June 18, 2009

Dispatches from Bethpage

*Editor's Note: Trevor Murphy plays most of his golf on the Gateway Tour, but he earned a berth in his first U.S. Open in one of last week's 36-hole sectional qualifiers. A native of Vermont who was an elite-level skier until injuring his knee, the 24-year-old Murphy played collegiately at UNC-Charlotte, and now lives in Arizona. He will be sharing his thoughts on his Open experience each day with GolfDigest.com. After playing just two holes of his first round on Thursday, Murphy played 16 holes at even par on Friday to shoot 71. *

My wake-up call came pretty early this morning -- around 4:30 -- but I managed to get over it pretty quick. I hit a bad tee shot on my first hole of the day, which led to a bogey. But then I made birdie on 13, and that got me going. I sort of said to myself, 'OK, here you go, you can make birdies out here.'

U.S. Open Qualifier Diary: Trevor Murphy

Throughout this whole process I think I did a pretty good job of staying in the moment. It's something I've struggled with in the past, but done pretty well in managing recently. Part of that comes from success. I've had nothing like some of these guys out here, but I've won tournaments, and when you do that, you get some important confidence.

Plus, out here, it's kind of easier to not get ahead of yourself because you're just so focused. Every hole is so good and so hard that it has your attention throughout.

So now I guess I'm within range of the cut, but again, it's not something I'm going to get caught up with. Just like with the first round, I just want to focus on trying to make things as easy on myself as possible.

What that means, I'm not sure, especially with the weather we're facing. It doesn't look promising, but you just have to deal with it. I'm younger than a lot of these guys, and in pretty good shape, so I'd like to think that will help.

What did a day like today teach me about myself? Well, I don't think I'm going to beat Tiger or a lot of these guys every day. Or at least not right now. But I know I can go out there and play better, and I also can play a lot worse. I'm just proud I got a good solid round behind me. No matter what happens, I've got nothing to lose. So things could be worse.

My wake-up call came pretty early this morning -- around 4:30 -- but I managed to get over it pretty quick. I hit a bad tee shot on my first hole of the day, which led to a bogey. But then I made birdie on 13, and that got me going. I sort of said to myself, 'OK, here you go, you can make birdies out here.'

Throughout this whole process I think I did a pretty good job of staying in the moment. It's something I've struggled with in the past, but done pretty well in managing recently. Part of that comes from success. I've had nothing like some of these guys out here, but I've won tournaments, and when you do that, you get some important confidence.

Plus, out here, it's kind of easier to not get ahead of yourself because you're just so focused. Every hole is so good and so hard that it has your attention throughout.

So now I guess I'm within range of the cut, but again, it's not something I'm going to get caught up with. Just like with the first round, I just want to focus on trying to make things as easy on myself as possible.

What that means, I'm not sure, especially with the weather we're facing. It doesn't look promising, but you just have to deal with it. I'm younger than a lot of these guys, and in pretty good shape, so I'd like to think that will help.

What did a day like today teach me about myself? Well, I don't think I'm going to beat Tiger or a lot of these guys every day. Or at least not right now. But I know I can go out there and play better, and I also can play a lot worse. I'm just proud I got a good solid round behind me. No matter what happens, I've got nothing to lose. So things could be worse.