Whatever Gets You Through the Day

By Brian HewittOctober 31, 2005, 5:00 pm
Carl Petterssen, the self-described Swedish redneck because he was born in Scandinavia, lived in England and was schooled in the American South, made a three foot putt on the 72nd hole to win the Chrysler Championship near Tampa Sunday.
It is Pettersens first victory on tour. So afterward I asked Tom Pernice, Jr., what he thought of Pettersens game. Pernice is the guy who finished second one week earlier at Disney, needing only 95 putts for 72 holes. At Chrysler, Pernice tied for third. In both events he was paired with Pettersen for at least one round.
Solid player, Pernice told me. Very solid player.
So what, I asked, got him over the hump Sunday?
Well, Pernice said, I think the difference might be the long putter. I think the long putter should be outlawed. But I think that might be the difference for Pettersen. But hes a very solid player.
Then I asked Pettersen how long he had been using the long putter.
Seven years, he said. And if I hadnt had that putter on the last hole, it would have been a mess.
This is not meant to be a screed against the long putter and a supporting position to those who think its too much of a crutch. More, its just another example of what confidence can do in golf. It is our sports strongest legal drug.
How else do you explain Steve Lowery missing his first eight cuts of the year and then coming back so strongly the last two weeks? Or Tag Ridings missing his first four cuts and rallying late in the season?
As recently as Las Vegas, earlier this month, Lowery was right on the bubble'No. 125 on the money list. But strong weeks at Disney and Chrysler have pushed him up to No. 88 on the money list. Ridings was on the outside of the top 125 looking in last Thursday. He responded with a 67 on Sunday, good for a tie for third. He now ranks No. 101 on the money list.
Both are safe from losing their cards.
For that matter, Pernice didnt have a top 10 all year until the last two weeks. Then he goes second and third.
The problem with confidence in golf is its ethereal nature. It comes. And it goes. You can hit balls all day on the range and one bad shot on the first hole can strip you of the good feeling you thought you had and ruin your day.or week.or year.
Similarly, you can be hitting it sideways on the practice ground and make one good strike on the first tee and.bingo.a light will go on. Suddenly the game will be easy.
The golf sports psychologists, most notably Bob Rotella, know much more about these phenomena than I do. It is what they do.
But I know this: If you play professional golf for a living and your name is anywhere near any of the money list bubbles that surface this time of year, confidence better be your best friend.
And if it takes a long putter to enhance that friendship--and if its legal--more power to you.
Email your thoughts to Brian Hewitt
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Day's wife shares emotional story of miscarriage

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 4:12 pm

Jason Day’s wife revealed on social media that the couple had a miscarriage last month.

Ellie Day, who announced her pregnancy on Nov. 4, posted an emotional note on Instagram that she lost the baby on Thanksgiving.

“I found out the baby had no heartbeat anymore. I was devastated,” she wrote. “I snuck out the back door of my doctor, a hot, sobbing, mascara-covered mess. Two and a half weeks went by witih me battling my heart and brain about what was happening in my body, wondering why this wouldn’t just be over.”

The Days, who have two children, Dash and Lucy, decided to go public to help others who have suffered similar heartbreak.

“I hope you know you aren’t alone and I hope you feel God wrap his arms around you when you feel the depths of sorrow and loss,” she wrote.  

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 5, Sergio Garcia

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 1:00 pm

This was the year it finally happened for Sergio Garcia.

The one-time teen phenom, known for years as “El Nino,” entered the Masters as he had dozens of majors beforehand – shouldered with the burden of being the best player without a major.

Garcia was 0-for-72 driving down Magnolia Lane in April, but after a thrilling final round and sudden-death victory over Justin Rose, the Spaniard at long last captured his elusive first major title.

The expectation for years was that Garcia might land his white whale on a British links course, or perhaps at a U.S. Open where his elite ball-striking might shine. Instead it was on the storied back nine at Augusta National that he came alive, chasing down Rose thanks in part to a memorable approach on No. 15 that hit the pin and led to an eagle.

Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year

A green jacket was only the start of a transformative year for Garcia, 37, who heaped credit for his win on his then-fiancee, Angela Akins. The two were married in July, and months later the couple announced that they were expecting their first child to arrive just ahead of Garcia’s return to Augusta, where he'll host his first champions’ dinner.

And while players often cling to the notion that a major win won’t intrinsically change them, there was a noticeable difference in Garcia over the summer months. The weight of expectation, conscious or otherwise, seemed to lift almost instantly. Like other recent Masters champs, he took the green jacket on a worldwide tour, with stops at Wimbledon and a soccer match between Real Madrid and Barcelona.

The player who burst onto the scene as a baby-faced upstart is now a grizzled veteran with nearly two decades of pro golf behind him. While the changes this year occurred both on and off the course, 2017 will always be remembered as the year when Garcia finally, improbably, earned the title of major champion.

Masters victory

Article: Garcia defeats Rose to win Masters playoff

Article: Finally at peace: Garcia makes major breakthrough

Article: Garcia redeems career, creates new narrative

Video: See the putt that made Sergio a major champ

Green jacket tour

Article: Take a look at Sergio's crazy, hectic media tour

Article: Garcia with fiancée, green jacket at Wimbledon

Article: Watch: Garcia kicks off El Clasico in green jacket

Man of the people

Article: SERGIO! Garcia finally gets patrons on his side

Article: Fan finally caddies for Sergio after asking 206 times

Article: Sergio donates money for Texas flood relief

Article: Connelly, Garcia paired years after photo together

Ace at 17th at Sawgrass

Growing family

Article: Sergio, Angela get married; Kenny G plays reception

Article: Garcia, wife expecting first child in March 2018

Departure from TaylorMade

Article: Masters champ Garcia splits with TaylorMade

Squashed beef with Paddy

Article: Harrington: Garcia was a 'sore loser'

Article: Sergio, Padraig had 'great talk,' are 'fine'

Victory at Valderrama

Article: Garcia gets first win since Masters at Valderrama

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Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 12:30 pm
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Montana parents can't watch kids play high school golf

By Grill Room TeamDecember 11, 2017, 9:47 pm

Well, this is a one new one.

According to a report from KTVQ in Montana, this line in the Montana State High School Association rule book all but forbids spectators from observing high school golf in that state:

“No spectators/fans are allowed on the course except for certain locations as designated by the tournament manager and club professional.”

Part of the issue, according to the report, is that most courses don't bother to designate those "certain locations" leaving parents unable to watch their kids compete.

“If you tell a parent that they can’t watch their kid play in the Thanksgiving Day football game, they would riot,” Chris Kelley, a high school golf parent, told KTVQ.

The report lists illegal outside coaching as one of the rule's chief motivations, but Montana State women's golf coach Brittany Basye doesn't quite buy that.

“I can go to a softball game and I can sit right behind the pitcher. I can make hand signals,” she is quoted in the report. “I can yell out names. I can do the same thing on a softball field that might affect that kid. Football games we can yell as loud as we want when someone is making a pass or a catch.”

The MHSA has argued that unlike other sports that are played in a confined area, the sprawling nature of a golf course would make it difficult to hire enough marshals to keep unruly spectators in check.

Meanwhile, there's a lawyer quoted in the report claiming this is some kind of civil rights issue.

Worth note, Montana is one of only two states that doesn't allow spectators on the course. The other state, Alaska, does not offer high school golf.