Kat Leads Tiger Survives

By Mercer BaggsAugust 17, 2001, 4:00 pm
Tiger Woods barely makes the cut. A par-70, 7,213-yard layout yields record-tying low numbers. And a cowboy-hat-wearing Japanese player shares the 36-hole lead.
This is not the PGA Championship we were expectinG. But its what we have, and you wont find David Toms complaining.
Toms, in dire need of a great finish this week to earn a spot on the U.S. Ryder Cup team, fired a 5-under-par 65 to tie Shingo Katayama, who shot a morning 64, for the lead entering weekend play in Duluth, Ga.
Click here to see how potential Ryder Cuppers fared in rd. 2
Toms and Katayama stand at 9-under-par 131. The 9-under total ties a 36-hole tournament scoring record, last set by Ernie Els in 1995.
Phil Mickelson (66) and Bob Estes (65) are tied for third place at 9-under.
Six players are tied for fifth place at 6-under; including Steve Lowery (67), K.J. Choi (68), Jim Furyk (64), Dudley Hart (68), Els (67) and David Duval (68).
Meanwhile, the two-time defending champion is nine shots off the pace.
Then again, Woods is happy to still be in the metro Atlanta area, as it took a pair of lengthy birdie putts over his final four holes just to keep him in the tournament.
Woods started the round at 3-over-par and needed to make a series of par saves to keep alive his chances coming down the stretch.
Tiger picked up a couple of shots at the 5th and 9th holes, but bogeyed the 13th.
He entered the par-3 15th at 2-over for the tournament, with the projected cutline looming at even par.
After coming up short of the green with his tee shot, Woods raced his birdie effort from 40 feet and off the green into the back of the cup. Had he missed, the ball might have traveled through the green. But as it was, Tiger moved to 1-over, which eventually became cutline.
At the par-4 16th, Tiger safely found the green, but some 30 feet from the flag. However, Tiger once again thrilled the gallery by draining the birdie effort to reach even par.
I knew I had to make something happen coming in, said Woods. I made two bombs.
Woods then proceeded to par his final two holes to shoot 67 and make the cut by one shot. Its officially the 74th consecutive cut made by Woods. He hasnt missed a cut in a major tournament since doing so in the 1996 Masters as an amateur.
'It seemed tougher trying to make the cut than winning the tournament,' Woods said.
Ive always believed youve got to give everything you have. Thats what I did today. I didnt hit it that great, but I hung in there, hung in there and did the best I could.
While Tigers performance, or lack thereof, is surprising, so too is that of both Katayama and Toms.

Katayama, known for the cowboy hat he wears during competition, capped a brilliant round by sinking a 20-foot birdie putt at the last. He raised his arms in celebration before the ball fell into the cup.
I started wearing the hat last year, Katayama said through an interpreter. Since I started wearing the hat, Ive had good results. I love my hat.
Toms sports the more traditional baseball cap, but was equally impressive on Friday.
This years Compaq Classic winner recorded six birdies and one bogey at the Highlands Course. He currently resides in 14th place on the U.S. Ryder Cup standings. And with this weeks event being the last before the American team in finalized, Toms needs no less than a tie for sixth to have a chance for automatically qualifying for the team.
Thats in the back of my mind, Toms said. But Im playing well enough to win this tournament. Thats first and foremost.
Lurking behind the two surprise leaders are a host of worthy contenders, but no bigger names than that of Mickelson and Duval.
Mickelson continued to avoid his penchant for disaster. For the second day in a row, the left-hander made five birdies to just one bogey.
Ive played two solid rounds and put myself score-wise about where I was expecting, said Mickelson. Heading into the weekend, Id like to try and separate myself a little bit.
Mickelson would like to do what Duval did at this years British Open ' shed the label of best player never to win a major.
Friday, Duval displayed stellar iron play, but was unable to go substantially low due to a poor putter. He left a number of birdie putts short.

News, Notes and Numbers
*The cutline fell at 1-over-par 141. Sergio Garcia (68-75), John Daly (72-77) and Tom Lehman (72-72) missed the cut. Lehman is currently 10th in Ryder Cup points.
*Mark OMeara set a new course record and tied a major championship record by shooting 63 in the second round. The 1998 Masters and British Open champion is four off the lead at 5-under.
*Overnight leader Grant Waite went from two ahead to seven down. The New Zealander followed an opening 64 with a second-round 74.
*1995 PGA champion Steve Elkington withdrew prior to his second round due to an illness.
*Rick Schuller was the only club professional of the 25 in the tournament to make the cut. Schuller, an assistant pro at River Creek Club in Leesburg, Va., shot rounds of 68-70 to qualify for weekend play.
Full-field scores from the 83rd PGA Championship
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Lesson with Woods fetches $210K for Harvey relief

By Will GrayDecember 13, 2017, 2:51 pm

A charity event featuring more than two dozen pro golfers raised more than $1 million for Hurricane Harvey relief, thanks in large part to a hefty price paid for a private lesson with Tiger Woods.

The pro-am fundraiser was organized by Chris Stroud, winner of the Barracuda Championship this summer, and fellow pro and Houston resident Bobby Gates. It was held at Bluejack National in Montgomery, Texas, about an hour outside Houston and the first Woods-designed course to open in the U.S.

The big-ticket item on the auction block was a private, two-person lesson with Woods at Bluejack National that sold for a whopping $210,000.

Other participants included local residents like Stacy Lewis, Patrick Reed and Steve Elkington as well as local celebrities like NBA All-Star Clyde Drexler, Houston Texans quarterback T.J. Yates and Houston Astros owner Jim Crane.

Stroud was vocal in his efforts to help Houston rebuild in the immediate aftermath of the storm that ravaged the city in August, and he told the Houston Chronicle that he plans to continue fundraising efforts even after eclipsing the event's $1 million goal.

"This is the best event I have ever been a part of, and this is just a start," Stroud said. "We have a long way to go for recovery to this city, and we want to keep going with this and raise as much as we can and help as many victims as we can."

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LPGA schedule features 34 events, record purse

By Randall MellDecember 13, 2017, 2:02 pm

The LPGA schedule will once again feature 34 events next year with a record $68.75 million in total purses, the tour announced on Wednesday.

While three events are gone from the 2018 schedule, three new events have been added, with two of those on the West Coast and one in mainland China.

The season will again start with the Pure Silk Bahamas Classic on Paradise Island (Jan. 25-28) and end with the CME Group Tour Championship in Naples, Fla., (Nov. 15-18).

The LPGA played for $65 million in total prize money in 2017.

An expanded West Coast swing in the front half of the schedule will now include the HUGEL-JTBC Championship in the Los Angeles area April 19-22. The site will be announced at a later date.

The tour will then make a return to San Francisco’s Lake Merced Golf Club the following week, in a new event sponsored by L&P Cosmetics, a Korean skincare company. Both new West Coast tournaments will be full-field events.

The tour’s third new event will be played in Shanghai Oct. 18-21 as part of the fall Asian swing. The title sponsor and golf course will be announced at a later date.

“Perhaps the most important aspect of our schedule is the consistency — continuing to deliver strong playing opportunities both in North America and around the world, while growing overall purse levels every year,” LPGA commissioner Mike Whan said in a statement. “There is simply no better [women’s] tour opportunity in the world, when it comes to purses, global TV coverage or strength of field. It’s an exciting time in women’s golf, with the best players from every corner of the globe competing against each other in virtually every event.”

While the Evian Championship will again be played in September next year, the tour confirmed its plans to move its fifth major to the summer in 2019, to be part of a European swing, with the Aberdeen Standard Investments Ladies Scottish Open and the Ricoh Women’s British Open.

The Manulife LPGA Classic and the Lorena Ochoa Invitational are not returning to the schedule next year. Also, the McKayson New Zealand Women’s Open will not be played next year as it prepares to move to the front of the 2019 schedule, to be paired with the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open.

The U.S. Women’s Open will make its new place earlier in the summer, a permanent move in the tour’s scheduling. It will be played May 31-June 3 at Shoal Creek Golf Club outside Birmingham, Ala. The KPMG Women’s PGA Championship (June 28-July 1) will be played at Kemper Lakes Golf Club on the north side of Chicago and the Ricoh Women’s British Open (Aug. 2-5) will be played at Royal Lytham & St. Annes in England.

For the first time since its inception in 2014, the UL International Crown team event is going overseas, with the Jack Nicklaus Golf Club in Incheon, South Korea, scheduled to host the event Oct. 4-7. The KEB Hana Bank Championship will be played in South Korean the following week.

Here is the LPGA's schedule for 2018:

Jan. 25-28: Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic; Paradise Island, Bahamas; Purse: $1.4 million

Feb. 15-18: ISPS Handa Women's Australian Open; Adelaide, Australia; Purse: $1.3 million

Feb. 21-24: Honda LPGA Thailand; Chonburi, Thailand; Purse: $1.6 million

March 1-4: HSBC Women's World Championship; Singapore; Purse: $1.5 million

March 15-18: Bank of Hope Founders Cup; Phoenix, Arizona; Purse: $1.5 million

March 22-25: Kia Classic; Carlsbad, California; Purse: $1.8 million

March 29 - April 1: ANA Inspiration; Rancho Mirage, California; Purse: $2.8 million

April 11-14: LOTTE Championship; Kapolei, Oahu, Hawaii; Purse: $2 million

April 19-22: HUGEL-JTBC Championship; Greater Los Angeles, California; Purse: $1.5 million

April 26-29: Name to be Announced; San Francisco, California; Purse: $1.5 million

May 3-6: Volunteers of America LPGA Texas Classic; The Colony, Texas; Purse: $1.3 million

May 17-20: Kingsmill Championship; Williamsburg, Virginia; Purse: $1.3 million

May 24-27: LPGA Volvik Championship; Ann Arbor, Michigan; Purse: $1.3 million

May 31 - June 3: U.S. Women's Open Championship; Shoal Creek, Alabama; Purse: $5 million

June 8-10: ShopRite LPGA Classic presented by Acer; Galloway, New Jersey; Purse: $1.75 million

June 14-17: Meijer LPGA Classic for Simply Give; Grand Rapids, Michigan; Purse: $2 million

June 22-24: Walmart NW Arkansas Championship presented by P&G; Rogers, Arkansas; Purse: $2 million

June 28 - July 1: KPMG Women's PGA Championship; Kildeer, Illinois; Purse: $3.65 million

July 5-8: Thornberry Creek LPGA Classic; Oneida, Wisconsin; Purse: $2 million

July 12-15: Marathon Classic presented by Owens-Corning and O-I; Sylvania, Ohio; Purse: $1.6 million

July 26-29: Aberdeen Standard Investments Ladies Scottish Open; East Lothian, Scotland; Purse: $1.5 million

Aug. 2-5: Ricoh Women's British Open; Lancashire, England; Purse: $3.25 million

Aug. 16-19: Indy Women in Tech Championship presented by Guggenheim; Indianapolis, Indiana; Purse: $2 million

Aug. 23-26: CP Women's Open; Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada; Purse: $2.25 million

Aug. 30 - Sept. 2: Cambia Portland Classic; Portland, Oregon; Purse: $1.3 million

Sept. 13-16: The Evian Championship; Evian-les-Bains, France; Purse: $3.85 million

Sept. 27-30: Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Purse: $1.8 million

Oct. 4-7: UL International Crown; Incheon, Korea; Purse: $1.6 million

Oct. 11-14: LPGA KEB Hana Bank Championship; Incheon, Korea; Purse: $2 million

Oct. 18-21: Name to be Announced; Shanghai, China; Purse: $2.1 million

Oct. 25-28: Swinging Skirts LPGA Taiwan Championship; New Taipei City, Chinese Taipei; Purse: $2.2 million

Nov. 2-4: TOTO Japan Classic; Shiga, Japan; Purse: $1.5 million

Nov. 7-10: Blue Bay LPGA; Hainan Island, China; Purse: $2.1 million

Nov. 15-18: CME Group Tour Championship; Naples, Florida; Purse: $2.5 million

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 4, Jordan Spieth

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 13, 2017, 1:00 pm

Dismissed because he’s supposedly too short off the tee, or not accurate enough with his irons, or just a streaky putter, Jordan Spieth is almost never the answer to the question of which top player, when he’s at his best, would win in a head-to-head match.

And yet here he is, at the age of 24, with 11 career wins and three majors, on a pace that compares favorably with the giants of the game. He might not possess the firepower of Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy, but since he burst onto the PGA Tour in 2013 he has all that matters – a better résumé.

Spieth took the next step in his development this year by becoming the Tour’s best iron player – and its most mentally tough.

Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year

Just a great putter? Oh, puhleeze: He won three times despite putting statistics (42nd) that were his worst since his rookie year. Instead, he led the Tour in strokes gained-approach the green and this summer showed the discipline, golf IQ and bounce-back ability that makes him such a unique talent. 

Even with his putter misbehaving, Spieth closed out the Travelers Championship by holing a bunker shot in the playoff, then, in perhaps an even bigger surprise, perfectly executed the player-caddie celebration, chest-bumping caddie Michael Greller. A few weeks later, sublime iron play carried him into the lead at Royal Birkdale, his first in a major since his epic collapse at the 2016 Masters.

Once again his trusty putter betrayed him, and by the time he arrived on the 13th tee, he was tied with Matt Kuchar. What happened next was the stuff of legend – a lengthy ruling, gutsy up-and-down, stuffed tee shot and go-get-that putt – that lifted Spieth to his third major title.

Though he couldn’t complete the career Grand Slam at the PGA, he’ll likely have, oh, another two decades to join golf’s most exclusive club.

In the barroom debate of best vs. best, you can take the guys with the flair, with the booming tee shots and the sky-high irons. Spieth will just take the trophies.


Masters Tournament: Return to the 12th; faltering on Sunday (T-11)

Spieth pars 12, but makes quad on 15

Spieth takes another gut punch, but still standing

Article: Spieth splashes to worst Masters finish


U.S. Open: 1 over usually good ... not at Erin Hills (T-35)


The Open: Unforgettable finish leads to major win No. 3 (1st)

Spieth survives confusing ordeal on 13

Photos: Spieth's incredible journey on 13

Take it, it's yours: Spieth gets claret jug

Chamblee: Spieth doesn't have 'it' - 'he has it all'

Article: Spieth silences his doubters - even himself


PGA Championship: Career Grand Slam bid comes up well short (T-28)

Article: Spieth accepts that Grand Slam is off the table


AT&T Pebble Beach

Article: Spieth rising from 'valley' after Pebble Beach win

Travelers Championship

Spieith wins dramatic Travelers in playoff

Watch: Spieth holes bunker shot, goes nuts



Photos: Jordan Spieth and Annie Verret


Photos: Jordan Spieth through the years

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Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 13, 2017, 12:30 pm