Creamer Leads Kerr Kang by One

By Sports NetworkAugust 27, 2005, 4:00 pm
2005 WendyDUBLIN, Ohio -- Paula Creamer bogeyed her last two holes on Saturday, but still holds the overnight lead heading into the final round at the Wendy's Championship.
 
Creamer shot a 6-under 66 to move to 16-under-par 200 for the tournament, which is good for a one-stroke lead at Tartan Fields Golf Club. The 19-year-old rookie is in position for her third victory this year.
 
Cristie Kerr also fired a 66 in her third round to share second place. She and overnight co-leader Soo-Yun Kang, who shot a 69, are knotted at 15-under-par 201. Pat Hurst (67) and Michele Redman (68) are one stroke further back in a tie for fourth.
 
All in all there are 19 golfers within six strokes of Creamer heading into the final round, including Annika Sorenstam, who shares 11th place with six others at minus-11. Sorenstam, who is in action for the first time since the Women's British Open last month, shot a 3-under 69 in the third round.
 
The players sat through a three-hour rain delay in the afternoon, but Sunday's forecast looks good for those in position to catch Creamer.
 
'She has a lot of experience for her young age, but she's still young. There are going to be a lot of players coming at her tomorrow,' Kerr said of the leader. 'Hopefully, I'll be one of those.'
 
Creamer's bogeys at the 17th and 18th were her first since the opening round and cost her a three-stroke lead. But as much as they robbed her of what could have been a second straight bogey-free round, they did not detract from what was still a very strong round for the Evian Masters champion.
 
'It's not going to taste as good as it would if that didn't happen,' admitted Creamer, who has earned more than $1 million this season to all but lock up Rookie of the Year honors. 'Tomorrow is a new day, a lot golf left and hopefully I can keep playing the way I've been playing.'
 
Creamer opened her round on fire, stringing together three straight birdies after teeing off in the second-to-last group off the first tee. She hit a pitching wedge to within 6 feet at the first hole, knocked the same club within a foot at the second, and then set up a 20-foot birdie putt with her nine iron at No. 3.
 
That moved Creamer to minus-13, and things would only get better on the front nine.
 
After collecting a par at the fourth -- which she had bogeyed on Day 1 -- Creamer came right back with her fourth birdie of the round at No. 5 when she landed her pitching wedge within 7 feet. She went out at 15-under after a birdie at the par-4 seventh and consecutive pars to finish the front nine.
 
Two more birdies at the 11th and 12th -- she knocked wedges inside 10 feet on both holes -- put Creamer at 17 under. She moved further under par with her eighth birdie of the day at 16 before the disastrous finish.
 
At the 136-yard par-3 17th, Creamer blasted an 8-iron long and chipped within 15 feet before two-putting. She then three-putted at the par-4 18th for her second straight bogey, missing a 4-foot par putt that would have given her a two-stroke lead.
 
Creamer acknowledged that the bad weather played a negative role in her finish.
 
'The whole day just took so long out there, either we were behind or we were waiting,' she said. 'It was never a consistent, flowing round, so I think that definitely got to me a little after a couple of holes.'
 
Six-time major winner Karrie Webb (70) shares sixth place with Lorena Ochoa (67) and Amy Hung (68) at 13-under-par 203.
 
Sophie Gustafson and Laura Davies are knotted one stroke further back in ninth place after two spectacular rounds. Davies fired a 63 and Gustafson carded a 64, the two low rounds of the day.
 
Defending champion Catriona Matthew, who shared the overnight lead with Kang, struggled to a 5-over 77. She dropped into a tie for 33rd place at minus-7 with seven other golfers, including Monday qualifier Lara Tadiotto (69).
 
Related Links:
  • Leaderboard - Wendy's Championship for Children

  • Full Coverage - Wendy's Championship for Children
  • Getty Images

    Watch: McIlroy gives Fleetwood a birthday cake

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 19, 2018, 2:58 pm

    Tommy Fleetwood turned 27 on Friday. He celebrated with some good golf – a 4-under 68 in Abu Dhabi, leaving him only two shots back in his title defense – and a birthday cake, courtesy of Rory Mcllroy.

    While giving a post-round interview, Fleetwood was surprised to see McIlroy approaching with a cake in hand.

    “I actually baked this before we teed off,” McIlroy joked.

    Fleetwood blew out the three candles – “three wishes!” – and offered McIlroy a slice.  

    <
    Getty Images

    DJ shoots 64 to surge up leaderboard in Abu Dhabi

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 1:48 pm

    Dustin Johnson stood out among a star-studded three-ball that combined to shoot 18 under par with just one bogey Friday at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

    Shaking off a sloppy first round at Abu Dhabi Golf Club, Johnson matched the low round of the day with a 64 that put him within four shots of Thomas Pieters’ lead.

    “I did everything really well,” Johnson said. “It was a pretty easy 64.”

    Johnson made four bogeys during an even-par 72 on Thursday and needed a solid round Friday to make the cut. Before long, he was closer to the lead than the cut line, making birdie on three of the last four holes and setting the pace in a group that also included good rounds from Rory McIlroy (66) and Tommy Fleetwood (68).

    “Everyone was hitting good shots,” McIlroy said. “That’s all we were seeing, and it’s nice when you play in a group like that. You feed off one another.” 


    Full-field scores from the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship


    Coming off a blowout victory at Kapalua, Johnson is searching for his first regular European Tour title. He tied for second at this event a year ago.

    Johnson’s second-round 64 equaled the low round of the day (Jorge Campillo and Branden Grace). 

    “It was just really solid all day long,” Johnson said. “Hit a lot of great shots, had a lot of looks at birdies, which is what I need to do over the next two days if I want to have a chance to win on Sunday.” 

    Getty Images

    Closing eagle moves Rory within 3 in Abu Dhabi

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 12:57 pm

    What rust? Rory McIlroy appears to be in midseason form.

    Playing competitively for the first time since Oct. 8, McIlroy completed 36 holes without a bogey Friday, closing with an eagle to shoot 6-under 66 to sit just three shots back at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

    “I’m right in the mix after two days and I’m really happy in that position,” he told reporters afterward.

    McIlroy took a 3 ½-month break to heal his body, clear his mind and work on his game after his first winless year since 2008, his first full season as a pro.

    He's back on track at a familiar playground, Abu Dhabi Golf Club, where he’s racked up eight top-11s (including six top-3s) in his past nine starts there.


    Full-field scores from the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship


    McIlroy opened with a 69 Thursday, then gave himself even more chances on Day 2, cruising along at 4 under for the day when he reached the par-5 closing hole. After launching a 249-yard long iron to 25 feet, he poured in the eagle putt to pull within three shots of Thomas Pieters (65). 

    Despite the layoff, McIlroy edged world No. 1 Dustin Johnson, coming off a blowout victory at Kapalua, by a shot over the first two rounds. 

    “DJ is definitely the No. 1 player in the world right now, and one of, if not the best, driver of the golf ball," McIlroy said. "To be up there with him over these first two days, it proves to me that I’m doing the right things and gives me a lot of confidence going forward.”

    Getty Images

    Duke to fill in for injured Pavin at CareerBuilder

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 12:25 pm

    Ken Duke will fill in for Corey Pavin for the next two rounds of the CareerBuilder Challenge – with nothing at stake but his amateur partner’s position on the leaderboard.

    Pavin was 4 over par when he withdrew after 17 holes Thursday because of a neck injury. Tournament officials contacted Duke, the first alternate, and asked if he would take Pavin’s spot and partner with Luis Lopez for the next two rounds, even though he would not receive any official money.

    Duke accepted and explained his decision on Twitter:

    Playing on past champion’s status, the 48-year-old Duke has made only four starts this season, with a best finish of a tie for 61st at the RSM Classic.

    Pavin received a sponsor exemption into the event, his first PGA Tour start since the 2015 Colonial.