The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Sports

July 12, 2014

Grueling third round a test for U.S. Senior Open field

EDMOND, Okla. — Stillwater resident Bill Glasson was no exception on Saturday's grueling third round of the 2014 U.S. Senior Open.

With only three golfers finishing the round under par, Glasson was among the majority to feel the brunt of Oak Tree National – shooting a 5-over 76 to drop to 9-over for the tournament.

“It's hard to play with very erratic ball striking. That's kind of my story,” Glasson said. “... I think I'm swinging decent. I made a couple of changes today to try to again better fit my ball to the holes, and, you know, it's hard when you get into a crosswind.

“For me, I have to move the ball into the wind, and I'm just not able to control the amount of curve on my ball right now. And I knew that.”

The former two-time All-American golfer at Oral Roberts was plugging along through the first 14 holes – standing at 1-over for the day – before carding a string of three straight bogeys on Nos. 15-17.

The Stillwater resident did finish the round on a better note than his first two rounds of the tournament – with his first par of the week on the par-4 18th. But he still stands 14 shots off the leader Gene Sauers, who is at 7-under after shooting a 3-under 68 on Saturday.

“Every shot looks hard to me,” Glasson said. “Every fairway looks like it's about three yards wide and every green looks like it's got a big hump in the middle. Other than that, I feel pretty good about it.”

Glasson's indecision with his putter led him to go back to the putter he used Thursday after mixing it up for Friday's second round.

“I just didn't roll the ball (Friday). I didn't necessarily putt terribly,” Glasson said. “It's just I'm looking for a roll – a ball to kind of just start rolling a little bit faster. Tried to change my setup position a little bit. ... It's just my shot's not fitting right now; I'm having a hard time committing to what I'm trying to do.”

The Stillwater Country Club member said the ball was rolling better off the Thursday-Saturday putter, but that his troubles were he was putting himself in tough positions on the green.

“I just didn't have enough chances. I just wasn't hitting it close enough,” Glasson said. “I hit a couple decent putts today, but not all good putts go in. I thought I had a chance the times that I had a birdie putt.

“That's the other problem you have. When you have so few (birdie chances), there is a lot of pressure to make the few that you have. You know, consequently, you start pushing and forcing a little, probably a little bit too hard.”

With the weekend round, a larger crowd turned out for the tournament – even with the local golfers out of the running. That included a larger gallery for the Stillwater golfer.

“People come watch me, they feel worse for me than I feel for me. I feel bad for them,” Glasson said. “You know, they're watching this exhibition when they probably would be better served doing something else. But it's nice having them out here.”

Ex-Cowboys out of contention heading into Sunday

The home course advantage hasn't benefited former Oklahoma State golfers Bob Tway and Willie Wood, both of whom are members of Oak Tree National.

Tway shot a 4-over 75, going off early in the morning, and had one bright moment – but more moments he'd probably rather forget. The ex-Cowboy carded an eagle on the par-5 seventh – which was playing 523 yards Saturday – but that was nullified with a double bogey on No. 4, along with five bogeys.

“Played terrible,” Tway said. “Golf course is playing difficult but I'm making it play much more difficult than it should be. Missing too many fairways and can't play from the rough. It's not that the rough is too penal, it's just that you can't hit the greens. I'm not playing very good.”

Wood shot just two birdies in his round, but registered six bogeys – and ending his round with a double bogey on No. 18.

“Sloppy golf for me today. I felt fine,” Wood said. “I thought I was going to be just fine and I birdied my fifth hole to get back to 1-over and then made bogies on three out of the next four and then hung in and made bunch of pars on the next nine and doubled my last hole to really kind of turn an okay round into a pretty poor round. So, it's disappointing, to say the least.”

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