Matches Level After First Day
Thats the whole fun of foursomes and fourball, European Captain Dale Reid said upon the conclusion of todays matches. You never know whats going to happen. But I think 4-4 is a good way to start off tomorrow.
U.S. Captain Patty Sheehan was brimming with pride for her squad and the comeback they made.
Obviously I was still out on the course watching the morning matches when the afternoon matches got underway so I didnt get to talk to my players before they went out, Sheehan said.
My players took it upon themselves to be self-motivated. They obviously know that this afternoon they would turn it around.
Americans Laura Diaz and Emilee Klein, both of whom are playing in the Solheim Cup for the first time, were a hot afternoon pairing. Diaz was a late substitution for Beth Daniel who is suffering from flu-like symptoms.
Ive waited and worked my whole life for this and Ive got no problem playing 36 today if you need me, Diaz told her Captain this morning.
The rookie duo chipped their way towards a lead with solid par play and some key birdies.
We made a lot of birdies together and that was great because were both rookies! Diaz shouted.
All the while European counterparts Sophie Gustafson and Cup rookie Karine Icher did their best to match par on the front nine while Diaz and Klein birdied there way through the turn. By the 14th the U.S. Cup rookies were dormie.
They scored the first afternoon point for the U.S. team after ended their match 4 up on the par-4 15th with three holes to go.
I tell you what, Ive got some stud muffin, tough rookies out there, the proud U.S. Captain said.
The feisty pairing of Rosie Jones and Cristie Kerr held their weight against Laura Davies and Paula Marti. Kerr, a first timer to the Cup and described as a methodical player by Davies, jump-started the round by recording birdie-birdie on the opening holes.
She showed no fear in her first match and by the time the U.S. pairing made the turn they were up by four.
I think I went a little unconscious there for a while, Kerr said of her first taste of match play in the Solheim Cup. My heart rate was pretty high all day.
For the European team of Davies and Marti, they received their first break on the par-5 10th after Davies holed a putt from 40 feet for eagle. The back nine, much like the front was a struggle yet Davies rallied late in the round making another spectacular birdie on the par-4 17th.
The Americans lead dwindled as they made their way into the closing holes and with only one hole remaining; the Americans were reduced to a lead of one. Thats when long ball hitter Laura Davies hit her tee shot into the water and then proceeded to recover making birdie on the last.
Once I knew it was in the water, I kind of counted her out and I know better, Jones said. I should never, ever, ever, ever count her out. A couple of years ago she wasnt putting or driving the ball well but now shes back.
Laura is back!
Both sides recorded birdie on the par-5 18th leaving the U.S. pairing of Jones and Kerr victoriously up by one.
We made a great comeback, and we made them make a birdie to beat us, Marti said. So thats pretty good.
We really lost it in the middle, on 6,7,8 and 9, Davies added. They won the match there. We made them work, but they won the match and thats all that matters.
Michele Redman and Meg Mallon got off to a good start winning the first hole but the European duo of Annika Sorenstam and Maria Hjorth matched on the par-3 4th with a birdie putt by Annika.
The match remained all square through the 11th but the Americans upped the ante by moving to one up after recording par on the par-4 15th. Sorenstam was visibly upset by this development.
Mallon and Redman were dormie after Mallons birdie on the 16th.
Mhairi McKay made her debut this afternoon with teammate Carin Koch in the final match of the day. Koch, who played with Sorenstam a Foursome match earlier in the day, was one of three winning European pairings this morning.
Paired against Americans Juli Inkster and Kelli Kuehne, the Europeans were all square for much of the round. Kochs par save on the par-4 11th put some blue back on the boards for Europe. By the 15th, the Europeans were dormie.
They ended the match on the par-4 16th with par to win the match 3 and 2 and record the sole afternoon point for Europe.
The Minnesota galleries out there are awesome. They came out in droves and it was huge for the team, Sheehan said shortly before rushing off to consult with her Captains Assistant Jane Geddes on tomorrows pairings.
Solheim Cup Scores
Watch: Tiger throws dart, pours in birdie at 8
Starting Sunday five off the lead, Tiger Woods teed off his final round of the Arnold Palmer Invitational with a laced 2-iron and a par at No. 1.
Woods hit the green at the par-3 second but left himself a 50-foot birdie putt and a 6-footer to save par, which we walked in.
Walking in the par putt at No. 2. pic.twitter.com/zuSGZmVL3z— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) March 18, 2018
A two-putt 4 at the par-5 fourth gave Woods his first birdie of the day and moved him to 8 under for the week. Apparently energized, Tiger pulled driver at the short par-4 fifth and unleashed this violent swing.
A pitch from the thick rough hit a sprinkler head and stopped on the apron, leading to this birdie try, which fortunately hit the pin but unfortunately didn't fall.
Looking to pick up another stroke - or two - at the par-5 sixth, Woods took his drive 317 yards over the water and hit this second shot from 227 yards to 13 feet, leading to another two-putt birdie when his eagle try burned the right edge.
Tiger gets it to 9-under.— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) March 18, 2018
He's 4 shots back. pic.twitter.com/cAZtM14SlJ
Returning to his trusty 2-iron, Tiger found the fairway at par-4 eighth and then threw this dart from 176 yards to 6 feet and rolled in his third birdie putt of the day to move to 10 under.
Tiger Tracker: Arnold Palmer Invitational
Tiger Woods will start Sunday five off the lead at the Arnold Palmer Invitational. How will he follow up last week's runner-up? We're tracking him at Bay Hill.
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McIlroy: Time for Tour to limit alcohol sales on course
ORLANDO, Fla. – Rory McIlroy suggested Saturday that the PGA Tour might need to consider curbing alcohol sales to stop some of the abusive fan behavior that has become more prevalent at events.
McIlroy said that a fan repeatedly yelled his wife’s name (Erica) during the third round at the Arnold Palmer Invitational.
“I was going to go over and have a chat with him,” McIlroy said. “I think it’s gotten a little much, to be honest. I think they need to limit the alcohol sales on the course, or they need to do something, because every week it seems like guys are complaining about it more and more.
“I know that people want to come and enjoy themselves, and I’m all for that, but sometimes when the comments get personal and people get a little bit rowdy, it can get a little much.”
This isn’t the first time that McIlroy has voiced concerns about fan behavior on Tour. Last month at Riviera, he said the rowdy spectators probably cost Tiger Woods a half-shot a round, and after two days in his featured group he had a splitting headache.
A week later, at the Honda Classic, Justin Thomas had a fan removed late in the final round.
McIlroy believes the issue is part of a larger problem, as more events try to replicate the success of the Waste Management Phoenix Open, which has one of the liveliest atmospheres on Tour.
“It’s great for that tournament, it’s great for us, but golf is different than a football game, and there’s etiquette involved and you don’t want people to be put off from bringing their kids when people are shouting stuff out,” he said. “You want people to enjoy themselves, have a good day.”
As for a solution, well, McIlroy isn’t quite sure.
“It used to be you bring beers onto the course or buy beers, but not liquor,” he said. “And now it seems like everyone’s walking around with a cocktail. I don’t know whether (the solution) is to go back to letting people walking around with beers in their hands. That’s fine, but I don’t know.”
Confident Lincicome lurking after 54 holes at Founders
PHOENIX – Brittany Lincicome is farther back than she wanted to be going into Sunday at the Bank of Hope Founders Cup, but she’s in a good place.
She’s keeping the momentum of her season-opening Pure Silk Bahamas Classic victory going this year.
Her confidence is high.
“Last year, I won in the Bahamas, but then I didn't do anything after that,” Lincicome said. “I don't even know if I had a top 10 after my win in the Bahamas. Obviously, this year, I want to be more consistent.”
Lincicome followed up her victory in the Bahamas this year with a tie for seventh in her next start at the Honda LPGA Thailand. And now she’s right back on another leaderboard with the year’s first major championship just two weeks away. She is, by the way, a two-time winner at the ANA Inspiration.
Missy Pederson, Lincicome’s caddie, is helping her player keep that momentum going with more focus on honing in the scoring clubs.
“One of our major goals is being more consistent,” Pederson said. “She’s so talented, a once in a generation talent. I’m just trying to help out in how to best approach every golf course.”
Pederson has helped Lincicome identify the clubs they’re likely to attack most with on the particular course they are playing that week, to spend more time working with those clubs in practice. It’s building confidence.
“I know the more greens we hit, and the more chances we give ourselves, the more our chances are to be in contention,” Pederson said. “Britt is not big into stats or details, so I have to figure out how to best consolidate that information, to get us exactly where we need to be.”
Lincicome’s growing comfort with clubs she can attack with is helping her confidence through a round.
“I’ve most noticed consistency in her mental game, being able to handle some of the hiccups that happen over the course of a round,” Pederson said. “Whereas before, something might get under her skin, where she might say, `That’s what always happens,’ now, it’s, `All right, I know I’m good enough to get this back.’ I try to get her in positions to hit the clubs we are really hitting well right now.”
That’s leading to a lot more birdies, fewer bogeys and more appearances on leaderboards in the start to this year.