20-year-old Fowler Owen share Fryscom lead

By Associated PressOctober 24, 2009, 1:07 am

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. 'Rickie Fowler is making his presence felt in a hurry as a professional golfer.

The 20-year-old former Oklahoma State standout, in his second PGA Tour event since turning pro, shared the lead with Englishman Greg Owen halfway through the Frys.com Open on Friday.

Both shot 6-under 64s in the second round in ideal conditions on the Raptor Course at Grayhawk Golf Club to reach 11-under 129.

Justin Leonard also shot a 64 and was one behind at 10 under. First-round leader Nick O'Hern (68) and Ryan Moore (65) were 9 under in the third stop of the PGA Tour's Fall Series.

Greg Owen, right, walks up the…
AP - Oct 23, 4:36 pm EDT Heath Slocum was in a group of five at 8 under. Troy Matteson shot a 61 and was in a pack with Tom Lehman (65) and Rocco Mediate (66), among others, at 7 under.

Fowler, who helped the United States beat Britain and Ireland in the Walker Cup last month, tied for seventh in his first PGA Tour start as a pro last week in Las Vegas at the Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open.

He was even for the round through five holes on Friday, then kicked his game into high gear with an eagle on the par-4, 345-yard sixth.

I swung out about as hard as I could and hit it about as hard as I could and it went about as straight as a ball could go, Fowler said. I ended up about 12 feet behind the hole and rolled in a good putt to kind of get things jump started.

The youngster was unflappable throughout the round, which ended with a birdie on No. 18.

This wasn't all new to him.

He noted he had played a few tour events as an amateur, including two U.S. Opens. He also played stops on the Nationwide Tour and two Walker Cups.

So I feel I've been through plenty of experiences to make me feel comfortable out here, Fowler said. You know, what you're seeing is pretty much how I feel. I just feel like I'm going around and having fun. Right now the game feels good, so that makes it even more fun.

He plans to go to PGA Tour qualifying school after this weekend. That would be unnecessary if he wins the tournament, though, because a victory would qualify him for next year's full PGA tour.

Fowler, who lives in Las Vegas, seems a natural for the game. He says he hasn't had a swing coach since high school.

Other than that, I'm basically on my own and doing my thing, he said.

Like Fowler, Owen played his round in the morning on the north Scottsdale course, not far from the site of February's FBR Open.

Owen entered the event 116th on the 2009 earnings list with $677,627. The top 125 automatically qualify for next year's tour.

First of all, a good week would mean I've got a job for next year, he said.

Owen's best PGA Tour finish was a tie for ninth at this year's John Deere Classic.

Leonard is a 12-time PGA winner and part of this year's victorious U.S. Presidents Cup team.

Asked if he came to the tournament because he needed to just because he likes the Phoenix area, Leonard said it's kind of a combination.

I played here two years ago and enjoyed the golf course and had a nice week, he said. I think the fact I had three weeks off after the playoffs and to really get rested up is another reason I am here.

Leonard said he spent part of those three weeks analyzing the year and working on a few things, you know, toward next year. I like the way things are going so far this week.

The Australian O'Hern began the day with a two-shot lead after shooting a 63 on Thursday. Starting his round on the back nine, he had an eagle on his second hole'the par-5 11th'to go 9 under.

Then came the 18th, when his second shot hit the water and he wound up with a double-bogey to fall back to minus-7. He regrouped for two birdies and seven pars on the final nine holes.

It wasn't a good way to finish that nine, O'Hern said, but as I said, I was happy with how I played the second nine just to get over that as quick as possible.

Defending champion Cameron Beckman shot his second 70 and missed the cut.

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Suspended Hensby offers details on missed drug test

By Will GrayDecember 12, 2017, 11:30 pm

One day after receiving a one-year suspension from the PGA Tour for failing to provide a sample for a drug test, Mark Hensby offered details on the events that led to his missed test in October.

Hensby, 46, released a statement explaining that the test in question came after the opening round of the Sanderson Farms Championship, where the Aussie opened with a 78. Frustrated about his play, Hensby said he was prepared to give a blood sample but was then informed that the test would be urine, not blood.

"I had just urinated on the eighth hole, my 17th hole that day, and knew that I was probably unable to complete the urine test for at least a couple more hours," Hensby said. "I told this gentleman that I would complete the test in the morning prior to my early morning tee time. Another gentleman nearby told me that 'they have no authority to require me to stay.' Thus, I left."

Hensby explained that he subsequently received multiple calls and texts from PGA Tour officials inquiring as to why he left without providing a sample and requesting that he return to the course.

"I showed poor judgment in not responding," said Hensby, who was subsequently disqualified from the tournament.

Hensby won the 2004 John Deere Classic, but he has missed six cuts in seven PGA Tour starts over the last two years. He will not be eligible to return to the Tour until Oct. 26, 2018.

"Again, I made a terrible decision to not stay around that evening to take the urine test," Hensby said. "Obviously in hindsight I should have been more patient, more rational and taken the test. Call me stupid, but don't call me a cheater. I love the game. I love the integrity that it represents, and I would never compromise the values and qualities that the game deserves."

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Day's wife shares emotional story of miscarriage

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 4:12 pm

Jason Day’s wife revealed on social media that the couple had a miscarriage last month.

Ellie Day, who announced her pregnancy on Nov. 4, posted an emotional note on Instagram that she lost the baby on Thanksgiving.

“I found out the baby had no heartbeat anymore. I was devastated,” she wrote. “I snuck out the back door of my doctor, a hot, sobbing, mascara-covered mess. Two and a half weeks went by witih me battling my heart and brain about what was happening in my body, wondering why this wouldn’t just be over.”

The Days, who have two children, Dash and Lucy, decided to go public to help others who have suffered similar heartbreak.

“I hope you know you aren’t alone and I hope you feel God wrap his arms around you when you feel the depths of sorrow and loss,” she wrote.  

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 5, Sergio Garcia

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 1:00 pm

This was the year it finally happened for Sergio Garcia.

The one-time teen phenom, known for years as “El Nino,” entered the Masters as he had dozens of majors beforehand – shouldered with the burden of being the best player without a major.

Garcia was 0-for-72 driving down Magnolia Lane in April, but after a thrilling final round and sudden-death victory over Justin Rose, the Spaniard at long last captured his elusive first major title.

The expectation for years was that Garcia might land his white whale on a British links course, or perhaps at a U.S. Open where his elite ball-striking might shine. Instead it was on the storied back nine at Augusta National that he came alive, chasing down Rose thanks in part to a memorable approach on No. 15 that hit the pin and led to an eagle.


Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year


A green jacket was only the start of a transformative year for Garcia, 37, who heaped credit for his win on his then-fiancee, Angela Akins. The two were married in July, and months later the couple announced that they were expecting their first child to arrive just ahead of Garcia’s return to Augusta, where he'll host his first champions’ dinner.

And while players often cling to the notion that a major win won’t intrinsically change them, there was a noticeable difference in Garcia over the summer months. The weight of expectation, conscious or otherwise, seemed to lift almost instantly. Like other recent Masters champs, he took the green jacket on a worldwide tour, with stops at Wimbledon and a soccer match between Real Madrid and Barcelona.

The player who burst onto the scene as a baby-faced upstart is now a grizzled veteran with nearly two decades of pro golf behind him. While the changes this year occurred both on and off the course, 2017 will always be remembered as the year when Garcia finally, improbably, earned the title of major champion.


Masters victory


Article: Garcia defeats Rose to win Masters playoff

Article: Finally at peace: Garcia makes major breakthrough

Article: Garcia redeems career, creates new narrative


Video: See the putt that made Sergio a major champ


Green jacket tour

Article: Take a look at Sergio's crazy, hectic media tour

Article: Garcia with fiancée, green jacket at Wimbledon

Article: Watch: Garcia kicks off El Clasico in green jacket


Man of the people


Article: SERGIO! Garcia finally gets patrons on his side

Article: Fan finally caddies for Sergio after asking 206 times

Article: Sergio donates money for Texas flood relief


Article: Connelly, Garcia paired years after photo together


Ace at 17th at Sawgrass


Growing family

Article: Sergio, Angela get married; Kenny G plays reception

Article: Garcia, wife expecting first child in March 2018


Departure from TaylorMade


Article: Masters champ Garcia splits with TaylorMade


Squashed beef with Paddy

Article: Harrington: Garcia was a 'sore loser'

Article: Sergio, Padraig had 'great talk,' are 'fine'


Victory at Valderrama


Article: Garcia gets first win since Masters at Valderrama

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Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 12:30 pm