Couples Early Leader in Skins Game

By Sports NetworkNovember 25, 2006, 5:00 pm
2006 LG Skins GameLA QUINTA, Calif. --All-time skins leader Fred Couples was up to his old tricks on Saturday at the Skins Game.
 
Couples rolled in birdie putts on the fourth and seventh holes en route to collecting six skins and $175,000 in the opening nine holes of the 24th annual Skins Game.
 
John Daly
John Daly was the only player besides Fred Couples to win any money on Day 1.
John Daly birdied the first at Trilogy Golf Club at La Quinta to earn the only other skin won. The eighth and ninth holes were halved.
 
Stephen Ames and defending champion Fred Funk were shutout over the first nine holes.
 
After the other three players missed birdie putts from within 30 feet, Daly collected the first skin as he sank a three-foot birdie putt on the first.
 
'I thought Freddy (Couples) would make his and I'd just tie him, but it's great to get off to a good start,' Daly said.
 
Couples and Funk halved the following two holes with birdies. Couples birdied the fourth from outside 25 feet to win three skins and $75,000.
 
'As I said earlier, you need a skin early and I got it,' said Couples, who has played just twice since the PGA Championship while getting treatment for a blood clot in his arm.
 
Couples made his fourth straight birdie at the fifth, but it was only good enough to halve the hole with Funk. After Ames, Couples and Funk missed birdie putts on the sixth, Daly had a birdie putt to earn two more skins.
 
However, Funk and his caddie had a trick up their sleeve first. Funk's caddie gave Daly's caddie a different golf ball and Daly put that ball down by his mark and as he lined up the putt, Funk's caddie moved the ball via remote control. After the shenanigans, Daly missed the birdie putt to make the seventh worth three skins and $100,000.
 
Couples watched as Ames and Daly missed long birdie putts on the seventh. The 1992 Masters winner rolled in a five-footer for birdie. That gave him three more skins and another $100,000 for a total of six skins and $175,000.
 
'It's been pretty good so far,' said Couples, who is donating part of his winnings to a fund for fallen firefighters. 'I've hit the ball pretty well and had a good time making some money for the firefighters, so this is a good day.'
 
The final two holes were halved, No. 8 with pars and No. 9 with birdies. That means the 10th hole, which will be the first hole played Sunday, will be worth three skins and $150,000.
 
From there, Nos. 11 and 12 are worth $50,000, while 13 through 17 are worth $70,000 apiece. The 18th hole will be worth $200,000.
 
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    Woods, Rahm, Rickie, J-Day headline Torrey field

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 20, 2018, 12:47 am

    Tiger Woods is set to make his 2018 debut.

    Woods is still part of the final field list for next week’s Farmers Insurance Open, the headliner of a tournament that includes defending champion Jon Rahm, Hideki Matsuyama, Justin Rose, Rickie Fowler, Phil Mickelson and Jason Day.

    In all, 12 of the top 26 players in the world are teeing it up at Torrey Pines.

    Though Woods has won eight times at Torrey Pines, he hasn’t broken 71 in his past seven rounds there and hasn’t played all four rounds since 2013, when he won. Last year he missed the cut after rounds of 76-72, then lasted just one round in Dubai before he withdrew with back spasms.

    After a fourth back surgery, Woods didn’t return to competition until last month’s Hero World Challenge, where he tied for ninth. 

    Woods has committed to play both the Farmers Insurance Open and next month's Genesis Open at Riviera, which benefits his foundation. 

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    Even on 'off' day, Rahm shoots 67 at CareerBuilder

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 20, 2018, 12:36 am

    Jon Rahm didn’t strike the ball as purely Friday as he did during his opening round at the CareerBuilder Challenge.

    He still managed a 5-under 67 that put him just one shot off the lead heading into the weekend.

    “I expected myself to go to the range (this morning) and keep flushing everything like I did yesterday,” said Rahm, who shot a career-low 62 at La Quinta on Thursday. “Everything was just a little bit off. It was just one of those days.”


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    After going bogey-free on Thursday, Rahm mixed four birdies and two bogeys over his opening six holes. He managed to settle down around the turn, then made two birdies on his final three holes to move within one shot of Andrew Landry (65).

    Rahm has missed only five greens through two rounds and sits at 15-under 129. 

    The 23-year-old Spaniard won in Dubai to end the year and opened 2018 with a runner-up finish at the Sentry Tournament of Champions. He needs a top-6 finish or better this week to supplant Jordan Spieth as the No. 2 player in the world.

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    Landry stays hot, leads desert shootout at CareerBuilder

    By Associated PressJanuary 20, 2018, 12:35 am

    LA QUINTA, Calif. – Andrew Landry topped the crowded CareerBuilder Challenge leaderboard after another low-scoring day in the sunny Coachella Valley.

    Landry shot a 7-under 65 on Thursday on PGA West's Jack Nicklaus Tournament Course to reach 16 under. He opened with a 63 on Thursday at La Quinta Country Club.

    Jon Rahm, the first-round leader after a 62 at La Quinta, was a stroke back. He had two early bogeys in a 67 on the Nicklaus layout.


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    Jason Kokrak was 14 under after a 67 at Nicklaus. Two-time major champion Zach Johnson was 13 under along with Michael Kim and Martin Piller. Johnson had a 64 at Nicklaus.

    Landry, Rahm, Kokrak and Johnson will finish the rotation Saturday at PGA West's Stadium Course, also the site of the final round.

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    Mickelson 'displeased' with iron play; 10 back

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 20, 2018, 12:18 am

    All of Phil Mickelson’s offseason work on his driver has paid off through two rounds of the CareerBuilder Challenge.

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    “I’ve been pretty pleased, overall, with the way I’ve been driving the ball, and very displeased with the way my iron game has been,” said Mickelson, who shot 68 Friday on PGA West’s Nicklaus course. He has hit only 21 of 36 greens so far this week. “Usually my iron play is a lot better than what it’s been. So I’ll go work on it and hopefully improve each round in this tournament and build a solid foundation for the upcoming West Coast events.


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    “I feel like if I continue to drive the ball the way I am, and if I got my iron play back to my normal standard, I should have the results that I’ve been expecting.”

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