Two Keys to Shooting Lower Scores

By Ryan Adams, PGA
Published on

(Raj Mehta/Getty Images)

It's a treat for golf fans when we get to see super low scores on the professional tours, and that's what happened on March 29.
First it was Tony Finau with a sizzling 62 at the Texas Children's Houston Open, tying the tournament record — a feat he accomplished when he won the tournament in 2022. Then it was Hannah Green, the 2019 KPMG Women's PGA Champion, who went bonkers with a one-stroke-lower 61 at the Ford Championship presented by KCC. Green made 11 birdies, which is second most all-time in any round on the LPGA, and even lipped out a final-hole birdie for 60.
Both are Finau and Green are leading their respective tournaments heading into the third round, so we'll see if they can each use their second round scores to get a victory. And while a 61 and 62 aren't scores most golfers can imagine ever shooting, as always, there's something we can learn from the world's best.
Check your fundamentals
In his post-62 press conference, Finau mentioned working on his putting with coach Boyd Summerhays after Round 1, and they made a putting setup tweak. Finau then goes to gain nearly four shots on the greens and was first in the field after the morning wave of Round 2 in Strokes Gained: Putting.
Try this: It goes to show that, especially for those getting back out on the course, a fundamentals check is important. A setup, alignment or grip tweak may be a simple solution to the swing issues you're seeing. Before you tee it up in your next round, hit the range and putting green and make sure everything is square (feet and shoulders). For setup, stand straight, and push your hands into your hips so your backside goes outward. Do a slight knee flex. You're in business for every swing.
Work on your long putts
Meanwhile in Arizona, Green was draining putts from all over the greens at Seville Golf and Country Club. Long putts, short putts, putts for key pars to keep momentum going . . . you name it and Green was making them. No bogeys, and 11 birdies was the result of fantastic putting.
Try this: Putting is one skill that can be worked on virtually anywhere. As discussed in tip No. 1, keep an eye on your fundamentals, but also work on your long putts. Putts over 20 feet tend to get amateurs into the 3-putt zone if they're not careful. PGA Coach Trish Holt has a great drill you can try to work on speed and distance control: