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Playing Hole #5

Wow, where has the time gone! An amazing first season for me at Prairie Links. I would like to thank everyone for their support. My Weekly blog is something that I enjoy doing. It allows me to communicate with you and get feedback as well.

Now that we have reached the off-season this is a great time to think about course management as we review our 2022 season. Finding ways to improve starts with how we think on the golf course. Having a plan of attack before we step onto the 1st tee. I will pick up where left off with hole 5. A par 5 that players feel like they can birdie with a well placed drive.

From the black tees the hole plays 529 yards. The dogleg left allows the golfer to cut off some yardage with a well struck drive. With a 300 yard drive you can have as little as 200 yards for your second shot.

When arriving at the tee my target is always the left edge of the red barn. As someone who naturally draws the golf ball this gives me enough room to allow for my miss either way.

Assuming I have executed the tee shot I will have around 200 yards in. The green is large, sloping from back to front. My play is to always keep the ball below the hole with my second shot. The miss is to the front left of the green. This will give me the best chance at a birdie (maybe even an eagle). I will gladly take my two putt birdie and go to the next hole.

Many times this summer I have played hole 5 in a not so stress free way. A miss high and to the right makes the hole much longer. From there, course management is the difference between making a par or even worse a double bogey.

Club selection from the rough of this hole is predicated on if I can carry the bunker on the left side of the fairway. The front of the bunker is 115 yards from the green and the back of the bunker is 85 yards to the green. I have to be 100% confident the golf ball can carry this hazard. A fairway bunker shot is the toughest shot in golf.

For example, if I have 250 yards to the center of the green I will hit a 120 yard shot short right of the bunker. Giving me a full wedge to attack the pin. It’s only 135 to the bunker, but like I said my play is short of the hazard and in the fairway.

In my lessons I preach to students the value of having a confident club into the green. Especially on par 5’s. Wedges and short irons hit confidently are the fastest way to lower scores. At Prairie Links the key to lower scores is playing the par 5’s correctly.

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