Axley Points Share Texas Open Lead

By Sports NetworkSeptember 22, 2006, 4:00 pm
2006 Valero Texas OpenSAN ANTONIO -- Eric Axley fired a 7-under 63 and D.A. Points carded a 4-under 66 Friday to move into a share of the lead after two rounds of the Texas Open. Axley and Points completed the opening 36 holes at 9-under-par 131.
Paul Goydos also posted a 63 and that moved him into third place at minus-8. David McKenzie (68), Dean Wilson (67), Charley Hoffman (67), Bernhard Langer (65) and Frank Lickliter (66) share fourth at 7-under-par 133.
Points started on the back nine and quickly found trouble, finding the right rough off the tee at the 11th. From there, he blasted his second well over the green and under a tree.
He pitched it back onto a hill behind the green and left his next shot on the hill as well. Points finally got it up and down from there, but the double-bogey dropped him to minus-3.
Points found a greenside bunker with his approach on 12. After blasting out, he two-putted for bogey. He began to right the ship with a two-putt birdie on the par-5 14th of the Resort Course at LaCantera Golf Club.
'Well, it started out terrible, could not have started out any worse,' Points admitted. 'I just made a couple of loose swings and got a couple of bad breaks and I was struggling.'
The 29-year-old dropped a wedge within 6 feet on 16 and sank the birdie putt. At the 18th, his pitching-wedge approach shot came to rest 7 feet from the hole.
Points, a three-time winner on the Nationwide Tour, dropped that birdie effort in to get back to even-par for his round and minus-5 overall. He ran home a 25-footer for birdie on two, then sank a 12-foot birdie effort on four.
He came right back with a 6-foot birdie putt on five to get to 8 under. Points used a pitching-wedge for his second shot at eight and stuck it eight feet from the hole. He sank that birdie putt to finish at minus-9.
'I kind of got it together. I had a good drive on the par-5 (14th) and I kind of figured something out with my swing. It was nice to get back to even- par through nine holes so I didn't feel like I necessarily gave a ton back to the field,' said Points, who has needed just 51 putts through two rounds. 'Then I made the turn and started making some more putts.'
Axley was hot from the start. He knocked in a 9-foot birdie putt on the first, then ran in a 5-footer for birdie on four.
The 32-year-old caught fire on the seventh. Axley converted an 8-footer for birdie there, then a 5-footer for birdie at the next.
Axley hit wedge to 8 feet on nine, and sank that to make it three in a row. He pitched to 3 feet on the par-4 11th and made that putt for birdie. Axley joined Points in the lead when he two-putted for birdie from the fringe on 14. He parred the final four holes to remain tied for the lead.
'Today was a pretty stress-free day,' admitted Axley, a tour rookie. 'It seemed like all my birdie putts I did make were between 8 and 12 feet without much break.'
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  • Fitzpatrick one back in 2018 Euro Tour opener

    By Associated PressNovember 23, 2017, 1:37 pm

    HONG KONG – S.S.P. Chawrasia had six birdies and a bogey Thursday for a 5-under 65 and a one-stroke lead at the Hong Kong Open, the first event of the 2018 European Tour season.

    Playing in sunny but breezy conditions at the Hong Kong Golf Club, the greens had the players struggling to gauge the approach.

    ''Very tough conditions today,'' Chawrasia said. ''It's very firm greens, to be honest. I'm just trying to hit the second shot on the green and trying to make it like a two-putt.''

    Full-field scores from the UBS Hong Kong Open

    Shubhankar Sharma and Matthew Fitzpatrick (both 66) were one shot behind, while seven others were tied for fourth a further stroke behind.

    ''Hit it great tee to green,'' Fitzpatrick said. ''I think I had like seven or eight chances inside 15 feet, and on a day like today when it's so windy and such a tough golf course, with how tight it is, yeah, it was a good day.''

    Justin Rose, who won the title in 2015, shot was 2 under with five birdies and three bogeys.

    ''I think the course played a couple shots harder than it typically does,'' Rose said. ''I like this course. I think it offers plenty of birdie opportunities.''

    Masters champion Sergio GarciaRafa Cabrera Bello and defending champion Sam Brazel (69) were in a group of 16 at 1 under.

    Day, Spieth chasing Davis after Day 1 of Aussie Open

    By Jason CrookNovember 23, 2017, 6:50 am

    The PGA Tour is off this week but a couple of the circuit’s biggest stars – Jordan Spieth and Jason Day – are headlining the Emirates Australian Open, the first event in The Open Qualifying Series for the 2018 Open at Carnoustie. Here's how things look after the opening round, where Cameron Davis has opened up a two-shot lead:

    Leaderboard: Davis (-8), Taylor MacDonald (-6), Nick Cullen (-5), Day (-5), Brian Campbell (-4), Lucas Herbert (-4), Stephen Leaney (-4), Anthony Quayle (-4)

    What it means: Spieth has won this event three of the last four years, including last year, but he got off to a rocky start on Thursday. Playing in the windy afternoon wave, the world No. 2 bogeyed his first two holes but rebounded with birdies on Nos. 4 and 5. It was more of the same the rest of the way as the 24-year-old carded three more bogeys and four birdies, getting into the clubhouse with a 1-under 70. While it certainly wasn't the start he was hoping for, Spieth didn't shoot himself out of the tournament with 54 holes left to play, he has plenty of time to claw his way up the leaderboard.

    Full-field scores from the Emirates Australian Open

    Round of the day: With Round 1 in the books, the solo leader, Davis, is the easy pick here. The 22-year-old Aussie who turned pro last year, came out of the gates on fire, birdieing six of his first seven holes, including four in a row on Nos. 4 through 7. He did drop a shot on the ninth hole to go out in 30 but rebounded with three more birdies on the back to card a 8-under 63. Davis, who was born in Sydney and played this year on the Mackenzie Tour in Canada. He will attempt to get his Tour card next month during qualifying in Arizona.

    Best of the rest: Making his first start in his home country in four years, Day started on the 10th hole at The Australian Golf Club and made four birdies to one bogey on the back side before adding four more circles after making the turn. Unfortunately for the 30-year-old, he also added an ugly double-bogey 6 on the par-4 eighth hole and had to settle for a 5-under 66, good enough to sit T-3. Day, who has dropped to No. 12 in the world rankings, is looking for his first win on any tour since the 2016 Players Championship.

    Main storyline heading into Friday: Can the upstart 22-year-old Davis hold off the star power chasing him or will he fold to the pressure of major champions in his rearview mirror? Day (afternoon) and Spieth (morning) are once again on opposite ends of the draw on Friday as they try to improve their position before the weekend.

    Shot of the day: It’s tough to beat an ace in this category, and we had one of those on Thursday from Australian Brad Shilton. Shilton’s hole-in-one on the par-3, 188-yard 11th hole came with a special prize, a $16k watch.

    Quote of the day: “Just two bad holes. Pretty much just two bad swings for the day,” – Day, after his 66 on Thursday. 

    Watch: Shilton wins $16k timepiece with hole-in-one

    By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 2:50 am

    Australian Brad Shilton made a hole-in-one on the par-3, 188-yard 11th hole during the first round of the Australian Open, and he was rewarded handsomely for his efforts - with a Tag Heuer watch worth $16k.

    Day gets in early mix with 66 in return to Australia

    By Associated PressNovember 23, 2017, 2:32 am

    SYDNEY - Jason Day's first tournament round in Australia in four years was a 5-under 66 to put him among the leaders early Thursday at the Australian Open.

    Day's round came unhinged late with a double-bogey 6 on the par-4 eighth hole, his second-last of the day. He hit his tee shot into the trees on the left, hit back out to the fairway, missed his approach to the green and then couldn't get up and down.

    ''That was brutal,'' Day said of the 481-yard hole that played into gusting winds.

    But Day recovered quickly to birdie his last to sit three strokes behind fellow Australian and early leader Cameron Davis, who started on the first, had six front-nine birdies and shot 63 at The Australian Golf Club.

    In between the two was Australian Taylor MacDonald, who shot 65.

    ''It was a pretty solid round, I didn't miss many fairways, I didn't miss many greens,'' Day said. ''I'd give myself a seven or eight out of 10.''

    Defending champion Jordan Spieth, attempting to win the Australian Open for the third time in four years, was off to a poor start among the afternoon players, bogeying his first two holes.

    The Sydney-born Davis played most of this season on the Mackenzie Tour in Canada and will attempt to secure his card in the final round of qualifying from Dec. 7-10 in Chandler, Arizona.

    ''Everything went to plan,'' Davis said. ''I got off to a great start. I was hitting my spots and was able to keep it together on the back nine.''

    NOTES: Australian Brad Shilton had the first ace of the tournament, using a 5-iron for a hole-in-one on the par-3, 188-yard 11th hole, his second hole of the day. Australian veteran Geoff Ogilvy, the 2006 U.S. Open winner, shot 69. He and Rod Pampling (68) played the first round with Day.