Skills Development: Scoring Wedges

Scoring wedges
PGA Instructor Jay Friedman demonstrates hitting scoring wedges uses the clock system: 7:30, 9:00, and 10:30

For our final Skills Development session of the semester, we were back out at Bear Creek in Chandler to practice what we learned in Mechanics of the Short Game about scoring wedges. Your scoring wedges are the shots you hit inside 100 yards.

Students get to work on the 9-shot drill: low, medium, and high trajectory fades, draws, and straight shots.

Right now, I’m reading Dave Pelz’s Short Game Bible. He recommends using the big muscles of the back and shoulders to hit your scoring wedges because the smaller muscles of the wrists and hands can tense up under pressure. He also uses the image of a clock to demonstrate how far back you should swing your wedges: to 7:30, 9:00, and 10:30 for each of your four wedges.

These 12 shots will really help you master your scoring wedges. Because you also use a weaker grip (both V’s pointing toward your chin), the swing is a lot less handsy, and the ball comes out dead. I still tend to slide into my shorter shots, my head moves slightly toward the target, and I’m starting my downswing with my wrists and hands. That’s not good. It’s a work in progress. I have to learn to stop moving my head. We also worked on hitting various ball flights. We hit shots that started left of the target, right of the target, and directly at the target.

The Collegiate Scoring format consists of five-person teams.
The Collegiate Scoring format consists of five-person teams.

After that, we played a tournament at Western Skies. We played a Collegiate Scoring format. Each team consists of five players organized by handicap. The No. 1s, No. 2s, No. 3s, No. 4s, and No. 5s from each team play together. The four best individual gross scores for each team count towards the team score. I’ll find out how we did as a team when I go to campus tomorrow.

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