Chalmers takes 2-point lead in Barracuda

By Associated PressJuly 2, 2016, 2:13 am

RENO, Nev. - Greg Chalmers birdied five of his last eight holes Friday to take a two-point lead in the Barracuda Championship, the PGA Tour's only modified Stableford scoring event.

The 42-year-old Australian had a 10-point round to reach 24 points at Montreux in the scoring system that awards eight points for double eagle, five points for an eagle, two points for a birdie and deducts a point for a bogey and three points for a double bogey or worse.

''I played OK,'' Chalmers said. ''It wasn't as good as yesterday ball-striking-wise, but then I ran in a lot of really nice putts. ... I stayed out of trouble on the holes I needed to and picked up some really good birdies where I needed to.''

Chalmers has only conditional tour status. He has made six starts this season on the PGA Tour, tying for 58th in the first in China in November and missing the cut in the last five. The two-time Australian Open and Australian PGA champion also has played in nine Web.com Tour events.

First-round leader Martin Laird of Scotland bogeyed three of his last six holes - finishing with a three-putt on the par-4 ninth - to drop into a tie for second with 2013 winner Gary Woodland. Laird also had five birdies in a seven-point round. Woodland had eight points with five birdies and two bogeys.

''Yesterday morning the greens were immaculate. If you hit a good putt, it was pretty much going in,'' Laird said. ''This afternoon, I hit two or three putts from 6 to 10 feet, felt like I hit good putts, and they wiggle around and miss. Same for everyone that plays in the afternoon. It's just kind of the nature of these greens. Hopefully, I can have some wiggle in the next couple of days.''

Chalmers, Laird and most of the players are fighting for a spot in the British Open in two weeks at Royal Troon in Scotland. Because of the West Virginia floods that led to The Greenbrier Classic being canceled next week, a spot was transferred to the leading player not already eligible at Montreux.

''Obviously, it would be great,'' Laird said. ''It's always nice for me to go back to Scotland. The Open's my favorite golf tournament in the year. .. But it's not really on my mind right now. I'm just trying to play good golf and keep firing away at flags and, hopefully, make some birdies.''

Woodland was one of five players already in the Open to advance to the weekend.

Colt Knost was fourth at 21 after an eight-point round.

''A lot of good and a lot of bad, honestly,'' Knost said. ''Yesterday, I really wasn't happy with my ball-striking. And today, I thought I found something on the range. I hit some better ones, but kind of still a little sloppy. But it definitely plays tougher here in the afternoon and the greens get a little bumpy.''

He recently moved from Dallas to Scottsdale, Arizona.

''I was out there all winter just working on my game out at Whisper Rock and decided to make the move permanent,'' Knost said. ''It just really allows me to focus on golf and everything. I think it's a big reason why I'm playing so well this year.''

Brendan Steele eagled the par-5 18th to reach 20 points. He hit a 210-yard shot to 12 feet.

''It's always good to have an eagle anywhere in your round, but definitely nice to finish with one,'' said Steele, already in the British Open. ''It's nice that they gave us a hole like 18 to finish on. It really makes it exciting for the fans and fun for us.''

Former Illinois player Charlie Danielson had 11 points in his professional debut. He eagled the 18th for the second straight day.

Graham DeLaet struggled to follow his nine-point opening round in his return from a five-week break to sort out anxiety issues with his putting. The bearded Canadian closed with a double bogey, leaving him with eight points heading into the weekend.

Camilo Villegas, tied for second with 14 points Thursday, lost seven points with two double bogeys and a bogey to make the cut on the number.

Jon Rahm and 2014 winner Geoff Ogilvy also had seven points. Rahm tied for third last week at Congressional in his pro debut to earn a British Open spot. The former Arizona State player is from Spain.

J.J. Henry, the 2012 and 2015 winner, missed the cut with three points.

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Lexi (wrist) WDs from Diamond Resorts Invitational

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 11:27 pm

Lexi Thompson on Friday withdrew from the Diamond Resorts Invitational, citing inflammation in her wrist. Thompson, who teamed with Tony Finau to finish tied for fourth place in last week's QBE Shootout, said she is under strict doctor's order not to hit golf balls until mid-January.

The Diamond Resorts Invitational is scheduled Jan. 12-14 at Tranquilo Golf Club in Orlando, Fla. The field for te 54-hole event includes LPGA and PGA Tour Champions players, as well as celebrities from the worlds or sports and entertainment.

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Rose leads Indonesian Masters; Snedeker WDs

By Associated PressDecember 15, 2017, 2:04 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose completed the final two holes of his second round early Saturday for a 3-under 69 and a one-stroke lead at the Indonesian Masters.

Rose, who had a first-round 62, was among a quarter of the field forced off the Royale Jakarta Golf Club course after weather delays on Friday.

The Englishman, who bogeyed his last hole, had a two-round total of 13-under 131.

Kiradech Aphibarnrat, who completed his 64 on Friday, was in second place.

Brandt Snedeker withdrew with apparent heat exhaustion on Friday on the 11th hole of the second round. 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. He has been affected by a rib-sternum injury for most of the season.

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.


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Finances


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Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

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