Andover CC (private)
Date Played: June 6, 2023
If I had to boil down Andover CC, I might start by comparing it to Florida golf in the northeast.
Every hole has water and/or OB lining one or both sides or cutting across it. Considering I was playing in a qualifier, my awareness of the hazards was certainly heightened as I needed to take extra care of my golf ball.
The other piece of the Florida golf vibe is the course weaves through a housing development, which has apparently altered some of the holes.
The land is not flat though. The third hole, the flattest of them all, felt out of place because there was no elevation change at all.
The greens are also a heavy dose of northeast golf. The 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 11th, and 16th stand out for their large size and rolling, severe slopes. Then other greens like the 1st, 10th, 12th, 14th, 17th, and 18th feel more like Ross in that they have the classic back-to-front slope.
The course gives tons of options off tees. Driver is often risky, but it can offer a great advantage on plenty of holes. Whereas laying back with hybrids and long irons will give players a chance at hitting greens with a mid-iron. There was not a hole where I felt like I had to lay back or stay short of a cross hazard. But the more a player sprays it right and left, the more the water and OB comes into play.
I wish the par 3s were a bit more varied, they all felt very similar both with regards to their distance and their design. They all had the same green shape and bunkering.
I did like the 12th hole, a curving dogleg left with a downhill tee shot and an uphill short approach. A big tree protects the dogleg (and so does OB on both sides).
I also very much liked the 16th hole. I hit a 6-iron and then a gap wedge, but players could also slam driver up near the green. The land movement is interesting and it's a very cool looking green from the tee and on the approach.
Overall, Andover is a quirky spot. It’s in great shape and requires a whole bunch of accuracy and patience.