Ashland golfers had woes, also fun
Ashland golfer Andrew Tredway entered the qualifying portion of the U.S. Amateur golf tournament earlier this week brimming with confidence and optimism.
Jason Allred, 19, his longtime friend and former Ashland High golf teammate, shared those feelings.
Two days later, the objectives of Allred and Tredway, 22, to play well in qualifying and make it through a round or two of match play in the country's most prestigious amateur tournament, had been reduced to rubble.
Neither player made it through the 36-hole qualifying.
Allred shot a 36-hole total of 156, and Tredway shot back-to-back rounds of 81 at Pebble Beach Golf Links and Spyglass Hill Golf Course in Monterey, Calif.
It was a great experience, and I have to say I was pumped up for it, says Tredway. But I didn't play well either day.
Maybe I was nervous, although it just felt like another tournament to me. I had a hard time focusing on pins and shots I needed to make. I started off the first round with a par and a birdie, and I thought I was on my way.
But with tight fairways, long rough and slick greens -- U.S. Open-type conditions -- Tredway and Allred couldn't get anything going.
Jason was disappointed, but he's one who tends to get over disappointments fast, says Tredway. I'm the same way, but it bothers me a little that I didn't play better in the qualifying.
Long rough, as much as seven inches tall, gobbled up many a Tredway drive and left him with difficult shots to the greens -- made especially fast by ocean breezes.
They set both courses up in U.S. Open conditions, says Tredway. For Pebble Beach, it was a practice tournament for them to get ready to host the U.S. Open next year.
Tredway would like to play in the U.S. Open next June, get another crack at this course. It's an indication of how he's raised his sights since an impressive run last spring in the Pac-10 Conference tournament. Playing for Oregon, he trailed the eventual winner by only one stroke entering the last round.
The rest of his golf life begins, he hopes, with a strong senior year for the Ducks.
`I've been playing real well lately, says Tredway. I feel like I should have my best year this year. I've improved almost every part of my game, although it didn't show this week.
I didn't drive the ball real well, and I had to hit a lot of 3-woods and 1-irons because the fairways were tight. I hit one drive into the rough at Pebble Beach and when I got down there, I couldn't see my ball unless I got right down there and looked around for it in the deep grass. The rough was so deep, it covered up my shoes.
I usually don't have to worry about those kinds of conditions when I tee it up, says Tredway. I need to work on that. The fairways were only 20 to 30 yards wide on both courses, and it adds to the pressure you feel on the tees.
WITH THE ROGUE VALLEY
Stroke-Play Championship -- the unofficial Medford city championship -- and the Southern Oregon Golf Championships coming up the next two weeks, a new local player is going to shake up the women's division.
She's Carman Akins, wife of new StoneRidge Golf Course head professional Pat Akins.
Carman, 53, has been a member of Rogue Valley Country Club for only a month. Already, she has won the women's club championship. She did it last week with three straight rounds of 79.
I love the course, says Akins. who was formerly a member at Willamette Valley Country Club in Canby, where her husband was the head pro.
Akins will enter the enter the Medford Stroke-Play Championship Aug. 28-29 at Cedar Links Golf Course and the Southern Oregon the following week.
It's going to be a fun two weeks, says Akins, who learned the game from her husband many years ago.
Carman now is a threat to beat her husband.
He used to give me two strokes a hole and play me left-handed , says Carman. Now he plays right-handed and I get three strokes a side.
Another player to watch on the men's side in the two events is Glen Clark, who won his second straight RVCC men's club title with a 54-hole score of 220. Clark opened with a 3-under-par 69 and continued to play well from there.
Clark was involved in one of the longest and most competitive matches in Southern Oregon Championship history last year.
He played nine extra holes before losing to Brad Bills 1-up in the semifinals. Bills and Clark played 24 holes -- it was scheduled for 18 -- before darkness forced them to stop and return the next morning.
Clark had come from four holes down with four to go to send the match into extra holes.
Spots remain open for the Medford Stroke-Play Championship at Cedar Links. The entry fee is $75.
Defending champions returning are Kevin Klabunde in the men's, Bob Harrell in the seniors and Reena Eklund in the women's.