Compton advances to second stage of Q-School

By Associated PressOctober 24, 2008, 4:00 pm
PGA Tour (75x100)KEY BISCAYNE, Fla. ' Add another comeback to Erik Comptons remarkable story.
 
Five months after receiving his second heart transplant, Compton shot a 4-under 68 on Friday at Crandon Golf Club on Key Biscayne to advance to the second stage of the PGA Tours Qualifying Tournament.
 
Battling gusty winds and light rain, Compton overcame a seven-shot deficit to turn in the best score of the day. He finished tied with six others for 23rd place to take the final qualifying spot.
 
Im jacked up. Im excited. Im almost in disbelief, Compton said. Everybody counted me out, and I survived again.
 
Compton woke up at 6:30 a.m. and turned on the Golf Channel.
 
All the commentators had the same message: It was great that he was playing, but there was no way he could overcome seven strokes.
 
It really motivated me, said Compton, who received special permission from the PGA Tour to use a golf cart and to continue taking banned anti-rejection pills. People always want to count me out.
 
Compton made a 15-foot putt to save par on seven, his second to last hole. He made birdies on 2, 10, 14 and 17, and tapped in an easy putt on nine to end his day.
 
Then came the wait.
 
With winds still gusting more than 25 mph on the course, Compton sat with friends and family in the clubhouse and watched as others struggled. When the news came in that he had qualified, Comptons father, Peter, was so overcome with emotion he had to leave.
 
Erik Compton and his wife, Barbara, whos pregnant with the couples first child, hugged and kissed, embracing a moment that seemed impossible months earlier.
 
I cant remember the last time I felt this good, Compton said.
 
Compton was diagnosed at age 9 with cardiomyopathy, an enlarging of the heart that hinders its ability to pump blood. Three years later in 1992, he received a new heart at Miamis Jackson Memorial Hospital.
 
He was a No. 1-ranked amateur and a two-time All-American at Georgia before he turned professional in 2001, playing mostly on the Nationwide Tour but also qualifying for a few PGA Tour events.
 
But after a heart attack last October, it became clear he would need another transplant.
 
Compton underwent the second operation May 20 and has been rehabbing ever since. His swing is near full strength, but he doesnt have the stamina to walk 72 holes.
 
Comptons next test will be a qualifying tournament at Callaway Gardens-Mountain View Golf Course in Pine Mountain, Ga. The final qualifying tournament is in Palm Springs, Calif., where 25 golfers will receive PGA Tour cards.
 
Now, he has a chance to get there.
 
After struggling the first three days of the tournament'shooting a 76, 75 and 77'it seemed his remarkable run would end.
 
Not yet.
 
I wanted to show people I could still do it, Compton said.
 
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  • Newsmaker of the Year: No. 1, Justin Thomas

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 18, 2017, 1:00 pm

    He won a major, captured the FedExCup and was named the PGA Tour’s Player of the Year. It should come as no surprise that Justin Thomas holds the top spot on our Newsmakers list for 2017.

    Thomas entered the year ranked outside the top 20, and few might have pegged him for a transcendent campaign. But he kicked off January with a win in Hawaii, added another before leaving the Aloha State and never looked back.

    Thomas’ seminal moment came in August when he captured the PGA Championship at Quail Hollow for his breakthrough major title. One month after greeting Jordan Spieth behind the final green at Royal Birkdale, this time it was Thomas’ turn to have friends stick around to snap pictures with the trophy that signaled his arrival among golf’s upper echelon.


    Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year


    In addition to racking up the hardware – five in total, including the inaugural CJ Cup at Nine Bridges in his first start of the new wraparound season – Thomas dazzled with style. His runaway win at the Sony Open included an opening-round 59, and his third-round 63 at Erin Hills marked the first time anyone had ever shot 9 under on a U.S. Open venue.

    Thomas’ consistency was rewarded at East Lake, when a runner-up finish at the Tour Championship netted him the season-long title and $10 million prize. It was in the subsequent press conference where he shared the goals list he had written into his cell phone in February, having ticked off nearly every one. It showed a dedicated attention to detail as well the tactical approach with which Thomas had steered his rapid ascent.

    Heading into a new year, he’s now very clearly entrenched as one of the world’s best. And as his career progresses, it’s likely we’ll look back at 2017 as the point where Thomas first transformed great potential into eye-popping results.

    Win No. 1: Title defense at the CIMB Classic

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    Record Round No. 2: 63 at the U.S. Open

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    Cabreras win PNC Father/Son Challenge

    By Associated PressDecember 17, 2017, 11:36 pm

    ORLANDO, Fla. - Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. closed with a 12-under 60 for a three-shot victory in their debut at the PNC Father/Son Challenge.

    The Cabreras opened with a 59 at The Ritz-Carlton Golf Club and were challenged briefly by the defending champions, David Duval and Nick Karavites, in the scramble format Sunday. The Argentines went out in 30, and they had a two-shot lead with Cabrera's son came within an inch of chipping in for eagle on the final hole.

    They finished at 25-under 199 for a three-shot victory over Duval and Karavites, and Bernhard Langer and Jason Langer. The Langer team won in 2014.

    Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara tied for fourth at 21 under with Jerry Pate and Wesley Pate.

    Cabrera wasn't even in the field until two-time U.S. Open champion Curtis Strange and his son, Tom Strange, had to withdraw.

    Duval and his stepson went out in 28, but the Cabreras regained control by starting the back nine with back-to-back birdies, and then making birdies on the 13th, 14th and 16th. The final birdie allowed them to tie the tournament scoring record.

    ''This is certain my best week of the year,'' said Cabrera, the 2009 Masters champion and 2007 U.S. Open champion at Oakmont. ''To play alongside all the legends ... as well as playing alongside my son, has been the greatest week of the year.''

    The popular event is for players who have won a major championship or The Players Championship. It is a scramble format both days.

    In some cases, the major champions lean on the power of their sons for the distance. O'Meara said Saturday that his ''little man'' hit it 58 yards by him on the 18th. And on Sunday, Stewart Cink said son Reagan told him after outdriving him on the opening four holes, ''In this tournament I may be your son, but right now I'm your Daddy!''

    Jack Nicklaus played with his grandson, G.T. They closed with a 64 and tied for 15th in the field of 20 teams.

    Rose wins; Aphibarnrat earns Masters bid in Indonesia

    By Will GrayDecember 17, 2017, 1:59 pm

    Justin Rose continued his recent run of dominance in Indonesia, while Kiradech Aphibarnrat snagged a Masters invite with some 72nd-hole dramatics.

    Rose cruised to an eight-shot victory at the Indonesian Masters, carding bookend rounds of 10-under 62 that featured a brief run at a 59 during the final round. The Englishman was the highest-ranked player in the field and he led wire-to-wire, with Thailand's Phachara Khongwatmai finishing second.

    Rose closes out the year as perhaps the hottest player in the world, with top-10 finishes in each of his final 10 worldwide starts. That stretch includes three victories, as Rose also won the WGC-HSBC Champions and Turkish Airlines Open. He hasn't finished outside the top 10 in a tournament since missing the cut at the PGA Championship.

    Meanwhile, it took until the final hole of the final tournament of 2017 for Aphibarnrat to secure a return to the Masters. The Thai entered the week ranked No. 56 in the world, with the top 50 in the year-end world rankings earning invites to Augusta National. Needing an eagle on the 72nd hole, Aphibarnrat got just that to snag solo fifth place.

    It means that he is projected to end the year ranked No. 49, while Japan's Yusaku Miyazato - who started the week ranked No. 58 and finished alone in fourth - is projected to finish No. 50. Aphibarnrat finished T-15 in his Masters debut in 2016, while Miyazato will make his first appearance in the spring.

    The results in Indonesia mean that American Peter Uihlein and South Africa's Dylan Frittelli are projected to barely miss the year-end, top-50 cutoff. Their options for Masters qualification will include winning a full-point PGA Tour event in early 2018 or cracking the top 50 by the final March 25 cutoff.