It’s a milestone I aim for every time I play a round of golf. While some golfers might be able to break 80 every time they go out, I find it a very difficult obstacle to overcome.
In 2016, I set a goal again of trying to break 80 for the first time in 16 years. I’ve done it once before, at The Golf Club of Texas when I worked in the cart barn and pro shop back in 2000. This was the time in my life when I was playing golf just about everyday.
I decided to start this series again on Front9Back9 called Project Break 80 after an 82 last weekend at La Cantera Palmer Course. I played really well and the chance to break 80 was right in front of me. In the end, I made some bad mistakes and the elusive 80 fell out of reach.
Project Break 80 Goals
I have three main goals each time I play golf which I believe can help me get closer to breaking 80:
- No Three Putts: This is a no-brainer. If I can eliminate 3-putts then I have a great shot of breaking 80.
- Eliminate Big Numbers: I have a goal of no score higher than +1 on any hole. This will only occur if I can eliminate the dreaded penalty shots during a round.
- Chip to within 3-feet: If I miss the green, I expect to chip it within a 3 foot circle around the hole to give myself a good chance at making the par.
If I can accomplish these three things in each round, I feel I am well on my to breaking 80 on a regular basis.
LaCantera Palmer Course – February 21, 2016
As mentioned above, I shot an 82 at LaCantera Palmer Course last Sunday. I felt this is a really good baseline for my game and wanted to share the breakdown from my analysis of the round. I do these breakdown’s after every round so I get an idea of where I can improve. Here’s how I played:
- 20 putts
- 5 of 7 Fairways Hit
- 5 of 9 Greens in Regulation
- 4 pars, 4 bogeys, 1 triple bogey
- Front 9 Score: 42
- 16 putts
- 5 of 7 fairways
- 4 of 9 greens in regulation
- 6 pars, 2 bogeys, 1 double bogey
- Back 9 Score: 40
- Fairways Hit: 71.4%
- Greens in Regulation: 50%
- Total Putts: 36
Goal Progress Report
No Three Putts: F
I get an failing grade for putting last Sunday. I had a total of 36 putts during my round, with three 3-putts. These all came
on the front 9. One three putt really irritated me because I drove the green on a short par-4. I left myself with about a 50-foot putt and tried to lag it to about 3 feet. I did that, but then missed the birdie putt. I really need to work on my putting.
Eliminate Big Numbers: F
I also get another failing grade for my big number scoring. I had one triple bogey and one double bogey. The triple was the result of a lost ball on a short little par-4 in which I made a horrible swing and just duck hooked it into the previous holes fairway. I thought surely I would be able to find it but I ended up taking a lost ball penalty. Now in our group, to save time, we play that as a lateral hazard instead of going back to the tee. I ended up having to drop in a really difficult area and proceed to just make a mess of the easiest golf hole on the course.
The double bogey results from a poor layup on a par-5. I hit a perfect drive but #16 at the Palmer Course but the second shot always forces me to layup because of bunkers that guard the entire right side of the green. I ended up hitting a solid 4-iron layup right into the front bunker, leaving me a 70 yard bunker shot that a hit fat. It went into another green side bunker and I proceeded to make a mess out of my next four shots.
Chipping/Short Game: A
I actually chipped really well. I chipped in from off the fairway from about 30 feet on one hole after missing the green on a sand shot. I struck the chip perfectly and it landed very close to the spot I was aiming for. My chipping game needs some improvement as well but I feel it it one of my stronger parts of my golf game.
Well, I need to break 80. I try to play at least one round of golf per week, typically on Sunday. First and foremost, I need to focus on my short game, specifically my putting. I am dabbling with building a putting green in my garage and might be starting work on that in the very near future. I’d be able to use that in the evenings after my son is put to bed.
I am also going to try and go to the driving range a couple times per week, or at least setup the Rukket Haack Net a couple times per week and just hit balls into the net in my driveway or garage.
What do you think? What should I focus on the most? Let me know below in the comments or hit me up on Twitter @Front9Back9.