Stanford, USC (Women) & Vanderbilt, Illinois (Men) Advance to Championship Matches at East Lake Cup; Each Avenge Semifinal Loss at NCAAs

By Golf Channel Public RelationsNovember 1, 2017, 12:26 am

All Four Semifinal Matches Featured Rematch from NCAAs Earlier This Year, and All Four Saw Team that Lost at NCAAs Earn Revenge with Victory Today

 Wednesday’s Championship Matches (Live, 3-6 p.m. ET on Golf Channel): Stanford vs. USC (Women’s); Vanderbilt vs. Illinois (Men’s)

 Consolation Matches: Northwestern vs. Arizona State; Oklahoma vs. Oregon

 

ATLANTA, Oct. 31, 2017 – Revenge was the unanimous theme on Tuesday at the 2017 East Lake Cup presented by Hewlett Packard Enterprise, as all four teams that collectively fell in the men’s and women’s semifinals at the NCAA Championships earlier this year avenged those losses by taking down the very team responsible for ending their national championship hopes. Stanford and USC (women), along with Vanderbilt and Illinois (men) each will advance to tomorrow’s championship match for an opportunity to close out their fall season on a high note. 

WOMEN: (1) Stanford def. (4) Arizona State, 3-2; (2) USC def. (3) Northwestern, 4-1

MEN: (1) Vanderbilt def. (4) Oregon, 4-1; (3) Illinois def. (2) Oklahoma, 3-2

WOMEN’S SEMFINALS

The USC Trojans won its first three matches against Northwestern to clinch a spot in Wednesday’s championship match, with Alyaa Abdulghany (freshman), Robynn Ree (junior) and Allisen Corpuz (sophomore) each winning their match by a 3&2 result. Divya Manthena (sophomore) also won her match (2&1) to earn a fourth point for the 2015 East Lake Cup champions.

“I was definitely happy to see the girls come out [today],” said USC head coach, Andrea Gaston. “They felt a little flat yesterday, and didn’t feel like they played their best. Golf in general, it’s always the ‘what I missed, what I didn’t do well.’ We just said, ‘focus on what you did do well.’ There was a chance to learn a lot about this golf course, go out [today], take that information and use it to our advantage.”

Stanford overcame an 8&7 loss in its first match of the day at the hands of Arizona State’s Olivia Mehaffey thanks to victorious efforts from Shannon Aubert (senior), Albane Valenzuela (sophomore) and Ziyi Wang (sophomore) to defeat the Sun Devils 3-2. Competing in the East Lake Cup for the third consecutive year, the Cardinal on Wednesday will be looking to win the event for the first time.

“It stung a lot in May, so to come out and get a little revenge was good,” Stanford head coach Anne Walker told Golf Channel’s Kay Cockerill during the live telecast. “We haven’t faced USC for a long time. I think we’ll just reassess what we did well today. If we can do that tomorrow, I’ll be really happy win or lose.”

 MEN’S SEMIFINALS

Despite Norman Xiong’s (sophomore, Oregon) emphatic 6&4 victory over freshman Harrison Ott, the Vanderbilt Commodores swept the remaining matches to defeat the Ducks 4-1. Will Gordon – Day 1 individual stroke play champion at the East Lake Cup on Monday – led the way with a 4&3 victory in Tuesday’s opening match, while Patrick Martin (junior), John Augenstein (sophomore) and Theo Humphrey (senior) propelled Vanderbilt to Wednesday’s championship match courtesy of victories in each of their respective semifinal matches.

“It certainly feels good,” Vanderbilt head coach Scott Limbaugh told Golf Channel’s Chantel McCabe during the live telecast. “We respect Oregon and Coach Martin. Our guys were focused today. I just kind of challenged them last night. I didn’t think I needed to give some huge pep talk. We respect that team because we’ve been in a lot of battles with them. And we knew our best was going to be required.”

On the other side of the bracket, the Illinois Fighting Illini fended off Oklahoma, winning 3-2 to advance to the championship match for the third consecutive year at the East Lake Cup. The two-time champions of the event leaned on its senior tandem of Dylan Meyer – who won the team’s first match of the day – and Nick Hardy, who avenged his loss to Oklahoma’s Grant Hirschman earlier this year at the NCAA Championship. Michael Feagles (sophomore) clinched Illinois’ semifinal victory with the deciding point, beating Brad Dalke 2&1.

“Oklahoma is a great team, we all know that,” Illinois head coach Mike Small told Golf Channel’s Steve Burkowski on Tuesday night. “And Vanderbilt is just as strong or stronger, so we’ve got a big day tomorrow.”

WEDNESDAY’S CHAMPIONSHIP & CONSOLATION MATCHES SCHEDULE:

Women’s Championship Match: (1) Stanford vs. (2) USC

Men’s Championship Match: (1) Vanderbilt vs. (3) Illinois

Women’s Consolation Match: (3) Northwestern vs. (4) Arizona State

Men’s Consolation Match: (2) Oklahoma vs. (4) Oregon

Golf Channel’s live coverage of Wednesday’s championship and consolation matches will air from 3-6 p.m. ET. Golf Central Pre-Game (2-3 p.m. ET) will preview each match and provide updates on matches already in progress.

SEMIFINAL RESULTS:

Women’s Division

(1) Stanford def. (4) Arizona State, 3-2

(2) USC def. (3) Northwestern, 4-1

Stanford (1)                            vs.                               Arizona State (4)

Madie Chou                                                                Olivia Mehaffey (8&7)

Shannon Aubert (1up)                                              Sophia Zeeb

Andrea Lee                                                                 Linnea Strom (1up)

Albane Valenzuela (1up)                                          Roberta Liti

Ziyi Wang (4&3)                                                        Madison Kerley

 

USC (2)                                    vs.                              Northwestern (3)

Alyaa Abdulghany (3&2)                                         Sarah Cho

Robynn Ree (3&2)                                                    Stephanie Lau

Allisen Corpuz (3&2)                                                Brooke Riley

Muni He                                                                      Hannah Kim (3&2)

Divya Manthena (2&1)                                             Janet Mao                   

Men’s Division

(1) Vanderbilt def. (4) Oregon, 4-1

(3) Illinois def. (2) Oklahoma, 3-2

Vanderbilt (1)                         vs.                               Oregon (4)

Will Gordon (4&3)                                                    Edwin Yi

Patrick Martin (2&1)                                                Ryan Gronlund

Harrison Ott                                                             Norman Xiong (6&4)

John Augenstein (1up)                                             Donald Kay

Theo Humphrey (3&2)                                             Thomas Mulligan

 

Oklahoma (2)                          vs.                              Illinois (3)

Blaine Hale                                                                 Dylan Meyer (3&2)

Garett Reband (3&2)                                                Giovanni Tadiotto

Riley Casey (1up)                                                      Brendan O’Reilly

Grant Hirschman                                                         Nick Hardy (6&4)

Brad Dalke                                                                  Michael Feagles (2&1)

Presented by Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE), the East Lake Cup Collegiate Match Play Championship is a three-day competition that features the eight semifinalists – including reigning NCAA national champion Oklahoma (men) and Arizona State (women) – reconvening at historic East Lake Golf Club.

For more information about the East Lake Cup, please visit the tournament website www.golfchannel.com/eastlakecup. Stay connected with the championship using the hashtag #EastLakeCup.

Ogilvy urges distance rollback of ball

By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 8:49 pm

Add Geoff Ogilvy to the chorus of voices calling for a distance rollback of the golf ball.

In an interview before the start of the Emirates Australian Open, Ogilvy said a "time-out" is needed for governing bodies to deal with the issue.

"It's complete nonsense," he said, according to an Australian website. "In my career, it’s gone from 300 yards was a massive hit to you’re a shorter hitter on tour now, legitimately short. It’s changed the way we play great golf courses and that is the crime. It isn’t that the ball goes 400, that’s neither here nor there. It’s the fact the ball going 400 doesn’t makes Augusta work properly, it functions completely wrong.’’


Full-field scores from the Emirates Australian Open


Ogilvy used an example from American baseball to help get his point across to an Australian audience.

“Major League Baseball in America, they use wooden bats, and everywhere else in baseball they use aluminium bats,’’ he said. “And when the major leaguers use aluminium bats they don’t even have to touch it and it completely destroys their stadiums. It’s just comedy.

“That’s kind of what’s happened to us at least with the drivers of these big hitters; We’ve completely outgrown the stadiums. So do you rebuild every stadium in the world? That’s expensive. Or make the ball go shorter? It seems relatively simple from that perspective.’’

Ogilvy, an Australian who won the 2006 U.S. Open, said he believes there will be a rollback, but admitted it would be a "challenge" for manufacturers to produce a ball that flies shorter for pros but does not lose distance when struck by recreational players.

The golf world celebrates Thanksgiving

By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 6:01 pm

Here's a look, through social media, at how the golf world celebrates Thanksgiving.

Lexi Thompson:

Baking time!!

A post shared by Lexi Thompson (@lexi) on

David Feherty:

Jack Nicklaus:

GC Tiger Tracker:

Steve Stricker:

Golf Channel:

Frank Nobilo:

Ian Poulter:

Tyrone Van Aswegen:

Happy Thanksgiving: Biggest turkeys of 2017

By Grill Room TeamNovember 23, 2017, 3:00 pm

Thanksgiving brings us golf's biggest turkeys of the year. Donald Trump, Grayson Murray and a certain (now-former) tournament director headline the list. Click here or on the image below to check out all the turkeys.

Tributes pour in for legendary caddie Sheridan

By Randall MellNovember 23, 2017, 2:54 pm

Tributes are pouring in as golf celebrates the life of Greg Sheridan after receiving news of his passing.

Sheridan, a long-time LPGA caddie who worked for some of the game’s all-time greats, including Kathy Whitworth and Beth Daniel, died Wednesday in Indian Rocks Beach, Fla., at 63. He was diagnosed in July 2016 with brain and lung cancer.

Sheridan worked the last dozen years or so with Natalie Gulbis, who expressed her grief in an Instagram post on Wednesday:

“Greg…I miss you so much already and it hasn’t even been a day. 15+ seasons traveling the world you carried me & my bag through the highs and lows of golf and life. You were so much more than my teammate on the course…Thank you.”

Sheridan was on Whitworth’s bag for the last of her LPGA-record 88 titles.

“When I first came on tour, I would try to find out how many times Greg won,” Gulbis told Golfweek. “It’s a crazy number, like 50.”

Matthew Galloway, a caddie and friend to Sheridan, summed up Sheridan’s impressive reach after caddying with him one year at the LPGA Founders Cup, where the game’s pioneers are honored.

“Best Greg story,” Galloway tweeted on Thanksgiving morning, “coming up 18 at PHX all the founders were in their chairs. Greg goes, `Yep, caddied for her, her and her.’ Legend.”

In a first-person column for Golf Magazine last year, Gulbis focused on Sheridan while writing about the special bond between players and caddies. She wrote that she won the “looper lottery” when she first hired Sheridan in ’04.

“Greg and I have traveled the world, and today he is like family,” Gulbis wrote. “Sometimes, he’s a psychologist. Last year, my mom got sick and it was a distraction, but he was great. When I used to have boyfriend issues and breakup issues, he was my confidant. In a world where caddies sometimes spill secrets, Greg has kept a respectful silence, and I can’t thank him enough for that. He’s an extension of me.”

Four months after Gulbis wrote the column, Sheridan was diagnosed with cancer.

“The LPGA family is saddened to hear of the loss of long-time tour caddie, Greg Sheridan,” the LPGA tweeted. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and players he walked with down the fairways. #RIP.”

Dean Herden was among the legion of caddies saddened by the news.

“Greg was a great guy who I respected a lot and taught me some great things over the years,” Herden texted to GolfChannel.com.

Here are some of heartfelt messages that are rolling across Twitter:

Retired LPGA great Annika Sorenstam:

LPGA commissioner Mike Whan in a retweet of Gulbis:

Golf Channel reporter and former tour player Jerry Foltz:

Christina Kim:

LPGA caddie Shaun Clews:

LPGA caddie Jonny Scott:

LPGA caddie Kevin Casas:

LPGA pro Jennie Lee: