Wilson leads Gainey at Phoenix Open

By Associated PressFebruary 7, 2011, 6:33 am
  • Waste Management Phoenix OpenSCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Mark Wilson had a two-stroke lead in the Phoenix Open when play was suspended Sunday because of darkness.

Wearing a yellow visor and green shirt in support of his beloved Packers, the Wisconsin player broke a tie with Tommy Gainey with a 15-foot birdie putt on the par-3 12th. Gainey three-putted the hole for a bogey.

“I birdied some tough holes,” Wilson said. “The 4-iron I hit on 12 was the best swing of the day and I rolled in that putt. Just felt good.

“Been a long ride. I mean, four holes the first day, 28 holes the next day and then four holes and now 31 holes, and we’ll do five more tomorrow and see what happens.”

Golf Channel will have live coverage of the conclusion of the Phoenix Open Monday morning at 11 a.m. ET. Also, prior to live tournament coverage, 'Morning Drive', Golf Channel’s weekday morning show, will air a bonus hour from 10-11 a.m. ET, featuring live reports from TPC Scottsdale.

Wilson and Gainey were facing 20-foot birdie putts on the par-5 13th when they decided it was too dark to finish the hole.

“I was thinking about putting it, but it’s hard to read and it’s a goofy little putt,” Wilson said. “It’ll be a lot easier tomorrow morning.

“Someone was screaming in my head saying, `Don’t putt this tonight!’ So, when I heard that voice, I said, `Let’s mark it.”’

Wilson was 18 under. Gainey was tied for second with Vijay Singh and Jason Dufner. Singh shot a 5-under 66, while Dufner had four holes left.

The start Sunday was delayed a half-hour because of frost. About nine hours of playing time has been lost to frost and frozen turf, forcing the Monday finish.

Wilson completed a 68 in the third round Sunday and was 2 under through 12 holes in the final round. On the amphitheater 16th in the third round, Wilson and caddie Chris Jones donned cheeseheads and led the rowdy fans in Packers chants.

“The saddest thing is I couldn’t watch the first half of the Super Bowl,” said Wilson, who got scoring updates from the on-course announcers. “That’s about it. But the Packers carried through in the first half, so I’ll watch the second half.”

Gainey was 1 over in the final round after shooting a 68 in the third round to take a one-stroke lead over Wilson.

“I’m not too happy in my position right now, two back, but I’ve just got to come out tomorrow and just get it done,” Gainey said. “Just start making some putts.”

He matched Wilson with a bogey on the par-4 11th after driving into the water on the left, then dropped another stroke on 12 when he three-putted from 90 feet.

“I made a couple bogeys the last few holes, and you know, I didn’t think I really hit that many bad shots to be honest with you,” Gainey said. “The drive on No. 11, I thought was good. I hit it in the middle of the fairway and it just happened to go in the water. That’s just how it goes.”

Singh, winless since 2008, was the last player off the course, putting out on the par-4 18th in the dark more than 10 minutes after Wilson and Gainey stopped playing.

“I’ve got no chance,” Singh said. “They’re going to come back tomorrow and I think the leaders have two par 5s to go and 17, and they’re good enough players.”

Singh has been slowed by right knee problems.

“Considering all, this is the first time that I’ve actually felt good, and coming back to the way I know how to play golf,” he said. “Whatever happens, I’m very satisfied with my result this week.”

J.B. Holmes (67) and Nick Watney (68) finished at 15 under. Martin Laird and Chris Couch also were 15 under. Laird had two holes left, and Couch had five.

Fan favorites Phil Mickelson and Rickie Fowler, paired together in the second-to-last group, dropped out of contention.

Fowler holed out from 123 yards on the final hole of the third round for a 69, but was six strokes back at 12 under with five holes left.

Mickelson, second a week ago in San Diego, had a 71 in the third round and was 11 under overall. He needs at least a solo third-place finish to pass Tiger Woods for No. 3 in the world. Lefty hasn’t been ranked ahead of Woods since the week before the 1997 Masters.

Fowler wore a hot pink hat, shirt and shoes in the third round, prompting a female fan near the 16th green to shout “Rickie, I want your shoes!” In the fourth round, he switched to an all-orange “Oklahoma State” ensemble.

Spieth, Thomas headline winter break trip to Cabo

By Grill Room TeamDecember 15, 2017, 1:05 am

Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth. Really good at golf. Really good at vacationing.

With #SB2K18 still months away, Thomas and Spieth headlined a vacation to Cabo San Lucas, and this will shock you but it looks like they had a great time.

Spring break veteran Smylie Kaufman joined the party, as did Thomas' roommate, Tom Lovelady, who continued his shirtless trend.

The gang played all the hits, including shoeless golf in baketball jerseys and late nights with Casamigos tequila.

Image via tom.lovelady on Instagram.

In conclusion, it's still good to be these guys.

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Awards season: Handing out the 2017 Rexys

By Rex HoggardDecember 14, 2017, 7:00 pm

After careful consideration and an exhaustive review of 2017 we present The Rexys, a wildly incomplete and arbitrary line up following one of the most eventful years in golf.

 There will be omissions – just keep your calls, concerns and even e-mails to yourself. We appreciate your patronage, but not your feedback.



It’s Not You, It’s Me Award. You know the deal: You can’t be a part of two until you’re a better one; but on this front it’s really just a desire to find a better two.

It was a tough year for caddies, and not just any caddies. In June, Phil Mickelson split with longtime bagman Jim “Bones” Mackay. Both player and caddie cited the need for “change,” but the move reverberated throughout the game.

“The fairytale is over,” mused one caddie when told of the high-profile split.

In the wake of the Lefty/Bones break, Rory McIlroy split with his caddie J.P Fitzgerald, and Jason Day replaced looper/swing coach Colin Swatton on his bag. It all proves yet again that there are only two kinds of caddies, those who have been fired and those who are about to be fired.



Run for the Rose Cup. Sergio Garcia got the green jacket, a lifetime exemption to the game’s most coveted member-member and a long-awaited major, but Justin Rose took home the slightly less prestigious “Rose Cup.”

Following a frenzied afternoon at Augusta National in April, Rose lost to Garcia on the first playoff hole, but he won so much more with his honesty and class.

“You're going to win majors and you're going to lose majors, but you've got to be willing to lose them,” Rose figured following the final round. “You've got to put yourself out there. You've got to hit the top of the leaderboard. There's a lot of pressure out there and if you're not willing to enjoy it, then you're not ready to win these tournaments. I loved it out there.”

Few have made losing look so dignified and fewer still are as easy to root for.



Half-Empty Cup. It was the perfect setting, with sweeping views of the Manhattan skyline and the promise of the Tristate masses descending on this fall’s Presidents Cup.

If only all those rowdy New Yorkers had something to cheer.

For the sixth time in the last seven matches, the U.S. team rolled to a victory of at least three points. This particular edition was even in danger of ending on Saturday afternoon thanks to a particularly dominant performance by a young American squad led by Steve Stricker.

Officials spoke of the purity of the competition and the attention the ’17 cup generated, but however you spin the 19-11 rout, this cup is half empty.



Enigma Award. The actual hardware is simply an oversized question mark and was sent directly to Tiger Woods’ South Florida compound following the most curious of seasons.

While it’s become customary in recent years to consider the uncertain path that awaits the 14-time major winner, this most recent calendar brought an entirely new collection of questions following fusion surgery on his lower back in April, his arrest for DUI on Memorial Day and, finally, a glimmer of hope born from his tie for ninth at the Hero World Challenge earlier this month.

When will he play again? Can he compete against the current generation of world-beaters? Can his body withstand the rigors of a full PGA Tour schedule? Should Jim Furyk make him a captain’s pick now or wait to see if he should be driving a vice captain’s golf cart instead?

Little is certain when it comes to Woods, and the over-sized question mark goes to ... the guy in red and black.



After Further Review Chalice. In April, Lexi Thompson endured a heartbreaking loss at the ANA Inspiration, the byproduct of a surreal ruling that arrived a day late via a viewer e-mail and cost the would-be winner a major championship.

The entire event was so unsavory that the USGA and R&A made not one but two alterations to the rules and created a “working group” to avoid similar snafus in the future.

That working group – it turns out the U.S. Ryder Cup team has some sort of copyright on “task force” – initially issued a decision that introduced a “reasonable judgment” and a “naked eye” standard to video reviews, and last week the rule makers kept the changes coming.

The new protocols on video review will now include an official to monitor tournament broadcasts and ended the practice of allowing fans to call in, or in this case e-mail, possible infractions to officials. The USGA and R&A also eliminated the two-stroke penalty for players who sign incorrect scorecards when the player is unaware of the penalty.

While all this might be a step in the right direction, it does nothing to change Thompson’s fate. The AFR Chalice won’t change the harsh reality, but at least it will serve as a reminder of how she helped altered the rulemaking landscape.



Nothing Runs Like a Deere Award. Nothing gets fans fired up like officials turning fields of fescue rough into hay on the eve of a major championship, and the USGA’s decision to do some 11th-hour trimming at Erin Hills in June certainly caught many by surprise.

Officials said the nip/tuck on four holes was in reaction to a particularly foreboding forecast that never materialized, and the maintenance drew the ire of some players.

“We have 60 yards from left line to right line,” Rory McIlroy said. “You’ve got 156 of the best players in the world here; if we can’t hit it within that avenue, you might as well pack your bags and go home.”

The record low scoring at the U.S. Open – winner Brooks Koepka finished with a 16-under total – didn’t help ease the fervor and had some questioning whether the softer side of the USGA has gone a bit too far?

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Podcast: Daly takes big pride in 'Little John'

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 14, 2017, 5:28 pm

John Daly is a two-time major champion, but the newest trophy in his household belongs to someone else.

That’s because Daly’s son, 14-year-old Little John “LJ” Daly, rallied to capture an IJGT junior golf event over the weekend. The younger Daly birdied the first extra hole to win a five-person playoff at Harbour Town Golf Links, site of the PGA Tour’s RBC Heritage.

Daly recently sat down for a Golf Channel podcast to describe what it’s like to cheer for his son and PNC Father-Son Challenge partner, share the unique challenge presented by the upcoming Diamond Resorts Invitational and reflect on some of the notable highs of a career that has now spanned more than 25 years.

Sneds starts slowly in Masters invite bid

By Will GrayDecember 14, 2017, 4:22 pm

Brandt Snedeker flew halfway around the world in search of a Masters invite, but after one round of the Indonesian Masters it appears he'll likely return home empty-handed.

Snedeker made only two birdies during his opening round in Indonesia, shooting an even-par 72 that left him in a tie for 77th and 10 shots behind leader Justin Rose. This is the final OWGR-rated event of 2017, and as a result it has drawn several notable entrants, including Snedeker, who hope to crack the top 50 in the world rankings by year's end to secure a trip to Augusta National.


Full-field scores from the Indonesian Masters


Snedeker started the year ranked No. 28, but after missing five months because of injury he entered the week ranked No. 51 and is projected to slip even further by the end of the month. As a result, he likely needs a top-3 finish in order to secure a return to the Masters, which he has missed only once since 2007.

World No. 55 Dylan Frittelli also struggled, shooting a 4-over 76 in the opening round, while No. 56 Kiradech Aphibarnrat is tied for 14th at 4 under. Yusaku Miyazato, currently 58th in the world, is tied for ninth and five shots behind Rose.

Should Snedeker and the other hopefuls fail to crack the top 50 by the end of the year, two paths to the Masters remain: win a full-point event on the PGA Tour in early 2018 or be inside the top 50 in the world rankings when the final cutoff is made on March 25.