Billy Casper Family Golf Month programs

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 22, 2011, 6:30 pm

Billy Casper Golf understands the value in getting families out of the house and onto the course. Below is a list of local course offerings during Family Golf Month to help foster play.

Kids Play Free

Designed for busy families to spend time together, Kids Play Free is an opportunity for golfer parents to affordably introduce the game to their children. Each junior golfer (age five to 17) plays free with each paying adult; details of the promotion vary at participating Billy Casper Golf courses. 

The genesis of BCG’s emphasis on promoting junior golf lies with its company namesake, the legendary Billy Casper, Masters and two-time U.S. Open winner. Casper has personally volunteered thousands of hours teaching golf and life skills to youth.

Wee Tees at SouthWood Golf Club (FL)

Named one of the Top 35 New Courses in America by Golf Magazine and among America’s Best New Courses by Golf Digest, SouthWood employs family-friendly “Wee Tees.” The 2,986-yard “Wee Tees” provide the ideal course setup for juniors, families, beginners or players seeking to improve their short games.

Masterfully designed by PGA Tour legend Fred Couples and his renowned design partner, architect Gene Bates, SouthWood Golf Club is an upscale public facility nestled among rolling hills, pastureland, and ancient oak trees draped in Spanish moss. SouthWood Golf Club was designed to provide enjoyable and challenging golf experience for players of all levels. 

The Golf Center at Lyman Orchards (CT)

The project calls for the addition of a comprehensive learning center with a nine-hole executive course, the only new golf course construction slated for 2011 in Connecticut. The family-friendly par-29 course will measure 1,600 yards with bentgrass greens and built to U.S. Golf Association specifications. Holes will range between 115 and 315 yards in length. 

Also planned is a 40-stall combination grass and artificial turf driving range with target greens and sand traps, a short-game practice area and 2,000-square-foot clubhouse. The Golf Center at Lyman Orchards is scheduled to open in late spring 2012.

“The Golf Center reinforces the Lyman family’s forward-thinking commitment to promote the game of golf and attract a new and broader demographic,” says Steve Ciskowski, President and CEO of Lyman Farms, Inc. “This cross-over facility will complement our two existing courses and represents a bold advance, distancing Lyman Orchards from the current landscape.”

Billy Casper Appearance Promoted Junior Programming (Washington, D.C. area)

Legendary golfer Billy Casper appeared at The First Tee of Prince William County Annual Benefit Tournament at Forest Greens Golf Club on Friday, July 15 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The Masters and two-time U.S. Open champion with 51 PGA TOUR victories, Casper provided opening remarks, offered tips to golfers, signed autographs and took photos.            

The tournament, a four-person scramble with a shotgun start at 10 a.m., raised money to help fund The First Tee programs throughout the year. The entry fee – $100 per player or $375 per team – included greens and cart fees, buffet lunch, on-course prizes and the chance to meet Billy Casper.

The First Tee of Prince William County impacts the lives of young people by providing learning facilitates and educational programs promoting character-development and life-enhancing values through golf. More than 10,000 children in Prince William County Schools have experienced the curriculum through The First Tee National School Program. 

Golf My Way at Ka’anapali

Traditionally, a round of golf is 18 holes stretched over roughly 4.5 hours. Over the last few years, golfers have found it harder to dedicate such a large block of time for one activity. Especially when on vacation with the family.

Who says you have to play all 18 holes over the course of several hours? You don’t, thanks to an innovative program – “Golf My Way” – introduced by Ka’anapali Golf Resort. The package allows golfers to pay for all 18 holes up front and have the option to leisurely fit in their round over a maximum of seven days.

“This package is perfect for golfers on vacation with their families who don’t want to spend the entire day on the course,” says Ed Kageyama, PGA General Manager of Ka’anapali.  “Parents can play a few holes in the morning, spend the rest of the day doing family activities and come back later during their vacation to finish the round. 

“Golf My Way” isn’t for everyone; the serious golfer wants to play all 18 at once. But the casual golfer is a different story. On the first day, players tee off on No. 1, but to complete the round golfers may tee off on a different hole – until all 18 holes are completed. The golfer can play three holes over six days, six holes over three days or any combination they chose – whichever best suits their time availability.

For more on Family Golf Month or to learn how you can get involved, click here.

If Park is nervous, she sure doesn't show it

By Randall MellNovember 17, 2017, 11:24 pm

NAPLES, Fla. – Sung Hyun Park says she can feel her heart pounding every time she steps to the first tee.

She says she always gets nervous starting a round.

You don’t believe it, though.

She looks like she would be comfortable directing a sky full of Boeing 737s as an air traffic controller at Incheon International Airport . . .

Or talking people off the ledges of skyscrapers . . .

Or disarming ticking bombs . . .

“In terms of golf, I always get nervous,” she insists.

Everything about Park was at odds with that admission Friday, after she took control halfway through the CME Group Tour Championship.

Her Korean nickname is “Dan Gong,” which means “Shut up and attack.” Now that sounds right. That’s what she looks like she is doing, trying to run roughshod through the Tour Championship in a historic sweep of all the LPGA’s most important awards and honors.

Park got just one look at Tiburon Golf Club before this championship began, playing in Wednesday’s pro-am. Then she marched out Thursday and shot 67, then came out Friday and shot 65.

At 12 under overall, Park has a three-shot lead on Caroline Masson and Sarah Jane Smith.

She is six shots up on Lexi Thompson, who leads the CME Globe point standings in the race for the $1 million jackpot.

She is 11 shots up on world No. 1 Shanshan Feng.

And 11 shots up on So Yeon Ryu, who leads the Rolex Player of the Year point standings.

CME Group Tour Championship: Articles, photos and videos

Full-field scores from the CME Group Tour Championship

There’s a long way to go, but Park is in position to make an epic sweep, to win the Tour Championship, that CME Globe jackpot, the Rolex Player of the Year Award, the Rolex Rookie of the Year Award, the Vare Trophy for low scoring average, the LPGA money-winning title and the Rolex world No. 1 ranking.

Nobody’s ever dominated a weekend like that in women’s golf.

It’s all there for the taking now, if Park can keep this going.

Park has another nickname back in South Korea. Her fans call her “Namdalla.” That means “I am different.” She’ll prove that if she owns this weekend.

Park, 24, isn’t assuming anything. She’s humbly aware how much talent is flooding the LPGA, how the tour’s depth was underscored in a year where five different players have reigned as world No. 1, five different players won majors and 22 different winners stepped forward in 32 events.

“I don’t think it’s quite that far a lead,” Park said of her three-shot advantage. “Two, three shots can change at any moment.”

About those nerves that Park insists plague her, even Hall of Famer Judy Rankin can’t see it.

Not when Park unsheathes a driver on a tee box.

“She’s the most fearless driver of the ball out here,” Rankin said. “I would put Lexi a close second and everybody else a distant third. She hits drivers on holes where you shouldn’t, and she hits it long and she just throws it right down there between hazard stakes that are 10 yards apart, like it’s nothing. Now, that’s a little hyperbole, but she will hit driver almost everywhere.”

David Jones, Park’s caddie, will attest to that. He was on Park’s bag when she won the U.S. Women’s Open in July and won the Canadian Pacific Women’s Open in August.

“She reaches for driver a lot because she is a good driver,” Jones said. “She isn’t reckless. She’s as accurate with a driver as she is a 3-wood.”

Park and Thompson played together in the first round. Park is eighth on tour in driving distance, averaging 270 yards per drive, and Thompson is third, averaging 274.

Thompson loves to hit driver, too, but . . . 

“Lexi hit a lot of 3-woods compared to us when we played together yesterday,” Jones said.

Jones doesn’t find himself talking Park out of hitting driver much.

“It’s really simple,” Jones said. “When you hit driver as straight as she does, why mess around?”

Count Golf Channel analyst Brandel Chamblee, a student of the swing, among admirers of Park’s abilities.

“No other swing in the game comes close to her technical perfection and elegance in my opinion,” Chamblee tweeted Friday.

Come Sunday, Park hopes to complete a perfect sweep of the LPGA’s most important awards.

National champion Sooners meet with Trump in D.C.

By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 17, 2017, 11:10 pm

The national champion Oklahoma men's golf team visited Washington D.C. on Frday and met with President Donald Trump.

Oklahoma topped Oregon, 3 1/2 to 1 1/2, in last year's national final at Rich Harvest Farms to win their second national championship and first since 1989.

These pictures from the team's trip to Washington popped up on social media late Friday afternoon:

Rookie Cook (66-62) credits prior Tour experience

By Rex HoggardNovember 17, 2017, 10:36 pm

ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – Austin Cook is a rookie only on paper. At least, that’s the way he’s played since joining the circuit this season.

This week’s RSM Classic is Cook’s fourth start on Tour, and rounds of 66-62 secured his fourth made cut of the young season. More importantly, his 14-under total moved him into the lead at Sea Island Resort.

“I really think that a couple years ago, the experience that I have had, I think I've played maybe 10 events, nine events before this season,” Cook said. “Being in contention a few times and making cuts, having my card has really prepared me for this.”

RSM Classic: Articles, photos and videos

Full-field scores from the RSM Classic

Cook has been perfect this week at the RSM Classic and moved into contention with four consecutive birdies starting at No. 13 (he began his round on the 10th hole of the Seaside course). A 6-footer for birdie at the last moved him one stroke clear of Brian Gay.

In fact, Cook hasn’t come close to making a bogey this week thanks to an equally flawless ball-striking round that moved him to first in the field in strokes gained: tee to green.

If Cook has played like a veteran this week, a portion of that credit goes to long-time Tour caddie Kip Henley, who began working for Cook during this year’s Tour finals.

“He’s got a great golf brain,” Henley said. “That’s the most flawless round of golf I’ve ever seen.”

Cook fires 62 for one-shot lead at RSM Classic

By Associated PressNovember 17, 2017, 10:26 pm

ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – PGA Tour rookie Austin Cook made a 6-foot birdie putt on his final hole for an 8-under 62 and a one-shot lead going into the weekend at the RSM Classic.

Cook has gone 36 holes without a bogey on the Plantation and Seaside courses at Sea Island Golf Club. He played Seaside - the site of the final two rounds in the last PGA Tour event of the calendar year - on Friday and ran off four straight birdies on his opening nine holes.

''We've just been able to it hit the ball really well,'' Cook said. ''Speed on greens has been really good and getting up-and-down has been great. I've been able to hit it pretty close to the hole to make some pretty stress-free putts. But the couple putts that I have had of some length for par, I've been able to roll them in. Everything's going well.''

The 26-year-old former Arkansas player was at 14-under 128 and had a one-stroke lead over Brian Gay, who shot 64 on Seaside. No one else was closer than five shots going into the final two rounds.

The 45-year-old Gay won the last of his four PGA Tour titles in 2013.

RSM Classic: Articles, photos and videos

Full-field scores from the RSM Classic

''I've hit a lot of greens and fairways,'' Gay said. ''I've hit the ball, kept it in front of me. There's a lot of trouble out here, especially with the wind blowing, so I haven't had to make too many saves the first couple days and I putted well.''

Cook has made the weekend cuts in all four of his starts this season. He earned his PGA Tour card through the Tour, and has hired Gay's former caddie, Kip Henley.

''With him being out here so long, he knows everybody, so it's not like I'm completely the new kid on the block,'' Cook said. ''He's introduced me to a lot of people, so it's just making me feel comfortable out here. He knows his way around these golf courses. We're working really well together.''

First-round leader Chris Kirk followed his opening 63 on the Plantation with a 70 on the Seaside to drop into a tie for third at 9 under with C.T. Pan (65) and Vaughn Taylor (66).

Brandt Snedeker is looking strong in his first start in some five months because of a sternum injury. Snedeker shot a 67 on the Plantation course and was six shots back at 8 under.

''I was hitting the ball really well coming down here,'' Snedeker said. ''I was anxious to see how I would hold up under pressure. I haven't played a tournament in five months, so it's held up better than I thought it would. Ball-striking's been really good, mental capacity's been unbelievable.

''I think being so fresh, excited to be out there and thinking clearly. My short game, which has always been a strength of mine, I didn't know how sharp it was going to be. It's been really good so far.''