Steven Fox Opens The Masters With 76

Thursday, April 11, 2013 - by B.B. Branton

AUGUSTA, Ga. -- 4/11/13 ---On his first day at The Masters, UTC senior Steven Fox - who shot 4-over 76 - felt good about his iron play and his overall swing, but disappointed with his putting.

"I hit my irons well and I felt confident out on the course, but my putting let me down," said Fox who is one of six amateurs in this year's field.

"I am off to the practice putting green and I feel I can putt better Friday and confident I can play on the weekend," Fox stated during media interviews.

Wearing a navy blue golf shirt emblazoned with the familiar UTC "Power C", the Hendersonville, Tenn. resident scrambled out of trouble to make par on No.1, bogeyed No.2, came back to even par with a birdie on No.8 and led Ian Poulter and defending Masters champion Bubba Watson at the turn.

A 10-foot par saving putt was a good start to the back nine, but then was 4-over for the final eight holes.

Bogey's at 11 and 12 and 17 and 18 put him at 4-over for the day.

Watson finished with a 3-over 75 and Poulter matched Fox's 76.

Leader in the Clubhouse: Twenty-nine-year-old Marc Leishman (Virginia Beach, Va.) is the leader in the club house at the 77th Masters as he carded a 6-under 66.

He opened with a bogey five on No.1, birdied Nos. 3 and 8 to go 1-under at the turn, before shooting a 31 on the closing 9 ...  35-31 - 66 ... He used a hot putter to string together four straight birdies on Nos.13-16.

While Leishman had a near perfect day - 7 birdies, 10 pars and 1 bogey - Fox's caddy Ben Rickett thought the UTC senior had a good ball striking day and will be ready for Friday

"Steven hit the ball well and played better than his 76 might indicate," said Rickett who is the Dalton College golf coach.

"He put the ball in the right places, but just didn't make the putts."

Friday Tee Time: Fox, Watson and Poulter tee off at 1:30 p.m.

"My mindset for tomorrow is good, the confidence is there and I am ready to go," Fox stated.

First Tee Nerves: "I was pretty calm on the practice range this morning, but the nerves did come up when I prepared for my first shot," Fox stated.

"I was in the rough with my tee shot, but I did get up and down for a par which helped."

The Six Amateurs

Tianlang Guan ...+1, 73

Steven Fox ... +4, 76

T.J. Vogel ...  +5, 77

Nathan Smth ... +5, 77

Michael Weaver ... +6, 78

Alan Dunbar ... +11, 83

Never Too Old ... 39-year-old David Lynn shot a 4-under 68 and is two back of Leishman ... Lynn is playing in he first Masters, missed the cut in three of 10 tournaments this year prior to the Masters with only one top 10 finish ... that being a tie for fourth at the Honda Classic.

Today, he was 3-under 33 at the turn and 1-under 35 on the back

Mom Controls the Tickets: “I am not able to control much else in my family, but I do control our two Masters tickets,” said Marilee Straza Thursday morning with a laugh.

The tickets have been in her family since the early 1950s and each year she decides which family members come on which days.

Marilee and husband, Jim, will be here today and Friday and one of their sons will walk among the dogwoods for the weekend.

“This is our 15th year coming to Augusta after my parents quit coming in 1998,” Marilee stated.

“My favorite memory was following Arnold Palmer the last year he played here (2004).”

Jim and Marilee’s daughter, Brittany, played four years at the U. of Florida was earned Academic All-SEC honors, was SEC runner-up as a freshman in 1999 and a semifinalist at the 1999 Women’s Public Links.

Rare Opportunity: Marilee’s dad, Jim Miller, was a comptroller for Caterpillar and before he retired had the rare privilege of playing Augusta National for a week due to the fact that the company president was a member of Augusta National.

You Know You Are in the South ... Two mini-Moon Pies are $1 at the concession stands.

Help Everywhere You Turn ... A myriad of volunteers  - always with a smile and "how are you?" - are seemingly omnipresent throughout the grounds to direct traffic, answer questions and even let you know if there are open toilets when one visits the bathrooms ...  at least it is that way in the men's restrooms . not sure about the ladies.

 

contact B.B. Branton at William.branton@comcast.net

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Zimmerman Hits Walk-Off Grand Slam For Lady Lions Tournament Win

The Bryan College softball team competed against Virginia Intermont College this afternoon in the AAC Tournament.  The Lions are the No. 4 seed in the tournament, while the Cobras are the No. 3 seed in the tournament.  Both teams already had one loss entering the game, making it an elimination game.  The Lions struck first by scoring two runs in the first inning.  ... (click for more)

Covenant Baseball Playing For USA South Regular Season Title

The Covenant baseball team will wrap-up its 2014 regular season schedule this weekend with a crucial three-game USA South series against Averett. Game one of the series is set for Friday at 4 p.m., and the two teams will play a doubleheader on Saturday starting at 1 p.m. With victories in all three games, Covenant (23-13, 16-8 USA South) will clinch the USA South's regular ... (click for more)

Berke Names Fred Fletcher, Of Austin, Tex., New Chattanooga Police Chief

Mayor Andy Berke announced Thursday that Fred Fletcher of Austin, Tex., is his pick for Chattanooga Chief of Police. With 20 years of experience in law enforcement, Mr. Fletcher has served in an executive, command, or supervisory role for 12 years.  As commander in Region III of the Austin Police Department, Mr. Fletcher spearheaded community initiatives including a drug market ... (click for more)

Child, 23 Months, Found Dead In Crib With Fentanyl Patch On Back; Death Ruled Homicide

A 23-month-old Chattanooga boy has been found dead in his crib with a Fentanyl patch on his back. The death of Demarcus Bryant at 7655 Borris Dr. last month was ruled a homicide. An autopsy report says he died from "Fentanyl patch placed by someone else." Chattanooga Police are investigating. No one has yet been charged. The child was found face down in his crib. ... (click for more)

A Slap In The Face To Local Police Applicants

Little Andy has once again shown what he thinks about the Chattanooga Police Department by ignoring all the applicants from within the department. There were several great candidates within the police department that had as much experience as the chosen one from 1,000 miles away. This is a slap in the face for any officer who is at the Chattanooga Police Department who has aspirations ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: UAW Voices In Detroit

Today we are going to eavesdrop on somewhat of an open conversation that was held far to the north after the United Auto Workers surprisingly dropped a legal challenge with the National Labor Relations Board in Chattanooga the first thing on Monday morning. The NLRB judge certified the VW workers’ February vote to turn away the UAW at Chattanooga’s Volkswagen manufacturing plant ... (click for more)