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April 6 2011

3:10 PM

Uihlein's week has been a fun blur

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U.S. Amateur champion Peter Uihlein will tee it up with Phil Mickelson on Thursday.

By Melanie Hauser, PGATOUR.COM Correspondent

AUGUSTA, Ga. -- Practice rounds with Geoff Ogilvy, Adam Scott and David Chung on Saturday. Check.

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Uihlein

Tee it up with Rickie Fowler and Bubba Watson Sunday. Check.

Watch Oklahoma State teammates play -- and win -- Sunday afternoon at Forest Hills. Check. Check.

Monday? Don't ask. It's a blur. No, wait, Peter Uihlein said, that was a round with Fowler and Nathan Smith.

Tuesday it was Smith, Bo Van Pelt and Ryan Palmer. More young -- or young-ish -- guns.

Welcome to the world of the reigning U.S. Amateur champion, who'll be teeing it up with defending champ Phil Mickelson and former U.S. Open champion Geoff Ogilvy Thursday morning.

"I think just being here is pretty special,'' Uihlein said. "Any time you can go out in the Masters and play as an amateur, it doesn't get any better than that.  That pretty much takes the cake.''

Uihlein rode out Monday night's storm in the Crow's Nest on the property, but has moved to a house -- a full house he added -- that will include OSU coach Alan Bratton and his wife and Uihlein's girlfriend.

"Just a lot of people are coming in,'' he said, " so I'm going to stay over there with them."

This is the first time Uihlein has been to Augusta National, but he's gotten some sound advice.

"Yeah, I've been told that a lot, to not burn out, not try and work too hard and overdo it,'' he said. " It's kind of hard, the facilities are so great you want to be out there all the time.  Yesterday was perfect, it was windy but you definitely wanted to be out there and you can over prepare and things like that.

"I've been trying to take good advice and play early and take some naps and relax in the afternoon, so I'm not burned out by Thursday or Friday."

The shot he really couldn't wait to hit for the first time? Other, of course, than his first tee shot?

"Twelve,'' he said. "Twelve  is obviously one of the trademark holes of golf, that's for sure.  I think just hitting that shot was pretty cool.''

The result? Not so much.

"I hit it in the water the first time I played,'' he said, drawing a chuckle from the room. " Right pin, I went for it."

Rookie mistake.

The first Masters the 21-year-old remembers watching? Tiger Woods' record-setting win in 1997.

"Actually it was on yesterday,'' he said. "I watched it again yesterday.

"He was hitting some short irons into those par 5s.  That was pretty impressive.  That was my first recollection."

Uihlein's goal this week?

"First and foremost have some fun, enjoy the experience and enjoy being out there with all of the patrons and everything, they are pretty special,'' he said. "Making the cut would be nice and being low amateur.  That would be great but first and foremost, just have some fun.''

If he does make the cut? Well, then the dream is on.

"I think everybody kind of dreams of playing on Sunday afternoon at the Masters in contention.  I think everybody has dreamt about it, at least one point in time."

That wouldn't just be a check. That would be an exclamation point.

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