Poor Play Sends DiMarco Packing

By Associated PressJune 17, 2005, 4:00 pm
PINEHURST, N.C. -- In his last two majors, Chris DiMarco was just a hair away from winning. In this one, he wasn't even close to making the cut.
DiMarco, a playoff runner-up at the most recent PGA and Masters, shot a 12-over-par 82 Friday in the second round of the U.S. Open to join Padraig Harrington as one of the few top contenders not able to stick around for the weekend.
DiMarco's score of 153 missed the cut by five strokes, and he did not make himself available for interviews afterward.
At the Open, the cut is the top 60 and ties, plus everyone within 10 strokes of the lead. That was 8 over par this year, and 83 players made it.
Among them was Davis Love III, who stood at 11-over after his first 27 holes and had every reason to believe his four birdies over the final nine holes wouldn't be enough to save him. Turns out, they did - with a stroke to spare.
Likewise, Mike Weir probably didn't think his birdie to close things out and finish at 7-over 147 meant much, but it did. The 2003 Masters champion will be around for the final two rounds.
'Whatever it does, it gives me something to build on,' Weir said following his round, hours before the cut line was established. 'Knowing you have to hit a good shot and to pull it off shows I've been battling. When my game comes around, I'll be OK.'
Others who extended their stay include two-time U.S. Open champion Lee Janzen, who finished at 7-over.
'I'd like to play on the weekend,' he said. 'If I can inch toward red numbers, who knows what can happen.'
Peter Jacobsen, the 51-year-old who won the U.S. Senior Open last year, is also staying, just seven strokes off the lead at 145. He made the cut for the 14th time in 16 U.S. Opens, although this was his first Open since 1996.
'I'm not surprised at all,' Jacobsen said. 'If you check my record, I'm pretty good in U.S. Opens. I drive it pretty straight. I'm real good around the greens, and I think the one thing that's in my advantage is attitude. I'm pretty patient.'
John Daly, Colin Montgomerie, Bernhard Langer and Stewart Cink were among a group of 15 at 7-over. Frank Lickliter, Chad Campbell and J.P. Hayes were the most fortunate, finishing at 8-over and getting the chance at a paycheck, even though they were in a 12-way tie for 72nd.
The 83 making the cut were still 25 short of the record set in 1996, but still not enough for Derek Brown of Walnut Cove, the only native North Carolinian playing at Pinehurst this week. He finished at 9-over.
'This is all a learning experience for me this year,' he said before he knew what the cut line would be. 'It's just great to be here. If I make the cut, it'll be awesome. That was my goal for the week.'
Others going home include David Duval, Tom Lehman, Len Mattiace, Rich Beem and Ben Curtis.
Ranked 11th in the world, Harrington was probably the biggest surprise outside of eighth-ranked DiMarco, who extended his strange connection with Tom Watson in the majors.
DiMarco became the first player to lose two straight playoffs in majors since Watson in 1978-79. In the tournament after Watson's second loss - the 1979 U.S. Open - he too missed the cut.
Related links:
  • Leaderboard - 105th U.S. Open
  • Full Coverage - 105th U.S. Open

    Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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    What's in the bag: CareerBuilder winner Rahm

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 22, 2018, 10:37 pm

    Jon Rahm defeated Andrew Landry in a playoff to earn his second PGA Tour title at the CareerBuilder Challenge. Here's what's in his bag:

    Driver: TaylorMade M4 (9.5 degrees), with Aldila Tour Green 75 TX shaft

    Fairway wood: TaylorMade M3 (19 degrees), with Aldila Tour Green 75 TX shaft

    Irons: TaylorMade P790 (3), P750 (4-PW), with Project X 6.5 shafts

    Wedges: TaylorMade Milled Grind (52, 56 degrees), Milled Grind Hi-Toe (60 degrees), with Project X 6.5 shafts

    Putter: TaylorMade Spider Tour Red

    Ball: TaylorMade TP5x

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    Strange irked by Rahm-Landry friendly playoff

    By Jason CrookJanuary 22, 2018, 9:45 pm

    Curtis Strange knows a thing or two about winning golf tournaments, and based on his reaction to the CareerBuilder Challenge playoff on Sunday, it’s safe to say he did things a little differently while picking up 17 PGA Tour victories in his Hall-of-Fame career.

    While Jon Rahm and Andrew Landry were “battling” through four extra holes, Strange, 62, tweeted his issues with the duo’s constant chit-chat and friendly banter down the stretch at La Quinta Country Club, where Rahm eventually came out on top.

    The two-time U.S. Open champ then engaged with some followers to explain his point a little more in depth.

    So, yeah ... don't think he's changing his perspective on this topic anytime soon ever.

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    Randall's Rant: The Euros won't just roll over

    By Randall MellJanuary 22, 2018, 9:36 pm

    The Ryder Cup may not be the King Kong of golf events yet, but you can hear the biennial international team event thumping its chest a full eight months out.

    As anticipation for this year’s big events goes, there is more buzz about Europe’s bid to hold off a rejuvenated American effort in Paris in September than there is about the Masters coming up in April.

    Thank Europe’s phenomenal success last weekend for that.

    And Rory McIlroy’s impassioned remarks in Abu Dhabi.

    And the provocative bulletin board material a certain Sports Illustrated writer provided the Europeans a couple months ago, with a stinging assault on the Euro chances that read like an obituary.

    McIlroy was asked in a news conference before his 2018 debut last week what he was most excited about this year.

    The Ryder Cup topped his list.

    Though McIlroy will be trying to complete the career Grand Slam at Augusta National come April, he talked more about the Ryder Cup than he did any of the game’s major championships.

    When asked a follow-up about the American team’s resurgence after a task-force overhaul and the injection of young, new star power, McIlroy nearly started breaking down the matchup. He talked about the young Americans and how good they are.

    “Yeah, the Americans have been, obviously, very buoyant about their chances and whatever, but it’s never as easy as that. ... The Ryder Cup’s always close,” McIlroy said. “I think we’ll have a great team, and it definitely won’t be as easy as they think it’s going to be.”

    McIlroy may have been talking about Alan Shipnuck’s bold prediction after the American Presidents Cup rout last fall.

    Or similar assertions from TV analysts.

    “The Ryder Cup is dead – you just don’t know it yet,” Shipnuck wrote. “One of the greatest events in sport is on the verge of irrelevancy. The young, talented, hungry golfers from the United States, benefitting from the cohesive leadership of the Task Force era, are going to roll to victory in 2018 in Paris.”

    European Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn won’t find words that will motivate the Euros more than that as he watches his prospective players jockey to make the team.

    And, boy, did they jockey last weekend.

    The Euros dominated across the planet, not that they did it with the Ryder Cup as some rallying cry, because they didn’t. But it was a heck of an encouraging start to the year for Bjorn to witness.

    Spain’s Jon Rahm won the CareerBuilder Challenge on the PGA Tour, England’s Tommy Fleetwood started the week at Abu Dhabi paired with American and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson and won the European Tour event, and Spain’s Sergio Garcia won the Singapore Open in a rout on the Asian Tour.

    And McIlroy looked close to being in midseason form, tying for third in his first start in three months.

    Yes, it’s only January, and the Ryder Cup is still a long way off, with so much still to unfold, but you got an early sense from McIlroy how much defending European turf will mean to him and the Euros in Paris in September.

    The Masters is great theater, the U.S. Open a rigorous test, The Open and the PGA Championship historically important, too, but the Ryder Cup touches a nerve none of those do.

    The Ryder Cup stokes more fervor, provokes more passion and incites more vitriol than any other event in golf.

    More bulletin board material, too.

    Yeah, it’s a long way off, but you can already hear the Ryder Cup’s King Kong like footsteps in its distant approach. Watching how the American and European teams come together will be an ongoing drama through spring and summer.

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    Quail Hollow officials promise players easier conditions

    By Rex HoggardJanuary 22, 2018, 9:14 pm

    Quail Hollow Club - a staple on the PGA Tour since 2003 - debuted as a longer, tougher version of itself at last year’s PGA Championship, receiving mixed reviews from players.

    The course played to a lengthened 7,600 yards at last year’s PGA and a 73.46 stroke average, the toughest course in relation to par on Tour in 2017. As a result, it left some players less than excited to return to the Charlotte, N.C.-area layout later this spring for the Wells Fargo Championship.

    It’s that lack of enthusiasm that led officials at Quail Hollow to send a video to players saying, essentially, that the course players have lauded for years will be back in May.

    The video, which includes Quail Hollow president Johnny Harris and runs nearly five minutes, begins with an explanation of how the first hole, which played as a 524-yard par 4 at the PGA, will play much shorter at the Wells Fargo Championship.

    “I had a number of my friends who were playing in the tournament tell me that tee was better suited as a lemonade stand,” Harris joked of the new tee box on the fourth hole. “I doubt we’ll ever see that tee used again in competition.”

    Harris also explained that the greens, which became too fast for some, will be “softer” for this year’s Wells Fargo Championship.