Wie goes two and out again

By Associated PressJuly 11, 2010, 3:12 am

2010 U.S. Women

OAKMONT, Pa. – It wouldn’t have been difficult envisioning Michelle Wie, Eun-Hee Ji and Se Ri Pak being grouped together near the top of the U.S. Women’s Open leaderboard not that long ago.

Like, maybe last year.

Instead, none of the three top golfers was within a Pennsylvania Turnpike toll lane’s length of the lead as the second round concluded Saturday and the third round began. That turnpike, by the way, cuts directly through the middle of Oakmont Country Club.

Wie needed 69 putts to get through her two rounds of 82-76-158, putting her 16-over during her worst performance in the tournament. She didn’t come close to reaching the cut line of 10-over 152.

She might have been headed to a higher score in 2007, but withdrew early in the second round while she was 17 over par.

Wie led the U.S. Women’s Open after three rounds at age 15 in 2005 and tied for third a year later, but hasn’t made the cut since then.

She withdrew in ’07, missed the cut in ’08 and failed to qualify last year. Wie also hasn’t placed in the Top 10 in a major since 2006, after doing so in seven of the first 11 majors she played.

Asked to assess her latest U.S. Women’s Open, she said: “Complete fail.” She hasn’t had many grades like that at Stanford, where she has two years remaining.

Pak, the 1998 winner, also missed the cut after going 77-78-155. Ji, last year’s winner at Saucon Valley in eastern Pennsylvania, extended her season-long struggles with a remade swing by barely making the cut at 152.

Obviously, some golfers couldn’t regain their games after play was suspended by rain on Friday.

M.J. Hur, one shot off the lead at 1-under 70 following the first round, ballooned to a 10-over 81. Inbee Park, the youngest winner in tournament history at age 19 in 2008, also had a 70 in the first round only to fall out of contention with a second-round 78.

Five amateurs made the cut. 

A blatant ploy to attract spectator support, or merely a merchandising tactic?

Sophie Gustafson wore a Pittsburgh Pirates logo on her cap and shirt as she concluded the second round Saturday, but she probably doesn’t know much about Andrew McCutchen or Evan Meek. She’s also never seen a Pirates game at PNC Park.

Gustafson is from Sweden, but that didn’t prevent Major League Baseball from signing her to an endorsement contract. This weekend, she’s a Pirates fan.

“I’m sponsored by Major League (Baseball), so I wear different teams in different cities,” she said.

She’s had the most success while wearing Giants gear.

NOT PLAYING LIKE A KID: Alexis Thompson, who recently turned pro at age 15, easily made the cut with rounds of 73 and 74, earning her a third-round pairing with Ai Miyazato and Jiyai Shin – the two most recent world-ranked No. 1s until Cristie Kerr moved to the top.

Thompson, who likes being called Lexi, didn’t have to go far to find a caddie. Father Scott Thompson is toting her bag.

QUICK CONVERSION: The USGA hastily shifted tee and pin locations for the third round after beginning the day with them where they were when play was halted Friday. Those locations must stay the same for all golfers in a round, even if that round is played over multiple days.

Some golfers barely left the course from early Saturday morning until early evening. Allison Fouch, for example, played a full 18-hole round Saturday morning after being in the last group to start, then was in the first group to tee off for the third round. 

HEY, YOU AGAIN? Paula Creamer and Cristie Kerr were paired together in the third round for the second U.S. Women’s Open in as many years.

Last year, Kerr had a 1-over 72 en route to finishing tied for third, while Creamer played herself out of contention with a 79. She came back with a final round 69, but finished tied for sixth.


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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.