Shin (66) leads KPMG Women's PGA

By Associated PressJune 11, 2015, 11:55 pm

HARRISON, N.Y. - South Korean Jenny Shin kept moving up the leaderboard, chasing Hall-of-Famer Karrie Webb.

Shin eventually caught her, shooting a bogey-free, 7-under 66 Thursday for a one-stroke lead after the opening round at the KPMG Women's PGA Championship, the second major of the season.

''I was chasing the leaderboard all day, and I was surprised that Webby was at 6 under at one point,'' said the 22-year-old Shin. ''I got there and was like 'Maybe I can get one more on the 18th hole,' and I did.''

Canadian teenager Brooke Henderson had a three-putt bogey on her final hole at the ninth to drop a shot back after Shin birdied No. 18 at the Westchester Country Club.

''I hit it well all day, I'm disappointed with the finish on the last hole,'' said the 17-year-old Henderson, who was playing on a sponsor exemption.

Webb birdied three of the first four holes and finished at 68. The 40-year-old Webb started her round in hazy conditions at No. 10 and shot a 4-under 33 on the opening nine. She had a bogey-free round until she dropped a shot on the seventh when she missed the fairway left and hit the front bunker.

''I hit a wedge to a foot and a half on 10 and that settled me in,'' Webb said. ''Hit the green in two on 12 and had about a 15-footer for eagle. I really put some very solid swings on it early on.''

Shin had five birdies and an eagle on the par-5 15th. She spoke to her sports psychologist on Wednesday night to help calm her nerves.


KPMG Women’s PGA: Articles, videos and photos


''I was freaking out for this round, so I tried to play as comfortable as I can, just like any other tournament,'' Shin said. ''I tried not to think of it as a major and it turned out great. I had a couple of bogey-free rounds last week, so I think I'm on a good run.''

Americans Brittany Lincicome, Lexi Thompson, Cristie Kerr and Stacy Lewis were in a large group that finished four strokes back at 70 in steamy temperatures that reached the mid-80s. Lincicome, the winner of the first major at the ANA Inspiration in April, eagled the par-5 15th and followed with a birdie on 16.

Two-time defending champion Inbee Park shot a 71. Top-ranked teenager Lydia Ko was another stroke back, and Suzann Pettersen, coming off a win in Canada, finished at 74. Michelle Wie, bothered by a hip injury, shot 75.

Shin, who is seeking her first major, had three birdies on the front nine to gain on Webb, a seven-time major winner.

Henderson, who turned pro in December, is below the LPGA Tour's age requirement of 18. But she made the most of her sponsor exemption.

Henderson birdied No. 10, her opening hole, and added birdies at Nos. 3, 5, 6 and 15. For her eagle on the par-5, 274 yard 12th hole, she hit a 7-wood 204 yards and the ball landed three feet from the cup.

Then came the three-putt on her final hole, where she ''tried to hit it a little too hard and had an 8-footer to save par.''

The 29-year-old Lincicome, who is seeking her third major, is one of the longest hitters on the tour. She used a 4-iron from 203 yards out and got within 30 feet for her eagle on the par-5, 497-yard 15th.

''The putt, if I hadn't hit the hole, it probably would have gone off the green,'' she said. ''(My caddie) asked if I had dented the cup.''

Park finished with a birdie on 18, one of five on the day along with a bogey. The South Korean has won five majors, including three straight in 2013.

Kerr had a bogey on the par-5, 551-yard fifth hole and four birdies on the West Course that she often plays when in New York. She's familiar with the sloping greens at the longtime home of the PGA Tour event now called The Barclays.

''The front nine, I had a bunch of chances and a couple putts lipped out,'' Kerr said. ''I just tried to stay patient and got off to a great start on the back nine.''

BIRDIES: Annika Sorenstam, a winner of 10 majors and three Women PGA Championships, said she walked the course. ''It's a tough course, the greens and some blind holes where you really have to commit yourself. The scores are not that low, not many birdies. It will be a typical grinder week.'' ... Lincicome ran into Triple Crown-winning jockey Victor Espinoza at the Mets game on Tuesday night and got a picture with him. ... Playing with Kerr and Jessica Korda, Lincicome bet $5 for every birdie after a slow start. ''Korda birdied the last, so we were tied, unfortunately,'' Lincicome said. ''We just kind of needed something to motivate us to get back in it. We didn't let Kerr in because she was already making too many.''

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Fleetwood rallies to defend Abu Dhabi title

By Will GrayJanuary 21, 2018, 12:48 pm

The 2018 European Tour season has begun just as the 2017 one ended: with Tommy Fleetwood's name atop the standings.

Facing the most difficult conditions of the week, Fleetwood charged down the stretch to shoot a 7-under 65 in the final round of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, good enough for a two-shot win and a successful title defense.

Abu Dhabi was the start of Fleetwood's resurgence a year ago, the first of two European Tour victories en route to the season-long Race to Dubai title. This time around the Englishman started the final round two shots off the lead but rallied with six birdies over his final nine holes to reclaim the trophy.

Fleetwood was five shots behind countryman Ross Fisher when he made made the turn, but he birdied the par-5 10th and then added four birdies in a five-hole stretch from Nos. 12-16. The decisive shot came on the final hole, when his pitch from the left rough nestled within a few feet of the hole for a closing birdie.

Fleetwood's 22-under total left him two shots ahead of Fisher and four shots clear of Rory McIlroy and Matthew Fitzpatrick. After entering the week ranked No. 18, Fleetwood is expected to move to at least No. 12 in the world when the new rankings are published.

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Garcia cruises to five-shot win in Singapore

By Associated PressJanuary 21, 2018, 12:10 pm

SINGAPORE - Sergio Garcia played 27 holes on the last day without dropping a shot to win the Singapore Open by five strokes Sunday in an ominous display of his newfound self-belief as he prepares to defend his Masters title.

Still brimming with confidence after claiming his first major title at Augusta National last year, Garcia started his new season with a runaway victory at the Sentosa Golf Club, finishing at 14-under 270.

Returning to the course just after dawn to complete his third round after play was suspended on Saturday because of lightning strikes, Garcia finished his last nine holes in 4 under for a round of 66 to take a one-shot lead into the final round.

With organizers desperate to avert the constant threat of more bad weather and finish the tournament on time, Garcia promptly returned to the first tee shortly after and fired a flawless 3-under 68, cruising to victory with 10 straight pars as his rivals floundered in the stifling humidity.

''It may have looked easy, but it wasn't easy. You still have to hit a lot of good shots out there,'' Garcia said. ''It's always great to start with a win, to do it here at this golf course against a good field in Asia on conditions that weren't easy. Hopefully I can ride on this momentum.''

Garcia's closest rivals at the end were Japan's Satoshi Kodaira (71) and South African Shaun Norris (70). Both birdied the last hole to share second spot but neither was ever close enough on the last day to challenge the leader.


Full-field scores from the Singapore Open


''I could not reach Sergio. I was thinking, 12 or 13 under for the win, but he went beyond that,'' Kodaira said.

Jazz Janewattananond (71) and his fellow Thai Danthai Bonnma (73) finished equal fourth at 8 under, earning themselves a spot in this year's British Open, while American Sean Crocker, who was given an invitation to the event after turning pro late last year, also won a place at Carnoustie by finishing in a tie for sixth.

Garcia made just three bogeys in 72 holes and his victory provided the 38-year-old with the 33rd title of his professional career and his sixth on the Asian Tour.

He has also won three titles in the last 12 months, including the Masters, and his game looks to be in better shape now than it was a year ago.

He credits the Singapore Open as having played a part in toughening him up for Augusta National because of the steamy conditions and the testing stop-start nature of the tournament, which is regularly stopped because of inclement weather.

Although he finished tied for 11th in Singapore a year ago, Garcia won the Dubai Desert Classic the next week and was in peak form when he won the Masters two months later.

"I'm extremely happy with how the week went. It was a tough day and a tough week, with the stopping and going. Fortunately, the weather held on. Still, it was hard to play 27 holes under this heat and I can't wait to get a cold shower,'' Garcia said. ''I came with some good confidence and wishing that I will play well. I hit the ball solid the whole week and didn't miss many shots.''

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Kelly beats Monty with two-shot swing on final hole

By Associated PressJanuary 21, 2018, 3:21 am

KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii – Jerry Kelly made an 18-foot birdie putt on the final hole, Colin Montgomerie missed a 6-footer for par and Kelly turned a one-shot deficit into a victory Saturday in the Mitsubishi Electric Championship, the season opener on the PGA Tour Champions.

After Kelly drove it well right into lava rocks on the par-4 16th, leading to bogey and giving Montgomerie the lead, Montgomerie made a mistake with his tee shot on the last, finding a fairway bunker. Montgomerie's approach went over the green and after Kelly converted his birdie, the 54-year-old Scot jammed his par putt well past the hole.


Full-field scores from the Mitsubishi Electric Championship


It was the third win on the over-50 tour for the 51-year-old Kelly, who finished tied for 14th last week at the PGA Tour's Sony Open in Honolulu. That gave him confidence as he hopped over to the Big Island for his tournament debut at Hualalai. The limited-field event includes winners from last season, past champions of the event, major champions and Hall of Famers.

Kelly closed with a 6-under 66 for a three-day total of 18-under 198. Montgomerie shot 69. David Toms shot 67 and finished two shots back, and Miguel Angel Jimenez was another stroke behind after a 66.

Bernhard Langer, defending the first of his seven 2017 titles, closed with a 70 to finish at 10 under.

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Rahm manages frustration, two back at CareerBuilder

By Randall MellJanuary 21, 2018, 1:21 am

Jon Rahm managed the winds and his frustrations Saturday at the CareerBuilder Challenge to give himself a chance to win his fourth worldwide title in the last year.

Rahm’s 2-under-par 70 on the PGA West Stadium Course left him two shots off the lead going into the final round.

“I wasn’t really dealing with the wind that much,” Rahm said of his frustrations. “I was dealing with not being as fluid as I was the last two days.”


Full-field scores from the Career Builder Challenge

CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos


The world’s No. 3 ranked player opened with a 62 at La Quinta Country Club on Thursday and followed it up with a 67 on Friday at PGA West. He made six birdies and four bogeys on the Stadium Course on Saturday.

“The first day, everything was outstanding,” Rahm said. “Yesterday, my driver was a little shaky but my irons shots were perfect. Today, my driver was shaky and my irons shots were shaky. On a course like this, it’s punishing, but luckily on the holes where I found the fairway I was able to make birdies.”

Rahm is projected to move to No. 2 in the world rankings with a finish of sixth or better on Sunday.