Arizona Wildcat Ricky Barnes
Height / Weight:
6-1 / 200
University of Arizona men's golfer Ricky Barnes made his initial 2003 PGA Tour appearance a good one as he finished tied for 18th place Sunday at the Chrysler Classic of Tucson.
Barnes, a 6-foot-1 senior from Stockton, Calif., shot an 11-under-par 277 to finish in a tie for 18th place. He posted rounds of 69, 70, 68 and 70 to finish eight strokes behind tournament winner Frank Lickliter II. Through four rounds of play, Barnes' round-by-round tally was never out of the top 23 places.
For Barnes, the reigning U.S. Amateur champion, it marked the first time he has made the cut in three career PGA Tour appearances. He had competed in the 2000 and 2002 United States Open Championships as well.
Barnes' solid play over the weekend at Tucson National Golf Course has been on display all season in the college ranks. He has four top-10 finishes this season, including three third-place efforts. Through seven events in 2002-03, the three-time All-American has a 71.67 stroke average with a low round of 66.
Junior Season: Placed his name along side the all-time greats of the game by winning the 102nd U.S. Amateur Championship with a 2 and 1 win over Hunter Mahan (McKinney, Texas) on Aug. 25 that was clinched on the 35th hole at Oakland Hills Country Club in Bloomfield Hills, Mich. ... Showed a remarkable display of power off the tee and a sharp short game throughout the week ... An Honorable Mention All-America selection by the GCAA ... Ranks second on the team with a 72.13 stroke average ... The Golf World magazine preseason Player of the Year ... Has five career wins, tied for third all-time at Arizona ... Has 17 career top-10 finishes and 33 career rounds in the 60s ... Finished tied for 94th place at the 2002 U.S. Open at Bethpage Black with a 78-75=153 (+13) total ... Qualified to play in the 2002 U.S. Open with a runner-up finish (70-67=137/-7) at the sectional qualifier in Daly City, Calif. ... UAs top finisher five times this spring ... Struggled with the putter all season ... Entered the 2001-02 season with the lowest career stroke average in school history (71.05) ... Five rounds in the 60s this season ... Arizonas top finisher at the 2002 NCAA Championships with a 71-71-70-71=283 (-1) to finish tied for 17th place ... Co-Individual Medalist at the NCAA West Regional in Albuquerque, N.M. with a 70-67-73=210 (-6) to become the fourth UA player to win a regional crown ... A second team all-Pacific-10 Conference selection ... Showed signs of breaking out of his slump with three sub-par rounds at the ASU Thunderbird and a top-10 finish at the Pac-10 Championships ... The only UA golfer to finish under par at the Pac-10 Championships, Barnes finished sixth with a 70-73-71-73=287 (-1) ... Shot 70-69-70=209 (-7) to card his lowest tournament total this year and his fifth top-20 finish at the ASU Thunderbird/Savane Invitational ... Posted his fourth top-20 finish of the season, April 5-7, at the PING-U.S. Collegiate Championships with a 221 (+5) total ... Collected a top-20 finish at the Las Vegas Collegiate, posting 75-73-70=218 (+2) ... Tied for 52nd place (his worst collegiate finish) with a 225 total (+9) at the John Burns Intercollegiate ... Posted his best finish of the year with a fourth-place effort at the PING-Arizona Intercollegiate Feb. 4-5, where he carded a 71-67-69=207 (-6) ... Shot 71-72-75=218 (+5) to finish 23rd at the Savane College All-America Golf Classic in El Paso ... Posted his worst round of the year (79) in the final 18 to finish tied for 28th at the Jerry Pate National Intercollegiate after shooting 72-70-79=221 (+8) ... Was three-under par over the last two rounds to finish tied for 35th at the Taylor Made Red River Classic at 216 (E) ... Finished tied for 29th place at The Preview by Ping and Golfweek with an eight-over-par 221 total ... Finished tied for 10th place at the William H. Tucker Intercollegiate with a 73-75-69=217 (+1).
Simpson WDs from RSM, tweets his father is ill
ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – Following rounds of 67-68, Webb Simpson was in 12th place entering the weekend at the RSM Classic before he withdrew prior to Saturday’s third round.
On Saturday afternoon, Simpson tweeted that he withdrew due to an illness in his family.
“Thanks to [Davis Love III] for being such a great tournament host. I [withdrew] due to my dad being sick and living his last days,” Simpson posted on Twitter on Saturday afternoon.
Simpson’s father, Sam, caddied for his son during amateur events, and Webb Simpson started playing golf after following his father to the course on family vacations to North Carolina.
“My dad is probably the kindest man I know. He’s always been the guy who knew everyone, everyone knew him, everyone wanted to be around him,” Simpson said in a 2015 interview with David Feherty. “He taught me the game. He’s always been one of those dads who loved to be active with their kids.”
Before play began on Thursday, Luke Donald withdrew after being hospitalized with chest pain. Tests indicated the Englishman’s heart was fine and he returned home to undergo more tests.
New old putter helps Kirk (64) jump into contention
ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – Chris Kirk’s ball-striking has been nearly flawless this fall. Unfortunately, the same couldn’t be said for his putting.
In four events this season, Kirk ranks 143rd in strokes gained: putting, but his fortunes have changed this week, thanks at least in part to a return to something familiar.
Kirk switched to an older style of putter similar to the one he used on the Web.com Tour in 2010 to earn his PGA Tour card.
“It's nice to be back in contention again,” said Kirk, who is alone in second place, three strokes behind front-runner Austin Cook. “It's been a little while for me. But I felt great out there today, I felt really comfortable, and so hopefully it will be the same way tomorrow.”
Kirk is 25th in strokes gained: putting this week and has converted several crucial putts, including a 30-footer for birdie at the 17th hole on his way to a third-round 64.
His putting is similar to 2013 when he won the RSM Classic, and his improved play on the greens has given the 32-year-old confidence going into Sunday’s final round.
“I'll probably be relatively comfortable in that situation, and thankfully I've been there before,” Kirk said. “It's still not easy by any means, but hopefully I'll be able to group together a bunch of good shots and see what it gives me.”
Rookie Cook (66) handling RSM like a pro
ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – Of all the impressive statistics Austin Cook has put up this week at the RSM Classic – he is first in strokes gained: tee to green, strokes gained: approach to the green and scrambling – the one number that stands out is 49.
That’s how many holes Cook went this week without a bogey or worse, a moment that prompted his caddie, Kip Henley, to joke, “The dream is over.”
That loss of momentum at the 14th hole didn’t last long, with the PGA Tour rookie making birdie at the next hole on his way to a third-round 66 and a three-stroke lead.
“Bouncing back from any bogey with a birdie is nice and helps get the number right back. Being my only bogey of the week so far, it was really nice to be able to get that back on the next hole,” said Cook, who leads Chris Kirk at 18 under par. “Going into tomorrow with a three-shot lead instead of a two-shot lead I think is crucial.”
Although this is the first time Cook has held a 54-hole lead on the Tour, in fact it’s just his fourth start as a Tour member, he has experienced Sunday pressure before. In 2015, he began the final round at the Shell Houston Open one stroke off the lead held by Jordan Spieth.
“Back then my game was good as well, but mentally I've grown a lot and matured a lot and been able to kind of just let small things on the golf course roll off my shoulder instead of getting tied up in one little small mistake,” said Cook, who closed with a 75 at the ’15 Shell Houston Open to tie for 11th.
Park collapses; leaderboard chaos at CME
Sung-Hyun Park started the day with a three-shot lead and slowly gave it all back over the course of a 3-over 75, leaving the CME Group Tour Championship and a host of season-long prizes up for grabs in Naples. Here’s where things stand through 54 holes at the LPGA finale, where Michelle Wie, Ariya Jutanugarn, Suzann Pettersen and Kim Kaufman share the lead.
Leaderboard: Kaufman (-10), Wie (-10), Jutanugarn (-10), Pettersen (-10), Stacy Lewis (-9), Karine Icher (-9), Austin Ernst (-9), Lexi Thompson (-9), Jessica Korda (-9), Pernilla Lindberg (-9)
What it means: It wasn’t the Saturday she wanted, but Park, who already wrapped up the Rookie of the Year Award, is still in position for the sweep of all sweeps. With a victory Sunday, she would claim the CME Group Tour Championship, the Race to CME Globe’s $1 million jackpot, the Rolex Player of the Year Award, and the money title, as she ascends to No. 1 in the Rolex world ranking. Meanwhile, Thompson, too, could take the $1 million and Player of the Year. As those two battle for season-long prizes, a host of other notable names – Wie, Jutanugarn, Pettersen, Korda, Lewis and Charley Hull (-8) – will fight for the Tour Championship.
Round of the day: Kaufman made four birdies on each side in a bogey-free 8 under-par 64. A lesser-known name on a stacked leaderboard, she seeks her first LPGA victory.
Best of the rest: Amy Yang will start the final round two behind after a 7-under 65. The three-time LPGA Tour winner could pick up her second title of the season after taking the Honda LPGA Thailand in February.
Biggest disappointment: On a day that featured plenty of low scores from plenty of big names, Lydia Ko dropped 11 spots down the leaderboard into a tie for 23rd with a Saturday 72. The former world No. 1 needed two birdies in her last five holes to fight her way back to even par. Winless this season, she’ll start Sunday four back, at 6 under.
Shot of the day: I.K. Kim aced the par-3 12th from 171 yards when her ball landed on the front of the green and tracked all the way to the hole.
Kim, oddly enough, signed her name to a scorecard that featured a 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7. It was all part of a 1-under 71.