Former U.S. Open champ Glover takes Zurich lead

By Will GrayApril 26, 2013, 10:16 pm

Another day of ideal scoring conditions allowed many of the players in the field at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans to once again post low numbers at TPC Louisiana. Here's the skinny heading into the third round, where a former major champion is now atop the leaderboard:

The leaderboard: Lucas Glover (-12), Boo Weekley (-11), D.A. Points (-10), Morgan Hoffmann (-9), Ernie Els (-8), Justin Rose (-7), Brian Davis (-7)

What it means: With first-round leader Ricky Barnes struggling Friday, Glover and Weekley were able to distance themselves somewhat from the field after strong rounds in the morning wave. While Weekley was a runner-up earlier this year in Tampa, Glover has only one top-10 finish in 2013 (T-4 at the Honda Classic) and enters the weekend in position for just his second win since hoisting the U.S. Open trophy in 2009.

Round of the day: After opening with a 1-over 73, 2011 Zurich champion Bubba Watson appeared in danger of missing the cut. A bogey on his first hole Friday dropped the former Masters winner to 2 over, but from there Watson birdied eight of his next 17 holes to post a 7-under 65 Friday, easily make it to the weekend and putting himself back into contention in the process.

Best of the rest: Another former winner in New Orleans, Jerry Kelly, nearly matched Watson's effort Friday. With birdies on five of his first 11 holes in the second round, Kelly moved quickly up the leaderboard but was not able to add any more red numbers coming down the homestretch. Still, the bogey-free 67 moved him to 7 under overall, putting Kelly, who was fifth last week in Harbour Town, in contention for the second week in a row.

Biggest disappointment: After struggling at the Masters, many expected Keegan Bradley to bounce back this week at TPC Louisiana. Instead, the former PGA champion, who had notched four straight top-10 finishes prior to the season's first major, carded rounds of 69 and 74, making only six total birdies across 36 holes. At 1 under, Bradley can now book an early flight out of New Orleans after missing his first cut of the season.

Main storyline heading into Saturday: With several big names chasing the leaders, who will make a move up the leaderboard? Els, Rose, Watson, Nick Watney and Billy Horschel all begin the third round tied for 11th or better, and with ideal weather conditions and more low scores expected this weekend, leaders will need to maintain their birdie pace if they want to keep the contenders at bay.

Shot of the day: Always possessing a flair for the dramatic, Boo Weekley got his second round started in exciting fashion Friday. Beginning his round on the 10th hole, the veteran split the opening fairway and then holed his wedge approach from 105 yards away for an eagle 2. Weekley went on to to shoot a 4-under 68 Friday, earning himself a spot in the final pairing Saturday afternoon.

Quote of the day: 'Making the cut is one of my goals. I'm having fun these couple of days, and I hope to play my best and go further.' – Guan Tianlang, 14, who advanced past the 36-hole cut after a 3-under 69 Friday.

Getty Images

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

CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos

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.

Getty Images

Mickelson 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.

Getty Images

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.

Getty Images

LAAC returning to Casa de Campo in 2019

By Randall MellJanuary 20, 2018, 8:23 pm

The Latin America Amateur Championship will return to Casa de Campo in the Dominican Republic in 2019 (Jan. 17-20), event organizers announced Saturday in Chile, where this year’s championship is underway.

The LAAC champion receives an invitation to play the Masters at Augusta National Golf Club every spring.

The champion is also exempt into The Amateur, the U.S. Amateur and any other USGA event for which he is eligible to compete. 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.

The championship got its start in 2015 with Chile’s Matias Dominguez winning at Pilar Golf in Argentina. In 2016, Casa de Campo hosted, with Costa Rica’s Paul Chaplet winning. At 16, he became the first player from Central America to compete in the Masters. In 2017, Chile’s Toto Gana won the title at  Club de Golf de Panama.