Harris Leads in Niagra Falls

By Sports NetworkSeptember 15, 2005, 4:00 pm
Canadian Tour-LargeNIAGRA FALLS, Ontario -- Michael Harris fired a 9-under-par 63 on Thursday to take the lead at the suspended Niagara Fallsview Casino Resort Pro Am Classic.
Harris, who defeated Anders Hultman in a playoff to win the Bay Mills Open Players Championship just three weeks ago, has a one-stroke advantage over Brad Fritsch.
Ken Duke is four strokes off the pace at minus-5, while Scott Ford, Michael Walton and David Mathis share fourth place one shot further back.
Darkness forced the suspension of play until 7:20 a.m. ET on Friday morning, when 14 players will finish their first rounds.
Harris' 63 set a course record at the 7,169-yard Thundering Waters Golf Club, which is PGA golfer John Daly's first 'signature' course.
The course is not yet open to the public, but Harris is already showing that low scores are possible. Or maybe it's just that he's playing that well.
'It turns out if you can hit it well and putt well, you can put up some good numbers,' Harris joked. 'There are times in your life this game is hard, there are times it is easy. Right now it seems easy.'
Harris, the Canadian Tour's money leader, has been busy during the past two months. In addition to his win at Bay Mills, he has four mini tour wins, a runner-up finish at the Montreal Open and a 21st place showing at the Canadian Open.
He struck the flagstick with his first approach shot of the day at No. 1, and saved par after the ball rolled into a bunker. It could have been a bad omen, but not for Harris, who chipped in twice on the front nine and made a relatively easy 3-foot birdie putt on 17 to reach his 9-under score.
'Sometimes when things like that happen, you just think 'It isn't going to be my day,'' Harris said of the first hole. 'I guess it didn't turn out that way.'
Dirk Ayers and Stephen Woodard share 10th place at minus-2 after opening rounds of 70. Six players are tied one stroke further back.
Related Links:
  • Leaderboard - Niagra Fallsview Casino Resort Pro-Am
  • Full Coverage - Niagra Fallsview Casino Resort Pro-Am
  • Lexi 'applaud's USGA, R&A for rules change

    By Randall MellDecember 11, 2017, 5:15 pm

    Lexi Thompson’s pain may prove to be the rest of golf’s gain.

    David Rickman, the R&A’s executive director of governance, acknowledged on Golf Channel’s "Morning Drive" Monday that the new protocols that will eliminate the use of TV viewer call-ins and emails to apply penalties was hastened by the controversy following Thompson’s four-shot penalty at the ANA Inspiration in early April. The new protocols also set up rules officials to monitor TV broadcasts beginning next year.

    “Clearly, that case has been something of a focus point for us,” Rickman said.

    Thompson reacted to the new protocols in an Instagram post.

    “I applaud the USGA and the R&A for their willingness to revise the Rules of Golf to address certain unfortunate situations that have arisen several times in the game of golf,” Thompson wrote. “In my case, I am thankful no one else will have to deal with an outcome such as mine in the future.”

    Thompson was penalized two shots for improperly returning her ball to its mark on a green during Saturday’s round after a viewer emailed LPGA officials during Sunday’s broadcast. She was penalized two more shots for signing an incorrect scorecard for her Saturday round. Thompson ultimately lost in a playoff to So Yeon Ryu.

    The new protocols will also eliminate the additional two-shot penalty a player receives for failing to include a penalty when a player was unaware of the penalty.

    Shortly after the ANA Inspiration, the USGA and R&A led the formation of a video review working group, which included the PGA Tour, LPGA, European Tour, Ladies European Tour and PGA of America.

    Also, just three weeks after Thompson was hit with the four-shot penalty, the USGA and R&A released a new Rules of Golf decision decision (34-3/10) limiting video evidence in two ways:

    1. If an infraction can’t be seen with the naked eye, there’s no penalty, even if video shows otherwise.

    2. If a tournament committee determines that a player does “all that can be reasonably expected to make an accurate estimation or measurement” in determining a line or position to play from or to spot a ball, then there will be no penalty even if video replay later shows that to be wrong.

    While the USGA and R&A said the new decision wasn’t based on Thompson’s ANA incident, LPGA players immediately began calling it the “Lexi Rule.”

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    PGA Tour, LPGA react to video review rules changes

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 11, 2017, 1:32 pm

    The USGA and R&A announced on Monday updates to the Rules of Golf, including no longer accepting call-ins relating to violations. The PGA Tour and LPGA, which were both part of a working group of entities who voted on the changes, issued the following statements:

    PGA Tour:

    The PGA Tour has worked closely with the USGA and R&A on this issue in recent years, and today's announcement is another positive step to ensure the Rules of Golf align with how the game is presented and viewed globally. The PGA Tour will adopt the new Local Rule beginning January 1, 2018 and evolve our protocols for reviewing video evidence as outlined.


    We are encouraged by the willingness of the governing bodies to fully vet the issues and implement real change at a pace much quicker than the sport has seen previously. These new adaptations, coupled with changes announced earlier this year, are true and meaningful advances for the game. The LPGA plans to adopt fully the protocols and new Local Rule as outlined.

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    Sharma closes on Monday, wins Joburg Open

    By Associated PressDecember 11, 2017, 12:43 pm

    JOHANNESBURG – Shubhankar Sharma won his first European Tour title by a shooting 3-under 69 Monday in the final round of the weather-delayed Joburg Open.

    The 21-year-old Indian resumed his round on the eighth green after play was halted early Sunday afternoon because of storms. He parred that hole, birdied No. 9 and made par on every hole on the back nine.

    Full-field scores from the Joburg Open

    Sharma finished at 23-under 264, three strokes ahead of the pack, and qualified for next year's British Open, too.

    ''I actually wasn't going to come here about a week ago ... so I'm really happy that I came,'' said Sharma, who shot 61 in the second round. ''I don't think I'm ever going forget my first time in South Africa.''

    Erik van Rooyen (66) was second, three strokes ahead of Shaun Norris (65) and Tapio Pulkkanen (68).

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    Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 11, 2017, 12:30 pm