A long long road to Bethpage for Brehaut

By Associated PressJune 18, 2009, 4:00 pm
2009 U.S. OpenFARMINGDALE, N.Y. ' If golf hadnt worked out, Jeff Brehaut figures hed be flipping houses right now, not sitting atop the leaderboard at the U.S. Open.
After all, the 46-year-old needed a lucky 13th trip to Q-school before getting his PGA Tour card. Before that he spent seven years driving his family around to mini-tour events, 30,000 miles a year by his estimate.
My journey, Brehaut said, is different than a lot of guys.
For sure, Brehaut took the long way to Bethpage Black.
So unlikely as it may seem, when Brehaut returns to the waterlogged course Friday morning, hell be tied for the lead, ahead of three reigning major championship winners ' one shot ahead of Angel Cabrera, two up on Tiger Woods, five better than Padraig Harrington.
OK, so hes only played 11 holes and the first round isnt even over yet, thanks to a daylong rain that turned Bethpage into Bathpage and prompted a suspension of play less than 3 1/2 hours into the tournament.
Assuming he sleeps at all Thursday night, Brehaut will wake up Friday with the lead in a major, sharing first place with fellow longer-than-long shots Johan Edfors, Andrew Parr and Ryan Spears.
Its a long way to go, said Brehaut, who is playing on the Nationwide Tour these days. Not that this isnt great.
No matter what happens Friday, Saturday, Sunday or whenever this tournament might end ' the forecast for the rest of the weekend is not good, and some people are just hoping for a Monday finish ' itll go down as a memorable trip for Brehaut.
In fact, a two-birdie, one-bogey, eight-par showing Thursday isnt even his highlight of the week. That came Wednesday, in a practice round.
He approached a green surrounded by a rabid gallery, virtually all craning their necks to see the next group, which just happened to include Bethpage favorites Phil Mickelson and Jim Furyk.
Safe to say, they werent there to see Brehaut. He gave them a show anyway.
Brehaut holed a shot from the sand, then tossed another ball into the same spot and did it again on the very next swing.
It was the funniest moment. I was jumping up and down like Bob Tway when he held on to beat Greg Norman, Brehaut said, referring to Tways chip-in to win the 1986 PGA Championship. I pumped my fist. I signed half an hour worth of autographs. Afterwards I told my wife I felt like I had just won the tournament. It was that funny.
He was laughing in the rain on Thursday as well.
Brehauts day started with a bogey, and for the next 10 holes he was flawless. His day began with a three-word pep talk from his wife ' Embrace your conditions, she said ' and thats exactly what he did.
He went off in the first group on the back side, lauding playing partner J.P. Hayes for starting with a birdie on the par-4 10th.
Wow, youre leading the Open, Brehaut marveled.
Little did he ' or anyone else ' know thats where hed be at days end.
Its an out-of-nowhere group out in front at Bethpage, even with the asterisk that the first round isnt anywhere near completed. Edfors is playing his ninth major; hes never made a cut in the previous eight. The rain was so bad that Spears mother didnt even go out on the course to watch Thursday morning. And Parr has a truly remarkable tale ' he suffered a stroke in 2007, endured some paralysis, and thought he might never play golf again.
Theyve all overcome much to get here. But at 46 and in a major for only the second time, Brehaut might have more of an appreciation of being on this rainslicked stage than anyone else.
I won Q-school once and that was pretty good, Brehaut said. I mean, Im not bad. But not everybodys a college All-American. A lot of us have to kind of be the guys that everyone beats up on. Thats fine.
For one day, anyway, Brehaut became the other guy.
Pretty cool, he said.
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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.

    Cabreras take 1-shot lead in Father/Son

    By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 11:23 pm

    ORLANDO, Fla. - Two-time major champion Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. birdied their last three holes for a 13-under 59 to take a one-shot lead Saturday in the PNC Father-Son Challenge.

    Cabrera, a Masters and U.S. Open champion, is making his debut in this popular 36-hole scramble. His son said he practiced hard for 10 days. What helped put him at ease was watching his father make so many putts.

    ''We combined very well,'' Cabrera said. ''When I hit a bad shot, he hit a good one. That's the key.''

    They had a one-shot lead over Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara, who are playing for the first time. That included a birdie on the last hole, which O'Meara attributed to the strength of his son.

    ''My little man hit it 58 yards by me on the 18th,'' said O'Meara, the Masters and British Open champion in 1998. ''It's a little easier coming in with a 6-iron.''

    Defending champions David Duval and Nick Karavites rallied over the back nine at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club for a 61. They are trying to become the first father-son team to repeat as winners since Bernhard and Stefan Langer in 2006. Larry Nelson won two years in a row in 2007 and 2008, but with different sons.

    ''I'd imagine we have to break 60 tomorrow to have a chance to win, but hey, stranger things have happened,'' Duval said. ''I've even done it myself.''

    Duval shot 59 at the Bob Hope Classic to win in 1999 on his way to reaching No. 1 in the world that year.

    Duval and his stepson were tied with Bernhard Langer and 17-year-old Jason Langer, who made two eagles on the last five holes. This Langer tandem won in 2014.

    Jack Nicklaus, playing with grandson G.T., opened with a 68.

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    Woods' 2018 schedule coming into focus ... or is it?

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 16, 2017, 5:46 pm

    Two weeks after his successful return to competition at the Hero World Challenge, Tiger Woods’ 2018 schedule may be coming into focus.

    Golfweek reported on Saturday that Woods hopes to play the Genesis Open in February according to an unidentified source with “direct knowledge of the situation.”

    Woods’ agent Mark Steinberg declined to confirm the 14-time major champion would play the event and told GolfChannel.com that Woods – who underwent fusion surgery to his lower back in April – is still formulating his ’18 schedule.

    Woods’ foundation is the host organization for the Genesis Open and the event supports the Tiger Woods Learning Center in Anaheim, Calif.

    The Genesis Open would be Woods’ first start on the PGA Tour since he missed the cut last January at the Farmers Insurance Open.