Rains soften Oakmont scores drop

By Associated PressJuly 12, 2010, 4:33 am

2010 U.S. Women

OAKMONT, Pa. – Before the U.S. Women’s Open began, this seemed like a safe prediction: No golfer will shoot a 65 at tough-to-crack Oakmont Country Club, one of the world’s most difficult courses.

Somehow, it happened.

Song-Hee Kim, down 14 shots to leader Paula Creamer when the final round began, shot by far the lowest round of the tournament with a 6-under 65 on Sunday. Until then, the best round was Brittany Lang’s 69 in the first round. Kim had seven birdies and a single bogey.

Na Yeon Choi was right behind her with a 66 that tied her for second with Suzann Pettersen.

There were 13 sub-par rounds Sunday as a course softened up by Friday’s rain finally yielded some good scores. By comparison, there were only 10 such scores combined in the first three rounds, with only two in the second round.

Even with all those good scores, Creamer – the winner by four shots – was the only golfer to finish below par for the tournament at 3-under 281.

Blame the overall high scores on the hot, dry weather that preceded the tournament and baked Oakmont’s already fast greens. Credit the good scores for the two inches of rain that fell Friday and pushed back most of the second round to Saturday.

“Everybody’s more comfortable with the greens’ speed,” said Jiyai Shin, whose 3-under 68 tied her for fifth. “A couple of days ago was the huge rain, so after that rain the green’s a little bit soft. So we can hit, (take) aggressive shots at every hole, so that makes for good scores.”

Lang, who tied for fifth, didn’t want to guess what the scores might have been if the dry weather and 90-degree heat had continued all weekend.

“If they don’t get that rain, the scores would have been way higher, no question,” she said. “No question.”

NOT HER TIME: The youngest golfer to win the U.S. Women’s Open was Inbee Park, who was 19 when she won two years ago.

Imagine someone four years younger doing it.

Alexis Thompson did, even if reality didn’t match her vision.

After her 1-under 70 on Saturday left her five shots off the lead, Thompson –  only 15, but playing in her fourth Women’s Open – nonchalantly suggested she thought she could win.

Any realistic chance of doing so vanished with her double bogey Sunday on No. 1, putting her seven shots out of the lead. However, the self-confidence and poise she displayed suggested there will be many more majors awaiting her.

Thompson, known as Lexi, tied for 10th after a final-round 73 left her at 6 over for the tournament.

She’s already getting an early start on her career. Thompson recently turned pro, doing so a year earlier than Michelle Wie did. She plans to petition the LPGA to allow her to play full-time, even though the tour doesn’t permit those younger than 18 from doing so.

“She hits it a long way,” said playing partner Suzann Pettersen, who tied for second. “She’s 15 and she’s the best 15-year-old I’ve ever seen.”

KERR-PLUNK: There was no repeat major win for Cristie Kerr, two weeks after her record-setting rout in which she won the LPGA Championship by 12 shots.

Kerr was close to the lead after starting 72-71, but a third-round 75 put her six shots out. Another 75 made certain she wouldn’t contend.

Kerr tried to make a move Sunday with birdies on Nos. 2 and 3, but she followed that surge with four bogeys during the final six holes of her front nine.

“Umm, I played terrible,” Kerr said. “I chunked the 3-wood, I topped the 3-wood. So something’s going a little haywire in my swing. I’ll work it out with my coach.”

Asked which holes gave her the most problems, she said, “All of them. Even hitting good shots, I just ended up making mistakes.”

Kerr won the 2007 Women’s Open, the last time an American won the most prestigious tournament in women’s golf before Creamer won.

“I think we can all finally stop answering, when are the Americans going to come up to the challenge?” Kerr said. “Because winning the last two majors is pretty impressive.”

MAJOR TITLES: The major winners to date this year are Creamer, Kerr and Yani Tseng, the Taiwan native who won the Kraft Nabisco.

Creamer won the U.S. Open after tying for 42nd in the LPGA Championship. Tseng tied for 10th in the U.S. Open and 19th in the LPGA Championship.

The final major of the year is the Women’s British Open in Southport, England, from July 29-Aug. 1.

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Angela hits Sergio in stride on field at Superdome

By Grill Room TeamDecember 18, 2017, 3:22 pm

Sergio and Angela Garcia's super 2017 keeps getting more ... Super ... Dome. (+1 awful blog lede.)

The couple started the year with Sergio's win at the Masters, then embarked on a whirlwind green jacket media tour, then kicked off El Clasico, then attended Wimbledon, then got married, then announced they were expecting their first child ...

2017 Newsmaker of the Year: No. 5, Sergio Garcia

And now, they're throwing each other passes on the New Orleans Saints' home turf at the Superdome.

Man, it must be so cool do that at the Silverdome. ... ... ... I'm sorry, it is the Superdome, brothers.

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 1, Justin Thomas

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 18, 2017, 1:00 pm

He won a major, captured the FedExCup and was named the PGA Tour’s Player of the Year. It should come as no surprise that Justin Thomas holds the top spot on our Newsmakers list for 2017.

Thomas entered the year ranked outside the top 20, and few might have pegged him for a transcendent campaign. But he kicked off January with a win in Hawaii, added another before leaving the Aloha State and never looked back.

Thomas’ seminal moment came in August when he captured the PGA Championship at Quail Hollow for his breakthrough major title. One month after greeting Jordan Spieth behind the final green at Royal Birkdale, this time it was Thomas’ turn to have friends stick around to snap pictures with the trophy that signaled his arrival among golf’s upper echelon.

Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year

In addition to racking up the hardware – five in total, including the inaugural CJ Cup at Nine Bridges in his first start of the new wraparound season – Thomas dazzled with style. His runaway win at the Sony Open included an opening-round 59, and his third-round 63 at Erin Hills marked the first time anyone had ever shot 9 under on a U.S. Open venue.

Thomas’ consistency was rewarded at East Lake, when a runner-up finish at the Tour Championship netted him the season-long title and $10 million prize. It was in the subsequent press conference where he shared the goals list he had written into his cell phone in February, having ticked off nearly every one. It showed a dedicated attention to detail as well the tactical approach with which Thomas had steered his rapid ascent.

Heading into a new year, he’s now very clearly entrenched as one of the world’s best. And as his career progresses, it’s likely we’ll look back at 2017 as the point where Thomas first transformed great potential into eye-popping results.

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Record Round No. 1: 59 at the Sony Open

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Record Round No. 2: 63 at the U.S. Open

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Best of: Justin Thomas and Jillian Wisniewski

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Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 18, 2017, 12:30 pm

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.