Bad golf can leave a scar

I’m thinking about my worst round of competitive golf. Honestly can’t remember what I shot (conveniently blocked it out), but I remember lugging my bag around Doral as a college junior thinking the round would never end. I couldn’t hit a green that day if my life depended on it. As my dad would say: “Take me out, coach.”

Whatever emotions I experienced that day, Heather Bearpaw has me beat. The 18-year-old Native American missed the 18-hole cut at Duramed Futures Qualifying School Nov. 2 after shooting 54-over 126. Her front-nine score of 69 was two shots worse than Tiffany Joh’s 18-hole score of 67. 

Clearly Bearpaw had a dream, but not a clue. My heart breaks for this young girl from Oklahoma, even though we’ve never met. Bad golf can leave a scar.

The Futures Tour charges non-members $1,200, hoping to keep inexperienced players out of its Q-School. There is a handicap limit, but it doesn’t apply to players who, like Bearpaw, turn professional.

Those who shoot 87 or higher at Futures Q-School can’t come back for Round 2. Nine women missed that mark. (I would’ve been kicked out of Doral as well.)

Hopefully, Bearpaw’s dream didn’t die because of one round of bad golf. Now might be a good time to get that amateur status back.

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