Pettersen leads during Day 2 at U.S. Women's Open

By Associated PressJuly 7, 2012, 1:40 am

KOHLER, Wis. – Even as she climbed into the lead in the second round of the U.S. Women's Open on Friday, Suzann Pettersen took some time to admire Michelle Wie's big move into contention.

Pettersen, the Norwegian star ranked sixth in the world, shot a 4-under 68 at Blackwolf Run on Friday and moved to 5 under for the tournament. But Wie was even better on the day, carding a 6-under 66 to move to 4 under and put herself in position to break out of a season-long slump.

Wie was tied with Cristie Kerr, the 2007 Open winner, one stroke off the lead.

Pettersen was playing in the group directly behind Wie, giving her a pretty good view of what turned out to be an impressive display of accurate approach shots and made putts.

''She was fist-pumping, every putt she looked at,'' Pettersen said.

Wie said she doesn't spend much time thinking about the attention she received as a high-profile child prodigy in the early 2000s, or whether some fans had written her off since then.

''I don't know if anyone gave up on me or not,'' Wie said. ''I'm sure some did and some didn't. But I never gave up on myself, and today was a good reminder to myself that I can do (it) and I still have it.''

Kerr, who was tied for the first-round lead at 3 under with Lizette Salas and Brittany Lincicome, had a 71.

''I always draw on that experience, of course, but it's hard to predict what's an advantage and what's not an advantage,'' Kerr said of her previous Open win. ''You just don't know.''

Sandra Gal, Inbee Park and Vicky Hurst shot 70 to reach 3 under.

Salas, a 22-year-old recent Southern California graduate, had a 73 to drop to 2 under. Mika Miyazato also was 2 under after a 71.

Lincicome had a miserable day, shooting an 80 on Friday to fall to 5 over.

''I did nothing right today,'' Lincicome said. ''I couldn't drive the ball. I couldn't do anything right. I couldn't putt.''

Seven-teen-year-old Lexi Thompson shot a 73 to top the group at 1 under.

Top-ranked Yani Tseng was 2 over aftter a 72r.

Second-ranked Stacy Lewis recovered from a first-round 77 to shoot a 69 on Friday, putting her 2 over. Third-ranked Ai Miyazato, the winner last week in Arkansas, was even par after a 74.

Defending champion So Yeon Ryu shot a 71 and was 1 over.

Se Ri Pak, the Open winner at Blackwolf Run in 1998, also was 1 over after a 73.

Seeing Wie's name near the top of the leaderboard will ring a bell with casual golf fans, even if they haven't heard from her in a while.

Wie was 12 years old when she qualified for an LPGA event in 2002 - making her at the time the youngest player ever to do so. She went on to compete in a handful of men's tournaments, but never turned her early stardom into consistent success. She has two career LPGA Tour victories.

Now she's 22 years old, a recent Stanford graduate - and, at least before Friday, struggling on the course.

Wie has missed six of eight cut times this season, although she says she has been feeling better about her game.

''The last couple of weeks it started to feel good,'' Wie said. ''Things were coming. My scores weren't showing up as well. But it's a work in progress. Still a long way to go.''

And Wie knows she's a long way from a potential victory Sunday, but is excited to have something to shoot for beyond simply making the cut.

''The fact that you're in contention to have a chance to win the U.S. Open is a big deal,'' Wie said. ''I'm so grateful I have that chance right now. I'm really looking forward to seeing the crowds tomorrow and experiencing it all again.''

Pettersen said Wie should be given some space to find her game at her own pace.

''I think you should give her a break,'' Pettersen said. ''She just graduated, four years in college. That's pretty impressive to do that on the sideline of trying to compete out here. So now it's obviously a little different world for her. Now it's all about golf, and she has to kind of find her schedule, how to kind of work it out the best way for her.''

Pettersen, meanwhile, believes her own game is in good shape.

''My game is very solid,'' Pettersen said. ''My ball striking is good. My short game is good. And my putting has been really good so far.''

Her day got off to a hectic start when she overslept and had to rush to make her tee time, skipping breakfast.

''For me breakfast is kind of my most important meal,'' Pettersen said. ''I didn't really have time. I thought it was more important to get stretched and loosened up. Even though it's hot. It's fine. Sometimes that's a good thing. You don't have time to think about stuff.''

The intense heat and humidity players and fans dealt with in Thursday's first round eased only slightly on Friday. The final two days of the tournament are expected to be more pleasant.

''Hopefully we're done with the two hot days, and they're all calling for a cooler weekend,'' Pettersen said. ''Which I'm all for. It's been two really hot days.''

Watch: Pros try to hit 2-yard wide fairway in Dubai

By Grill Room TeamNovember 18, 2017, 5:20 pm

While in Dubai for the DP World Tour Championship, the European Tour prestented a little challenge to Ross Fisher, Richie Ramsay, Nicolas Colsaerts and Soren Kjeldsen. On a stretch of road outside of town, the four players had to try and hit a 2-yard wide fairway. Check out the results.

Rose (65) leads Rahm, Frittelli in Dubai

By Associated PressNovember 18, 2017, 3:24 pm

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates – Justin Rose will take a one-shot lead into the final day of the season-ending Tour Championship as he attempts to win a third straight title on the European Tour and a second career Race to Dubai crown.

The 37-year-old Rose made a gutsy par save on the final hole after a bogey-free round for a 7-under 65 Saturday and overall 15-under 201.

The Englishman leads South African Dylan Frittelli, who produced the day's best score of 63, and Spain's Jon Rahm, who played in the same group as Rose and matched his 65.

Rose is looking to be Europe's season-ending No. 1 for the second time. His leading rival for the Race to Dubai title, Tommy Fleetwood, is only two shots behind here after a second straight 65 on the Earth course of Jumeirah Golf Estates.

Fleetwood did his chances no harm by overcoming a stuttering start before making eight birdies in his final 11 holes to also post a 65. The 26-year-old Englishman was tied for fourth place at 13 under, alongside South African Dean Burmester (65) and Thailand's Kiradech Aphibarnrat (67), who closed with five birdies in a row.

''So, last day of the season and I've got a chance to win the Race to Dubai,'' Fleetwood said. ''It's cool.''


DP World Tour Championship: Articles, photos and videos

Full-field scores from the DP World Tour Championship


Masters champion Sergio Garcia, the only other player with a chance to win the Race to Dubai title, is tied for 13th on 10 under after a 67.

Fleetwood had a lead of 256,737 points going into the final tournament and needs to equal or better Rose's finishing position to claim the title. If Rose doesn't finish in the top five and Garcia doesn't win, Fleetwood will have done enough.

Rose is hoping to win a third straight tournament after triumphs in China and Turkey.

Rose, who made some long putts for birdies apart from chipping in on the 13th hole, looked to be throwing away his advantage on the par-5 18th, when his second shot fell agonizingly short of the green and into the water hazard. But with his short game in superb condition, the reigning Olympic champion made a difficult up-and-down shot to stay ahead.

''That putt at the last is a big confidence-builder. That broke about 18 inches right-to-left downhill. That's the kind of putt I've been hoping to make. That was a really committed stroke. Hopefully I can build on that tomorrow,'' said Rose. ''I know what I need to do to stay at the top of the leaderboard. If I slip up tomorrow, he's (Fleetwood) right there. He's done everything he needs to do on his end, so it's a lot of fun.''

The last player to win three tournaments in a row on the European Tour was Rory McIlroy, when he won the Open Championship, the WGC-Bridgestone and the PGA Championship in 2014.

Fleetwood was 1 over after seven holes but turned it on with a hat trick of birdies from the eighth, and then four in a row from No. 13.

''I wanted to keep going. Let's bring the tee times forward for tomorrow,'' quipped Fleetwood after closing with a birdie on the 18th. ''Just one of them strange days where nothing was going at all. A couple sloppy pars on the par 5s, and a bad tee shot on fifth and I was 1-over through seven on a day where scoring has been really good ... Ninth and 10th, felt like we had something going ... it was a really good last 11 holes.''

If Park is nervous, she sure doesn't show it

By Randall MellNovember 17, 2017, 11:24 pm

NAPLES, Fla. – Sung Hyun Park says she can feel her heart pounding every time she steps to the first tee.

She says she always gets nervous starting a round.

You don’t believe it, though.

She looks like she would be comfortable directing a sky full of Boeing 737s as an air traffic controller at Incheon International Airport . . .

Or talking people off the ledges of skyscrapers . . .

Or disarming ticking bombs . . .

“In terms of golf, I always get nervous,” she insists.

Everything about Park was at odds with that admission Friday, after she took control halfway through the CME Group Tour Championship.

Her Korean nickname is “Dan Gong,” which means “Shut up and attack.” Now that sounds right. That’s what she looks like she is doing, trying to run roughshod through the Tour Championship in a historic sweep of all the LPGA’s most important awards and honors.

Park got just one look at Tiburon Golf Club before this championship began, playing in Wednesday’s pro-am. Then she marched out Thursday and shot 67, then came out Friday and shot 65.

At 12 under overall, Park has a three-shot lead on Caroline Masson and Sarah Jane Smith.

She is six shots up on Lexi Thompson, who leads the CME Globe point standings in the race for the $1 million jackpot.

She is 11 shots up on world No. 1 Shanshan Feng.

And 11 shots up on So Yeon Ryu, who leads the Rolex Player of the Year point standings.


CME Group Tour Championship: Articles, photos and videos

Full-field scores from the CME Group Tour Championship


There’s a long way to go, but Park is in position to make an epic sweep, to win the Tour Championship, that CME Globe jackpot, the Rolex Player of the Year Award, the Rolex Rookie of the Year Award, the Vare Trophy for low scoring average, the LPGA money-winning title and the Rolex world No. 1 ranking.

Nobody’s ever dominated a weekend like that in women’s golf.

It’s all there for the taking now, if Park can keep this going.

Park has another nickname back in South Korea. Her fans call her “Namdalla.” That means “I am different.” She’ll prove that if she owns this weekend.

Park, 24, isn’t assuming anything. She’s humbly aware how much talent is flooding the LPGA, how the tour’s depth was underscored in a year where five different players have reigned as world No. 1, five different players won majors and 22 different winners stepped forward in 32 events.

“I don’t think it’s quite that far a lead,” Park said of her three-shot advantage. “Two, three shots can change at any moment.”

About those nerves that Park insists plague her, even Hall of Famer Judy Rankin can’t see it.

Not when Park unsheathes a driver on a tee box.

“She’s the most fearless driver of the ball out here,” Rankin said. “I would put Lexi a close second and everybody else a distant third. She hits drivers on holes where you shouldn’t, and she hits it long and she just throws it right down there between hazard stakes that are 10 yards apart, like it’s nothing. Now, that’s a little hyperbole, but she will hit driver almost everywhere.”

David Jones, Park’s caddie, will attest to that. He was on Park’s bag when she won the U.S. Women’s Open in July and won the Canadian Pacific Women’s Open in August.

“She reaches for driver a lot because she is a good driver,” Jones said. “She isn’t reckless. She’s as accurate with a driver as she is a 3-wood.”

Park and Thompson played together in the first round. Park is eighth on tour in driving distance, averaging 270 yards per drive, and Thompson is third, averaging 274.

Thompson loves to hit driver, too, but . . . 

“Lexi hit a lot of 3-woods compared to us when we played together yesterday,” Jones said.

Jones doesn’t find himself talking Park out of hitting driver much.

“It’s really simple,” Jones said. “When you hit driver as straight as she does, why mess around?”

Count Golf Channel analyst Brandel Chamblee, a student of the swing, among admirers of Park’s abilities.

“No other swing in the game comes close to her technical perfection and elegance in my opinion,” Chamblee tweeted Friday.

Come Sunday, Park hopes to complete a perfect sweep of the LPGA’s most important awards.

National champion Sooners meet with Trump in D.C.

By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 17, 2017, 11:10 pm

The national champion Oklahoma men's golf team visited Washington D.C. on Frday and met with President Donald Trump.

Oklahoma topped Oregon, 3 1/2 to 1 1/2, in last year's national final at Rich Harvest Farms to win their second national championship and first since 1989.

These pictures from the team's trip to Washington popped up on social media late Friday afternoon: