Mark OMeara on top at Boeing Classic

By Associated PressAugust 28, 2009, 4:00 pm
Champions TourSNOQUALMIE, Wash. ' Its the only accolade missing from Mark OMearas golf resume: a win on the Champions Tour.
 
Hes a third of the way to filling that void.
 
OMeara eagled the 18th hole on Friday to finish a round of 6-under 66 and take a two-shot lead over a jumbled field after the first round of the Boeing Classic.
 
Its been 11 years since OMeara hosted a trophy in a PGA Tour-sanctioned event, when he won both the Masters and British Open in 1998 and was ranked as high as No. 2 in the world. But its been an official victory drought for OMeara since ' he won the Dubai Desert Classic in 2004 on the European Tour and a handful of specialty events since he hoisted the Claret Jug at Royal Birkdale 11 years ago.
 
Absolutely, it would be nice to win. Besides winning at Dubai the last thing I won was the par-3 competition at Augusta National two years ago, OMeara joked. It would be nice to get my first win and hopefully soon.
 
OMeara was 5 under after making birdie on No. 12, but fell back into the pack after a bogey on 16. On the uphill, 498-yard par-5 finishing hole ' that ranked the easiest hole in last years tournament ' OMeara knocked a 3-iron from about 205 yards to 17 feet. He then curled in the eagle putt, one of only two golfers on Friday to eagle the closing hole.
 
It was OMearas best opening round of the year and the second time hes led after the first round of a Champions Tour event. But leading after the first round at TPC Snoqualmie Ridge, the picturesque foothills course about 30 miles east of Seattle, has not been a good thing in the first four years of the tournament. No first-round leader has gone on to win.
 
Today the difference was I putted well. Last week I hit the ball well and didnt putt very well, OMeara said. This week, so far Ive putted a lot better and hit some really good shots.
 
Australian Mark McNulty had the best round of the day going, shooting a sizzling 6-under 30 on his first nine holes ' the back nine at Snoqualmie Ridge. But with the big names of OMeara, Nick Price, Gary Player and defending champion Tom Kite sent off on the front side, very little attention was paid to McNulty. He made the turn and played his 10th hole with a gallery of just seven people watching.
 
But McNulty couldnt keep the rhythm from his hot start going. He scrambled for pars on the first three holes of his backside, then bogeyed his 13th hole. He bogeyed his last ' the par-3 ninth ' when his tee shot on the 207-yard hole with water fronting the green found one of the greenside bunkers.
 
You shoot 6 under the first nine and come back 2 over its always disappointing, McNulty said.
 
Joining McNulty at 4 under were Allen Doyle, Loren Roberts and John Jacobs, who has played in just one tournament in the last two months. Jacobs, who limits himself to 11 tournaments a year, eagled No. 8, his 17th, to jump into contention.
 
The oldest winner on the Champions Tour was Mike Fetchick, who won the Hilton Head Seniors Invitational on his 63rd birthday in 1985. Jacobs wouldnt mind supplanting him.
 
Ive thought about that, the 64-year-old said. It might not happen this week, but I tell you what, if I behave myself it will happen.
 
Fifteen players were within three shots of OMeara, including Kite, the two-time champion, John Cook and Bernhard Langer. Its been a busy week for Kite, who played in last weeks Tradition in Sunriver, Ore., then jetted to the East Coast to promote Liberty National, the course he helped design and is being used this week for The Barclays.
 
Then it was back to Seattle, where Kite birdied three straight on the back nine before pulling his second shot into a bunker on 18 and making bogey. Thirty-two golfers broke par Friday, including Hale Irwin (70), Craig Stadler (70), Fuzzy Zoeller (71) and Hal Sutton (71).
 
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    Snedeker starts slow in effort to snag Masters invite

    By Will GrayDecember 14, 2017, 4:22 pm

    Brandt Snedeker flew halfway around the world in search of a Masters invite, but after one round of the Indonesian Masters it appears he'll likely return home empty-handed.

    Snedeker made only two birdies during his opening round in Indonesia, shooting an even-par 72 that left him in a tie for 77th and 10 shots behind leader Justin Rose. This is the final OWGR-rated event of 2017, and as a result it has drawn several notable entrants, including Snedeker, who hope to crack the top 50 in the world rankings by year's end to secure a trip to Augusta National.

    Snedeker started the year ranked No. 28, but after missing five months because of injury he entered the week ranked No. 51 and is projected to slip even further by the end of the month. As a result, he likely needs a top-3 finish in order to secure a return to the Masters, which he has missed only once since 2007.

    World No. 55 Dylan Frittelli also struggled, shooting a 4-over 76 in the opening round, while No. 56 Kiradech Aphibarnrat is tied for 14th at 4 under. Yusaku Miyazato, currently 58th in the world, is tied for ninth and five shots behind Rose.

    Should Snedeker and the other hopefuls fail to crack the top 50 by the end of the year, two paths to the Masters remain: win a full-point event on the PGA Tour in early 2018 or be inside the top 50 in the world rankings when the final cutoff is made on March 25.

    Nathaniel Crosby at the 1983 Bing Crosby Pro-Am at Pebble Beach. Getty Images

    Crosby selected as 2019 U.S. Walker Cup captain

    By Will GrayDecember 14, 2017, 3:19 pm

    The USGA announced that former U.S. Amateur champ Nathaniel Crosby will serve as the American captain for the 2019 Walker Cup, which will be played at Royal Liverpool Golf Club in Hoylake, England.

    Crosby, 56, is the son of entertainment icon and golf enthusiast Bing Crosby. He won the 1981 U.S. Amateur at The Olympic Club as a teenager and earned low amateur honors at the 1982 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach. He also played in the 1983 Walker Cup, coincidentally held at Royal Liverpool, before embarking on a brief career in professional golf, with his amateur status reinstated in 1994.

    "I am thrilled and overwhelmed to be chosen captain of the next USA Walker Cup team," Crosby said in a statement. "Many of my closest friends are former captains who will hopefully take the time to share their approaches in an effort to help me with my new responsibilities."

    Crosby takes over the captaincy from John "Spider" Miller, who led the U.S. squad both in 2015 and earlier this year, when the Americans cruised to a 19-7 victory at Los Angeles Country Club.

    Crosby is a Florida resident and member at Seminole Golf Club, which will host the 2021 matches. While it remains to be seen if he'll be asked back as captain in 2021, each of the last six American captains have led a team on both home and foreign soil.

    Started in 1922, the Walker Cup is a 10-man, amateur match play competition pitting the U.S. against Great Britain and Ireland. The U.S. team holds a 37-9 all-time lead in the biennial matches but has not won in Europe since 2007.

    Rose (62) sets blistering pace in Indonesia

    By Associated PressDecember 14, 2017, 3:06 pm

    JAKARTA, Indonesia – Justin Rose shot a 10-under 62 Thursday to take a two-stroke lead after the first round of the Indonesian Masters.

    Rose, starting on the back nine at Royale Jakarta Golf Club, had five birdies to go out in 31, then birdied four of five holes midway through his final nine and another birdie on his last hole in the $750,000 tournament.


    Full-field scores from the Indonesian Masters


    Gunn Charoenkul (64) was in second place and Kim Giwhan and Phachara Khongwatmai (both 65) were tied for third.

    Brandt Snedeker shot 72. Ranked 51st in the world, the American is aiming for a strong finish in Jakarta to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters.

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    LaCava: Woods wouldn't talk after H.O.R.S.E. match

    By Will GrayDecember 14, 2017, 2:27 pm

    The competitive streak within Tiger Woods knows no bounds - even on the basketball court, according to caddie Joe LaCava.

    LaCava has been on Woods' bag since 2011, and he recently shared a story on "Inside the Ropes" on Sirius/XM PGA Tour Radio about a clash between the two men over a seemingly friendly game of H.O.R.S.E. Actually, it turned into nine straight games (and nine straight wins) for LaCava, who exploited a weakness in Woods' on-court strategy while leaning on a mid-length jumper of his own:

    "The thing with him was if I missed a shot, which I missed plenty of shots, but if I missed the shot he'd go back down to the 3 (point line) because he liked to make the 3," LaCava said. "But it's harder obviously to make a 3, and I'd go right back to the baseline 12-footer, and he couldn't make it."

    It's a short list of people who have beaten Woods nine times in any athletic pursuit, let alone in a row. But for LaCava, the fallout from his afternoon of on-court dominance was less than subtle.

    "He did not talk to me the rest of the day," LaCava explained. "I didn't even get the old text, 'Dinner is ready,' because I stay across at the beach house. I didn't even get that text that night. I had to get take-out. He didn't announce he wasn't (talking), he just did it. I'm telling you, nine games in a row. Like I said, he's so competitive, even at something like that."