Jamie Lovemark at the AT&T National

I'll admit to completely sleepwalking this because I don't pay attention to golf - even though I've been driving by all the signs for the AT&T National while commuting out to work...

Anyway.

Jamie Lovemark, rising SC sophomore and NCAA men's individual golf title holder, was profiled in the Washington Post earlier this week:

The 19-year-old amateur is the youngest player in this week's AT&T National, but even as he readies for his third career PGA Tour event and fourth professional tournament against golf's biggest names, Lovemark is very much at ease.

He just finished his freshman year at Southern California, where he won the 2007 NCAA men's golf individual title, becoming only the third Trojan to do so and the first in 26 years. He was tied for 11th entering the final day of the NCAA tournament when he shot his second consecutive round of 64, including three straight birdies, to win the championship by two strokes.

[snip]

At 6 feet 4, Lovemark looked older than his age as he walked the course yesterday. Clad in a white polo and white visor, the Southern California native gave all his shots sound effects, regardless if they fell in a bunker or landed perfectly on a green. He also sings quietly to himself as he tees up his ball.

Whatever works, I'd say. Lovemark also was included in a puff piece about what players are carrying around on the course this week (PDF File)

After the second round, Jamie Lovemark is in a 14-way (!) tie for 26th on the leader board, standing at a cumulative +1. Yesterday he hit a 64 in Round 1 which left him 12th on the leader board, but today slipped a little to a 71, partly because of a rough start:

Things got ugly quick for Jamie Lovemark, the 19-year-old amateur playing on a sponsor's exemption. A double bogey on his second hole could have spelled disaster for the reigning NCAA champion. Instead, Lovemark gathered himself and strung together five birdies for a 3-under 67 in just the third PGA Tour event of his career.

"I was real calm today, nervous on the first tee like anybody is supposed to be, and after that it was autopilot, just kind of taking control, cruising," Lovemark said.

That double bogey escapade actually got called out in the WaPo "Hole of the Day" blurb for complete heinousness:

Jamie Lovemark's adventure began when his tee shot sailed left of the grandstand. He could have hit his ball from there, but decided to take a drop because he could get a better angle to the hole. He had 146 yards to the front of the green, so he pulled out his 9-iron. Once again, his ball went left, this time into the lake. He took another drop and got another bad angle. The ball rolled off the back of the green. He chipped up to eight feet and made the putt for a double-bogey 6 that took 35 minutes to finish. "It was the longest six of my life," Lovemark said. "It was brutal."

This, incidentally, is why I don't play golf. It's not a sport, it's a Calvinist life lesson with visors: whenever you think that you're getting somewhere, you get bitten in the ass. And not in a good way.

According to Tom Boswell in the Washington Post, the course is running very soft and slow - drives aren't running, and the greens are especially slow. I'll have to take his word for it - all I know about Congressional is that they do a decent club sandwich (which I know because our realtor is a member, I hasten to add...)

Lovemark tees off tomorrow morning at 11.35 EDT, so Fight On! and best of luck to him. I'll update tomorrow.

Update [2007-7-9 11:10:32 by DC Trojan]:

Lovemark shot a 73 on Saturday and a 71 on Sunday, leaving him at a cumulative 5 over, tied for 45th with 9 other players - not bad for a 19 year old amateur, I should think.

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