Tway holds one-shot lead over Armour III

By Associated PressJune 11, 2011, 8:03 pm

CONOVER, N.C. – Bob Tway decided to try the Champions Tour because he still enjoyed playing competitive golf. What disappeared in the shift from the PGA Tour was the intense pressure to win.

Two years later, the 1986 PGA Championship winner is about to test his new, relaxed persona.

Tway, the overnight leader, fired a 5-under 67 Saturday to move to 14 under and maintain a one-shot lead over Tommy Armour III in the Greater Hickory Classic. One more low round on a hot, humid weekend at Rock Barn and Tway could capture his first victory on the 50-and-over circuit.

“Of course, you should be a little nervous. That’s why you do it,” the 52-year-old Tway said. “But I may not be quite the same as I was on the other tour. I’d still like to win tournaments, no doubt after that.”

He’ll have plenty of competition.

Armour’s recent resurgence continued with four birdies over the final six holes for a 67. James Mason, looking to become the 12th Monday qualifier to win on the circuit, shot 65 and was two shots back along with Chip Beck (65), Mark Wiebe (68) and Mark O’Meara (67).

Nick Price, who overcame a double-bogey, Jeff Sluman and Mike Goodes sat three strokes behind and 29 golfers were within six shots of the lead.

“The guys are lighting it up,” said O’Meara, playing the event for the first time.

The intense heat – the temperature soared into the 90s Saturday – has tamed Rock Barn. Tway acknowledged how the course’s grounds crew has had to “baby the greens” with water while the fairways remained firm. That’s allowed golfers to target the flagstick on nearly every hole, with balls usually stopping on impact.

Tom Kite was the first to show just how low you could go. He had three eagles in five holes and posted a 28 before making the turn. Thoughts of a possible 59 faded with a bogey on his 10th hole and he sat six shots back.

After needing only 23 putts in a round of 63 on Friday, Tway wasn’t so hot with the putter a day later, where making par felt almost like you were going backward. He still managed seven birdies, including on 18 for the second straight day.

“It’s a birdie-fest,” Tway said. “You’ve got to just keep going.”

That’s been Mason’s attitude all year.

The Georgia native, whose lone victory came as a qualifier in his first season on the 50-and-over tour in 2002, lost his full-time playing privileges heading into the year. Then he turned 60 in January and started wondering about his future.

“I said as soon as I go downhill with my playing ability then I’ll certainly give it up,” Mason said. “I made a commitment this year that I was going to go to every qualifier I could go to and then evaluate it after the year.”

Mason had been 0 for 5 in Monday qualifiers, including failing to make the field last week in Iowa, yet was encouraged by his play in a few mini-tour events. It all came together when he fired a 62 on Monday that included an ace.

“I’m just delighted to be here,” Mason said. “Once I got into the tournament I felt fairly at ease.”

That showed in a bogey-free 67 on Friday. Then he heated up on the back nine Saturday in a round that included just 22 putts.

Mason holed out from the fairway for eagle on the par-5 14th to take the lead at 11 under. He gained another stroke with a birdie on 17, and suddenly Mason had earned a spot in the final threesome Sunday.

“I’m just going to try to go out there and not choke, I guess,” he said.

Tway won eight times on the PGA Tour – the last in 2003 at the Canadian Open. But he isn’t sure how he’ll react entering the final day with the lead.

“It’s hard to tell,” he said. “Relaxation is always a huge key to anything. I guess in what they call our second chance or whatever, the main thing is to just enjoy the process.”

Rose wins; Aphibarnrat earns Masters bid in Indonesia

By Will GrayDecember 17, 2017, 1:59 pm

Justin Rose continued his recent run of dominance in Indonesia, while Kiradech Aphibarnrat snagged a Masters invite with some 72nd-hole dramatics.

Rose cruised to an eight-shot victory at the Indonesian Masters, carding bookend rounds of 10-under 62 that featured a brief run at a 59 during the final round. The Englishman was the highest-ranked player in the field and he led wire-to-wire, with Thailand's Phachara Khongwatmai finishing second.

Rose closes out the year as perhaps the hottest player in the world, with top-10 finishes in each of his final 10 worldwide starts. That stretch includes three victories, as Rose also won the WGC-HSBC Champions and Turkish Airlines Open. He hasn't finished outside the top 10 in a tournament since missing the cut at the PGA Championship.

Meanwhile, it took until the final hole of the final tournament of 2017 for Aphibarnrat to secure a return to the Masters. The Thai entered the week ranked No. 56 in the world, with the top 50 in the year-end world rankings earning invites to Augusta National. Needing an eagle on the 72nd hole, Aphibarnrat got just that to snag solo fifth place.

It means that he is projected to end the year ranked No. 49, while Japan's Yusaku Miyazato - who started the week ranked No. 58 and finished alone in fourth - is projected to finish No. 50. Aphibarnrat finished T-15 in his Masters debut in 2016, while Miyazato will make his first appearance in the spring.

The results in Indonesia mean that American Peter Uihlein and South Africa's Dylan Frittelli are projected to barely miss the year-end, top-50 cutoff. Their options for Masters qualification will include winning a full-point PGA Tour event in early 2018 or cracking the top 50 by the final March 25 cutoff.

Cabreras take 1-shot lead in Father/Son

By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 11:23 pm

ORLANDO, Fla. - Two-time major champion Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. birdied their last three holes for a 13-under 59 to take a one-shot lead Saturday in the PNC Father-Son Challenge.

Cabrera, a Masters and U.S. Open champion, is making his debut in this popular 36-hole scramble. His son said he practiced hard for 10 days. What helped put him at ease was watching his father make so many putts.

''We combined very well,'' Cabrera said. ''When I hit a bad shot, he hit a good one. That's the key.''

They had a one-shot lead over Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara, who are playing for the first time. That included a birdie on the last hole, which O'Meara attributed to the strength of his son.

''My little man hit it 58 yards by me on the 18th,'' said O'Meara, the Masters and British Open champion in 1998. ''It's a little easier coming in with a 6-iron.''

Defending champions David Duval and Nick Karavites rallied over the back nine at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club for a 61. They are trying to become the first father-son team to repeat as winners since Bernhard and Stefan Langer in 2006. Larry Nelson won two years in a row in 2007 and 2008, but with different sons.

''I'd imagine we have to break 60 tomorrow to have a chance to win, but hey, stranger things have happened,'' Duval said. ''I've even done it myself.''

Duval shot 59 at the Bob Hope Classic to win in 1999 on his way to reaching No. 1 in the world that year.

Duval and his stepson were tied with Bernhard Langer and 17-year-old Jason Langer, who made two eagles on the last five holes. This Langer tandem won in 2014.

Jack Nicklaus, playing with grandson G.T., opened with a 68.

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Woods' 2018 schedule coming into focus ... or is it?

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 16, 2017, 5:46 pm

Two weeks after his successful return to competition at the Hero World Challenge, Tiger Woods’ 2018 schedule may be coming into focus.

Golfweek reported on Saturday that Woods hopes to play the Genesis Open in February according to an unidentified source with “direct knowledge of the situation.”

Woods’ agent Mark Steinberg declined to confirm the 14-time major champion would play the event and told that Woods – who underwent fusion surgery to his lower back in April – is still formulating his ’18 schedule.

Woods’ foundation is the host organization for the Genesis Open and the event supports the Tiger Woods Learning Center in Anaheim, Calif.

The Genesis Open would be Woods’ first start on the PGA Tour since he missed the cut last January at the Farmers Insurance Open.

Rose weathering delayed Indonesian Masters

By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 3:52 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead after eight holes of the third round Saturday when play was suspended for the day due to bad weather at the Indonesian Masters.

Rose was 3-under on the day and led his playing partners Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Scott Vincent. The Englishman led both players by a stroke after the second round was completed Saturday morning due to weather delays on Friday.

Brandt Snedeker withdrew with apparent heat exhaustion on Friday on the 11th hole of the second round. Ranked 51st in the world, he flew to Jakarta looking to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters.