Sun Devils Win Thunderbird Invite

By Golf Channel NewsroomApril 13, 2004, 4:00 pm
Courtesy of thesundevils.ocsn.com
 
College CentralThe Arizona State men's golf team won its Thunderbird Invitational for the fifth time in six years on Saturday at The Karsten Golf Course with a final round 273 and finished at 43-under par 821 (270-278-273), which broke the tournament record of 40-under 824 it had set last year.
 
Sophomore Alejandro Canizares, the 2003 NCAA champion, shot a final round 69 and tied the tournament record with a 16-under 200 (65-66-69) to win medalist honors. Canizares tied the mark set by TCU's Bret Guetz. Canizares also became the first Sun Devil to win the event since Paul Casey in 2000, as the three-time All-American shot a 9-under 207. It marked the third tournament win in 19 career events for Canizares, who also won the 2003 National Invitational Tournament in Tucson in addition to his 2003 NCAA championship in Stillwater.

Arizona State has now won its home event 13 times and has finished first or second every year since 1994, a streak of 11 straight tournaments. The Sun Devils also have won back-to-back tournaments for the first time since the 1999-2000 squad won back-to-back titles twice in a five-tournament span, as this year's team won the National Invitational in Tucson March 28-30.
 
The Sun Devils have also now won four tournaments on the year, as it also took home championship honors at New Mexico's Tucker Intercollegiate (Sept. 12-13), UNLV's Southern Highlands Championship (March 12-14) and the National Invitational (March 28-30) held in Tucson. It last won four tournaments in 1999-2000.
 
Senior Chez Reavie, the 2001 U.S. Public Links champion, finished third with a final round 67 and a 13-under 203 (66-70-67). Reavie now has a 21 top-10 finishes in his four-year career, including seven this year, and leads the team with a 70.84 stroke average.
 
ASU's Kendall Critchfield, playing for the ASU Maroon squad, finished tied for sixth with an 11-under 205 (63-70-72). The Mesa, Ariz., native shot a 9-under 63 in the first round and had a double-eagle on the par-5 14th hole, which was his finishing hole in the shotgun-start format used Friday. The 63 marked a collegiate best for Critchfield, whose previous best of 65 came on April 11, 2003, in the second round of the Thunderbird Invitational.
 
Ninth-ranked Arizona shot a 32-under 832 (273-285-274) to finish second.
 
Peter Tomasulo of 16th-ranked California, who carded a course and tournament record 11-under 61 (29-32) in the opening round and was tied for second at 11-under 133 after two rounds, had to withdraw after 12 holes in the final round due to an injury. His first-round 61 was one stroke better than the 62 shot by 2000 U.S. Amateur champion Jeff Quinney on April 18, 1999. Quinney shot a 15-under 201 that year.
 
ASU entered play this week fifth in the Golf Coaches Association poll, sixth in the Golfstat poll and seventh according to Golfweek. Chez Reavie is ranked 15th by Golfweek and Alejandro Canizares is No. 31.
 
Arizona State will next compete in the Pac-10 Championships April 25-28 in Tucson. The Sun Devils have won the league title 11 times, including a league-record six straight titles from 1995-2000. ASU coach Randy Lein has led ASU to seven of those Pac-10 titles.

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 Web.com 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 sank a 6-foot birdie putt on his final hole for an 8-under 62 and a one-shot lead going into the weekend at RSM Classic.

Cook has gone 36 holes without making a bogey on the Plantation Course or the Seaside Course at Sea Island Golf Club. He played Seaside on Friday and ran off four straight birdies on his opening nine holes.

Cook 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.

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.

Bubba (64) fires his lowest round of 2017

By Rex HoggardNovember 17, 2017, 10:12 pm

ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – Bubba Watson’s plan when he left the Dell Technologies Championship in September was to take a few months off and come back fresh in 2018

Those plans changed after a few weeks.

“What we figured out was the mental side, preparing for kindergarten - not for me, for my son - preparing for [wife] Angie's knee surgery. It's been a tough go,” Watson said.

“Being home and being with the family and everything, I realized how much I missed the game of golf, and that's why I wanted to come and play in these tournaments.”


RSM Classic: Articles, photos and videos

Full-field scores from the RSM Classic


The plan has paid off this week at the RSM Classic, where Watson is tied for 12th place after a second-round 64 on the Seaside course moved him to 7 under par.

Watson, who tied for 51st two weeks ago in Las Vegas, got off to a quick start on Day 2, playing the opening nine in 29. Despite a miscue at the 14th hole, when his tee shot wedged into a tree, he was solid coming in for his best individual round this year.

The left-hander was particularly sharp with his ball-striking after what has been a difficult year.

“I want to play golf now and right now I'm swinging at it pretty nicely,” he said.

S.H. Park (65) builds three-shot lead at LPGA finale

By Doug FergusonNovember 17, 2017, 9:58 pm

NAPLES, Fla. – Golf felt so easy to Sung Hyun Park that only when she took out her card to catch up on her scores did she realize she had closed out the front nine with five straight birdies at the CME Group Tour Championship.

Park kept right on attacking.

The 24-year-old from South Korea added a 30-foot eagle putt late in her second round and finished with a 7-under 65, giving her a three-shot lead going into the weekend at Tiburon Golf Club.

Nothing seems to bother her, even the chance to cap off an amazing rookie season by sweeping all the big awards on the LPGA Tour.

''To be honest, I don't feel quite as nervous as I thought I would,'' Park said through an interpreter. ''After the first shot, after the first hole, I felt a lot more comfortable. I'm not feeling as nervous as I thought I might be going into today.''

Leave that to the players chasing her.

Even with a three-putt bogey on the final hole, Park was at 12-under 132 and was three shots clear of Caroline Masson (66) and Sarah Jane Smith (69).


CME Group Tour Championship: Articles, photos and videos

Full-field scores from the CME Group Tour Championship


More importantly, none of the other players in the chase for the $1 million Race to the CME Globe bonus or any other big award was within five shots of Park, who is trying to become the first rookie since Nancy Lopez in 1978 to win LPGA player of the year.

Lexi Thompson, who leads the Race to the CME Globe and the Vare Trophy for lowest adjusted scoring average, shot a 67 and wound up losing ground. She was six shots behind and must stay within 10 shots of Park to win the Vare.

So Yeon Ryu, who leads the points-based award for player of the year, managed a 71 with her sore right shoulder but was 11 shots back.

The other two players who need to win the tournament to collect the $1 million bonus also had their work cut out for them. Brooke Henderson had another 70 and was eight shots behind, while world No. 1 Shanshan Feng shot 73 and was 11 shots behind.

Park was in control, only she didn't see it that way.

''I don't think it's quite that far of a lead,'' Park said. ''Two, three shots of a lead can change at any moment. We will have to see what's in store for this weekend.''

Park began her big run with an 18-foot birdie on No. 5, got up-and-down for birdie from just off the green at the par-5 sixth, holed a 25-foot birdie putt on No. 7, and then closed out the front nine with birdie putts from 8 feet and 15 feet.

''I actually didn't know that I was going five birdies in a row,'' Park said. ''Come hole No. 10, I realized that I hadn't been jotting down my scores as diligently, and so I realized it a little bit later on. And it felt great.''

That gave her the lead by one shot over Suzann Pettersen, except that Pettersen faded badly on the back nine.

Pettersen dropped four shots in a three-hole stretch by getting out of position off the tee and she shot 39 on the back nine for a 70 to fall five shots behind.

''I feel like I'm playing good,'' Pettersen said. ''Three bad drives on the back nine cost me four shots. That should not be possible on this course, where the fairways are about 100 yards wide.''

Park was honored at an awards banquet Thursday night as the LPGA rookie of the year. Now, she has more awards in her sights. A victory would give her the award for player of the year. She would capture the money title, which she leads over Ryu. And depending on how the weekend goes, she might be able to surpass Thompson in the race for the Vare Trophy.

Thompson did well to recover from two bogeys on her opening three holes.

''I hit a few really erratic shots in the beginning. It wasn't a good start to the round,'' Thompson said. ''Just tried to stay positive and find something that could work for the last 14, 15 holes.''

Lydia Ko fell six shots behind in her bid to avoid a winless season. She was one shot behind going into the second round but managed only three birdies in her round of 71.

Park, meanwhile, had everything going her way. Even when she pulled her drive on the par-5 14th into a sandy area with a root next to her ball, she picked it clear and sent it through a goal post of trees back to the fairway. Three holes later, she blasted a drive and had only a 7-iron into the green at the par-5 17th, which she hit to 30 feet and made the long putt.

Does anything make her nervous?

''I hate spiders,'' she said. ''But in terms of golf, I always get nervous to this day on the first tee. I can feel my heart pounding.''

It's a feeling that doesn't appear to last very long.