Tway taps in to childhood Kapalua memories
January 03, 2019
By Ben Everill, PGATOUR.COM
Kevin Tway interview after Round 1 of Sentry
KAPALUA, Hawaii – Kevin Tway is listed as a Sentry Tournament of Champions rookie but his preparation at the Plantation Course in Kapalua started 15 years ago as a 15-year-old kid.
Tway, son of eight-time PGA TOUR winner Bob, opened his first tournament round at the venue with an impressive 7-under 66 for the early lead on Thursday despite being sick with an ear and sinus infection.
Generally first timers don’t do great at Kapalua but Tway recalled some important reconnaissance from his teenage years.
After winning the 2003 RBC Canadian Open, Bob had his ticket to Maui for early 2004 and decided to bring the family out a week early for a vacation and extended preparation.
But a freak injury meant it was Kevin doing all the prep work.
“It's weird, we came a week early and I played with dad the whole week before, but on one hole dad took a huge divot and a centipede had come up from the ground and he went to flick it away and it stung him,” Tway recalled.
“His finger swelled up to like the size of a golf club grip, so he couldn't play that entire week, so he just watched me play the course. He was just kind of watching me play for his preparation.”
Teenage Kevin went home to return to school before the tournament proper but after claiming the Safeway Open this season for his first PGA TOUR title he returns to Kapalua playing for real.
Running third in the FedExCup, Tway was forced to pull out of the pro-am after a few holes Wednesday after feeling “like I was walking on a water bed.”
But it didn’t hold him back on Thursday as he knocked in a seven birdies in a blemish free day.
“When you're making a lot of birdies it makes everything better. I was just trying to drink a lot of water. But I didn't think I was going to play that good, to be honest … still a little dizzy,” he said.
“I hit the ball well, kept the ball in play, made a few putts, controlled my ball in the wind.
“It's windy where I'm from in Oklahoma so it's kind of like I was at home. Each shot's difficult so you're just focused on the trajectory and where I need to land it and where I need to miss it.”
Kevin Tway dials in approach to set up birdie on No. 16 at Sentry