Timeline: U.S. Amateur Public Links

By Golf Channel DigitalFebruary 11, 2013, 4:26 pm

The U.S. Golf Association announced Monday that the men’s and women’s U.S. Amateur Public Links will no longer be contested following the 2014 event.

Here is a timeline of the tournament:

MEN

1922: Inaugural event was won by Eddie Held at Ottawa Park in Toledo, Ohio. There were 140 entries. Held joined a private club soon after his victory and was not eligible to defend his title in 1923

1927: Carl Kauffmann won the first of his three consecutive titles and is the only three-time champion of the event

1988: Ralph Howe III won and received the first invitation to the Masters (in 1989) as champion of the U.S. Amateur Public Links. An invitation to The Masters has been extended every year since

1997: Tim Clark defeated Ryuji Imada, 7 and 6. Trip Kuehne was medalist that year, shooting 134

1998: Trevor Immelman defeated Jason Dufner, 3 and 2, to win the championship

2003: Brandt Snedeker defeated Dayton Rose, 10 and 9, to win the championship

2004: Ryan Moore also defeated Dayton Rose, this time 6 and 5, to win the championship. Moore also won in 2002 

2005: Michelle Wie (then 15 years old) qualified for the championship, making her the first female ever to qualify for a USGA men’s event. She qualified for stroke play and eventually lost in the quarterfinals to eventual champion Clay Ogden

Notes: The championship has had varying formats. From 1922-47 there was stroke-play qualifying before match play; from 1948-55 the championship was stroke play only; from 1956-66 there was 36-hole stroke play before match play; from 1967-74 it was only stroke play; from 1975 to present the format has been 36-hole stroke play before match play. The introduction of the 8.4 handicap index limit was introduced in 2000


WOMEN

1977: Inaugural event, held on the East Course of Yahara Hills GC in Madison, Wis., was won by Kelly Fuiks. She won again in ’78 before turning pro 

1988: Pearl Sinn became the first women’s player to win both the U.S. Women’s Amateur as well as the Women’s Publinx in the same season. Jennifer Song also won both titles in 2009

2003: Michelle Wie became the youngest winner of an “adult” USGA championship when she won the Women’s Publinx at age 13

2004: Current women’s world No. 1 Yani Tseng defeated Wie, 1 up, to win at Golden Horseshoe GC in Williamsburg, Va.

2008: Tiffany Joh won her second of two WAPL titles with a 2-and-1 victory over Jennifer Song at Erin Hills. Joh also won in ’06

Notes: The final match moved to 36 holes for the first time in 2002. Fuiks, Lori Castillo, Sinn, Jo Jo Robertson and Joh are the only players to win the event multiple times. The handicap index limit of 18.4 was introduced in 2005. The WAPL team championship was held from 1977 to 2008.

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Rahm (62) fires career low round

By Will GrayJanuary 19, 2018, 12:03 am

The scores were predictably low during the opening round of the CareerBuilder Challenge, where the top-ranked player in the field currently sits atop the standings. Here's how things look after the first day in Palm Springs as Jon Rahm is out to an early advantage:

Leaderboard: Jon Rahm (-10), Austin Cook (-9), Andrew Landry (-9), Jason Kokrak (-9), Brandon Harkins (-8), Martin Piller (-8), Aaron Wise (-8), Beau Hossler (-8)

What it means: Rahm is coming off a runner-up finish two weeks ago at Kapalua, and he picked up right where he left off with a 10-under 62 at La Quinta Country Club. It marked his lowest career round on the PGA Tour, and it gave him a one-shot lead heading to the Nicklaus Tournament Course. Cook is the only player within two shots of Rahm who has won already on Tour.

Round of the day: Rahm got off to a fast start, playing his first seven holes in 6 under, and he made it around La Quinta without dropping a shot. The 62 bettered his previous career low on Tour by two shots and it included an eagle on the par-5 fifth hole to go along with eight birdies.

Best of the rest: Cook was a winner earlier this season at the RSM Classic, and he's now in the mix for trophy No. 2 following a 9-under 63 on the Nicklaus Tournament Course. Like Rahm, he opened with a seven-hole stretch at 6 under and turned in a scorecard without a bogey. He'll now head to the more difficult Stadium Course for his second round.

Biggest disappointment: Patrick Reed blitzed the three-course rotation in Palm Springs en route to his first career Tour title back in 2014, but he's unlikely to repeat that feat after opening with a 2-over 74 on the Nicklaus Tournament course. Reed made only one birdie against three bogeys and was one of only 32 players in the 156-man field who failed to break par in the opening round.

Main storyline heading into Friday: Rahm deserves the spotlight, as he entered the week as one of the event's headliners and did nothing to lose that billing in the opening round. But the pack of contenders is sure to keep pace, while players like Phil Mickelson (-2) will look to put up a low score in order to build some momentum heading into the weekend.

Shot of the day: Wesley Bryan's 7-under 65 on the Nicklaus Tournament course was helped in large part by an eagle on the par-4 10th, where he holed a 54-degree wedge from 112 yards away. Bryan went on to birdie the next hole amid a five-hole stretch of 5 under play.

Quote of the day: "Shot 10 under par. There's not much more I can ask for." - Rahm

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Recent winner Cook contending at CareerBuilder

By Will GrayJanuary 18, 2018, 11:45 pm

Patton Kizzire is currently the only two-time PGA Tour winner this season, but Austin Cook hopes to join him this week at the CareerBuilder Challenge.

Cook won for the first time in November at the RSM Classic, a victory that catapaulted him from the Web.com Tour graduate category into an entirely new echelon. Cook notched a pair of top-25 finishes over the last two weeks in Hawaii, and he's again in the mix after an opening 63 on the Nicklaus Tournament Course left him one shot behind Jon Rahm.

"Today was great," Cook told reporters. "The conditions were perfect, but I always loved desert golf and I was just hitting the ball well and seeing good lines on the greens and hitting good putts."

Cook got off to a fast start, playing his first seven holes in 6 under highlighted by an eagle on the par-5 fourth hole. He briefly entertained the notion of a sub-60 round after birdies on Nos. 10 and 11 before closing with six pars and a birdie.


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Cook was a relative unknown before his victory at Sea Island earlier this season, but now with the flexibility and confidence afforded by a win he hopes to build on his burgeoning momentum this week in California.

"That was a big, proud moment for myself, knowing that I can finish a tournament," Cook said. "I think it was one of those things that I've proven to myself that now I can do it, and it just meant the world to me."

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Photo: Fleetwood's phone cover is picture of Bjorn

By Jason CrookJanuary 18, 2018, 11:40 pm

There's phone covers and then there are Phone Covers.

Paul Casey has himself a Phone Cover, showing off the protective case that features a picture of his wife at last year's U.S. Open.

Now, it appears, Tommy Fleetwood has joined the movement.

Fleetwood, last year's season-long Race to Dubai winner, has a phone cover with a picture of Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn on it. And not even a current Thomas Bjorn. This is a young Bjorn. A hair-having Bjorn.

@tommyfleetwood_1

A post shared by Alex Noren (@alexnoren1) on

The 26-year-old is a virtual lock for this year's European Ryder Cup team, but just in case, he's carrying around a phone with a picture of the team captain attached to the back of it.

It's a bold strategy, Cotton. Let's see if it pays off for him.

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Mickelson starts fast, fades to 70 at La Quinta

By Will GrayJanuary 18, 2018, 11:07 pm

Phil Mickelson got off to a fast start in his first competitive round of 2018 - for six holes, at least.

The 47-year-old is making his first start since the WGC-HSBC Champions this week at the CareerBuilder Challenge, and only his third competitive appearance since the BMW Championship in September. Four birdies over his first six holes indicated that a strong opener might be in the cards, but Mickelson played his subsequent holes in 2 over.

It added up to a 2-under 70 at La Quinta Country Club, typically the easiest of the three courses in rotation this week, and left Mickelson eight shots behind Jon Rahm.

"It was fun to get back out and be competitive," Mickelson told reporters. "I for some reason am stuck on 70 here at La Quinta, whether I get off to a good start or a bad one, I end up shooting the same score."


Full-field scores from the Career Builder Challenge

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Mickelson stunted his momentum with a tee shot out of bounds on the par-4 eighth hole, but he managed to save bogey and otherwise drove the ball relatively well. Instead, he pointed to his normally reliable iron play as the culprit for his back-nine backslide on a day when more than 120 players in the 156-man field broke par.

Mickelson will now head to the Nicklaus Tournament Course with the Stadium Course on tap for Saturday's third round. While there were several low scores Thursday at La Quinta, Mickelson remains bullish about the birdie opportunities that still lie ahead.

"This isn't the course where I go low on," Mickelson said. "I feel more comfortable on Stadium and Nicklaus. Neither of them are nearly as tight and I tend to score a lot lower on those other two than I do here, historically."