Day 3 recap: Kaymer's point gives Euros win

By Golf Channel DigitalSeptember 30, 2012, 10:36 pm

MEDINAH, Ill. – Match-by-match recaps of Day 3 of the 39th Ryder Cup from Medinah Country Club, where the Europeans staged an epic comeback win. USA began the singles competition with a 10-6 lead and needed 4 1/2 points to capture the cup, but failed to do so.

Sunday singles: Europe  8 1/2, USA 3 1/2 (Total: Europe 14 1/2, US 13 1/2)

Tiger Woods vs. Francesco Molinari, halved

Many believed this match wouldn't matter. Turns out it didn't, but for completely different reasons. When Kaymer closed out the match ahead this one didn't matter. Still, Woods missed a short par putt that made him winless on the week at 0-3-1.

Martin Kaymer def. Steve Stricker, 1 up

Kaymer was considered Europe's weakest link and yet delivered the winning point to win the Ryder Cup. He did not play well, but Stricker had no gas left in the tank. Tiger Woods was in the last match, but it didn't matter, the cup was essentially over here.

Jason Dufner def. Peter Hanson, 2 up

Huge victory for the U.S. as it tied the score at 13 a piece. Next point wins with only two matches on the course. The rookie Dufner was 3-1 on the week and, although he didn't play his best in singles, it was enough for a full point. Still not sure he's smiled.

Sergio Garcia def. Jim Furyk, 1 up

Furyk has not had a great summer blowing the U.S. Open, the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational and now a 1-up lead with two holes remaining in a critical singles match against Sergio Garcia. Neither man played well but Furyk coughed up the match with bogeys on 17 and 18.

Lee Westwood def. Matt Kuchar, 3 and 2

Westwood played poorly all week and Kuchar played well. But this match was the complete opposite as Westwood was steady and Kuchar was erratic. Europe's Ryder Cup veteran kept the momentum going for his team in a crucial position.

Luke Donald def. Bubba Watson, 2 and 1

Recap: The Englishman birdied two of his first four holes, halved a hole despite a tee shot into the water (13th) and led by four holes with six to play yet still needed a sand save at the penultimate hole to secure Europe’s first point of the day and, at least momentarily, quiet the Chicagoland masses.

Paul Lawrie def. Brandt Snedeker, 5 and 3

Recap: An early shocker as Lawrie cruised to an easy victory with five birdies to record his first point of the week. Snedeker's week began with a loss and ended with one in his rookie performance. 

Rory McIlroy def. Keegan Bradley, 2 and 1

Recap: The world No. 1 nearly missed his tee time because he misinterpreted the time zone, a surreal episode that included a police escort from the team hotel, but didn’t miss much the rest of the way. The Ulsterman pulled away with back-to-back birdies at Nos. 14 and 15 to hand the American rookie his only loss this week.

Ian Poulter def. Webb Simpson, 2 up

Recap: The emotional soul of the European team set the tone early with a chip-in birdie at the first and pulled the Continent even with the home team, 10-10. He also improved to 4-0 for the week and 4-0 in career singles play.

Dustin Johnson def. Nicolas Colsaerts, 3 and 2

Recap: The first American point goes on the board after four European points to open the session. Johnson was clearly the better talent, producing six birdies in his match and ending the week a perfect 3-0.

Justin Rose def. Phil Mickelson, 1 up

Recap: Mickelson was 1 up with two remaining and Rose made consecutive birdies to steal the match and give Europe a full point in each of the first five matches. The Rose rally ruined Mickelson's perfect record.

Zach Johnson def. Graeme McDowell, 2 and 1

Johnson didn’t play particularly well and McDowell handed him this match by making four bogeys in the first 13 holes. A hugely disappointing week for McDowell (1-3) and a great one for Johnson (3-1).

Click here for Day 2 match-by-match recaps

Click here for Day 1 match-by-match recaps

Relive Day 2 Ryder Cup matches Monday at 8 p.m. ET and the singles matches Tuesday at 4 p.m. ET.

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Durant tops Stricker, others to win Chubb Classic

By Associated PressFebruary 19, 2018, 12:19 am

NAPLES, Fla. - Joe Durant birdied the final two holes - and got some help from Steve Stricker - to win the PGA Tour Champions' Chubb Classic.

Durant shot a 5-under 67 on Sunday for a four-stroke victory over Stricker, David Toms, Lee Janzen, Billy Mayfair and Tim Petrovic.

''The stick-to-itiveness and the intestinal fortitude,'' Durant said when asked what he most proud about. ''I was nervous starting out, and I missed short putts early, but I kept grinding, kept telling myself that if I could just steady myself, hit some quality shots, the putts would start to go.''

Tied with Durant with two holes left, Stricker dropped a stroke back when Durant birdied the par-5 17th. On the par-4 18th, Stricker hit into the water and made a double bogey for a three-shot swing.

''Not my favorite pin in the world on the right side and the right-to-left wind, and I tried to hold it off and pushed it a little bit,'' Stricker said. ''He hit a great shot in there, forced me to try to go right straight at it, and I didn't pull it off.''

The 53-year-old Durant closed with a 15-footer to finish at 19-under 197 on TwinEagles' Talon course. He was safely on the 18th green when Stricker - needing birdie to tie - hit into the water.

''One of those situations where I was fortunate that I hit fist, knocked it onto the green,'' Durant said. ''So, it might have put a couple thoughts in his head anyway.''

Durant earned $240,000 for his third victory on the 50-and-over tour after winning four PGA Tour titles.

''Joe hit some great shots when he had to, put the pressure on all of us when it mattered most,'' Stricker said. ''He played great.''

The 50-year-old Stricker shot 70. He made his first start of the year on the senior tour after playing six tournaments last year - a runner-up finish in his debut along with three third-places ties.

''The par 5s killed me today,'' Stricker said. ''I eagled the first one, and then I was in great position on every other one and walked away with pars on all of them. That was really the difference.''

Durant eagled the par-5 13th - ''I felt like if I could make the 3 there, I had a shot,'' he said - and birdied the par-4 14th to take the lead at 18 under. He dropped into a tie with a bogey on the par-3 16th and Stricker's birdie on the hole.

''I was just so nervous today, and it showed on the first few holes,'' Durant said. ''I missed some short putts. My goal was to just hang in there. If you can stay around it, you never know what's going to happen the last three or four holes, and that's all I really tried to do.''

Mayfair and Petrovic shot 64, Toms had a 65, and Janzen a 68.

''Didn't really get anything going until the end of the round today,'' Toms said. ''I'm playing solid, just keep putting myself in position, maybe one day I'll get that hot round on Sunday.''

Scott McCarron was 14 under after a 68.

John Daly had a hole-in-one in a 67 to get to 13 under. He used an 8-iron on the 16th for the ace.

First-round leader Miguel Angel Jimenez was ninth at 12 under after a 72.

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Phil eyes Augusta after third straight top-6 finish

By Will GrayFebruary 18, 2018, 11:54 pm

LOS ANGELES – For the third straight Sunday, a valiant back-nine charge came up just short for Phil Mickelson.

Mickelson began the final round of the Genesis Open five shots off the lead, but after a chip-in birdie on No. 12 he got within a shot of Bubba Watson. With the leaders a few holes behind him, he continued to press and his aggressive approaches into Nos. 15 and 16 both led to bogeys that effectively ended his chances to win for the first time since 2013.

Mickelson’s closing 3-under 68 ultimately left him in a tie for sixth, four shots behind Watson. It comes on the heels of a runner-up finish last week at Pebble Beach and a T-5 finish the week before that in Phoenix, marking the first time since 2007 that Mickelson has strung together three straight top-6 finishes.

Full-field scores from the Genesis Open

Genesis Open: Articles, photos and videos

“My game’s on the upswing,” Mickelson said. “I’m playing well enough to compete week in and week out now, and now it’s just a matter of a shot here or there, the difference between winning and not, as opposed to kind of finding my game. I’m not searching anymore.”

Mickelson added that he has seen “significant” progress in both putting and driving, two areas of concern he addressed in the offseason. But as the season’s first major continues to draw near, he believes that turning top-10s into a victory is critical to his chances at a fourth green jacket.

“I think it will be important for me, if I want to go into Augusta with the expectation of winning again, that I win before then,” Mickelson said. “If it doesn’t happen, it doesn’t happen. But I think that that would be a big thing for momentum, because you need to perform under the gun, in the clutch, and play well enough to win a tournament before you expect to win a major.”

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Watson wins at Riviera for third time

By Golf Channel DigitalFebruary 18, 2018, 11:35 pm

Bubba Watson holed a bunker shot midway through the back nine Sunday on his way to a 2-under 69 and a two-stroke victory in the Genesis Open. Here's the plot lines of Watson's third victory in the PGA Tour's Los Angeles stop:

Leaderboard: Bubba Watson (-12), Kevin Na (-10), Tony Finau (-10), Scott Stallings (-9), Patrick Cantlay (-9)

What it means: This is the third time Watson has won at Riviera Country Club, following victories in 2014 and 2016. It's his 10th PGA Tour win and his first since he won at Riviera two years ago. After a shaky, three-bogey, two-birdie front nine, he settled down - helped by his prodigious length - to make three birdies on the back with no dropped shots.

Full-field scores from the Genesis Open

Genesis Open: Articles, photos and videos

Round of the day: Adam Hadwin shot his second consecutive 5-under-par 66. Only a second-round 74 kept him from being squarely in the mix.

Best of the rest: Jordan Spieth shot a final-round 67 to finish tied for ninth.

Biggest disappointment: Graeme McDowell was just two shots off the lead after 54 holes, seeking his first win since 2015, but he closed with a 77 and fell 23 spots.

Shot of the day: Watson's bunker hole-out from 16 yards at the par-3 14th. It gave him a two-stroke cushion over Cantlay.

Quote of the day: "It means a lot. My goal has always been to get 10 wins." - Bubba Watson

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Bubba holes birdie from bunker after caddie calls it

By Golf Channel DigitalFebruary 18, 2018, 10:31 pm

Bubba Watson started the final round of the Genesis Open with the lead, but quickly squandered it with three bogeys on the front nine.

That didn't crush the two-time tournament champion's (or his caddie's) confidence though, as evidenced by his birdie on the par-3 14th hole, which he made from the greenside bunker.

Watson regained the final-round lead by finding the bottom of the cup with this splash-out from the sand, a shot his caddie, Ted Scott, apparently called before he hit it:

Hey, when you caddie for a guy who has two green jackets hanging in the closet at home, sometimes you just know.