D. Johnson hangs on for WGC-Mexico title

By Will GrayMarch 5, 2017, 10:52 pm

It wasn't exactly as easy as Riviera, but in the end Dustin Johnson did just enough to capture his second trophy in as many starts. Here's how things ended up at the WGC-Mexico Championship, where Johnson strengthened his grip on the No. 1 ranking:

Leaderboard: Dustin Johnson (-14), Tommy Fleetwood (-13), Ross Fisher (-12), Jon Rahm (-12), Thomas Pieters (-11), Justin Thomas (-11)

What it means: Johnson started the day one shot back, but as Thomas started to fade he quickly took over the top spot and at one point led by four shots. He gave some of that back and received a back-nine challenge from Rahm, who briefly drew even, but a birdie on No. 15 and three closing pars were good enough to give DJ the win in his first-ever start as the top-ranked player in the world.

Round of the day: Fisher's final-round 65 included nine birdies and gave the Englishman some valuable OWGR points. Fisher made the turn in 33 and closed with three straight birdies, essentially locking up his spot in the WGC-Dell Match Play and giving him a great chance to earn a Masters bid via the world rankings later this month.

Best of the rest: Brandt Snedeker tied Fisher with a 6-under 65, a score that moved the veteran up 11 spots into a tie for seventh at 10 under. Snedeker had four birdies in a six-hole stretch from Nos. 11-17 and rebounded nicely after an opening 75 by carding three straight rounds of 68 or better.

Biggest disappointment: Thomas entered with a one-shot lead, but he seemed to struggle from the start. A watery double bogey on the par-3 seventh gave the lead to Johnson, and by the time Thomas birdied Nos. 14 and 15 it was too little, too late. A 1-over 72 after three straight rounds in the 60s dropped him into a tie for fifth.

Shot of the day: Nursing a one-shot lead and facing an awkward lie in the fairway bunker, Johnson carved his approach on No. 18 around a tree and watched it settle pin-high to set up an easy two-putt for the victory.

Quote of the day: "I played just well enough, I guess, because I won by one." - Johnson

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.