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Saturday morning's drive to Lansing was a tricky one. The farther south I went, the more snow there was and the icier the roads became. I stopped by Keith's place to give him a ride to the tourney. It's always a pleasure to get some historical perspective (yeah, I'm older than him but he's golfed competitively much longer) on this sport and the local leagues. By the time we got to Lansing, there was 4" of the white stuff on the ground. March Mush had become "Spring Snow Surprise".

The Am Masters division was fairly small but a great group to play with as always. Joining me was Thom Kelly from Midland, Jeff Bonn from Saginaw and Don Jensen from Muskegon. I knew I would have to bring my A game to keep up with these guys but unfortunately I must have left my A game on the dresser back home (I knew I forgot something!).

The first round, my long game seemed pretty good but the closer I got to the basket, the worse things got. I actually had 3 or 4 "putts" from within 10 feet hit the basket or chains and fall out. Yeah, it was BRUTAL. I'm still not convinced that I should just take up fishing instead. ;-) To add insult to injury, on hole 8 my Champ Valk crossed the ditch into OB land. I was tempted to run around to get it but I knew it would be there later or some good samaritan would pick it up during the round. Well, immediately following round 1, I went back to find someone had picked it up but never turned it in, so that was a bummer. The end of round one had me at the back of the bus with an 8-over score. As bad as that was, I was still only 4 strokes out of the lead so I hadn't given up quite yet...

Instead of a visit to a local pub to pound back a few (dozen), Keith and I went to Jersey Giants for a sub. We both stunk up our first round and needed some redemption in the afternoon.

The second round was a little friendlier to me as only 1 "sure" putt missed and I actually sunk a couple fairly long ones. I was happy to par Hole 10 both rounds and stay out of that gully. The sun was shining, the snow was melting (March Mush started earning it's name) and the four of us were all enjoying a better second round, so all-in-all a fun afternoon. I think the fact that my back was killing me became a factor but I played through it most of the time. My second round score was 4-over giving me a score of 120 overall, good for 4th (ok, LAST) place.

Thanks to Bob and his crew for holding a great tourney and of course J-Bird (who I wished I had seen to get some plastic before he left).

Lessons Learned: Putt, Putt, Putt

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Comment by Keith Aten on March 28, 2008 at 9:25am
Craig I hope you dont mine but I copied and paisted your account on my opage and just changed the names LOL. Bruce must not know our connection (triple wink wink, nudge, nudge! ;-)
Comment by Craig Clingan on March 23, 2008 at 7:11pm
Sounds like I need to stock up on mini's and really work on my putting! See you on the tee box...
Comment by Bruce Brakel on March 23, 2008 at 6:10pm
+2, +2. The winner in Am Master I think would have beat Wildman and would have taken third. If we all were to just play pro master and take the prizes, the prizes would go to mostly the same people. But when it works out, you might also be able to sell a mini to a pro and decline!
Comment by Craig Clingan on March 23, 2008 at 4:44pm
Yeah, but I hear mini's get expensive some times. Double wink, wink, nudge, nudge! ;-) How did your rounds go?
Comment by Bruce Brakel on March 23, 2008 at 3:18pm
The Am Master and Pro Master scores were so similar, it's too bad we all didn't just play pro master. With the new Ams Taking Prizes in Pro rule, you can get prizes in pro master and not go pro. In my case it worked out better to decline the cash and prizes and have the TD pay it down to Wildman. Wink, wink, nudge, nudge. Say no more!

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