Yang Leads Futures Tour

By Futures Tour MediaMay 1, 2004, 4:00 pm
Futures TourEL PASO, Texas -- For the first time in the history of the Futures Golf Tour, a player from the Peoples Republic of China emerged as a tournament leader. Hong Mei Yang of Si Chuan, China ' playing in her first Futures Tour event as a first-year member of the tour ' fired a 5-under-par 67 to lead going into Sundays final round of the $70,000 IOS Futures Golf Classic.
 
Yang, who was allowed to pursue golf in her country because she showed promise in the game, showed the rest of the 144-player field that she promised to put up a fight despite her rookie status and limited tournament experience. With a first-round score of 70, she holds a two-stroke lead at 137 (-7) over Mee Na Lee of Seoul, Korea, who fired a 69 today to move into second at 139.
 
'I have prepared for this,' said Yang, 28, through her California coach, James Chen. 'My goal has been to come to the United States to play tournaments and I like the challenge. This is my first big tournament.'
 
Big, is right. Big, as in larger than the 60-to-80-player fields she is used to with the West Coast Ladies Golf Tour in California, where she won twice in March. Big, as in more women professionals than she could imagine coming from a super-size nation with less than 40 women golf professionals in the entire country. Big, as in unbelievably impressive for a player who scored in the high-70s and low-80s as recently as two years ago.
 
'Maybe today, I perform pretty good,' said Yang in her own words.
 
But while Yang is the epitome of the 'little engine that could,' she will have her work cut out for her in Sundays final around against a couple of Mercedes from Korea. Lee, along with Kyeong Bae of Seoul, who also carded a 67 today to move into third place at 140 (-4), have golf resumes that span the Pacific.
 
At age 18, Bae already has won twice on the Korean LPGA Tour and was ranked sixth on the KLPGAs Money List in 2003. She turned pro four years ago and arrived in California in January to begin studying English in preparation for her rookie season on the Futures Tour.
 
'I came to America and had a big dream,' said Bae, who hit 17 greens today on the 6,453-yard Sunrise Course at the Underwood Golf Complex. 'I will trust myself. I will try my best.'
 
Lee, 23, brought with her to her first Futures Tour season a resume that includes four tournament wins on the KLPGA, including honors as Most Valuable Player, top rookie and No. 1 on the money list in 2002. Like Bae, she might be a Futures Tour rookie, but she is far from inexperienced.
 
Early first-round leader Lisa Chang of Los Angeles, and Brittney Bacon of Minot, N.D., are tied for fourth at 141.
 
And while the wind and desert sands have held an upper hand for much of the week, making the tournament feel more like military maneuvers on the surrounding grounds of the U.S. Armys Ft. Bliss base than a 54-hole test of golf, Sundays final round will produce the Futures Tours own elite soldiers of the sod. After all, the battle is universal in golf, regardless of the flag.
 
Seventy-three players in the 144-player field made the 36-hole cut at 151 (+7).
 
Sundays final round will begin at 8 a.m. from the first tee, with the leaders going off the first tee at 11:36 a.m.
 
Related Links:
  • Full Coverage - IOS Futures Golf Classic
  • Day (68) just one back at Australian Open

    By Nick MentaNovember 24, 2017, 6:40 am

    Jason Day posted a second-round 68 to move himself just one off the lead held by Lucas Herbert through two rounds at the Emirates Australian Open. Here’s where things stand after 36 holes in Sydney.

    Leaderboard: Herbert (-9), Day (-8), Cameron Davis (-7), Anthony Quayle (-6), Matt Jones (-4), Cameron Smith (-4), Nick Cullen (-4), Richard Green (-4)

    What it means: Day is in search of his first worldwide victory of 2017. The former world No. 1 last visited the winner’s circle in May 2016, when he won The Players at TPC Sawgrass. A win this week would close out a difficult year for the Aussie who struggled with his game while also helping his mother in her battle with cancer. Day’s last victory on his native soil came in 2013, when he partnered with Adam Scott to win the World Cup of Golf for Australia at Royal Melbourne.


    Full-field scores from the Emirates Australian Open


    Round of the day: Herbert followed an opening 67 with a round of 66 to vault himself into the lead at The Australian Golf Club. He made six birdies, including four on his second nine, against a lone bogey to take the outright lead. The 22-year-old, who held the lead at this event last year and captured low-amateur honors in 2014, is coming off a runner-up finish at the NSW Open Championship, which boosted him from 714th to 429th in the Official World Golf Ranking. His 5-under score was matched by Dale Brandt-Richards and Josh Cabban.

    Best of the rest: Matt Jones, who won this event over Jordan Spieth and Adam Scott two years ago, turned in 4-under 67. Jones is best known to American audiences for his playoff victory at the 2014 Shell Houston Open and for holding the 36-hole lead at the 2015 PGA Championship at Whistling Straits, which was eventually won by Day. Jones will start the weekend five shots off the lead, at 4 under par.

    Biggest disappointment: Spieth has a lot of work to do this weekend if he expects to be in the title picture for the fourth year in a row. Rounds of 70-71 have him eight shots behind the lead held by Herbert. Spieth made a birdie and a bogey on each side Friday to turn in level par. The reigning champion golfer of the year has finished first, second and first at this event over the last three years.

    Storyline to watch this weekend: The Australian Open is the first event of the 2018 Open Qualifying Series. The leading three players who finish in the top 10 and who are not otherwise exempt will receive invites into next summer’s Open Championship at Carnoustie.

    Ogilvy urges distance rollback of ball

    By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 8:49 pm

    Add Geoff Ogilvy to the chorus of voices calling for a distance rollback of the golf ball.

    In an interview before the start of the Emirates Australian Open, Ogilvy said a "time-out" is needed for governing bodies to deal with the issue.

    "It's complete nonsense," he said, according to an Australian website. "In my career, it’s gone from 300 yards was a massive hit to you’re a shorter hitter on tour now, legitimately short. It’s changed the way we play great golf courses and that is the crime. It isn’t that the ball goes 400, that’s neither here nor there. It’s the fact the ball going 400 doesn’t makes Augusta work properly, it functions completely wrong.’’


    Full-field scores from the Emirates Australian Open


    Ogilvy used an example from American baseball to help get his point across to an Australian audience.

    “Major League Baseball in America, they use wooden bats, and everywhere else in baseball they use aluminium bats,’’ he said. “And when the major leaguers use aluminium bats they don’t even have to touch it and it completely destroys their stadiums. It’s just comedy.

    “That’s kind of what’s happened to us at least with the drivers of these big hitters; We’ve completely outgrown the stadiums. So do you rebuild every stadium in the world? That’s expensive. Or make the ball go shorter? It seems relatively simple from that perspective.’’

    Ogilvy, an Australian who won the 2006 U.S. Open, said he believes there will be a rollback, but admitted it would be a "challenge" for manufacturers to produce a ball that flies shorter for pros but does not lose distance when struck by recreational players.

    The golf world celebrates Thanksgiving

    By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 6:01 pm

    Here's a look, through social media, at how the golf world celebrates Thanksgiving.

    Lexi Thompson:

    Baking time!!

    A post shared by Lexi Thompson (@lexi) on

    David Feherty:

    Jack Nicklaus:

    GC Tiger Tracker:

    Steve Stricker:

    Golf Channel:

    Frank Nobilo:

    Ian Poulter:

    Tyrone Van Aswegen:

    Happy Thanksgiving: Biggest turkeys of 2017

    By Grill Room TeamNovember 23, 2017, 3:00 pm

    Thanksgiving brings us golf's biggest turkeys of the year. Donald Trump, Grayson Murray and a certain (now-former) tournament director headline the list. Click here or on the image below to check out all the turkeys.