Seven Players Tied in NY Wie Solid Start

By Associated PressJune 19, 2008, 4:00 pm
LPGA Tour _newROCHESTER, N.Y. -- Japans Ai Miyazato, celebrating her 23rd birthday, shot a 4-under 68 on Thursday to join Cristie Kerr and five South Korean players atop the crowded leaderboard at the Wegmans LPGA.
 
I think it was a good start to my birthday. I want to win a tournament this year, said Miyazato, one of the biggest female stars in Japanese sports history but winless in 56 career starts on the LPGA Tour.
 
Jeong Jang, Inbee Park, Song-Hee Kim, Jimin Jeong and Soo-Yun Kang, who holed a 9-wood shot for an ace on the 165-yard seventh hole, also shot 68s.
 
Kerr, a nine-time tour winner preparing for her title defense next week in the U.S. Womens Open, is especially mindful of the South Koreans passion'and flair.
 
Theyre all good and theyre all young. Its pretty amazing, she said.
 
Morgan Pressel, Becky Lucidi, Swedens Helen Alfredsson and South Koreas Hee-Won Han, Na On Min, Kyeong Bae and Young-A Yang opened with 69s.
 
Defending champion Lorena Ochoa, the No. 1 player in womens golf, carded an even-par 72 in cool, blustery conditions at the tight, tree-lined Locust Hill course, one better than Annika Sorenstam. Michelle Wie, who is ranked 200th in the world and received a sponsor exemption, shot a 71.
 
Ochoa, who won in Rochester in 2005 and 2007, is seeking her seventh win this season. With $1.9 million in earnings, she has a half-million-dollar lead over Sorenstam, whose best finish in four tries here was a second place in 1996.
 
It was a mostly overcast day and, except for an occasional sprinkle, the rain held off until the early evening.
 
Kerr said she had a flare-up of neck issues that have dogged her for the last six or seven years. She also held the first-round lead last year despite battling a severe head cold.
 
Beware of the wounded, she said.
 
Sandwiched between two majors'the U.S. Womens Open is at Interlachen Country Club in Edina, Minn.'the $2 million tournament drew 88 of the top 100 money winners. Among them were rookie Yani Tseng (72) of Taiwan, whose victory at the LPGA Championship two weeks ago dashed Ochoas chances of capturing a third consecutive major.
 
A 14-time champion on the Japanese tour, Miyazato has accumulated 13 top-10 finishes in the last two years, her best outing a runner-up spot to Seon Hwa Lee last July in the HSBC Womens Match Play Championship.
 
The highlight of her bogey-free round was a 21-foot birdie putt on No. 18' her ninth hole'but she lost a chance to take an outright lead on the last hole, missing a 9-footer for birdie on the par-3 ninth.
 
I hit it too hard and try to hole it instead of concentrating on my stroke, she said.
 
While she has missed the cut in four of 12 outings this year'her season-best performance a tie for 14th at the SemGroup Championship in May' Miyazato is happy with her progress. I do feel Im in a really good rhythm, she said.
 
Jang chipped in from 117 yards for an eagle on No. 12. Although dogged by arthritis and cysts in her right wrist, the 2005 Womens British Open champion said she feels propelled by a lot of good memories of her triumph here in 2006'her second tour victory.
 
I didnt win (on tour) last year and this year, and I have a couple of seconds. Maybe Im ready, she said.
 
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    Day's wife shares emotional story of miscarriage

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 4:12 pm

    Jason Day’s wife revealed on social media that the couple had a miscarriage last month.

    Ellie Day, who announced her pregnancy on Nov. 4, posted an emotional note on Instagram that she lost the baby on Thanksgiving.

    “I found out the baby had no heartbeat anymore. I was devastated,” she wrote. “I snuck out the back door of my doctor, a hot, sobbing, mascara-covered mess. Two and a half weeks went by witih me battling my heart and brain about what was happening in my body, wondering why this wouldn’t just be over.”

    The Days, who have two children, Dash and Lucy, decided to go public to help others who have suffered similar heartbreak.

    “I hope you know you aren’t alone and I hope you feel God wrap his arms around you when you feel the depths of sorrow and loss,” she wrote.  

    Newsmaker of the Year: No. 5, Sergio Garcia

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 1:00 pm

    This was the year it finally happened for Sergio Garcia.

    The one-time teen phenom, known for years as “El Nino,” entered the Masters as he had dozens of majors beforehand – shouldered with the burden of being the best player without a major.

    Garcia was 0-for-72 driving down Magnolia Lane in April, but after a thrilling final round and sudden-death victory over Justin Rose, the Spaniard at long last captured his elusive first major title.

    The expectation for years was that Garcia might land his white whale on a British links course, or perhaps at a U.S. Open where his elite ball-striking might shine. Instead it was on the storied back nine at Augusta National that he came alive, chasing down Rose thanks in part to a memorable approach on No. 15 that hit the pin and led to an eagle.


    Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year


    A green jacket was only the start of a transformative year for Garcia, 37, who heaped credit for his win on his then-fiancee, Angela Akins. The two were married in July, and months later the couple announced that they were expecting their first child to arrive just ahead of Garcia’s return to Augusta, where he'll host his first champions’ dinner.

    And while players often cling to the notion that a major win won’t intrinsically change them, there was a noticeable difference in Garcia over the summer months. The weight of expectation, conscious or otherwise, seemed to lift almost instantly. Like other recent Masters champs, he took the green jacket on a worldwide tour, with stops at Wimbledon and a soccer match between Real Madrid and Barcelona.

    The player who burst onto the scene as a baby-faced upstart is now a grizzled veteran with nearly two decades of pro golf behind him. While the changes this year occurred both on and off the course, 2017 will always be remembered as the year when Garcia finally, improbably, earned the title of major champion.


    Masters victory


    Article: Garcia defeats Rose to win Masters playoff

    Article: Finally at peace: Garcia makes major breakthrough

    Article: Garcia redeems career, creates new narrative


    Video: See the putt that made Sergio a major champ


    Green jacket tour

    Article: Take a look at Sergio's crazy, hectic media tour

    Article: Garcia with fiancée, green jacket at Wimbledon

    Article: Watch: Garcia kicks off El Clasico in green jacket


    Man of the people


    Article: SERGIO! Garcia finally gets patrons on his side

    Article: Fan finally caddies for Sergio after asking 206 times

    Article: Sergio donates money for Texas flood relief


    Article: Connelly, Garcia paired years after photo together


    Ace at 17th at Sawgrass


    Growing family

    Article: Sergio, Angela get married; Kenny G plays reception

    Article: Garcia, wife expecting first child in March 2018


    Departure from TaylorMade


    Article: Masters champ Garcia splits with TaylorMade


    Squashed beef with Paddy

    Article: Harrington: Garcia was a 'sore loser'

    Article: Sergio, Padraig had 'great talk,' are 'fine'


    Victory at Valderrama


    Article: Garcia gets first win since Masters at Valderrama

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    Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 12:30 pm
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    Montana parents can't watch kids play high school golf

    By Grill Room TeamDecember 11, 2017, 9:47 pm

    Well, this is a one new one.

    According to a report from KTVQ in Montana, this line in the Montana State High School Association rule book all but forbids spectators from observing high school golf in that state:

    “No spectators/fans are allowed on the course except for certain locations as designated by the tournament manager and club professional.”

    Part of the issue, according to the report, is that most courses don't bother to designate those "certain locations" leaving parents unable to watch their kids compete.

    “If you tell a parent that they can’t watch their kid play in the Thanksgiving Day football game, they would riot,” Chris Kelley, a high school golf parent, told KTVQ.

    The report lists illegal outside coaching as one of the rule's chief motivations, but Montana State women's golf coach Brittany Basye doesn't quite buy that.

    “I can go to a softball game and I can sit right behind the pitcher. I can make hand signals,” she is quoted in the report. “I can yell out names. I can do the same thing on a softball field that might affect that kid. Football games we can yell as loud as we want when someone is making a pass or a catch.”

    The MHSA has argued that unlike other sports that are played in a confined area, the sprawling nature of a golf course would make it difficult to hire enough marshals to keep unruly spectators in check.

    Meanwhile, there's a lawyer quoted in the report claiming this is some kind of civil rights issue.

    Worth note, Montana is one of only two states that doesn't allow spectators on the course. The other state, Alaska, does not offer high school golf.