Points Imada share lead at Torrey Pines

By Doug FergusonJanuary 30, 2010, 4:55 am
Farmers Insurance OpenSAN DIEGO – D.A. Points saved his best golf for the tougher course at Torrey Pines and wound up in a share of the second-round lead with Ryuji Imada in the Farmers Insurance Open on Friday.

Points avoided a shaky start with a series of good par saves, then finished strong with an eagle and a birdie over the final four holes on the South Course for a 7-under 65. Imada also played the South, which hosted the U.S. Open in 2008, and shot a 68.

Imada, who was runner-up to Tiger Woods by eight shots in 2008 at the PGA Tour event, has yet to make a bogey.

They were at 11-under 133, giving them a head start going into the weekend when it’s far easier to keep track of who’s doing well.

Torrey Pines has two of the most distinct courses on the PGA Tour, with the South playing 2 1/2 shots easier than the North. Points apparently didn’t get the memo.

“Funny enough, I’ve played this course a lot more than I’ve played the other one, and I feel pretty comfortable out here,” he said.

They were two strokes ahead of Matt Every, who had a 70 on the South, and Michael Sim of Australia, who had a tournament-best 62 on the North Course and finished with an eagle.

Robert Allenby, who opened with a 67 on what he called the “real course”–  the South – didn’t fare quite as well on the North as he struggled on the bumpy greens. He still had a 69 and was three shots back going into the weekend.

Phil Mickelson didn’t go as low as he wanted, but he also finished with a flourish for a 67 that left him only four shots behind in his first tournament of the year. Mickelson spent most of his time after the round answering questions about the old Ping wedge in his bag with square grooves, and Scott McCarron accusing him of “cheating” for using it.

“I think he’s saying the rule is a terrible rule,” Mickelson said.

More important to Mickelson is having a chance on a hometown course that has befuddled him since the South Course was revamped to accommodate a U.S. Open. Mickelson is a three-time winner at Torrey Pines, but not since 2001. A victory this week would be his third in four starts, something he has never done in his career.

The final two rounds are held on the South Course, and some believe the tournament doesn’t really start until Saturday.

Points, with a 36-hole lead for only the third time, relishes two more days on the South.

He not only played the U.S. Open, but the Junior World Championship at Torrey Pines twice. That brought back some sour memories, although it had nothing to do with his scores. Points said he tied for seventh at the Junior Worlds in his last year, which qualified him to compete in a junior event in Japan.

“Like a stupid kid, I didn’t go to Japan,” he said. “I went and played in the Maxfli Junior PGA because it was on ESPN, and I thought it would be cool to be on TV rather than to have the experience of going to Japan. I kind of regret that part.”

Twenty players were separated by five shots going into the weekend on a course that can be punishing for short hitters who aren’t in the fairway, and everyone who can’t judge the distance to reach the proper spots on the greens.

Mickelson struggled on the greens, missing three birdie opportunities in a span of four holes. The other was the 323-yard second hole, where he pounded a driver that barely cleared a bunker and hopped onto the green for a two-putt birdie.

“I didn’t have many birdie putts, but I was able to make all the tough par putts and kind of salvage the round,” Mickelson said.

Allenby referred to the North Course as “Mickey Mouse-ish,” and while his score didn’t indicate that – a 69 – he had few complaints with his position. Allenby has two victories and a runner-up finish on three tours in his last three starts, and is playing as well as anyone.

The struggle was not so much the greens, but his emotions.

He wore a pink shirt with a purpose for the second round.

“One year ago today at 9 a.m., my mother drew her last breath,” he said somberly.

Allenby’s mother died of cancer on Jan. 29, and he spent Friday thinking about his shots, and thinking about his mother.

“I was up and down like a yo-yo,” he said. “That was one of the worst times of my life. What I’m trying to do now is make this one of the best weeks of my life.”

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 GolfChannel.com 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.

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Lexi (wrist) WDs from Diamond Resorts Invitational

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 11:27 pm

Lexi Thompson on Friday withdrew from the Diamond Resorts Invitational, citing inflammation in her wrist. Thompson, who teamed with Tony Finau to finish tied for fourth place in last week's QBE Shootout, said she is under strict doctor's order not to hit golf balls until mid-January.

The Diamond Resorts Invitational is scheduled Jan. 12-14 at Tranquilo Golf Club in Orlando, Fla. The field for te 54-hole event includes LPGA and PGA Tour Champions players, as well as celebrities from the worlds or sports and entertainment.