October 24, 2015

Back in Arizona the 2015-16 golf season is just beginning to heat up. The trickle of snowbirds is about to become a steady stream, the golf courses are lush and green, and the greens fees are as high as the courses can reasonably make them. Here in New England it’s quite the opposite: the days are getting shorter and colder, the sun low in the sky, and soon the clocks will be turned back, making it nearly impossible to hit a bucket of balls after work.

Still, last Friday afternoon was more than nice enough to get in a few hours work on my game, and it needed it. I hadn’t played since Goodboys Invitational weekend back in July, and I knew hitting a couple of buckets of balls back in Arizona in preparation for my trip back to New England wasn’t the same thing as playing. Still, I had shot a solid 48 on the back nine at Pease Golf Course on Tuesday but could tell my short game was in as bad shape as it had been all year. And it showed the following day with a ghastly 113 at Hickory Hill in Methuen, where not only could I not hit an iron straight all day, but chipped and putted abysmally. Work was fairly quiet on Friday morning, so I took the afternoon off and headed to World Cup Driving Range in Hudson, New Hampshire to try and work out some kinks ahead of a planned round with fellow Goodboys “Killer” Kowalski on Sunday at my #1 favorite gold course in the world, Portsmouth Country Club.

And it was there you could really feel what the end of the golf season looks like here in New England. Normally on a Friday afternoon the place is packed: the large field dotted with golfers of all ages and skills in the hitting areas set about in a large half-circle around the property. The same with the putting green and chipping area – always packed. So it felt weird to walk into the shop, plunk my $10 bill down and see only machines there to cough up the tokens. As I walked out, clubs clinking over my shoulder, it was weird to see the place so empty – just a handful of golfers silhouetted against the low October sun:

And on the putting green, just a lone individual chipping balls as yellow as some of the autumn colors behind him:

Still, even with the cool breeze, it didn’t take long before I was warm enough to abandon my pull-over. I hit a few balls and tried to think as my golf instructor Alex Black would have me do. I soon found the cause of my errant iron play: I was set up with my grip way too strong and my club face slightly closed at address. No wonder my shots were starting right and going even further right! Putting my grip to neutral and opening the club face a bit I was back to hitting a slight fade (not the power draw that Alex has been encouraging, but good enough for now), and working on not jumping at the ball. I got a second bucket and to work solely on my 100-yard in play, which has been poor all year. I never really got to where I wanted to be, but the work I got in left me in a much better place.

By the time I headed to the putting chipping area, the gentleman I had photographed had left and I had the green all to myself. I didn’t even bother to try and chip balls as I had been doing – playing the ball back in my stance and using some wrist action. Instead, I put the ball in the middle of my stance and started hitting balls without any wrist at all, a la Steve Stricker, and started seeing a higher ball flight and better distance control. I probably chipped a hundred balls, and at no time did anyone else ever join me there. Around 4:30 you could feel a chill coming on, so I put my pull-over back on and chipped a few more before calling it a day.

I have two more rounds of golf here in New England before going back, and as far as my 2015 New England golf season goes, that will be the end of it. And I’m guessing for a lot of folks around here the same holds true.

Filed in: Golf & Sports by The Great White Shank at 01:52 | Comments Off on What The End Of The Golf Season Looks Like
No Comments

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.


Search The Site

Recent Items


September 2021
April 2021
January 2021
December 2020
November 2020
October 2020
September 2020
August 2020
July 2020
June 2020
May 2020
April 2020
March 2020
February 2020
January 2020
December 2019
November 2019
October 2019
September 2019
August 2019
July 2019
June 2019
May 2019
April 2019
March 2019
February 2019
January 2019
December 2018
November 2018
October 2018
September 2018
August 2018
July 2018
June 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006



4 Goodboys Only

Site Info