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Michigan's Scott Hebert was mostly disappointed in himself for a few mental mistakes that cost him big Thursday. (Photo: E.M. Pio Roda,

Hebert Blog: No fun when you don't follow your plan

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PGA Professional National Champion Scott Hebert knew heading into the 90th PGA Championship that hitting fairways was a must at Oakland Hills. He didn't do that Thursday, and paid a dear price.

Each day of the 90th PGA Championship, PGA Professional National Champion Scott Hebert will share his thoughts about competing in the season's final major and playing front of the home folks.

Hebert Blog Archive: Wednesday

BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. -- Golf's a lot easier when you hit

it in the fairways. That's what I said yesterday, it's what I've been telling myself for weeks coming into this championship, it's what I've been working my game around. And then I went out today and didn't follow that plan a bit.

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As soon as I completed my round (a 10-over par 80), people were asking me if I was nervous. My answer? Yes, absolutely. I get nervous to an extent at every big tournament, but this is the PGA Championship -- of course I'm going to have some nerves. To me, the biggest difference was, I just couldn't shake those nerves. Nothing surprised me today, every shot, every situation I had prepared myself for. But in the middle of the competition, as the pressure and the expectations rise, you just sometimes deviate from the plan you had set up -- and that almost always costs you. My practice coming in to today was great. Yesterday, I drove the ball beautifully. But that's the difference between Wednesday and Thursday at a major championship.

To me, that's the most disappointing aspect of my round today. I know better than to make some of the mental mistakes that I made. As a teacher of the game, it would have been easy for me to talk a student into the right course management, to relax and not try to force the issue, but out here, under these conditions, you can just let your focus slip a little and you pay a price. My game plan coming in was to not make any double bogeys. I ended up making three. That's the price you pay for losing focus on a course like this.

But I should be very clear, I still have every intention of making the cut. Or I should say, I'm going to come back tomorrow and give it all I have and hope to still be around on the weekend.

I'm not a superstitious guy, but I might alter tonight's menu. I had some Italian last night, wanting to keep my energy up. I think tonight will be a pizza night -- my wife will say it should be pizza and nachos; that tends to spur on some good rounds it seems.

So I can't hide my disappointment in my play today, but I'm still really excited to be here and looking forward to tomorrow. Hopefully, a return to the basics and a commitment to my game plan will mean some better results.

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