July 9, 2013

A new perspective

Caddy’s-eye view different for locals


“I think I got more frustrated watching them and seeing some little mistakes than I get frustrated at myself when I am playing out on the course,” he said. “It is a totally different perspective of the game. It was fun to be able to watch them and analyze their game. You are so focused on your own game that you really don’t get a chance to pay attention to the other golfers.

“For my game, I think that it will really help to see the game from another point of view. I learned some different strategies that I can use. There were some things I can take from this and work on in my game.”

CHAMP RETURNS: In 2009, as a freshman at North Clayton High School in Riverdale, Mariah Stackhouse was the medalist at the Georgia High School Association Class 4A girls state tournament at DGCC.

She won that tournament — Northwest Whitfield won the team title — with a par round. She couldn’t duplicate that total her second time around.

Now a sophomore at Stanford University and building quite an amateur reputation with her play, Stackhouse struggled on the greens and finished at 6 over. Stackhouse, who qualified for the 2011 Women’s U.S. Open, said this was a much different DGCC course than she remembered.

“It is a different course from what I remember from winning state,” Stackhouse said. “I was fairly confident coming into the round, but that is one of the biggest difficulties in an 18-hole qualifier. It is one round, and you have to be on top of your game. A couple of bad holes can spring up and you have no one to blame but yourself.”

The course also played a lot longer. GHSA recommendations for postseason girls play puts the distance of courses near 5,500 yards. The course played more than 900 yards longer than that Monday.

But Stackhouse wasn’t blaming her distance, she was blaming her putter. While drives weren’t rolling far on the fairways after seven-straight days of rain, Stackhouse and the rest of the field could fire at pins as greens were sticking.

“I just didn’t make any putts,” she said. “You could fly it to the pin, but when I had birdie putts, I made par, and when I had some par putts, I made bogey.”

During her freshman year at Stanford, Stackhouse lit the golf world atwitter after shooting a 61 to win the Peg Barnard Invitational. She shot a 9-under 26 on the front nine at Stanford Golf Course and finished the round at 10-under.

As an African-American golfer at Stanford who lived up to her first-year expectations, the comparisons to Tiger Woods — a Stanford alum — have been inevitable.

“It is an easy comparison for people to make because we are both African-American,” she said, “but he was a lot better at my age than I am.”

SPOTS SECURED: Katy Funk of Spartanburg, S.C., and Ally McDonald of Fulton, Miss., both finished at 2-under 70 to share medalist honors and were two of nine automatic qualifiers for the championship, which will be played August 5-11 at the Country Club of Charleston in South Carolina.

Lauren Stephenson of Lexington, S.C., was alone in third at 71, while Lori Beth Adams of Burlington, N.C., shot a 72. Laura Wearn (Charlotte, N.C.), Jordan Britt (Chattanooga) and McKenzie Talbert (North Augusta, S.C.) all shot 73 and were automatic qualifiers.

England’s Melissa Siviter and Suwanee’s Sloan Shanahan won a four-woman playoff at 74 for the other two automatic spots. Cammie Gray of Northport, Ala., and Sarah Harris of Hermitage, Tenn., lost the playoff and will serve as alternates.

Text Only
  • Chris Whitfield's Fairways & Greens: Experience matters for local golfers

    Tyler Mitchell has past success in the Georgia Open on his side. David Noll Jr. has past success at Pinetree Country Club on his.

    July 31, 2014

  • Chris Whitfield's Fairways & Greens: Nob North prepares for 'big date'

    Like anyone getting ready for a big date, golf courses get dressed up when it is time for a major event. But while a woman may put on a little makeup and a man may add a spray of cologne, Nob North Golf Course in Varnell is getting something more akin to Botox.

    July 24, 2014

  • Loran Smith: McIlroy at his peak at Hoylake

    HOYLAKE, England — It’s the setting which enraptures those who appreciate the things that accompany a championship, The British refuse to let a downpour or two, intermittent and inconvenient, to make them fret.

    July 20, 2014

  • Loran Smith: Change is needed for major titles

    HOYLAKE, England — This is a good time to be Bubba Watson — long off the tee which brings golf aficionados through the gates, two Masters titles which puts him in the pantheon of the greats at Augusta, deal-makers hovering about, more perks than a palace prince, exempt status to the end of the decade and a cash flow that resembles a raging river.

    July 19, 2014

  • Loran Smith: Brits know how to hold classy affairs

    HOYLAKE, England — Summertime is a royal time for the British, who have more sporting options in a six-week period than some societies have in a lifetime.
    If you think the U.S. is keen on sport — with the NBA finals lasting into June and baseball and golf dominating the scene — consider what takes place in the land of our forebears. Wimbledon gets underway the last week in June for a fortnight of resonating excitement. Wimbledon is like Augusta National or Churchill Downs — a memorable experience regardless of who walks away with first prize.

    July 15, 2014

  • End of streak for Noll at Georgia Amateur

    With the day’s low round at the Georgia Amateur Championship, Columbus’ Robert Mize claimed his first title at the Georgia State Golf Association tournament and added some hardware to the family’s trophy case.

    July 14, 2014

  • Close call for Noll at Georgia Amateur

    Most years at the Georgia Amateur Championship, Dalton’s David Noll Jr. is in the fight for first place.

    July 12, 2014

  • Local trio unable to break par at Georgia Amateur

    Eatonton’s Trey Rule opened with a 5-under-par 65 to take the lead Thursday in the first round of the Georgia Amateur Championship at Idle Hour Club in Macon.

    July 11, 2014

  • Public Links set for September at Nob North

    Registration is open for the 26th annual Georgia Public Links Championship, set for Sept. 13-14 at Nob North Golf Course in Varnell.

    July 11, 2014

  • Chatsworth's Mitchell picks up confidence-boosting victory

    Two good rounds of golf and a tournament victory secured some momentum for Chatsworth’s Tyler Mitchell as he prepares for this week’s Georgia Amateur Championship.

    July 9, 2014