Bill Haas and his dad, Jay, won the Umpqua Bank Challenge on Tuesday.
Editor’s note: Bill Haas, the reigning FedExCup champion, is writing a blog for PGATOUR.COM through the Playoffs. This is his fifth installment.
NORTON, Mass. — I’m at TPC Boston this week for the Deutsche Bank Championship, which is the second event in the FedExCup Playoffs. I missed the cut at The Barclays last weekend and I dropped from 21st to 29th in the standings. So I know I need two good weeks to get back to East Lake for the TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola. The pressure is on.
After I missed the cut at Bethpage last Friday, I headed back to South Carolina. My dad and I were going to play in the Umpqua Bank Challenge in Aloha, Ore., and I knew he was heading out on Sunday night so that way we could go together. It added an extra leg of flying but I figured it would be nice to get two extra nights in my own bed. Plus, I was able to play one round at home one day with my dad before we left. He’s usually the guy I go to for swing advice and all that. So it was a good pit stop, I guess — changing new tires and all that — because these next two weeks are so important.
Mostly, Dad just said little things to try to give me confidence. He looked at my ball position, my alignment, how my swing looked, everything, and sometimes all it takes is one little key. We’ll see. We’ll see this week. I’ve played at TPC Boston before and I’ve had decent tournaments here before so I am certainly just looking for some good finishes.
We had a great time at the Umpqua Bank Challenge, too. We shot 9 under at The Reserve on Monday, which was pretty good, but we really got going in the second round. I think we birdied the first 13 holes and then eagled No. 14. We didn’t make a par until the 15th hole and ended up shooting 17 under for a two-day total of 26 under. We beat Scott McCarron and Steve Elkington by eight strokes.
I was pleased with the way I played. I made 10 birdies and an eagle on my own ball and shot 60. Of course, it was unofficial because I picked up one hole. Still, 60 is my lowest score ever – I shot it once in an amateur tournament years ago at Niagra Falls and I did it back at home, too. So it was really fun. I’ve only been able to play with my dad a couple of times as a partner and we had a ball. Obviously, it’s fun to want to make a putt for yourself but then, really wanting to make it for your dad and your team, is even better. We both played pretty good, too. The last day, obviously, I made a lot of birdies but he made some, as well. He probably would have shot 65 on his own ball. And the first day it was the same kind of deal.
The Reserve course was certainly shorter and less challenging than what we have here at TPC Boston. But if anything you take confidence from making putts so hopefully that will tie into this week. I had a good start today in the pro-am when I shot 63 so I hope I can ride that momentum into the tournament — and the rest of the Playoffs. Wish me luck!
- Deutsche Bank Championship
- TPC Boston