At the Web.com Boise Open on Sunday, July 20, Ogden resident Zac Blair wrapped up this tournament in 25th place, a finish that keeps him in contention for a PGA Tour Q-Card--given at the conclusion of the 2014 Webcom Tour to the top 25 finishers.
Going into the final round at the scenic Hillcrest Country Club, Blair appeared to be struggling, dropping in just one round from 8th place to 44th place overall.
The bottom had fallen out of Blair's game and even he knew it. He got to this point by playing a horrendous round three. His third round from Hell didn't begin too shabbily, though.
Blair played well over his first few holes, hitting a birdie on one of his first four holes and reaching par over the other three. If a groundhog poked out of one of the holes, you wouldn't have been surprised--because Blair's golf over the first few holes bore a distinct resemblance to how he played during his first two rounds.
Just as golf can be so accommodating, it can also be equally irritating. The rest of Blair's front nine was a disaster in the third round. He bogeyed four of his next five holes, resulting in a 38 that dropped him like a lead balloon from atop the leader board.
He played better over the back nine and finished the third round with a 73 score--his worst round at this tournament. Blair had picked up momentum off a solid showing at the Utah Championship last weekend so it wasn't surprising that his golf was up to par.
Tony Finau--who finished fifth overall in Utah--wasn't as fortunate as Blair has been this weekend, for Finau didn't even make the final cut in Boise.
Blair certainly showed he was in control over his first 36 holes in Boise. In the first round, he hammered the course like he'd been playing on it every day, slapping three shots for birdies on the front nine and another three for birdies on the back nine. That led to a 65 in his first 18 holes.
The scenic course also looked like it would cooperate with Blair in the second round. The Ogden resident shot birdies on two of his first four holes. But a bogey on the fifth hole prevented Blair from possibly posting his best front nine at the Boise Open.
Blair played well to finish the front nine--and he even shaved off one stroke on the back nine to go into the clubhouse. Blair had avoided elimination and was in good shape tied for 8th place.
Then came his third round debacle, which even prompted Blair, who can be a bit of a joker, to comment on his play on Twitter. "Only 12 back, why not," he tweeted.
Blair did what he could to climb back into the thick of things on Sunday's final round, playing more like the person who dominated rounds one and two--and less like the person who hacked up grass everywhere and found more bunkers than a U.S. Army regiment firing mortars in round three.
Round four was solid for Blair, starting with two birdies on the front nine and ending with three birdies on the final nine holes of the tournament. Just as he started the tournament with a 65--he ended it with the same score.
Blair collected over $6,000 for his efforts at the Boise Open. At one point in this tournament, he was right in the thick of things, mere strokes from avoiding roughs, brush and disaster. But that's how golf is sometimes, a beautiful game when your game is working--and the most unkind of sports when it isn't.