High Winds Create 6-way Logjam at St Jude

By Associated PressJune 6, 2008, 4:00 pm
Stanford St. Jude ChampionshipMEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Everyone at the TPC Southwind wanted a nice warmup for the U.S. Open. They got as good a simulation as possible Friday thanks to gusting wind and firm greens that made par an attractive score.
 
Tommy Armour III double-bogeyed No. 18 and fell into a six-way tie atop the leaderboard after two rounds at the Stanford St. Jude Championship on a day where only 13 players were under par. It was the most players tied for lead at the halfway point on the PGA Tour since a six-way tie last year at the Shell Houston Open.
 
Armour finished with a 71. He was tied with Gavin Coles, whose 64 was the low round through the first two days, Dean Wilson (68), Jason Dufner (68), Michael Bradley (68) and Marc Turnesa (69) at 3-under 137'the highest 36-hole total on the PGA TOUR since Angel Cabrera at the Open last year when he was at even par-140.
 
Thirty-six holes left, I make bogeys and doubles. Its the way it happens, Armour said.
 
Coles credited patience for his six-birdie, bogey-free round in an event where the cut came at 5 over.
 
Its pretty slow out there really. So you can sort of back off and have another look and sort of take a bit of time, sort of wait for the gusts to go by, he said. It was difficult, but you now I think if you putted well today you would have had a pretty decent score. When I did get in trouble, my putter sort of got me out of it a little.
 
Vijay Singh started the day in third, two strokes back of the lead at 3 under. He finished with a 71 and was tied for seventh with Alex Cejka (69), Michael Letzig (68) and Davis Love III (70) at 138.
 
Im glad to get in under par, Love said.
 
So even though the TPC at Southwind never will be mistaken for what they will face at the U.S. Open, Singh called it a good test for those tuning up for Torrey Pines with the gusting winds making club selection difficult.
 
It gets you in the game, keeps you very focused. You can lose your focus out there. Once you do that, youre going to shoot a number, Singh said.
 
Armour started the day a stroke off the lead. He missed a chance to keep the lead to himself on the par-4 18th when he hit his tee shot into the lake that runs along the fairway and fronts the green. He missed a 16-foot putt to salvage bogey that would have given him a one-shot lead, but he wasnt worried with 36 holes left.
 
You got to hit good shots, quality shots, and (I) hit a lot of them today and I played as good as I did yesterday. So looking forward to tomorrow, Armour said.
 
Boo Weekley was the first-round leader, and his one-stroke margin held up until midway through the afternoon before he fell apart.
 
He was tied with Armour at 5 under, then had a three-way tie with Wilson at 4 under before Weekleys lone birdie put him back atop the leaderboard at 5 under. Then Weekley made the turn onto the front nine where he carded three bogeys and a double bogey to finish with a 75 for a 140 total.
 
Bradley is working his way back into form on a major medical exemption after breaking his right ankle playing softball last year and in only his fourth event of the year.
 
Its imperative you drive it in the fairway this week due to the wind conditions and the firmness of the greens. It allows you to control the flight and the spin of the ball. If you hit it out of the rough, you cant control either. Thats one thing Ive done pretty good this week is driven the ball in play, Bradley said.
 
The biggest problems came after balls had been hit.
 
Theres a ton of water on some holes, said Jason Dufner, who was at 137 after a 68. You know you just catch a gust, and its almost like you feel helpless sometimes.
 
Bob Estes, who won here in 2001, had a 65 that was the days best round and finished in a three-way tie for 11th at 139. He started in the morning but said the wind was really howling.
 
It was hard to even step up to the shot and hit it, it was blowing so hard, Estes said. Im thinking in particular about the second shot at No. 5. Were playing dead into the south wind and just ripped a 4-iron. I was trying to carry the ball maybe 185 yards. I normally hit a 4-iron 205.
 
Divots
 
David Toms, a two-time champ here, extended his streak of cuts at this event to 13 straight. John Daly, who started the day 2 over, broke his putter and wound up using a wedge for a bit before getting a replacement as he made the turn. It didnt help as he finished with an 81 and missed the cut at 13 over. Carlos Franco and Brent Geiberger each withdrew before the second round. Franco was sick, while Geiberger was injured. Both had opened with 77s Thursday. Lucas Wald was disqualified after carding an 85 Friday.
 
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    Day's wife shares emotional story of miscarriage

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 4:12 pm

    Jason Day’s wife revealed on social media that the couple had a miscarriage last month.

    Ellie Day, who announced her pregnancy on Nov. 4, posted an emotional note on Instagram that she lost the baby on Thanksgiving.

    “I found out the baby had no heartbeat anymore. I was devastated,” she wrote. “I snuck out the back door of my doctor, a hot, sobbing, mascara-covered mess. Two and a half weeks went by witih me battling my heart and brain about what was happening in my body, wondering why this wouldn’t just be over.”

    The Days, who have two children, Dash and Lucy, decided to go public to help others who have suffered similar heartbreak.

    “I hope you know you aren’t alone and I hope you feel God wrap his arms around you when you feel the depths of sorrow and loss,” she wrote.  

    Newsmaker of the Year: No. 5, Sergio Garcia

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 1:00 pm

    This was the year it finally happened for Sergio Garcia.

    The one-time teen phenom, known for years as “El Nino,” entered the Masters as he had dozens of majors beforehand – shouldered with the burden of being the best player without a major.

    Garcia was 0-for-72 driving down Magnolia Lane in April, but after a thrilling final round and sudden-death victory over Justin Rose, the Spaniard at long last captured his elusive first major title.

    The expectation for years was that Garcia might land his white whale on a British links course, or perhaps at a U.S. Open where his elite ball-striking might shine. Instead it was on the storied back nine at Augusta National that he came alive, chasing down Rose thanks in part to a memorable approach on No. 15 that hit the pin and led to an eagle.


    Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year


    A green jacket was only the start of a transformative year for Garcia, 37, who heaped credit for his win on his then-fiancee, Angela Akins. The two were married in July, and months later the couple announced that they were expecting their first child to arrive just ahead of Garcia’s return to Augusta, where he'll host his first champions’ dinner.

    And while players often cling to the notion that a major win won’t intrinsically change them, there was a noticeable difference in Garcia over the summer months. The weight of expectation, conscious or otherwise, seemed to lift almost instantly. Like other recent Masters champs, he took the green jacket on a worldwide tour, with stops at Wimbledon and a soccer match between Real Madrid and Barcelona.

    The player who burst onto the scene as a baby-faced upstart is now a grizzled veteran with nearly two decades of pro golf behind him. While the changes this year occurred both on and off the course, 2017 will always be remembered as the year when Garcia finally, improbably, earned the title of major champion.


    Masters victory


    Article: Garcia defeats Rose to win Masters playoff

    Article: Finally at peace: Garcia makes major breakthrough

    Article: Garcia redeems career, creates new narrative


    Video: See the putt that made Sergio a major champ


    Green jacket tour

    Article: Take a look at Sergio's crazy, hectic media tour

    Article: Garcia with fiancée, green jacket at Wimbledon

    Article: Watch: Garcia kicks off El Clasico in green jacket


    Man of the people


    Article: SERGIO! Garcia finally gets patrons on his side

    Article: Fan finally caddies for Sergio after asking 206 times

    Article: Sergio donates money for Texas flood relief


    Article: Connelly, Garcia paired years after photo together


    Ace at 17th at Sawgrass


    Growing family

    Article: Sergio, Angela get married; Kenny G plays reception

    Article: Garcia, wife expecting first child in March 2018


    Departure from TaylorMade


    Article: Masters champ Garcia splits with TaylorMade


    Squashed beef with Paddy

    Article: Harrington: Garcia was a 'sore loser'

    Article: Sergio, Padraig had 'great talk,' are 'fine'


    Victory at Valderrama


    Article: Garcia gets first win since Masters at Valderrama

    Getty Images

    Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 12:30 pm
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    Montana parents can't watch kids play high school golf

    By Grill Room TeamDecember 11, 2017, 9:47 pm

    Well, this is a one new one.

    According to a report from KTVQ in Montana, this line in the Montana State High School Association rule book all but forbids spectators from observing high school golf in that state:

    “No spectators/fans are allowed on the course except for certain locations as designated by the tournament manager and club professional.”

    Part of the issue, according to the report, is that most courses don't bother to designate those "certain locations" leaving parents unable to watch their kids compete.

    “If you tell a parent that they can’t watch their kid play in the Thanksgiving Day football game, they would riot,” Chris Kelley, a high school golf parent, told KTVQ.

    The report lists illegal outside coaching as one of the rule's chief motivations, but Montana State women's golf coach Brittany Basye doesn't quite buy that.

    “I can go to a softball game and I can sit right behind the pitcher. I can make hand signals,” she is quoted in the report. “I can yell out names. I can do the same thing on a softball field that might affect that kid. Football games we can yell as loud as we want when someone is making a pass or a catch.”

    The MHSA has argued that unlike other sports that are played in a confined area, the sprawling nature of a golf course would make it difficult to hire enough marshals to keep unruly spectators in check.

    Meanwhile, there's a lawyer quoted in the report claiming this is some kind of civil rights issue.

    Worth note, Montana is one of only two states that doesn't allow spectators on the course. The other state, Alaska, does not offer high school golf.