Getty Images

Spieth uses birdie run, good breaks for 65

By Rex HoggardAugust 25, 2017, 10:57 pm

OLD WESTBURY, N.Y. – What was starting to look like a mundane round for Jordan Spieth at The Northern Trust turned quickly when he rolled in 52 feet of birdie putts on his way to five consecutive birdies starting at the 10th hole.

Although it matched the longest birdie streak of Spieth’s PGA Tour career, and moved him into a share of the lead at 6 under, it wasn’t the key to his round.

“Going [Nos.] 15 through 18 in [even par] with the positions I was in, was a steal. That was more important than the five birdies,” said Spieth, who finished with a 66 for a share of the lead. “I felt like I stole some strokes and got some good breaks coming in.”

Fresh off his five consecutive birdies, Spieth allowed himself to go after a “sucker pin” at No. 15 and was lucky to escape with a bogey when his tee shot at the par 3 stopped just short of rolling into a water hazard.

At the next hole Spieth missed his drive in the right rough but rolled in a 41-footer for birdie, the longest putt at the 16th this week. He found a bunker at the par-3 17th but scrambled for par and two-putted for a closing par after hitting into a fairway bunker off the tee.

The Northern Trust: Articles, video and photos

FedExCup standings entering the playoffs

That grinding finish set the stage for a high-power showdown between Spieth, world No. 1 Dustin Johnson, Jhonattan Vegas and Rickie Fowler, who are all tied at 6 under.

“No surprise those guys are towards the top,” Spieth said. “Rickie has been playing awesome. DJ has been trying to get his groove back, but for him it wasn't far off. It just needed to click. He seemed to be kind of using a couple different putters. Found one that's working well for him.”

Spieth knows a thing or two about how finicky a putter can be, even a putter as consistent as the 24-year-old’s. After a less-than-stellar day on the greens on Thursday when he opened with a 69, Spieth arrived three hours before his tee time on Friday to work on his alignment.

It’s been a common drill this summer.

“Alignment for me has been the thing that's been more important. My speed's still been pretty good this year,” he said.

Spieth rolled in 147 feet of putts on Day 2, including a 29-footer at No. 2, a 23-footer at the 12th hole and his bomb at the 16th hole, all for birdies.

Although statistically he’s been among the Tour’s best putters this season, it has been a strangely inconsistent year on the greens for Spieth. Friday at Glen Oaks was more of the same.

“On 9, I had just a standard, as-easy-a-putt as it gets. And I was so tentative to start the round today, left it short,” said Spieth, who made the turn at even par for the day. “Finally on 10, one you need to be tentative with, I hit it with perfect speed and it just dived in the center of the hole. Once that lid came off, made one at 11.

“It's just been a bit streaky, and I got on the good side of the streak on the back nine today.

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.

Getty Images

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.

Getty Images

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.