First of all, the Upper Montclair Country Club is bee-yoo-ti-ful. It’s an awesome old golf course. Trust me. If you can get out there this week, do it.
I’m no expert, but I had a few observations while I was walking the course yesterday. From what I could tell, excellent ball-striking will be the KEY to scoring low. Even though the course isn’t especially long, the fairways are very narrow. Can anyone say target golf? Not to mention, the greens are awfully small. Again, target golf.
On the back nine, the three par-4s in a row, starting at the 12th hole, are pretty tricky. They aren’t that long, but I smell trouble if the ladies don’t work the ball correctly. The par-5s are reachable in two for the those that hit it long off the tee. In general, it looks like it’ll be important to take advantage of them. With that said, Par-5s = BIRDIES (lots of them!).
Without further ado, here are my fave 5:
- Lorena Ochoa: This is like picking Tiger. She won this tournament last year. She’s the best player in the world. She already has two wins under her belt this season, and in her other five starts, she finished in the top ten. You could say she’s pretty good.
- Suzann Pettersen: She’s been playing well all year. Before last week, she placed in the top ten four tournaments in a row. And she finished in the top 5 three times this season. I’d say she’s due for a WIN.
- Lindsey Wright: She hasn’t won yet, but she’s put herself in contention. She’s been playing all-around solid golf. In her last two starts, she finished 4th and T-3. It’s time for her to breakout. There’s no reason it shouldn’t be this week.
- Stacy Lewis: This is her rookie season after winning Q-school last December. She was a great college player and amateur. As an excellent ball-striker, the course sets up well for her game. There have been high expectations that she hasn’t fulfilled YET…
- Paige Mackenzie: I know what you’re thinking. I’m biased. Well, I sure am. But, I watched her play yesterday and she’s striking the ball better than ever. She’s also putting well finally – something she’s struggled with in the past few years (and you can’t hide that part of your game – that’s what she said!). Let’s do some math: Confidence + Ballstriking = LOOK OUT! What else is there to say? Oh, I’ll be there and I’m good luck.