Park cruises to win in final round of Kraft Nabisco

By Randall MellApril 8, 2013, 2:43 am

RANCHO MIRAGE, Calif. – Inbee Park has a terrific counter punch.

A day after Lizette Salas revealed that boxing champ Oscar De La Hoya was rooting for Salas to go for the “knockout” at the Kraft Nabisco, it was Park who landed the big blow early.

Park pretty much won by TKO on the first hole of the final round Sunday at the Mission Hills’ Dinah Shore Course.

Three shots ahead of Salas at day’s start, with nobody else closer than six, Park buried a 20-foot birdie putt at the opening hole. With Salas cold-topping her approach to No. 1, advancing it just 15 yards in the rough on the way to making double bogey, Park was on the better side of a staggering three-shot swing. With another birdie at the second hole, Park was off and running with a seven-shot lead in a finish that offered little drama.

Closing with a 3-under-par 69, Park claimed her second major championship title, ultimately winning by four shots over fellow South Korean So Yeon Ryu, who tried to make it interesting with a closing 65. Park finished at 15-under 273 overall.

“She looks like she played another golf course,” Ryu said. “This golf course is really hard.”

Park’s victory gives the South Koreans three major championship titles in a row, four of the last five.

“It feels very good,” Park said. “It has been awhile since I won a major. It feels very special.”

Kraft Nabisco Championship: Articles, videos and photos

Park broke through to win her first major at the U.S. Women’s Open at Interlachen in 2008.

This victory shouldn’t surprise. Park and Stacy Lewis are the two hottest players in the women’s game. Park won the LPGA money title and the Vare Trophy for low scoring average last year. Lewis was the Rolex Player of the Year. The victory is Park’s second already this year, equaling Lewis’ fast start. The two have won four of the first six LPGA events this season.

Lewis, who tied for 32nd on Sunday, will remain the Rolex world No. 1 when the newest women’s rankings are released on Monday. Park will climb to No. 2 after starting the week at No. 4.

“I think Inbee Park and Stacy Lewis might be the next big battle this year,” Hall of Famer Judy Rankin said.

Park seems to be in contention every time she tees it up now. She has won four of her last 16 LPGA starts dating back to last summer. She had a remarkable run last year where she finished first or second eight times over 14 events. She finished outside the top 10 just twice in that five-month span.

“I feel a lot of confidence with my swing and with my putting,” Park said. “Everything has been going the right way this season, and it feels good.”

Not a power player, Park wasn’t sure of her chances coming into the Kraft Nabisco, thinking she hit the ball too low for the Dinah Shore course’s quick surfaces. Park, though, showed masterful control through four rounds. Nobody hit more greens in regulation all week (57/72). Her ball striking has improved dramatically since she asked her fiancé, Gi Hyeob Nam, to coach her last year.

Really, though, Park’s putting is her greatest weapon.

Park, wielding her Odyssey Sabertooth putter like some magic wand, may be the best putter on tour. She has led the LPGA in putts per greens in regulation three of the last five years. Twice, she has finished first in putts per GIR and total putts.

From the start Sunday, Park’s putter didn’t let her down. She rolled in that 20-footer at the first and another 15-footer at the second. She buried a couple 30 footers for birdies coming home with just one hiccup, a short miss at the 17th that did not really matter.

“I’ve seen Inbee do this before,” Lewis said. “When she’s rolling it, you can’t beat her.”

Park was rolling in birdies that landed like knockout punches Sunday at Mission Hills.

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Angela hits Sergio in stride on field at Superdome

By Grill Room TeamDecember 18, 2017, 3:22 pm

Sergio and Angela Garcia's super 2017 keeps getting more ... Super ... Dome. (+1 awful blog lede.)

The couple started the year with Sergio's win at the Masters, then embarked on a whirlwind green jacket media tour, then kicked off El Clasico, then attended Wimbledon, then got married, then announced they were expecting their first child ...

2017 Newsmaker of the Year: No. 5, Sergio Garcia

And now, they're throwing each other passes on the New Orleans Saints' home turf at the Superdome.

Man, it must be so cool do that at the Silverdome. ... ... ... I'm sorry, it is the Superdome, brothers.

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 1, Justin Thomas

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 18, 2017, 1:00 pm

He won a major, captured the FedExCup and was named the PGA Tour’s Player of the Year. It should come as no surprise that Justin Thomas holds the top spot on our Newsmakers list for 2017.

Thomas entered the year ranked outside the top 20, and few might have pegged him for a transcendent campaign. But he kicked off January with a win in Hawaii, added another before leaving the Aloha State and never looked back.

Thomas’ seminal moment came in August when he captured the PGA Championship at Quail Hollow for his breakthrough major title. One month after greeting Jordan Spieth behind the final green at Royal Birkdale, this time it was Thomas’ turn to have friends stick around to snap pictures with the trophy that signaled his arrival among golf’s upper echelon.

Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year

In addition to racking up the hardware – five in total, including the inaugural CJ Cup at Nine Bridges in his first start of the new wraparound season – Thomas dazzled with style. His runaway win at the Sony Open included an opening-round 59, and his third-round 63 at Erin Hills marked the first time anyone had ever shot 9 under on a U.S. Open venue.

Thomas’ consistency was rewarded at East Lake, when a runner-up finish at the Tour Championship netted him the season-long title and $10 million prize. It was in the subsequent press conference where he shared the goals list he had written into his cell phone in February, having ticked off nearly every one. It showed a dedicated attention to detail as well the tactical approach with which Thomas had steered his rapid ascent.

Heading into a new year, he’s now very clearly entrenched as one of the world’s best. And as his career progresses, it’s likely we’ll look back at 2017 as the point where Thomas first transformed great potential into eye-popping results.

Win No. 1: Title defense at the CIMB Classic

Article: Thomas (64) rallies to defend CIMB title

Win Nos. 2 and 3: The Hawaiian double

Article: Thomas refuses to let disastrous hole derail TOC win

Article: Worst week ever ends with another title at Sony Open

Record Round No. 1: 59 at the Sony Open

Article: Thomas becomes youngest player to shoot 59

Take a look: Thomas’ scorecard from his amazing 59

Record Round No. 2: 63 at the U.S. Open

Article: Thomas sets U.S. Open record with 9-under 63

Temporary Slide: Open MC makes it three in a row

Watch: Thomas loses club, makes 9, misses Open cut

Mr. Major (and win No. 4): PGA champ at Quail Hollow

Article: Thomas joins the club – the major club

Win No. 5: Dell Technologies Championship

Article: Thomas wins the battle of buddies over Spieth

The $10 Million Man: FedExCup champ

Biggest Win of All? Player of the Year

And One to Grow On: Wins at CJ Cup in 2017-18 season

Article: Thomas caps torrid 12-month run with CJ Cup win

Photo Galleries: Best of ...

Best of: Justin Thomas and Jillian Wisniewski

Best of: Justin Thomas through the years

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Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 18, 2017, 12:30 pm

Cabreras win PNC Father/Son Challenge

By Associated PressDecember 17, 2017, 11:36 pm

ORLANDO, Fla. - Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. closed with a 12-under 60 for a three-shot victory in their debut at the PNC Father/Son Challenge.

The Cabreras opened with a 59 at The Ritz-Carlton Golf Club and were challenged briefly by the defending champions, David Duval and Nick Karavites, in the scramble format Sunday. The Argentines went out in 30, and they had a two-shot lead with Cabrera's son came within an inch of chipping in for eagle on the final hole.

They finished at 25-under 199 for a three-shot victory over Duval and Karavites, and Bernhard Langer and Jason Langer. The Langer team won in 2014.

Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara tied for fourth at 21 under with Jerry Pate and Wesley Pate.

Cabrera wasn't even in the field until two-time U.S. Open champion Curtis Strange and his son, Tom Strange, had to withdraw.

Duval and his stepson went out in 28, but the Cabreras regained control by starting the back nine with back-to-back birdies, and then making birdies on the 13th, 14th and 16th. The final birdie allowed them to tie the tournament scoring record.

''This is certain my best week of the year,'' said Cabrera, the 2009 Masters champion and 2007 U.S. Open champion at Oakmont. ''To play alongside all the legends ... as well as playing alongside my son, has been the greatest week of the year.''

The popular event is for players who have won a major championship or The Players Championship. It is a scramble format both days.

In some cases, the major champions lean on the power of their sons for the distance. O'Meara said Saturday that his ''little man'' hit it 58 yards by him on the 18th. And on Sunday, Stewart Cink said son Reagan told him after outdriving him on the opening four holes, ''In this tournament I may be your son, but right now I'm your Daddy!''

Jack Nicklaus played with his grandson, G.T. They closed with a 64 and tied for 15th in the field of 20 teams.