Thanks for the encouragement - I guess that's the best I can do.
By closely watching the sun and heat over the weekend, I "think" I got the watering system rezoned to accommodate. Whole lawn gets TWO deep 20 minute soakings early AM. (5am and 7am). Then between 11am and 1 am, each zone gets one 15 minute period "cool down" the soil and keep the top 1/2 from drying out. This cycle repeats at 3pm when the sun/heat seams to be at the worst.
The soil doesn't puddle anymore. Over the summer I worked tirelessly on getting it deeply aerated to 6" and then topdressed with gypsm, lime, and compost filling the aeration holes the best I can. I have silt covered plastic soil/hardpan clay and have been at this fight for 10+ yrs now. It absorbs MUCH better now as long as the watering is done in two intervals an hour apart and not all-at-once.
I will be one very happy camper if I can keep it from burning off over the next 10 days. Here's to hoping for the best. On a positive note, the stuff in part shade is growing great! 2" already. Full sun areas is only about 3/4".