How to Keep Score in Golf

By Kevin D. Boehler
Keeping score in golf.
Keeping score in golf.

One person in a group of golfers should be designated the scorekeeper. He should keep track of everyone's strokes, and confirm a player's score after the completion of each hole. This article focuses on keeping score in a stroke-play match.

Write the names of each player in the appropriate spaces on the scorecard.

Count each player's strokes for each hole. Penalty strokes should be added to a players score on the hole they are incurred; e.g., if a player hits a ball out of bounds or into a water hazard on hole 1, the two-penalty stroke should be added to the strokes for that hole.

Confirm each player's score at the end of each hole and write the number of strokes on the scorecard in the appropriate box. If there are any disputes about a player's score, discuss it with the player before proceeding.

Total the number of strokes for each player at the end of the round. Par is the amount of strokes it should take a scratch golfer to complete the holes. That number is listed on the scorecard for each hole. Total par on a standard golf course is usually between 70 and 72. So, if a golfer's total is 75, he has ended three over par.

Confirm the final scores with the players in your group. If any player thinks the score is wrong, go over the scorecard hole by hole with the whole group.

Determine the winner: He's the one with the lowest score.

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