Hull shares lead in Bahamas; Creamer 2 back

By Associated PressJanuary 30, 2016, 1:00 am

PARADISE ISLAND, Bahamas – Megan Khang shot a 5-under 68 in strong wind Friday for a share of the lead in the season-opening Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic, her first event as an LPGA Tour member.

The 18-year-old Khang eagled the par-5 fourth hole and had four birdies and a bogey in wind gusting to 30 mph at the Ocean Club to match England's Charley Hull and Japan's Haru Nomura at 8-under 138.

''It was such a grind,'' Khang said. ''To come out with 68 is incredible. Can't wait for the weekend.''

Hull and Nomura each shot 70.

Khang, from Rockland, Massachusetts, tied for sixth at Q-school in December to earn a tour card.

''I think my game's at a good place right now and I definitely think I can hold my own,'' Khang said. ''I was confident in my game. I just didn't know how I was going to play right now being a rookie and under the circumstances. But I'm just having so much fun out here. I just love it out here.''

The 5-foot-1 Khang hits her drives in the 260-yard range.

''Sandra (Gal) was like, 'You hit it pretty far for a little one,''' Khang said. ''I was like, 'You're not the first one to say that.' ... I took it as a compliment.''

The 19-year-old Hull closed with a birdie on the par-5 18th.

''I've never played the golf course with that wind before,'' Hull said. ''It was a completely opposite direction. So, it was good fun to play in that direction. I like it in that direction actually. It was good. Just got to keep patient out there. Obviously, the same for everyone.''



Nomura bogeyed Nos. 14 and 16 after getting to 10 under with a birdie on the 13th.

''Wind is very heavy,'' Nomura said. ''Some holes yesterday downwind, today into the wind.''

Defending champion Sei Young Kim was a stroke back along with Anna Nordqvist, 46-year-old Catriona Matthew and Min Seo Kwak. Kim shot 68, Nordqvist 69, Kwak 70, and Matthew 71.

''Pretty windy today,'' Kim said. ''The greens are a little tough and then a couple holes when I on the putting green, really strong wind, almost 30 mph. Little adjust my stance more wide and just worked today.''

Paula Creamer and Hyo Joo Kim were 6 under. Creamer shot 72, and Hyo Joo Kim 70. Nine under with 5 holes left, Creamer dropped four strokes with a double bogey on 16 and bogeys on 14 and 17 before birdieing the 18th.

''It was howling right to left and I was kind of in between clubs and tried to use the wind and I used it too much and I hooked it too much,'' Creamer said about the double bogey. ''I was aiming literally 35 yards right, but I did too much with my golf swing. I should have hit it a little straighter.''

Third-ranked Stacy Lewis shot a 68 to move up 35 places into a tie for 10th at 5 under.

''I woke up and saw the wind and actually saw it as a good thing,'' Lewis said. ''I knew it was going to be a hard day, but if I could shoot a good number, I could get myself back into contention, which I did. But it was definitely a hard round.''

Cristie Kerr matched the tournament record with a 65 to jump from a tie for 95th after an opening 77 to a tie for 13th at 4 under.

''After yesterday, it wasn't looking good,'' Kerr said. ''It was a very difficult day and I just came out and just did it.''

Michelle Wie missed the cut by a stroke a day after being stung by a bee on the palm of her right hand. She followed her opening 76 with a 73.

Second-ranked Inbee Park withdrew Thursday because of back pain after an 80, the second-worst round of her LPGA Tour career.

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

Article: Thomas (64) rallies to defend CIMB title


Win Nos. 2 and 3: The Hawaiian double

Article: Thomas refuses to let disastrous hole derail TOC win

Article: Worst week ever ends with another title at Sony Open


Record Round No. 1: 59 at the Sony Open

Article: Thomas becomes youngest player to shoot 59

Take a look: Thomas’ scorecard from his amazing 59


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

Article: Thomas sets U.S. Open record with 9-under 63


Temporary Slide: Open MC makes it three in a row

Watch: Thomas loses club, makes 9, misses Open cut


Mr. Major (and win No. 4): PGA champ at Quail Hollow

Article: Thomas joins the club – the major club


Win No. 5: Dell Technologies Championship

Article: Thomas wins the battle of buddies over Spieth


The $10 Million Man: FedExCup champ


Biggest Win of All? Player of the Year


And One to Grow On: Wins at CJ Cup in 2017-18 season

Article: Thomas caps torrid 12-month run with CJ Cup win


Photo Galleries: Best of ...

Best of: Justin Thomas and Jillian Wisniewski

Best of: Justin Thomas through the years

Getty Images

Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 18, 2017, 12:30 pm
Getty Images

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.