Trio of major champs to duke it out at Wegmans

By Randall MellAugust 17, 2014, 1:00 am

PITTSFORD, N.Y. – Inbee Park and Suzann Pettersen have no shortage of fuel for their run at chasing down Brittany Lincicome Sunday at the Wegmans LPGA Championship.

Park and Pettersen both left the Ricoh Women’s British Open last month disappointed they couldn’t close out chances to win.

Lincicome has her own full tank of motivation as she seeks to claim her first victory in three years and extend the Americans’ bid to sweep all the women’s majors this year.

With a 1-under-par 71 Saturday, Lincicome battled to hold off her hard-pressing challengers. At 10-under 206, she is one shot ahead of both Park (69) and Pettersen (67).

“It means the world to me,” Lincicome said of this chance.

This looks like it will come down to the trio of major champions topping the leaderboard. Lincicome, 28, won her first and only major at the Kraft Nabisco in 2009. Park, 26, has won four majors, including a historic run winning the first three last year. Pettersen, 33, has a pair of majors, including the Evian Championship at the end of last year, when she put on a ball-striking clinic.

Park and Pettersen left the Ricoh Women’s British Open hungry for another chance.

Park took a one-shot lead into the final round at Royal Birdale and built it into a two-shot lead making the turn, but in windy, tough conditions, she could not hold on as Mo Martin posted early with a spectacular finish to prevail.

Park and Pettersen both found themselves needing to hole out from the same greenside bunker at the last hole at Royal Birkdale to tie Martin and force a playoff, but they left watching Martin hoist the claret jug.

“I kind of still think about it, especially when I see Mo,” Park said. “Yeah, it’s tough to forget.”

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Park ended up fourth behind Martin at the Ricoh Women’s British Open.

“I think it'll be good to actually recover from my mistakes at the British Open and play well in the final round,” Park said. “I think that's going to be great key going into the last half of the season.”

Pettersen’s road through the majors hasn’t been easy since she won at Evian last year. Stricken with a back injury in late March, she was laid up and unable to play this year’s first major, the Kraft Nabisco. She was stricken again before the year’s second major, the U.S. Women’s Open, but she came back to play it, missing the cut.

“Ever since the U.S. Women’s Open, my back and my body have been great,” Pettersen said. “Arkansas [the week after the U.S. Women’s Open] was probably the first tournament back where I felt like that was the real me, back in contention, back where my game should be, and ever since it's been good.  It's been solid.”

Pettersen started the year looking like she was poised to reach the world No. 1 ranking for the first time in her career, but an aggravated disc in her back laid her up for nearly a month. A workout warrior, she has cut down her regimen and says she’s actually gaining distance and feeling better than she ever has about her game.

“My good right now has never been this good,” Pettersen said.

Pettersen has finished T-4 or better in five of her last seven major championships starts. She won five times around the world last year, but she's seeking her first title since winning the LPGA’s Sunrise Taiwan Championship last October.

Lincicome is trying to make it four straight major championship titles for the Americans this year. Lexi Thompson opened the year winning the Kraft Nabisco, Michelle Wie followed winning the U.S. Women's Open and Martin won the Ricoh Women's British. Lincicome has proven she can close out as a five-time LPGA winner, but she acknowledged battling nerves Saturday after going three seasons without a victory. She was pleased she battled to hold on to her lead.

“Nervous was probably an understatement,” Lincicome said of waiting for her late afternoon tee time. “I was fine all morning. I got my 10 hours of sleep. I watched `Puss In Boots’ on TV. I watched kids' movies, was doing fine, and then when it came time to eat lunch, it just wasn't happening. And then on the course, I took some stuff to calm my belly.  I did have a banana, a few bananas actually.

“I think because I haven't been in this position in a while, it just kind of all caught up with me.  Just tried to take multiple deep breaths out there. I don't think I calmed down until, really, the back nine, probably.

“Hopefully, going into tomorrow, it's kind of out of my system. I kind of know what it feels like to be in this position, to kind of dominate again.”

Cabreras take 1-shot lead in Father/Son

By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 11:23 pm

ORLANDO, Fla. - Two-time major champion Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. birdied their last three holes for a 13-under 59 to take a one-shot lead Saturday in the PNC Father-Son Challenge.

Cabrera, a Masters and U.S. Open champion, is making his debut in this popular 36-hole scramble. His son said he practiced hard for 10 days. What helped put him at ease was watching his father make so many putts.

''We combined very well,'' Cabrera said. ''When I hit a bad shot, he hit a good one. That's the key.''

They had a one-shot lead over Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara, who are playing for the first time. That included a birdie on the last hole, which O'Meara attributed to the strength of his son.

''My little man hit it 58 yards by me on the 18th,'' said O'Meara, the Masters and British Open champion in 1998. ''It's a little easier coming in with a 6-iron.''

Defending champions David Duval and Nick Karavites rallied over the back nine at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club for a 61. They are trying to become the first father-son team to repeat as winners since Bernhard and Stefan Langer in 2006. Larry Nelson won two years in a row in 2007 and 2008, but with different sons.

''I'd imagine we have to break 60 tomorrow to have a chance to win, but hey, stranger things have happened,'' Duval said. ''I've even done it myself.''

Duval shot 59 at the Bob Hope Classic to win in 1999 on his way to reaching No. 1 in the world that year.

Duval and his stepson were tied with Bernhard Langer and 17-year-old Jason Langer, who made two eagles on the last five holes. This Langer tandem won in 2014.

Jack Nicklaus, playing with grandson G.T., opened with a 68.

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Woods' 2018 schedule coming into focus ... or is it?

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 16, 2017, 5:46 pm

Two weeks after his successful return to competition at the Hero World Challenge, Tiger Woods’ 2018 schedule may be coming into focus.

Golfweek reported on Saturday that Woods hopes to play the Genesis Open in February according to an unidentified source with “direct knowledge of the situation.”

Woods’ agent Mark Steinberg declined to confirm the 14-time major champion would play the event and told that Woods – who underwent fusion surgery to his lower back in April – is still formulating his ’18 schedule.

Woods’ foundation is the host organization for the Genesis Open and the event supports the Tiger Woods Learning Center in Anaheim, Calif.

The Genesis Open would be Woods’ first start on the PGA Tour since he missed the cut last January at the Farmers Insurance Open.

Rose weathering delayed Indonesian Masters

By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 3:52 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead after eight holes of the third round Saturday when play was suspended for the day due to bad weather at the Indonesian Masters.

Rose was 3-under on the day and led his playing partners Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Scott Vincent. The Englishman led both players by a stroke after the second round was completed Saturday morning due to weather delays on Friday.

Brandt Snedeker withdrew with apparent heat exhaustion on Friday on the 11th hole of the second round. Ranked 51st in the world, he flew to Jakarta looking to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters.

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Lexi (wrist) WDs from Diamond Resorts Invitational

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 11:27 pm

Lexi Thompson on Friday withdrew from the Diamond Resorts Invitational, citing inflammation in her wrist. Thompson, who teamed with Tony Finau to finish tied for fourth place in last week's QBE Shootout, said she is under strict doctor's order not to hit golf balls until mid-January.

The Diamond Resorts Invitational is scheduled Jan. 12-14 at Tranquilo Golf Club in Orlando, Fla. The field for te 54-hole event includes LPGA and PGA Tour Champions players, as well as celebrities from the worlds or sports and entertainment.