Day, Piercy share lead at WGC-Bridgestone

By Nick MentaJuly 2, 2016, 9:47 pm

On a day when he would have struggled to find the ocean from the beach, Jason Day nonethless found a way to shoot 1-under 69 and hold on to his lead at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational. He'll enter the final round at Firestone C.C. tied for the lead with Scott Piercy at 5 under par. Here's where things stand heading into the final round of the season's final World Golf Championship:

Leaderboard: Day (-5), Piercy (-5), David Lingmerth (-4), Brian Stuard (-3), Dustin Johnson (-2), Charl Schwartzel (-2), William McGirt (-2)

What it means: The No. 1 player in the world is in pursuit of his fourth win this season, his third career WGC title and his ninth victory in his last 20 PGA Tour starts dating back to the Canadian Open last July. Day hit just 3 of 14 fairways in Round 3 and relied on his short game and putter to keep himself afloat on a day when lesser players wouldn’t have shot anywhere close to 1 under. Tied at the top, Piercy is a three-time Tour champ who finished runner-up at Oakmont just two weeks ago. One back, Lingmerth is looking to win for the second time in the state of Ohio after his breakthrough at the Memorial last year.

Round of the day: Dustin Johnson made five birdies in his first 12 holes and dropped his only shot after failing to get up and down from left of the green at 14 for a 4-under 66 that vaulted him 17 spots into a tie for fifth at 2 under.

Best of the rest: Piercy opened with an eagle at No. 2, added birdies at 11 and 17 and was bogey-free until he reached the home hole. After missing the fairway left at 18, he found the back left bunker, failed to get his ball on the green, and then got up and down for a bogey-5 and a round of 67. Stuard, Schwartzel and Louis Oosthuizen (+4) also posted 3 under.

Biggest disappointment: Jordan Spieth looked as if he was about to insert himself into the mix when he birdied the 14th hole to move to 3 under. Unfortunately, a triple-bogey 8 at the par-5 16th sank his momentum after he found the water and then again failed to find the green from 86 yards. The world No. 2 finished birdie-bogey to shoot 1-over 71 and enter the final round even par.

Shot of the day: Even par through 14 holes after a series of testy par putts, Day got a much-needed spark when this downhill birdie putt from 35 feet found the bottom of the cup at the par-3 15th.

Quote of the day: "I kind of felt like Mr. Havercamp out of Caddyshack, not knowing where my golf ball was." - Day

Storyline to watch Sunday: Day will dominate the attention at the top of the board, but the newly minted major champ Johnson sits just three back.

Rose wins; Aphibarnrat earns Masters bid in Indonesia

By Will GrayDecember 17, 2017, 1:59 pm

Justin Rose continued his recent run of dominance in Indonesia, while Kiradech Aphibarnrat snagged a Masters invite with some 72nd-hole dramatics.

Rose cruised to an eight-shot victory at the Indonesian Masters, carding bookend rounds of 10-under 62 that featured a brief run at a 59 during the final round. The Englishman was the highest-ranked player in the field and he led wire-to-wire, with Thailand's Phachara Khongwatmai finishing second.

Rose closes out the year as perhaps the hottest player in the world, with top-10 finishes in each of his final 10 worldwide starts. That stretch includes three victories, as Rose also won the WGC-HSBC Champions and Turkish Airlines Open. He hasn't finished outside the top 10 in a tournament since missing the cut at the PGA Championship.

Meanwhile, it took until the final hole of the final tournament of 2017 for Aphibarnrat to secure a return to the Masters. The Thai entered the week ranked No. 56 in the world, with the top 50 in the year-end world rankings earning invites to Augusta National. Needing an eagle on the 72nd hole, Aphibarnrat got just that to snag solo fifth place.

It means that he is projected to end the year ranked No. 49, while Japan's Yusaku Miyazato - who started the week ranked No. 58 and finished alone in fourth - is projected to finish No. 50. Aphibarnrat finished T-15 in his Masters debut in 2016, while Miyazato will make his first appearance in the spring.

The results in Indonesia mean that American Peter Uihlein and South Africa's Dylan Frittelli are projected to barely miss the year-end, top-50 cutoff. Their options for Masters qualification will include winning a full-point PGA Tour event in early 2018 or cracking the top 50 by the final March 25 cutoff.

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 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.