Hole # 4, par 5, White tees, 468 yards
They say to shoot lower scores, you need to employ course management techniques. And on Sterling Hills GC, it is advantageous if you do, especially when you come to hole # 4. After finishing up on the par 3, you come around the corner to hole # 4, a mid length par 5. It is a tricky hole because when you set up on the white tees, you have a tendency to hit it right towards the bank of trees. Perhaps the better player has the guts to hit it closer to the cart path and slowly fade it in to the center. I set up for my tee shot, aim it to the last tree and blast away. Luckily the ball flies straight towards the center but fades slightly towards the shared bunker on the right. When I get up to my ball, I see there’s a lot tree debris around the rough. Watch out for small twigs that can fly up when you swing your club. Yani Tseng hurt her shin when a large twig flew up and hit her across her leg, when she hit down into her ball at the Lotte Championship in Hawaii.
I decided to hit my 4-hybrid because I could hit it pretty straight. My ball cleared the rough and ended up in the middle of the fairway. From there, I had a 158 yards approach to the green with water on the right and trees to the left. I decided to go with a 7-iron, fly it up to the front of the green and hope that it would bounce and roll on. My trajectory isn’t normal and is lower than most players. Surely enough, the ball dribbles onto the green for a GIR. I would 3-putt in for a bogey. Not bad. I’m just glad it wasn’t wet nor lost.
Have you played Sterling Hills lately? If so, how did you play this hole? Do you go right off the tee or are you a straight hitter? Please add your comments.