Quicken Loans National Notebook: Competitive Hossler happy to put questions to bed

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Potomac, MD — Beau Hossler has been sick of consistent questioning from media about why his weekend rounds did not match the scoring average he put out on Thursdays and Fridays.

Last week at the Travelers Championship, Hossler went out and did something about it, firing four sub-70 rounds.

“I’ve always had confidence that I can play well on the weekends,” he said. “I’ve had some rounds where maybe I got a little tired or maybe a little impatient.  I played great on the weekend last week, finished the tournament 4-under the last 6 or 7 holes which was really nice. It was good, and hopefully I can continue the momentum this weekend.”

Hossler is in position to do just that after two more sub-70 rounds have him tied for first place at the Quicken Loans National.

“I feel good,” Hossler said. “I would expect to be in contention heading into the weekend and look forward to it.”

Hossler is familiar with golfing in Maryland having played the 2011 U.S. Open as an amateur at nearby Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, MD but comes away with positive impressions of TPC Potomac.

“I like it, it’s tough, said Hossler. “You have to play smart and get the ball in play off the tee.  The greens are tricky, there’s a lot of slope of them.  With the greens being a little bit slow right now, you have to be aggressive.”

When it comes to sports, Hossler always was more a fan of the hand-eye variety and also took a liking to baseball, but when it came time to choose, golf was the answer.

Simply put, he wanted to be responsible for his successes and any failures.

“I liked the individuality of it,” he said.

Anyone who follows Hossler around for 18 holes can get a glimpse of how competitive he is and can see the belief he has in both himself and his game.

“It’s fun to be really good at what you do, and ideally you want to be the best at what you do,” said Hossler. “That definitely drives me to get there.”

That ambiguous “there” is his first PGA TOUR win.

As for when he started to get good, Hossler believes he has progressed at every level and despite some lumps this season, he has put together solid rounds including 41 sub-70 rounds which is the best mark on the PGA TOUR.

A big reason for Hossler being tied for the Quicken Loans National lead is his putting, as he has made over 100 feet of putts both days.

“I’m seeing the lines pretty well and the greens are very true,” he said. “It’s a struggle to get the speed, probably made a few of those putts just comebacks. I was hitting it too far Thursday and the greens sped up a lot. So I was able to make a pretty good adjustment and make some pretty good putts.”

While Hossler has plenty of experience being around the lead and having good results this year, he does not have one thing Armour and Gay do have, a PGA TOUR win.

Armour won the Sanderson Farms Championship in October and Gay has won four times on TOUR, most recently at the 2013 Humana Challenge in a three-man playoff.

By no means does that intimidate Hossler.

“The reality is, on a given week there’s 120 to 156 of the best players in the world out here and it’s hard to do,” Hossler said. “It’s kind of like my first round, I’m not going to get impatient, I’m going to take it a step at a time and try to play one good round after another.  I know that eventually that will pay off.”

Ventura comes full circle

At age 10, Kristoffer Ventura received the surprise of his life from his father. In one day he was going to enjoy a clinic in which Tiger Woods would attend.

“I remember him and whenever he went to leave, everyone would kind of go quiet and look at him,” Ventura said. “I remember the cameras going off, the click of the cameras. It was something that motivated me to practice harder and to pretty much make this my job.”

Recalling the experience, Ventura knew that each child at the clinic would get 10-15 minutes with Woods, who he idolized.

“When he got to me, he helped me a little bit,” said Ventura. “Just meeting him after watching him on TV and all of that was pretty special. I had not seen him since them, but saw him yesterday. It was pretty cool and hopefully I can get paired with him soon.”

Ventura missed the cut but did post an even-par second round but the highlight may have come Thursdsy when he made a 46-foot putt for birdie on the par-4 13th hole.

“It is really cool to play in Tiger’s tournament,” Ventura said. “That putt just happened to go in and it worked out. Other then that, I am just really thankful to be out here competing.”

Lingmerth hoping course knowledge results in trip to Carnoustie

In terms of course knowledge, Billy Hurley III may have the most of anyone in the field since he tries to practice at TPC Potomac when he is in the area, but outside of that David Lingmerth may have everyone else in the field beat.

“I played some good golf around here,” he said. “I tend to like golf courses where it’s really important to hit the fairways.  I feel that’s one of the strengths of my game. This one is very penalizing if you hit it out of the rough or get in positions.”

Lingmerth won the 2012 Web.com Tour Mid-Atlantic Championship which was contested at TPC Potomac

“The course is playing similar to 2012,” said Lingmerth. “We had a fair amount of rain here.  in 2012 it was a lot cooler.  Last year, it was way firmer, so it played a lot different. “So it reminds me more of 2012.”

Course knowledge served Lingmerth well in last year’s event as he led after each of the first three rounds, but was unable to finish the weekend out with a win.

In his opening round, Lingmerth was 1-over par after his opening nine but made three birdies to end his round.

“There was a few swings that got me in trouble,” Lingmerth said. “Overall I was playing better than the scorecard showed.  I just told myself to stay pat.  A couple of the putts went in and I played solid on the back.”

Currently Lingmerth does not have a spot at The Open Championship at Carnoustie and has work to do in order to earn a spot there with his current T45 standing of 1-under par.

“Obviously, it’s one of the things I’d like to do, Hopefully I grab one this week, and it’ll happen but if it doesn’t it’s not a big deal,” said Lingmerth. “I’d love to do it. I played it one time, practice round.  I loved it.”

Author: Zac Weiss