Austin takes Round 1 lead in Tucson

By Associated PressMarch 19, 2016, 1:45 am

TUCSON, Ariz. - Woody Austin had six birdies in a seven-hole stretch and shot a 7-under 65 on Friday to take the first-round lead in the PGA Tour Champions' Tucson Conquistadores Classic.

Playing his final nine holes after opening on No. 10, the 52-year-old Austin birdied Nos. 2-5 and 7-8 on Omni Tucson National's Catalina Course.

''I basically hit it really close,'' Austin said. ''I got jump-started, I holed out a bunker shot on 2 for birdie after hitting two really good shots and being dead. I didn't get my first one out of the bunker, and then I holed the next bunker shot for birdie, which really got me going.

''Then I knocked the flag over for a couple, I hit it about 2 feet on the next hole, then I hit it 8 feet on the next hole, and then I hit it 7 feet on the next hole. And then the par 3, I hit a 5-iron to about 7 feet, and then I hit No. 8 in 2, I only had about a 20-footer for eagle and two-putted.''

Winless in 27 starts on the 50-and-over tour, Austin won the 2013 Sanderson Farms Championship at age 49 for the last of his four PGA Tour titles.

''My game today is not indicative,'' Austin said. ''I haven't played that good. I usually don't play very good in the beginning of the year. The benefit I have this week is I took my two boys and their buddy on a golfing trip this past week, so I got in some golf, which I haven't been able to do. I actually played Pebble Beach on Sunday, Spyglass on Monday, Spanish Bay on Tuesday, so I at last got some golf in before this week, so that was necessary because I haven't really played that much.''

Scott Verplank and Billy Andrade were a stroke back.

''I kind of kept the ball in play and hit good iron shots, putted pretty solid,'' Verplank said. ''I hit a couple of tee shots that I wasn't happy with, but I've been hitting a lot of tee shots that I wasn't happy with. It was a beautiful day and just kind of played like I knew what I was doing.''

The five-time PGA Tour winner has fought a series of injuries.

''I had another cortisone shot in my shoulder last week,'' Verplank said. ''Just had so many little ailment things, it's just been hard to get much rhythm. But it's nice today. I think coming to great weather will help. Hopefully, it will keep going.''

Andrade closed with a bogey on the par-4 18th after hitting within a foot of the water. With both feet in the water, he was able to blast out with a sand wedge.

''I was just hoping and praying that a snake or something wasn't going to come up and bite me before I hit the shot,'' Andrade said. ''Last year, same kind of scenario, hit the same kind of drive like that. It's 300 yards to the water on that line into the wind, so I didn't think I could get it to the water. Last year, I did and I did it again this year, so, I'm just not very smart, I guess.''

Mark Calcavecchia and Gene Sauers shot 67, and defending champion Marco Dawson was in the group at 68. Bernhard Langer, coming off victory Feb. 14 in Naples, Florida, in the last tour event, opened with a 69.

''We had a month off and I've been playing great every day,'' Sauers said. ''I was like, 'Man, I wish there were tournaments the past four weeks.' I'm playing really well, hitting the ball solid. I'm looking forward to some good things.''

Getty Images

Rose leads halted Indonesian Masters; Snedeker WDs

By Associated PressDecember 15, 2017, 2:04 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead at the Indonesian Masters when bad weather stopped play Friday during the second round.

The Englishman, who shot a 10-under 62 on Thursday, had completed 13 holes and was 5 under on the day at the Royale Jakarta Golf Club course.

Kiradech Aphibarnrat (64) was in second place.

Brandt Snedeker withdrew wit on the 11th hole at 2 under for the day after shooting an opening 72.

There was no reason given for his withdrawal, but the American has been affected by a rib-sternum injury for most of the season. Ranked 51st in the world, he flew to Jakarta looking to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters.

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 2, Donald Trump

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 1:00 pm

Even away from the White House, President Donald Trump generated plenty of headlines this year.

Trump’s first year in office didn’t dim his enthusiasm for the game, as he made splashy appearances at two big events, tweeted about golf to his more than 44 million followers, teed it up with some of the sport’s biggest stars, including Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Lexi Thompson, and fired a few eyebrow-raising scores. Logging more than 75 rounds since his inauguration, the 3-handicap has only bolstered his reputation as the best golfing president, particularly after his alleged 73 with Sen. Lindsey Graham.

None of his appearances created a bigger stir than when he attended the U.S. Women’s Open. Despite protests and calls for the USGA to move its premier women’s event from Trump Bedminster – the president reportedly threatened to sue – his weekend there went off without incident, as Trump watched the action and hosted players in his private box near the 15th green.


Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year


Despite his controversial rhetoric on a variety of national issues, Trump has remained a staunch supporter of women’s golf, and he became the first sitting president to attend the U.S. Women’s Open.

An honorary chairman of the Presidents Cup, Trump also flew to Liberty National for the biennial team event, where he presented the trophy to the U.S. team and dedicated the victory to the hurricane victims in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.

In late November, amid tweets about the national anthem, Turkey, Egypt and Time Magazine, Trump announced that he was playing a round in South Florida with Woods and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson.

Yes, that too became a headline, just like everything else Trump did in 2017.


Playing with the pros

Tiger, DJ and Faxon

Article: Video, images from Tiger, DJ's round with Trump

Article: After DJ and Tiger, Trump plays golf with Jack

Rory faces criticism

Article: Rory: Round with Trump about respect for presidency

Article: Rory: Round with Trump not a 'political statement'


President at the Presidents Cup


Video: President Trump makes the rounds at Liberty National

Article: President Trump presents trophy to U.S. team

Article: Stricker: 'Great thrill' to get trophy from Trump


Purported round of 73 with Lindsey Graham

Article: Senator tweets Trump shot 73 in windy, wet conditions

Article: Graham offers details on Trump's round of 73


Cart on the green


Article: Trump appears to drive cart on Bedminster green


Presence and protests at U.S. Women's Open


Article: Trump makes presidential history at Women's Open

Article: Trump supporters, protesters clash near Women's Open

Article: UltraViolet takes protest inside Trump National


Photo gallery: President Trump at the U.S. Women's Open


Trump golf properties

Vandalism

Article: Environmental group vandalizes Trump golf course

Article: Man accused of vandalizing four Trump courses

Finances


Article: Two Trump courses in Scotland losing millions

Article: Eric Trump denies Russia helped fund golf courses

Article: Trump company ordered to pay $5.77M in dues dispute

Reportedly fake TIME covers


Article: Trump clubs display fake Time magazine cover


Trump apologizes for voter-fraud story

Report: Trump's voter fraud claim tied to Langer

Langer: Trump 'apologized' for story mix-up


Pros comment on the president

Article: Players defend Trump at Senior PGA Championship

Article: Trump congratulates Daly; Daly congratulates Trump

Getty Images

Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 12:30 pm

Spieth, Thomas headline winter break trip to Cabo

By Grill Room TeamDecember 15, 2017, 1:05 am

Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth. Really good at golf. Really good at vacationing.

With #SB2K18 still months away, Thomas and Spieth headlined a vacation to Cabo San Lucas, and this will shock you but it looks like they had a great time.

Spring break veteran Smylie Kaufman joined the party, as did Thomas' roommate, Tom Lovelady, who continued his shirtless trend.

The gang played all the hits, including shoeless golf in baketball jerseys and late nights with Casamigos tequila.

Image via tom.lovelady on Instagram.

In conclusion, it's still good to be these guys.