Watson Wins a Wild One

By Golf Channel NewsroomAugust 31, 2003, 4:00 pm
ALOHA, Ore. (AP) -- Tom Watson made a 4-foot birdie putt on the final hole Sunday to win the JELD-WEN Tradition - the final major this season on the Champions Tour - by one stroke.
Watson, Tom Kite, Gil Morgan and third-round leader Jim Ahern were tied for the lead at 14-under after 17 holes.
After Morgan shot par on the hole, Watson's third shot from the bunker on the par-5 No. 18 at the Reserve Vineyards and Golf Club bounced right toward the hole.
He made his winning putt, wrapping the day up with a 3-under 69 for a 15-under 273, and retreated to the scorer's room to watch Kite and Ahern.
'I was ready for a playoff,' Watson said.
Ahern, known more for long drives than his putting, missed a 6-foot birdie putt on the 18th to finish with an even-par 72 and a 14-under 274.
Kite, the 1992 U.S. Open winner, missed a 5-footer that would have forced the playoff, ending the day with a 5-under 67.
It was Watson's second major this season on the Champions Tour; he also won the Senior British Open. It was his third career major on the senior tour.
Watson birdied the par-5 No. 15 hole under sunny skies but sometimes gusty winds as the Reserve. With the shot, Watson took a one-stroke lead over Morgan.
But on the next hole, Watson hit into the water and took a bogey to fall back to 14-under through 16 holes.
Morgan, a two-time winner of the Tradition, shot par on the final hole to finish with a 4-under 68 on the day, and in the group at 14-under for the tournament.
Morgan won in 1997 and 1998 at the Desert Mountain Golf Club. The Tradition moved to Oregon this year after 14 years in Arizona.
Ahern started the day with a one-stoke lead with a 14-under 202 after the third round, but had a roller-caster final round with four bogeys and an eagle.
Ahern, who noted he had never led - after any round - in a major before, won the Music City Championship in June, his second career win on the senior tour.
'I figured it would take 15 - someone in that group was going to finish at 15,' he said.
Morris Hatalsky, last season's rookie of the year on the Champions Tour who won the Columbus Southern Open earlier this season finished with a 2-under 70. He was at 13-under for the tournament with Bruce Summerhays, who shot a 66.
Watson finished with the group at 14-under as he rounded the corner - but he bogeyed the next hole.
He birdied the par-4 No. 12 to climb back into the co-lead, then made a well-placed shot from the bunker off the green of the par-3 14th hole to save par.
Kite had a chance to birdie the same hole and take the lead outright, but his putt stopped just short of the hole.
Watson was a four-stroke leader after the second round with a 10-under 62 - a record low round in the Tradition.
It was his sixth overall victory on the Champions Tour. He has won 39 times on the PGA Tour with eight majors.
Defending champion Jim Thorpe shot a 71 to finish three strokes back.
Jack Nicklaus, who has won the Tradition four times, was in contention most of the day, but bogeyed the par-3 No. 11.
It was the ninth and final tour event this season for Nicklaus, who was given a standing ovation by the gallery as he approached the 18th green. He finished four strokes back of Watson with a 70 on Sunday.
Related Links:
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    Rahm manages frustration, two back at CareerBuilder

    By Randall MellJanuary 21, 2018, 1:21 am

    Jon Rahm managed the winds and his frustrations Saturday at the CareerBuilder Challenge to give himself a chance to win his fourth worldwide title in the last year.

    Rahm’s 2-under-par 70 on the PGA West Stadium Course left him two shots off the lead going into the final round.

    “I wasn’t really dealing with the wind that much,” Rahm said of his frustrations. “I was dealing with not being as fluid as I was the last two days.”

    Full-field scores from the Career Builder Challenge

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    The world’s No. 3 ranked player opened with a 62 at La Quinta Country Club on Thursday and followed it up with a 67 on Friday at PGA West. He made six birdies and four bogeys on the Stadium Course on Saturday.

    “The first day, everything was outstanding,” Rahm said. “Yesterday, my driver was a little shaky but my irons shots were perfect. Today, my driver was shaky and my irons shots were shaky. On a course like this, it’s punishing, but luckily on the holes where I found the fairway I was able to make birdies.”

    Rahm is projected to move to No. 2 in the world rankings with a finish of sixth or better on Sunday.

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    Cook leads by one entering final round at CareerBuilder

    By Associated PressJanuary 21, 2018, 12:51 am

    LA QUINTA, Calif. – Austin Cook played a six-hole stretch in 6 under and shot an 8-under 64 in breezy conditions Saturday to take the lead at the CareerBuilder Challenge.

    Cook began the run at La Quinta Country Club with birdies on Nos. 4-5, eagled the sixth and added birdies on No. 7 and 9 to make the turn in 6-under 30.

    After a bogey on the 10th, he birdied Nos. 11, 12 and 15 and saved par on the 18th with a 20-footer to take a 19-under 197 total into the final round on PGA West's Stadium Course. The 26-year-old former Arkansas player is making his first start in the event. He won at Sea Island in November for his first PGA Tour title.

    Fellow former Razorbacks star Andrew Landry and Martin Piller were a stroke back. Landry, the second-round leader, had a 70 on the Stadium Course. Piller, the husband of LPGA tour player Gerina Piller, shot a 67 at La Quinta. They are both winless on the PGA Tour.

    Full-field scores from the Career Builder Challenge

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    Jon Rahm had a 70 at the Stadium Course to reach 17 under. The top-ranked player in the field at No. 3, Rahm beat up the par 5s again, but had four bogeys – three on par 3s. He has played the 12 par 5s in 13 under with an eagle and 11 birdies.

    Scott Piercy also was two strokes back after a 66 at the Stadium.

    Adam Hadwin had a 67 at La Quinta a year after shooting a third-round 59 on the course. The Canadian was 16 under along with Grayson Murray and Brandon Harkins. Murray had a 67 on PGA West's Jack Nicklaus Tournament Course, and Harkins shot 68 on the Stadium Course.

    Phil Mickelson missed the cut in his first tournament of the year for the second time in his career, shooting a 74 on the Stadium Course to finish at 4 under – four strokes from a Sunday tee time.

    The 47-year-old Hall of Famer was playing for the first time since late October. He also missed the cut in the Phoenix Open in his 2009 opener.

    Charlie Reiter, the Palm Desert High School senior playing on the first sponsor exemption the event has given to an amateur, also missed the cut. The Southern California recruit had three early straight double bogeys in a 77 on the Stadium that left him 1 over for the week.

    John Daly had an 80 at La Quinta. He opened with a triple bogey and had six bogeys – four in a row to start his second nine – and only one birdie. The 51-year-old Daly opened with a 69 on the Nicklaus layout and had a 71 on Friday at the Stadium.

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    Phil misses CareerBuilder cut for first time in 24 years

    By Randall MellJanuary 21, 2018, 12:48 am

    Phil Mickelson missed the cut Saturday at the CareerBuilder Challenge. It’s a rare occurrence in his Hall of Fame career.

    He has played the event 15 times, going back to when it was known as the Bob Hope Classic. He has won it twice.

    How rare is his missing the cut there?

    The last time he did so, there was no such thing as a DVD, Wi-Fi, iPods, Xbox, DVR capability or YouTube.

    Full-field scores from the Career Builder Challenge

    CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos

    The PGA Tour’s Jon Rahm didn’t exist, either.

    The last time Mickelson missed a cut in this event was 1994, nine months before Rahm was born.

    Mickelson struggled to a 2-over-par 74 in the heavy winds Saturday on the PGA West Stadium Course, missing the 54-hole cut by four shots. He hit just four of 14 fairways, just nine of 18 greens. He took a double bogey at the 15th after requiring two shots to escape the steep-walled bunker on the left side of the green.

    Mickelson won’t have to wait long to try to get back in the hunt. He’s scheduled to play the Farmers Insurance Open next week at Torrey Pines in La Jolla, Calif.

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    Defending champ Gana co-leads Latin America Amateur

    By Randall MellJanuary 20, 2018, 11:20 pm

    Toto Gana moved into early position to try to win a return trip to the Masters Saturday by grabbing a share of the first-round lead at the Latin America Amateur Championship.

    The defending champ posted a 3-under-par 68 at Prince of Wales Country Club in his native Chile, equaling the rounds of Argentina’s Mark Montenegro and Colombia’s Pablo Torres.

    They are one shot ahead of Mexico’s Alvaro Ortiz and Mario Carmona, Argentina’s Horacio Carbonetti and Jaime Lopez Rivarola and the Dominican Republic’s Rhadames Pena.

    It’s a bunched leaderboard, with 19 players within three shots of each at the top of the board in the 72-hole event.

    “I think I have my game under control,” said Gana, 20, a freshman at Lynn University. “I hit the ball very well, and I also putted very well. So, I am confident about tomorrow.”

    The LAAC’s champion will get more than a Masters invitation. He also will be exempt into the The Amateur, the U.S. Amateur and any other USGA event he is eligible to play this year. The champion and players who finish runner-up are also exempt into the final stages of qualifying for The Open and the U.S. Open.

    The LAAC was founded by the Masters, the R&A and the USGA, with the purpose of further developing amateur golf in South America, Central America, Mexico and the Caribbean.