Hartog missed a pair of two-foot par putts, she said. And still, listening to her describe it all, it was easy to understand how easily the round could have been in the 70s.
She was constantly putting for par and missing. She was hardly out of play. For better or worse, she left plenty of strokes out on the course.
But the biggest reason she’s my new favorite golfer is that she cares. She cares enough to not immediately be ready to answer the questions and she cares enough to take not living up to her own expectations personally.
She’d played the best round of her life only seven days ago and she expected to play that way again.
What’s not to like?
“I know I can play. I know there’s something there,” Hartog said, “and when it starts to go bad I just get so upset because I expect to shoot good rounds and hit good shots.”
A young woman after any golfer’s heart.
The truth is Hartog wasn’t so bad.
Among the individual qualifiers, only Bishop Kelley’s Megan Ramos (84) and Moore’s Taylor Greteman (85), who also shot 71 at Westwood last week, are in front of her. And of the entire field of 75, only 13 broke 80 and eight of those were from two schools, Union and Broken Arrow. Hartog shot 86 with a penalty stroke and two missed two-footers.
Yes, they all count.
Yes, maybe I’m discounting some of her problems Wednesday because we’re talking about my new favorite golfer. But she’s so young in the game and here she is, believing and expecting more.
The game will beat you up again and again, but Hartog’s attitude is bound to lead to better things, maybe as soon as today.
“It could switch like that,” she said. “I could shoot 71 tomorrow.”
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