Golf 2010

Robert Gilbert

SOUTH CAROLINA INSIDER

 

Hole of the Week — Lesser of two evils on Tara’s No.18

Posted 10/18/2010 4:36:00 PM

After 17 holes of constant uphill shots on the hilly Tara Course at Savannah Lakes, you would think the downhill fairway and elevated tee of the 18th hole would give golfers a relaxing end to the round. However, as I found last week, it doesn’t quite work out that way.

At first glance from the tee, the 18th hole on this course, which is situated on Lake Thurmond just north of Augusta, seems pretty benign. Hit the ball straight down the fairway, let it roll, and then hit a wedge into the green and see if you can end the round with a birdie. At second glance, however, you notice that there is a water hazard at the base of that downhill fairway. You also might notice that the fairway does not level out until just before that hazard. Therein lies the challenge.

There are two options off the tee. Play it conservatively and stay safely short of the water, or shoot for the level part of the fairway and hope you don’t run 15 yards too far and end up in the water. With the latter option, the danger is obvious. However, with the conservative play, the risk is not apparent until you get ready to hit your second shot.

Depending on how safely you play it, you’ll be left with a 60-110 yard knock-down shot from a downhill lie — definitely one of the more difficult shots in golf. Lesson learned. Playing it safe doesn’t always pay off … at least not at Savannah Lakes.