Bean routs field at Charles Schwab Cup

By Associated PressNovember 2, 2008, 5:00 pm
  SONOMA, Calif. ' Andy Bean breezed through 32 holes of play Sunday to win the Charles Schwab Cup Championship, pulling away from the Champions Tours best players for a nine-stroke victory over Gene Jones.
 
After finishing the last 14 holes of the rain-delayed third round, Bean then made six birdies in the first nine holes of a final-round 66 to finish at 20-under 268, blowing away the 29-man field.
 
Jay Haas also had reason to celebrate after the Champions Tours final event of the year despite his 16th-place finish at 4-under 284. Haas claimed the Schwab Cup at Sonoma Golf Club for the second time in three years as the winner of the tours season-long points competition.
 
Bean earned $442,000 from the $2.5 million purse for his second Champions Tour victory of the season, just the third of his career. Haas claimed a $1 million annuity by winning the Schwab Cup.
 
Haas won the Schwab Cup despite getting no points Sunday after finishing out of the top 10. Fred Funk and Bernhard Langer, his main competition for the crown, also didnt earn any points.
 
Its a little strange, Haas said. Most of the time when you win something, you beat everybody that week. I was real fortunate that nobody right behind me did what they had to do. I guess its like NASCAR, when the guy thats holding the big major trophy at the end didnt win anything that week.
 
Langer won the tours overall scoring title and the Arnold Palmer Award for the Champions money leader. He was the only player who took home more than $2 million.
 
Steady rain on Saturday forced the golfers to complete their third rounds Sunday morning, but Bean only added to his slim second-round lead despite intermittent rain in the heart of Northern Californias wine country. He then got rolling to begin his fourth round with a string of birdies, burying Jones and playing partner Nick Price, who finished 12 strokes behind Bean in a six-way tie for fifth place at 280.
 
Bean is in his sixth full season on the Champions Tour after winning 11 PGA Tour events. He had won just once on the senior circuit before this season, earning a previous career-best $240,000 check at the Greater Hickory Classic in 2006 for his first tournament victory of any kind in 20 years.
 
But Bean followed up his victory last May at the Regions Charity Classic in Alabama with a dominant win in Sonoma despite the bothersome weather.
 
Bean had played just four holes Saturday before rain blanketed the historic course, leaving standing water on the fairways and slippery greens. Bean began play Sunday under more intermittent rain, but still finished the third round at 14-under 202 with Price as his playing partner.
 
Bean doesnt like wearing rain gear because it limits his backswing, but the skies cleared enough to allow him to shed it during the third round ' and his comfort quickly became obvious. His run of superb play culminated in a perfect putt off the fringe on the ninth hole. He gave a disbelieving wave to the gallery after glancing at the leaderboard and realizing he probably couldnt be beaten.
 
Haas has been the Champions Tours most consistent player for three straight years. He won the Schwab Cup and the Arnold Palmer Award as the tours money leader in 2006, then claimed Player of the Year honors and another Arnold Palmer trophy last season despite finishing second to Loren Roberts for the Schwab Cup.
 
Haas wasnt terribly impressive in Sonoma, never emerging from the pack, but was tremendously consistent all season. He had two victories and 15 top-10 finishes ' including four straight to start the season and four more in a row to finish it.
 
Haas led Fred Funk by just 12 points for the Schwab Cup entering the tournament, but Funk struggled even more mightily than Haas, finishing at even par in a tie for 25th place.
 
Related Links:
  • Leaderboard ' Charles Schwab Cup Championship
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    Singh's lawsuit stalls as judge denies motion

    By Rex HoggardJanuary 23, 2018, 7:54 pm

    Vijay Singh’s attempts to speed up the proceedings in his ongoing lawsuit against the PGA Tour have been stalled, again.

    Singh – who filed the lawsuit in New York Supreme Court in May 2013 claiming the Tour recklessly administered its anti-doping program when he was suspended, a suspension that was later rescinded – sought to have the circuit sanctioned for what his attorneys argued was a frivolous motion, but judge Eileen Bransten denied the motion earlier this month.

    “While the court is of the position it correctly denied the Tour’s motion to argue, the court does not agree that the motion was filed in bad faith nor that it represents a ‘persistent pattern of repetitive or meritless motions,’” Bransten said.

    It also doesn’t appear likely the case will go to trial any time soon, with Bransten declining Singh’s request for a pretrial conference until a pair of appeals that have been sent to the court’s appellate division have been decided.

    “What really should be done is settle this case,” Bransten said during the hearing, before adding that it is, “unlikely a trail will commence prior to 2019.”

    The Tour’s longstanding policy is not to comment on ongoing litigation, but earlier this month commissioner Jay Monahan was asked about the lawsuit.

    “I'll just say that we're going through the process,” Monahan said. “Once you get into a legal process, and you've been into it as long as we have been into it, I think it's fair to assume that we're going to run it until the end.”

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    Videos and images from Tiger's Tuesday at Torrey

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 23, 2018, 7:45 pm

    Tiger Woods played a nine-hole practice round Tuesday at Torrey Pines South, site of this week's Farmers Insurance Open. Woods is making his first PGA Tour start since missing the cut in this event last year. Here's a look at some images and videos of Tiger, via social media:







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    Power Rankings: 2018 Farmers Insurance Open

    By Will GrayJanuary 23, 2018, 6:59 pm

    The PGA Tour remains in California this week for the Farmers Insurance Open. A field of 156 players will tackle the North and South Courses at Torrey Pines, with weekend play exclusively on the South Course.

    Be sure to join the all-new Golf Channel Fantasy Challenge - including a new One & Done game offering - to compete for prizes and form your own leagues, and log on to www.playfantasygolf.com to submit your picks for this week's event.

    Jon Rahm won this event last year by three shots over Charles Howell III and C.T. Pan. Here are 10 names to watch in La Jolla:

    1. Jon Rahm: No need to overthink it at the top. Rahm enters as a defending champ for the first time, fresh off a playoff win at the CareerBuilder Challenge that itself was preceded by a runner-up showing at Kapalua. Rahm is perhaps the hottest player in the field, and with a chance to become world No. 1 should be set for another big week.

    2. Jason Day: The Aussie has missed the cut here the last two years, and he hasn't played competitively since November. But he ended a disappointing 2017 on a slight uptick, and his Torrey Pines record includes three straight top-10s from 2013-15 that ended with his victory three years ago.

    3. Justin Rose: Rose ended last year on a tear, with three victories over his final six starts including two in a row in Turkey and China. The former U.S. Open winner has the patience to deal with a brutal layout like the South Course, as evidenced by his fourth-place showing at this event a year ago.

    4. Rickie Fowler: This tournament has become somewhat feast-or-famine for Fowler, who is making his ninth straight start at Torrey Pines. The first four in that run all netted top-20 finishes, including two top-10s, while the last four have led to three missed cuts and a T-61. After a win in the Bahamas and T-4 at Kapalua, it's likely his mini-slump comes to an end.

    5. Brandt Snedeker: Snedeker has become somewhat of a course specialist at Torrey Pines in recent years, with six top-10 finishes over the last eight years including wins in both 2012 and 2016. While he missed much of the second half of 2017 recovering from injury and missed the cut last week, Snedeker is always a threat to contend at this particular event.

    6. Hideki Matsuyama: Matsuyama struggled to find his footing after a near-miss at the PGA Championship, but he appears to be returning to form. The Japanese phenom finished T-4 at Kapalua and has put up solid results in two of his four prior trips to San Diego, including a T-16 finish in his 2014 tournament debut. Matsuyama deserves a look at any event that puts a strong emphasis on ball-striking.

    7. Tony Finau: Finau has the length to handle the difficult demands of the South Course, and his results have gotten progressively better each time around: T-24 in 2015, T-18 in 2016 and T-4 last year. Finau is coming off the best season of his career, one that included a trip to the Tour Championship, and he put together four solid rounds at the Sony Open earlier this month.

    8. Charles Howell III: Howell is no stranger to West Coast golf, and his record at this event since 2013 includes three top-10 finishes highlighted by last year's runner-up showing. Howell chased a T-32 finish in Hawaii with a T-20 finish last week in Palm Springs, his fourth top-20 finish this season.

    9. Marc Leishman: Leishman was twice a runner-up at this event, first in 2010 and again in 2014, and he finished T-20 last year. The Aussie is coming off a season that included two wins, and he has amassed five top-10s in his last eight worldwide starts dating back to the Dell Technologies Championship in September.

    10. Gary Woodland: Woodland played in the final group at this event in 2014 before tying for 10th, and he was one shot off the lead entering the final round in 2016 before Mother Nature blew the entire field sideways. Still, the veteran has three top-20s in his last four trips to San Diego and finished T-7 two weeks ago in Honolulu.

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    Davis on distance: Not 'necessarily good for the game'

    By Will GrayJanuary 23, 2018, 6:28 pm

    It's a new year, but USGA executive Mike Davis hasn't changed his views on the growing debate over distance.

    Speaking with Matt Adams on SiriusXM PGA Tour Radio, Davis didn't mince words regarding his perception that increased distance has had a negative impact on the game of golf, and he reiterated that it's a topic that the USGA and R&A plan to jointly address.

    "The issue is complex. It's important, and it's one that we need to, and we will, face straight on," Davis said. "I think on the topic of distance, we've been steadfast to say that we do not think increased distance is necessarily good for the game."

    Davis' comments echoed his thoughts in November, when he stated that the impact of increased distance has been "horrible" for the game. Those comments drew a strong rebuke from Titleist CEO Wally Uihlein, who claimed there was "no evidence" to support Davis' argument.

    That argument, again reiterated Tuesday, centers on the rising costs associated with both acquiring and maintaining increased footprints for courses. Davis claimed that 1 in 4 courses in the U.S. is currently "not making money," and noted that while U.S. Open venues were 6,800-6,900 yards at the start of his USGA tenure, the norm is now closer to 7,400-7,500 yards.

    "You ask yourself, 'What has this done for the game? How has that made the game better?'" Davis said. "I think if we look at it, and as we look to the future, we're asking ourselves, saying, 'We want the game of golf to be fun.' We want it to continue to be challenging and really let your skills dictate what scores you should shoot versus necessarily the equipment.

    "But at the same time, we know there are pressures on golf courses. We know those pressures are going to become more acute."