In addition to his responsibilities planning and running the Skyway Skirmish at Quail Ridge in Sanford on Saturday, @westerj12 agreed to a CLC Matchplay tangle with me. We also happened to be partners in the Skirmish. It was wild man.
Since the Skirmish was a shamble, we agreed to 2nd ball and in match. I’m giving four shots based on full handicaps. Forecast called for 95 degrees, holy shit it’s May, so we’re riding.
Funky all around.
Dogleg left, JW ropes a drive around the corner. So we play from about 35 yards, in the left sandy waste. JW catches his pitch a little thin, over the green. Then back across to the fringe. Two putts for five. I nip a nice one to 18 feet, two puts for par
AJ One up
Both hit good drives, we use mine (I hit D, he hit H). 100 yards in to an elevated, very undulating green, pin cut in a mini-punchbowl in the middle front. I end up short fringe, decent chip to 5 feet, which I ultimately make. Doesn’t matter, as JW is in the left fringe, and he rolls it in for a 3. He’s popping in our match, and the Skirmish so thats a 3 net 2 from my PARTNER!
160 yard par 3. JW ends up pin high left rough after his ball rolls out of worse trouble on the hill left. I catch the front right bunker. Swear to god there’s no sand in there, next ball FLIES. Short fringe next. Decent put down a steep hill, but it doesn’t to in. Double. JW’s chip rolls out to 18 feet, but two putts wins with bogey.
JW one up
Par 5, we take my drive, which if I must say, was PIPED, down the middle. JW approach is left in sand/path, I’m short right. JW hits a tasty pitch from the sand, two putts for a 5, but is popping so it’s a net bird (PARTNER!). I pitch up, two putt for par, which is insufficient.
JW two up
No good drives, I’m righter than JWs right. So we both have 100 yards, punching from under a tree. JW stays in the trees, then bunker, eventually a bogey. I’m short with my second, chip stays in the rough by an inch, but I make the putt from there to get one back.
JW one up
Shortish par 4, I hit another skanker, JW ropes a low one that goes far. We’re in the left rough, with a slightly concerning tree limb overhanging. But 95 yards makes it manageable. JW takes the sensible route, playing to 20 ft from the pin. Which frees me up to go right at it, which I manage to do - 6 ft. PARTNER! He two putts for par, I roll mine in for bird. Lot of blood out there!
Par 3, downhill but into the wind, lots of discussion about what to hit. Nothing good comes of it. JW hooks one OB, then finds the bunker right. I find the bunker short. JW catches his bunker shot clean, OB again. Telling you, there’s no sand in there. I got mine out, then rolled in a 15 footer for par.
AJ one up
Par 5, reachable. I hit ANOTHER crappy one, JW hits it far, in the left rough. 200 or so to the flag. JW SLAMS a 6I to the green, call it 18 feet down the hole. I toe a 5I to the front fringe. From there, the bed was shat. 3 putts for JW, a loose chip from me, and we’re both out of there with disappointing pars. If there is such a think.
AJ one up
I hit a good drive, we have 125 in. I hit PW, but pull it to the left fringe. Decent putt 30 feet down the hill, then make the 5 footer coming back. JW is in front bunker, nice out but misses the putt. 4 for me, 5 for him. On the Skirmish side, we’re net -3 and feeling great about that.
AJ two up
Good drive finds the left side of the fairway. 100 years in, uphill. Long is dead, JW tells me before we hit, and unfortunately he pull flushes a wedge. Bit of an adventure from there, crooked number for JW. I hit the green, two putt for par.
AJ three up
Par three, down another hill. Wind blowing hard into us (AGAIN). Both tee shots end up short, in the fringe. I hit another loose chip, leave the 20-footer an inch on the right. Bogey. JW putts up, but can’t convert the up and down. Also bogey. Let’s not think about this too much.
AJ three up
I hit a wipey, fadey near-queef fairway finder, but JW is under a tree left. So we take mine. 150 in. I hit the green, JW finds bunker left. Again, thin sanded, JW flies the green, then hits a good one that runs out down the hill back to the fringe in the bunker. He’s popping, but makes a triple / net double. I two putt for par.
AJ four up
Par 3, about 185 up the hill. I chunk a 6. Then hit an indifferent wedge. Then get up and down for bogey. JW has an adventure, makes double. I’m dormie, but that just means I’m setting myself up for disaster…
AJ five up
Speaking of disaster: Par five, dogleg right downhill, big pond in front of the green. JW bombs a flare right, OB. Ok, fine, no problem, bunt one down the fairway. Right? RIGHT?!?!?
It’s a half swing, low-toe, WHAT THE FUCK, slice, also OB.
So we both reload, JW bombs a draw to the middle of the fairway, I also hit a good one but we play his longer good one. About 200 in. JW hits a bullet, just barely too far left, catches the bunker. I hit a toe fade that BARELY clears the water. From there, further pukeage, and we make 7s. Not good for the Skirmish.
JW was popping, so he takes the hole. JFC.
AJ four up
OK, fine, we play on, still dormie. No problem. Short par 4, dogleg right around a big tree. Which I promptly find with my 3W. JW’s 3W on the other hand is MAJESTIC, fading around the corner into the go-zone. 110 in, I hit a weak PW to the short fringe. JW pures a wedge, hits the backstop behind the pin, and rips it back, damn near holes out. 6 feet for birdie, draino. Crap chip for me (notice a trend), and I make bogey. Sphincter getting tight over here!!!
AJ three up
Par 5, dogleg right. JW takes the mega line, over the tree, way up there. We like that. 135 in, up the hill. JW hits a slight pull, just left of the green. I hit a great 8I, hardly leaves the flag, ends up six feet past, downhill putt. JW’s chip rolls out, then can’t get up and down. Bogey. I tickle the ball down the hill to a couple inches, tap in for the partner/opponent-assisted bird and that’ll do it.
AJ wins 4 & 2
@westerj12 is always a class act - the Skirmish was a resounding success, and he was a worthy opponent. We ham and egged it for the Skirmish competition, finished third. Quail Ridge was a true delight. Excellent conditions, fun holes, terrific company. GREAT day, fortunate to come out with the CLC win after I started to give it away. Just the tip, in the end.