DiMarco Goes from Playoff to MC - COPIED - COPIED

By Associated PressApril 7, 2006, 4:00 pm
AUGUSTA, Ga. -- Chris DiMarco sure could have used this shot a year ago.
 
DiMarco made an eagle Friday with his final swing at the Masters, holing out a 6-iron on the 18th hole. Alas, it wasn't nearly enough to get him to the weekend at Augusta National -- a startling change from the position he was in last April.
 
Chris DiMarco
Chris DiMarco will have to wait another year before he has a chance to win the Masters.
The plucky DiMarco had a stirring Sunday duel with Tiger Woods at the 2005 Masters, forcing a playoff with the world's best player.
 
Woods won his fourth green jacket with a 15-foot birdie putt on the first extra hole -- another close-but-no-cigar call for the short-hitting player who putts with that strange 'claw' grip.
 
This time, DiMarco didn't come close to challenging for his first major title. He put himself in a big hole at the start with a 4-over 76. He followed with a 74 -- a score bolstered by that improbable shot from 177 yards, but still two strokes shy of making the 4-over 148 cut.
 
'It just wasn't meant to be,' DiMarco said with a shrug.
 
Plenty of others were on their way out of town, including U.S. Ryder Cup captain Tom Lehman, whose week began with a random drive-by shooting -- he wasn't hurt -- and ended with a 76-75 in the Masters.
 
Lehman managed only one birdie over two days and finished with a 7-over 151, three strokes too much and a blow to his hopes of being the first U.S. playing captain since Arnold Palmer in 1963.
 
Of course, Lehman has an inside track to the team even if he fails to crack the top 10 in the points -- the captain gets to pick the last two players himself.
 
Also missing the cut: reigning U.S. Open champ Michael Campbell (149); 2005 Tour Championship winner Bart Bryant (149); and former No. 1 player in the world David Duval (159), who certainly had the most interesting round of the day.
 
Already staggering after an opening-round 84, Duval began the day with a double bogey at No. 1 and a quintuple-bogey 10 at the second, when he drove into a hazard on the left and took two more penalty strokes before he finally escaped.
 
But Duval bounced back, making five birdies over his final 12 holes and a 32 on the back nine on the way to signing for a 75. Not nearly good enough to make the cut, but quite a recovery nonetheless.
 
While Duval has been mired in a mystifying slump for nearly five years, DiMarco appeared on the verge of breaking through in a major. He lost a three-man playoff to Vijay Singh at the 2004 PGA Championship, then came up short against Woods eight months later.
 
DiMarco feels as though he lost a chipping contest at last year's Masters.
 
Woods pulled off a memorable birdie on the 16th hole with a shot that nearly stopped twice -- once at the top of the slope, then again at the edge of the cup before dropping in. DiMarco had a chance to rewrite history with his own chip from the edge of the 18th green, but the ball rattled the pin and stayed out.
 
Asked what he would have given to pull off an eagle at No. 18 last year, DiMarco jokingly pushed aside his 10-year-old son, Cristian, and said, 'See ya boy!'
 
Actually, he still had faint hopes of making the cut when he approached the last hole this time.
 
'I was just trying to hang in there and make a birdie because you never know what might happen out there with the wind swirling and the greens firm,' DiMarco said.
 
The conditions were U.S. Open-style tough, but the scores didn't go high enough for DiMarco to move on. So, he's moving out, settling for a pair of crystal goblets awarded by Augusta National to anyone making an eagle.
 
Seven golfers at 149 -- a group that included Campbell, Bryant and Colin Montgomerie -- were the most unfortunate.
 
The 36-hole leader, Chad Campbell, sneaked in a 15-foot birdie putt on the last hole, the ball spinning around the left edge before dropping in to give him a 6-under 138 total. If it stays out, everyone at 149 would have advanced to the weekend by being within 10 strokes of the top spot.
 
Then there's the most fortunate golfer in the field -- Brandt Jobe. He made an eagle at No. 10 that was even more remarkable than DiMarco's at the 18th, finding the cup with a 6-iron from 202 yards.
 
'I knew it was pretty good, but I couldn't believe it went in,' Jobe said. 'I just about fell over.'
 
He, too, gets a pair of crystal goblets -- and something even more rewarding. Jobe finished with a 148, just enough to make the cut.
 
Augusta National will save a bit on the awards it gives to the low amateur. To qualify for the prize, a not-for-pay player must actually make the cut. None of the five amateurs made it through this year, the first time that's happened since 2002.
 
In fact, none came close. Brian McElhinney had the best score among the amateurs, an 11-over 165 that was seven strokes too high to play on the weekend.
 
'It was the experience of a lifetime,' said McElhinney, who qualified for the Masters by winning the British Amateur. 'There's so much for my long game to improve. I will probably stay amateur another year.'
 
Related Links:
  • Leaderboard - 70th Masters Tournament
  • Full Coverage - 70th Masters Tournament
     
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  • Ogilvy urges distance rollback of ball

    By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 8:49 pm

    Add Geoff Ogilvy to the chorus of voices calling for a distance rollback of the golf ball.

    In an interview before the start of the Emirates Australian Open, Ogilvy said a "time-out" is needed for governing bodies to deal with the issue.

    "It's complete nonsense," he said, according to an Australian website. "In my career, it’s gone from 300 yards was a massive hit to you’re a shorter hitter on tour now, legitimately short. It’s changed the way we play great golf courses and that is the crime. It isn’t that the ball goes 400, that’s neither here nor there. It’s the fact the ball going 400 doesn’t makes Augusta work properly, it functions completely wrong.’’


    Full-field scores from the Emirates Australian Open


    Ogilvy used an example from American baseball to help get his point across to an Australian audience.

    “Major League Baseball in America, they use wooden bats, and everywhere else in baseball they use aluminium bats,’’ he said. “And when the major leaguers use aluminium bats they don’t even have to touch it and it completely destroys their stadiums. It’s just comedy.

    “That’s kind of what’s happened to us at least with the drivers of these big hitters; We’ve completely outgrown the stadiums. So do you rebuild every stadium in the world? That’s expensive. Or make the ball go shorter? It seems relatively simple from that perspective.’’

    Ogilvy, an Australian who won the 2006 U.S. Open, said he believes there will be a rollback, but admitted it would be a "challenge" for manufacturers to produce a ball that flies shorter for pros but does not lose distance when struck by recreational players.

    The golf world celebrates Thanksgiving

    By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 6:01 pm

    Here's a look, through social media, at how the golf world celebrates Thanksgiving.

    Lexi Thompson:

    Baking time!!

    A post shared by Lexi Thompson (@lexi) on

    David Feherty:

    Jack Nicklaus:

    GC Tiger Tracker:

    Steve Stricker:

    Golf Channel:

    Frank Nobilo:

    Ian Poulter:

    Tyrone Van Aswegen:

    Happy Thanksgiving: Biggest turkeys of 2017

    By Grill Room TeamNovember 23, 2017, 3:00 pm

    Thanksgiving brings us golf's biggest turkeys of the year. Donald Trump, Grayson Murray and a certain (now-former) tournament director headline the list. Click here or on the image below to check out all the turkeys.

    Tributes pour in for legendary caddie Sheridan

    By Randall MellNovember 23, 2017, 2:54 pm

    Tributes are pouring in as golf celebrates the life of Greg Sheridan after receiving news of his passing.

    Sheridan, a long-time LPGA caddie who worked for some of the game’s all-time greats, including Kathy Whitworth and Beth Daniel, died Wednesday in Indian Rocks Beach, Fla., at 63. He was diagnosed in July 2016 with brain and lung cancer.

    Sheridan worked the last dozen years or so with Natalie Gulbis, who expressed her grief in an Instagram post on Wednesday:

    “Greg…I miss you so much already and it hasn’t even been a day. 15+ seasons traveling the world you carried me & my bag through the highs and lows of golf and life. You were so much more than my teammate on the course…Thank you.”

    Sheridan was on Whitworth’s bag for the last of her LPGA-record 88 titles.

    “When I first came on tour, I would try to find out how many times Greg won,” Gulbis told Golfweek. “It’s a crazy number, like 50.”

    Matthew Galloway, a caddie and friend to Sheridan, summed up Sheridan’s impressive reach after caddying with him one year at the LPGA Founders Cup, where the game’s pioneers are honored.

    “Best Greg story,” Galloway tweeted on Thanksgiving morning, “coming up 18 at PHX all the founders were in their chairs. Greg goes, `Yep, caddied for her, her and her.’ Legend.”

    In a first-person column for Golf Magazine last year, Gulbis focused on Sheridan while writing about the special bond between players and caddies. She wrote that she won the “looper lottery” when she first hired Sheridan in ’04.

    “Greg and I have traveled the world, and today he is like family,” Gulbis wrote. “Sometimes, he’s a psychologist. Last year, my mom got sick and it was a distraction, but he was great. When I used to have boyfriend issues and breakup issues, he was my confidant. In a world where caddies sometimes spill secrets, Greg has kept a respectful silence, and I can’t thank him enough for that. He’s an extension of me.”

    Four months after Gulbis wrote the column, Sheridan was diagnosed with cancer.

    “The LPGA family is saddened to hear of the loss of long-time tour caddie, Greg Sheridan,” the LPGA tweeted. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and players he walked with down the fairways. #RIP.”

    Dean Herden was among the legion of caddies saddened by the news.

    “Greg was a great guy who I respected a lot and taught me some great things over the years,” Herden texted to GolfChannel.com.

    Here are some of heartfelt messages that are rolling across Twitter:

    Retired LPGA great Annika Sorenstam:

    LPGA commissioner Mike Whan in a retweet of Gulbis:

    Golf Channel reporter and former tour player Jerry Foltz:

    Christina Kim:

    LPGA caddie Shaun Clews:

    LPGA caddie Jonny Scott:

    LPGA caddie Kevin Casas:

    LPGA pro Jennie Lee: