McMajor McNulty Captures JELD-WEN Tradition

By Associated PressAugust 19, 2007, 4:00 pm
2006 Jeld-Wen TraditionBEND, Oregon -- When Mark McNulty ran into some trouble on the final hole of The Tradition, he recalled words of advice from Gary Player.
'Gary Player always said, `Mark, as long as you win by one, you've won,'' McNulty said.
McNulty double-bogeyed the 18th hole at Crosswater Golf Club, but still claimed his first major by five strokes.
McNulty shot a 4-under 68 Sunday, finishing the Champions Tour event with a 16-under 272 total. David Edwards, tied for the lead with McNulty after the third round, had a 73 to finish at 11 under. D.A. Weibring was 10 under after a 72.
The day started out rainy in central Oregon, but later in the final round there was mostly brilliant sunshine. The wind gusted and temperatures were on the chilly side, ranging from the 50s in the morning to the low 60s in the afternoon.
McNulty, who had six birdies on the final day to go along with his double bogey, has had lower back problems and had not finished in the top 10 this season.
He birdied four of the first seven holes, setting him on the course for victory.
'It was my tournament to lose, but I still had to earn it,' he said.
He splashed on to the Champions Tour in 2004 and was named rookie of the year. With Sunday's victory, he has six total victories on the tour for players 50 and older.
Before joining the Champions Tour, McNulty played primarily on the European Tour. His best finish in a major was when he tied for second with Payne Stewart in the 1990 British Open, five strokes behind of Nick Faldo.
McNulty was steady all day and didn't even show much emotion, except on the troublesome 18th, when he missed a nearly 4-foot putt.
'Fortunately, I have a lock,' he joked with the gallery.
'Today I was at ease,' he said about his cool demeanor. 'It was quite unbelievable how fortunate and lucky I was. I didn't feel any jitterbugs as all.'
Edwards, who joined the Champions Tour last year and had three top-10 finishes before The Tradition, had four bogeys and three birdies in the final round. Edwards and McNulty went into the final day with a two-stroke advantage.
Edwards said his back was giving him trouble all day, perhaps because of the weather.
'So I didn't hit very many shots to warm up and I didn't practice any at all after the rounds,' Edwards said.
McNulty is the second straight international player to win the event. Last year, Argentina's Eduardo Romero beat Lonnie Nielsen with a birdie on the first playoff hole at the Reserve Vineyards & Golf Club in Aloha, west of Portland.
Romero finished this year with a 3-under 285.
The Tradition started at Desert Mountain in Scottsdale, Ariz., before it was moved to Superstition Mountain. With the help of Oregon native Peter Jacobsen, the event moved again in 2003 to the Reserve. This season, it came to Crosswater in central Oregon's high desert.
Money leader Jay Haas also finished at 3-under 285. Loren Roberts, who won The Tradition in 2005, and Tom Kite each finished at 8 under.
The Tradition is the fourth of five majors on the Champions Tour. Tom Watson won the British Open, Brad Bryant took the U.S. Senior Open and Denis Watson won the Senior PGA Championship.
The Tradition is sponsored by JELD-WEN, an Oregon-based window and door manufacturer.
Related Links:
  • Leaderboard - JELD-WEN Tradition
  • Full Coverage - JELD-WEN Tradition
  • Getty Images

    Watch: McIlroy gives Fleetwood a birthday cake

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 19, 2018, 2:58 pm

    Tommy Fleetwood turned 27 on Friday. He celebrated with some good golf – a 4-under 68 in Abu Dhabi, leaving him only two shots back in his title defense – and a birthday cake, courtesy of Rory Mcllroy.

    While giving a post-round interview, Fleetwood was surprised to see McIlroy approaching with a cake in hand.

    “I actually baked this before we teed off,” McIlroy joked.

    Fleetwood blew out the three candles – “three wishes!” – and offered McIlroy a slice.  

    Getty Images

    DJ shoots 64 to surge up leaderboard in Abu Dhabi

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 1:48 pm

    Dustin Johnson stood out among a star-studded three-ball that combined to shoot 18 under par with just one bogey Friday at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

    Shaking off a sloppy first round at Abu Dhabi Golf Club, Johnson matched the low round of the day with a 64 that put him within four shots of Thomas Pieters’ lead.

    “I did everything really well,” Johnson said. “It was a pretty easy 64.”

    Johnson made four bogeys during an even-par 72 on Thursday and needed a solid round Friday to make the cut. Before long, he was closer to the lead than the cut line, making birdie on three of the last four holes and setting the pace in a group that also included good rounds from Rory McIlroy (66) and Tommy Fleetwood (68).

    “Everyone was hitting good shots,” McIlroy said. “That’s all we were seeing, and it’s nice when you play in a group like that. You feed off one another.” 

    Full-field scores from the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship

    Coming off a blowout victory at Kapalua, Johnson is searching for his first regular European Tour title. He tied for second at this event a year ago.

    Johnson’s second-round 64 equaled the low round of the day (Jorge Campillo and Branden Grace). 

    “It was just really solid all day long,” Johnson said. “Hit a lot of great shots, had a lot of looks at birdies, which is what I need to do over the next two days if I want to have a chance to win on Sunday.” 

    Getty Images

    Closing eagle moves Rory within 3 in Abu Dhabi

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 12:57 pm

    What rust? Rory McIlroy appears to be in midseason form.

    Playing competitively for the first time since Oct. 8, McIlroy completed 36 holes without a bogey Friday, closing with an eagle to shoot 6-under 66 to sit just three shots back at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

    “I’m right in the mix after two days and I’m really happy in that position,” he told reporters afterward.

    McIlroy took a 3 ½-month break to heal his body, clear his mind and work on his game after his first winless year since 2008, his first full season as a pro.

    He's back on track at a familiar playground, Abu Dhabi Golf Club, where he’s racked up eight top-11s (including six top-3s) in his past nine starts there.

    Full-field scores from the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship

    McIlroy opened with a 69 Thursday, then gave himself even more chances on Day 2, cruising along at 4 under for the day when he reached the par-5 closing hole. After launching a 249-yard long iron to 25 feet, he poured in the eagle putt to pull within three shots of Thomas Pieters (65). 

    Despite the layoff, McIlroy edged world No. 1 Dustin Johnson, coming off a blowout victory at Kapalua, by a shot over the first two rounds. 

    “DJ is definitely the No. 1 player in the world right now, and one of, if not the best, driver of the golf ball," McIlroy said. "To be up there with him over these first two days, it proves to me that I’m doing the right things and gives me a lot of confidence going forward.”

    Getty Images

    Duke to fill in for injured Pavin at CareerBuilder

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 12:25 pm

    Ken Duke will fill in for Corey Pavin for the next two rounds of the CareerBuilder Challenge – with nothing at stake but his amateur partner’s position on the leaderboard.

    Pavin was 4 over par when he withdrew after 17 holes Thursday because of a neck injury. Tournament officials contacted Duke, the first alternate, and asked if he would take Pavin’s spot and partner with Luis Lopez for the next two rounds, even though he would not receive any official money.

    Duke accepted and explained his decision on Twitter:

    Playing on past champion’s status, the 48-year-old Duke has made only four starts this season, with a best finish of a tie for 61st at the RSM Classic.

    Pavin received a sponsor exemption into the event, his first PGA Tour start since the 2015 Colonial.