The fury of Kapalua: Wicked scoring at Mercedes Championships in Hawaii
It’s Sunday morning, Buffalo standard time, and I count exactly one score out of eighty-four posted in the 60s. Is this June and Pinehurst? I mean, Olin Browne DID shoot the 69, something I think I sorta remember him doing in 2005 … time warp?
So, is it rust? Does rust explain wonderboy not breaking 80 in three tries? Someone should steal his crap out of his van again … get him motivated. Did Sean O’Hair dump the father-in-law on his bag for someone less inspirational? He was barely under 80 for the first two rounds, then joined Gore in the “club” for round three. At least Faxon is headed in the right direction on his one knee. Funk and Slocum are the other guys in the octogenarian club, but heck, long course, short hitters, ditto Faxon.
Oh, wait, I forgot. The guy that Parnevik once called, “the only Swedish redneck.” The class of the tournament, one of us. Carl Petersson, aka, one of us. Friday’s second round began with … eight bogeys and a double in ten holes. I think he got strokes on three of them, so he was technically only seven over. He settled down to make six pars and a double on his last seven holes, to finish with a sweet 85. Otis, my man!
All right, enough Let’s examine those close calls, those four lucky lads who posted 70. Jason Bohn, someone’s pick somewhere for biggest surge in 2006, had to finish with four birdies in the last five holes to do it on Friday. What’s up, J-Bo? Couldn’t muster a tre on the pushover 16th to break the barrier? This isn’t Duval in the desert, you know. Appleby left his restaurant long enough to birdie 18 yesterday to hit the almost-magical number. Luke Leia Glover did, too, but he tossed away a thump on 17 with a bogey. Nice job under pressure, Jedi. You had a freaking hole in one on the 8th and you still couldn’t do it! Vijay had five birdies on Thursday, but couldn’t make 4 on the ski-slope 18th … it’s a black diamond from tee to green, for god’s sake!
We must, therefore, retreat to the Holy Grail of Golf of 2006, Olin Browne’s magical 69. He made five birdies and one bogey, but here’s the key: he played the par five in even, with two 5s, a 4 and a 6. His only bogey came on number fifteen, as he was threatening 68. He might have run away with the tournament with birdies on 15 and 18, the remaining par fives when he sat at -5. Could you imagine a 66 this week? That’s like starting on the back nine!
Is Kapalua worthy of hosting one of the majors, albeit in January? Do Kona winds blow coffee-hard in June and August, too? If so, the USGA and PGA might end up fighting it out for rights to one of the islands for the first non-continental, US Professional/Open major championship in history. As for me, I’m hoping the glove®s come off today and 28 guys go nuts and break 70. Get the world spinning on the correct axis again.
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Might make it harder to find players though ;-)