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Sunday, January 13, 2008


Cave Creek, Again

We played here before, but all I could talk about was the back 9 . . . starting with the amazing green on #10, every hole has some unique feature that is commentworthy . . . I 3jacked it again -- no matter how close I get . . . I went in the water on the far side of the fairway on #11 this time, but salvaged a par with 3 perfect shots after that. Mr Science was in the brushy ditch down the left side -- as he has been before, too. We were all in the woods on the inside of the dogleg on #12, again. We both parred the par 3 #13, I with a sculled 5iron that wound up pin high. On #14 I hit a drive windblown down the right side of the fairway, down between the two water hazards; it was only a half-wedge approach for me, but I burned the edge of the cup with my birdie-miss. on #15, uphill and against the wind I had only 102 to the middle of the green, and spun my PW approach (sideways -- off a ridge on the green) 4 ft from the pin, but my putt broke 6 inches the last 2 inches, skirting the cup. A weak 5iron betrayed me into the water on #16 -- the Easiest Shot in Golf, the 5iron layup on a par 5 -- but I still confidently struck my 9iron approach over the green onto the hill behind. Skipped my 5wood off the water from the tee on #17, then couldn't get up into the swale where the flag was stuck. On #18 I bit off too much and my ball turned down the slope from the fairway into the desert area . . . I could still hit it, but it was uphill 30 ft from there; at least it wasn't a double-bogey like the prior two holes.

BUt I didn't want to talk about the back9 again -- just those two holes where I had missed two 4ft putts for birdies . . .

The first 3 holes always make me feel like I should have scored better than I do: that green on #1 throws me everytime (it is very steep, with a pinnacle in the back-middle from which the rest of the green slopes away like an upsidedown funnel). There's a very large swale on the left side of the #2 fairway that sucks my ball in like a black hole, every time. Makes the 3putt on the green seem kinda anti-climactic. Also, I always seem to get my greenie on the long par 3 #3, but then 3putt, there, too.

#4,5,&6 could be breather holes, as long as you don't wind up on the wrong part of the green -- easy 3putts, there, too.

On #6 I complained that my lies were even more thin and bare than the ones yesterday at Vistal. "Have you tried the fairway?" Mr Science asked, "It seems lush enough . . . "

#7 is a very tough, long par 3, with a huge bunker guarding the left side and a huge dropoff to the right side of the green -- there was a backup of 3 foursomes on the tee while we were there today -- an indication of something, I'm sure . . .

#8 is the #1 handicap hole. In addition to the daunting tee shot to the round-shouldered elevated fairway, there is the length of the hole, a huge swale that bisects the fairway at the 150 marker, and an elevated, contortured green.

#9 looks like a long flat hole bordering the driving range on the left and that huge ravine all down the right, but somehow that second shot does not suit my eye, and I wind up floundering.

I wound up with an 88 and a double handful of putts missed by a gnat hair . . .Mr Science wound up with another 86, with more 3putts and penalty strokes than he'd expect in a month.

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