Furyk, Day share 1-shot lead at Barclays

By Golf Channel DigitalAugust 23, 2014, 9:16 pm

Jim Furyk and Jason Day sit at 9 under and share a one-shot lead over a crowded leaderboard at the Barclays heading into Sunday. Here's what you may have missed on Saturday from Ridgewood CC in Paramus, N.J.

Leaderboard: Furyk (-9), Day (-9), Hunter Mahan (-8), Morgan Hoffmann (-7), Matt Kuchar (-7), Kevin Na (-7), Bo Van Pelt (-7), Kevin Chappell (-7), Brendon Todd (-7), Cameron Tringale (-7)

What it means: Furyk shot a fairly boring yet very solid 2-under 69 in Round 3. He made 16 pars, with 12 on his first 12 holes, before birdies at 13 and 16. He finished with a key up-and-down from the greenside bunker on 18 to get into the clubhouse tied for the lead. Day, on the other hand, had a far more adventurous back nine, featuring four birdies, a bogey and a double. His dropped shots, oddly enough, came on two par 5s, Nos. 13 and 17. His double on the 13th came as a result of a lost ball. His bogey on 17 was surrounded by three birdies on his final four holes.

Round of the day: Morgan Hoffmann posted a bogey-free 5-under 66 to vault himself into a tie for third. Hoffmann, a Wyckoff, N.J., native, is spending the week with his family and sleeping in his old room. After a 70-70 start to the tournament, the homecooking finally paid off.Saturday.

Best of the rest: Hunter Mahan would have made it a three-way tie atop the leaderboard, but missed a 6-footer for par on the final hole to shoot 68 and leave himself one off the pace. Cameron Tringale and Brendon Todd both had opportunities to join Mahan at minus-8 but both, playing in the day's final two groups, made bogey on 18 to fall two shots back.

Biggest disappointment: Overnight leader and world No. 2 Adam Scott blew up Saturday with a 4-over 75. After making par on each of his first eight holes, he finished with three bogeys and a double against just one birdie. Even an even-par round Saturday would have kept Scott only one back. Now, he trails by five.

Shot of the day: He missed the secondary cut, but Phil Mickelson could hardly be accused of selling the New Jersey fans short. Mickelson played from the hopitality tent to the left of the par-4 fifth for the second straight round. And this time he got up and down for par. Later, once he knew his tournament was over on 18, he made - and lost - a $20 bet with a fan. That's Phil for you.

Biggest storylines heading into Sunday: Here Furyk goes again. The 44-year-old has not won since the 2010 Tour Championship, almost four years ago. Over that stretch he has failed to close his last seven 54-hole leads. His most recent near-miss came at the RBC Canadian Open in July, when he couldn't hold onto a three-shot lead to start his round. Day, meanwhile, fell into an injury-induced lull following his win at the WGC-Match Play earlier this year but rebounded to contend at the PGA just two weeks ago and is back again. He is in search of his third PGA Tour victory. Aside from those two, there are 22 other players within four shots of the lead.

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Watch: McIlroy gives Fleetwood a birthday cake

By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 19, 2018, 2:58 pm

Tommy Fleetwood turned 27 on Friday. He celebrated with some good golf – a 4-under 68 in Abu Dhabi, leaving him only two shots back in his title defense – and a birthday cake, courtesy of Rory Mcllroy.

While giving a post-round interview, Fleetwood was surprised to see McIlroy approaching with a cake in hand.

“I actually baked this before we teed off,” McIlroy joked.

Fleetwood blew out the three candles – “three wishes!” – and offered McIlroy a slice.  

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DJ shoots 64 to surge up leaderboard in Abu Dhabi

By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 1:48 pm

Dustin Johnson stood out among a star-studded three-ball that combined to shoot 18 under par with just one bogey Friday at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

Shaking off a sloppy first round at Abu Dhabi Golf Club, Johnson matched the low round of the day with a 64 that put him within four shots of Thomas Pieters’ lead.

“I did everything really well,” Johnson said. “It was a pretty easy 64.”

Johnson made four bogeys during an even-par 72 on Thursday and needed a solid round Friday to make the cut. Before long, he was closer to the lead than the cut line, making birdie on three of the last four holes and setting the pace in a group that also included good rounds from Rory McIlroy (66) and Tommy Fleetwood (68).

“Everyone was hitting good shots,” McIlroy said. “That’s all we were seeing, and it’s nice when you play in a group like that. You feed off one another.” 

Full-field scores from the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship

Coming off a blowout victory at Kapalua, Johnson is searching for his first regular European Tour title. He tied for second at this event a year ago.

Johnson’s second-round 64 equaled the low round of the day (Jorge Campillo and Branden Grace). 

“It was just really solid all day long,” Johnson said. “Hit a lot of great shots, had a lot of looks at birdies, which is what I need to do over the next two days if I want to have a chance to win on Sunday.” 

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Closing eagle moves Rory within 3 in Abu Dhabi

By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 12:57 pm

What rust? Rory McIlroy appears to be in midseason form.

Playing competitively for the first time since Oct. 8, McIlroy completed 36 holes without a bogey Friday, closing with an eagle to shoot 6-under 66 to sit just three shots back at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

“I’m right in the mix after two days and I’m really happy in that position,” he told reporters afterward.

McIlroy took a 3 ½-month break to heal his body, clear his mind and work on his game after his first winless year since 2008, his first full season as a pro.

He's back on track at a familiar playground, Abu Dhabi Golf Club, where he’s racked up eight top-11s (including six top-3s) in his past nine starts there.

Full-field scores from the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship

McIlroy opened with a 69 Thursday, then gave himself even more chances on Day 2, cruising along at 4 under for the day when he reached the par-5 closing hole. After launching a 249-yard long iron to 25 feet, he poured in the eagle putt to pull within three shots of Thomas Pieters (65). 

Despite the layoff, McIlroy edged world No. 1 Dustin Johnson, coming off a blowout victory at Kapalua, by a shot over the first two rounds. 

“DJ is definitely the No. 1 player in the world right now, and one of, if not the best, driver of the golf ball," McIlroy said. "To be up there with him over these first two days, it proves to me that I’m doing the right things and gives me a lot of confidence going forward.”

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Duke to fill in for injured Pavin at CareerBuilder

By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 12:25 pm

Ken Duke will fill in for Corey Pavin for the next two rounds of the CareerBuilder Challenge – with nothing at stake but his amateur partner’s position on the leaderboard.

Pavin was 4 over par when he withdrew after 17 holes Thursday because of a neck injury. Tournament officials contacted Duke, the first alternate, and asked if he would take Pavin’s spot and partner with Luis Lopez for the next two rounds, even though he would not receive any official money.

Duke accepted and explained his decision on Twitter:

Playing on past champion’s status, the 48-year-old Duke has made only four starts this season, with a best finish of a tie for 61st at the RSM Classic.

Pavin received a sponsor exemption into the event, his first PGA Tour start since the 2015 Colonial.