and it continues and players are struggling to 2-putt or make dicey up-and-downs. Shot placement, where you want your ball to end up, stop rolling, is always important.

See you on #1 tee looking for a great shot… Sam

Junior Golf: The Masters

In today’s Wednesday Waggle we take a look at the men’s 1st major championship of the year and play starts tomorrow. Just to show you how nearly everybody in the world of golf is trying to tie in to The Masters, here are some examples of what’s available this week. (Dufner photo golfdigest.com)img_0102-1

1st and foremost, record the golf and the related talk shows like the Golf Channel’s Live From The Masters which airs all week long from Augusta National Golf Club. These “Live From” shows are great with amazing interviews and insights that your son can’t get anywhere else. If you don’t have a TiVo or some sort of recorder for your tv, please consider adding 1 to your tv provider package. Yes, I know it’s extra money, but if you and your son are serious about junior golf, this should be part of your budget. And yes, you need to get a tv package that includes The Golf Channel.

We have used DirecTV for years and they are a superior provider. For the majors they air extra broadcast channels and for The Masters it’s channels 701-705, showing featured holes, featured groups, etc., great stuff! ESPN, DirecTV channel 206, airs the tournament on Thursday and Friday starting at 2:00pm central time. Then CBS, DirecTV channel 5 here in San Antonio, airs it Saturday and Sunday also starting at 2:00pm central time. For Sunday, the final round, always records at least 2 hours extra after the end of scheduled broadcast time to capture any playoffs or just overrunning of time. This happens more often than you would expect.image

Just about every golf entity is relating their week’s activities to The Masters, and why wouldn’t they, certainly we are doing it here. Golf World, Golf Digest and the other big golf media companies are loaded with posts and featured articles about this tournament. Some are historical, some are current events and some are barely filler material, but all are worth at least a glance. Your son can get a grasp on some of the great moments in golf history and you can enjoy learning these things together. Quality time. This fires most kids up! S3 would be ready to get in the car and leave right now to go watch in person! It’s good for your Junior golfer to be excited about his sport. (image wplgroup.com)

Future Champions Golf in California is offering some discounts for event sign-ups when you do it through April 10, relating to The Masters. Big golf retailer Golfsmith is having a Par 3 Sale relating to the famous Masters Par 3 event. GolfNow also is using Masters references in their ads and emails promoting their discounted green fees. Masters mania is everywhere this week and you might take advantage of some of these specials and save a few bucks. Enjoy!

See you on #1 tee ready for a major round of golf… Sam

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