Hoffman Hearn Tied at Permian Basin

By Sports NetworkOctober 15, 2004, 4:00 pm
04 Permian Basin Charity Golf Classic MIDLAND, Texas -- Charley Hoffman fired the lowest round of the day on Friday with a 5-under 67. That was good enough to put him in a tie for the lead with David Hearn, who shot a 70, after two rounds of the Permian Basin Charity Golf Classic.
The duo stands knotted at 5-under-par 139 and own a two-shot lead over James Driscoll and Steve Alker, both of whom posted rounds of 3-under 69, at Midland Country Club.
Hoffman, who currently holds the 60th place on the money list and the final spot in the Nationwide Tour Championship, wasted little time in breaking into red figures on Friday. He ran home a 6-footer for birdie at the second, then made it back-to-back birdies with an 18-footer at the third. Hoffman tallied his third birdie in a row at the fourth, but found trouble at the next hole.
His drive landed in the left rough and he failed to save par at the fifth, but Hoffman rebounded with a 10-foot birdie putt at No. 6. He closed his front nine with a chip-in birdie at the eighth to go out at 4-under-par 32.
Hoffman did not get off to a good start on the second nine. His approach at No. 10 landed 70 feet from the hole and he three-putted for a bogey. Hoffman parred his next four holes, but strong play over his final four holes got him a piece of the 36-hole lead.
At the 601-yard, par-5 15th, Hoffman reached the green in two with a 4-iron and two-putted for birdie. He hit a wedge to 10 feet to set up birdie at the 17th and get into a share of the top spot.
'If there's a problem with my game, it's not hitting the fairway, but I kept it in play all day,' said Hoffman, who hit 12 of 14 fairways on Friday. 'Par if good out here. I'll try to go out and finish one on the weekend.'
Hearn opened on the back nine Friday and sank a 25-foot birdie putt at the 10th. He added back-to-back 8-foot birdie putts at 12 and 13, then rolled in an 18-foot birdie putt at the 17th hole to reach 7 under par for the championship.
Hearn struggled from that point. His 6-iron approach at the 18th sailed over the green, but his chip only came up 12 feet short. Hearn missed his par putt, but still held the lead.
On his second nine, Hearn played solidly with seven consecutive pars. At the 224-yard, par-3 eighth, Hearn hit his 5-iron into the front bunker. He blasted out to 10 feet, but failed to save par, thus falling into a tie for the lead.
'I got my birdies early and tried to stay aggressive on the back nine,' said Hearn, who occupies the 34th spot on the tour's money list. 'I really only made two mistakes and apart from that, I kept trying to hit it close.'
Matthew Jones carded a 4-under 68 and shares fifth place with Brad Fabel, who posted a 1-under 71, at 2-under-par 142.
Overnight co-leaders Eduardo Herrera and Jeff Gove each shot rounds of 3-over-par 75 and are tied for seventh place with Mathew Goggin (70), two-time winner this season Kevin Stadler (71) and Craig Lile (71). The group is knotted at minus-1.
The 36-hole cut fell at 4-over-par 148 with 61 players advancing to the weekend.
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    Hadwin returns to site of last year's 59

    By Will GrayJanuary 17, 2018, 11:04 pm

    Adam Hadwin had a career season last year, one that included shooting a 59 and winning a PGA Tour event. But those two achievements didn't occur in the same week.

    While Hadwin's breakthrough victory came at the Valspar Championship in March, it was at the CareerBuilder Challenge in January when he first made headlines with a third-round 59 at La Quinta Country Club. Hadwin took a lead into the final round as a result, but he ultimately couldn't keep pace with Hudson Swafford.

    He went on to earn a spot at the Tour Championship, and Hadwin made his first career Presidents Cup appearance in October. Now the Canadian returns to Palm Springs, eager to improve on last year's result and hoping to earn a spot in the final group for a third straight year after a T-6 finish in 2016.

    "A lot of good memories here in the desert," Hadwin told reporters. "I feel very comfortable here, very at home. Lots of Canadians, so it's always fun to play well in front of those crowds and hopefully looking forward to another good week."

    Hadwin's 59 last year was somewhat overshadowed, both by the fact that he didn't win the event and that it came just one week after Justin Thomas shot a 59 en route to victory at the Sony Open. But he's still among an exclusive club of just eight players to have broken 60 in competition on Tour and he's eager to get another crack at La Quinta on Saturday.

    "If I'm in the same position on 18, I'm gunning for 58 this year," Hadwin said, "not playing safe for 59."

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    Rahm: If I thought like Phil, I could not hit a shot

    By Will GrayJanuary 17, 2018, 10:39 pm

    When it comes to Jon Rahm and Phil Mickelson, there are plenty of common bonds. Both starred at Arizona State, both are now repped by the same agency and Rahm's former college coach and agent, Tim Mickelson, now serves full-time as his brother's caddie.

    Those commonalities mean the two men have played plenty of practice rounds together, but the roads quickly diverge when it comes to on-course behavior. Rahm is quick, fiery and decisive; Mickelson is one of the most analytical players on Tour. And as Rahm told reporters Wednesday at the CareerBuilder Challenge, those differences won't end anytime soon.

    "I don't need much. 'OK, it's like 120 (yards), this shot, right," Rahm said. "And then you have Phil, it's like, 'Oh, this shot, the moisture, this going on, this is like one mile an hour wind sideways, it's going to affect it one yard. This green is soft, this trajectory. They're thinking, and I'm like, 'I'm lost.' I'm like, 'God if I do that thought process, I could not hit a golf shot.'"

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    The tactics may be more simplified, but Rahm can't argue with the results. While Mickelson is in the midst of a winless drought that is approaching five years, Rahm won three times around the world last year and will defend a PGA Tour title for the first time next week at Torrey Pines.

    Both men are in the field this week in Palm Springs, where Mickelson will make his 2018 debut with what Rahm fully expects to be another dose of high-level analytics for the five-time major winner with his brother on the bag.

    "It's funny, he gets to the green and then it's the same thing. He's very detail-oriented," Rahm said of Mickelson. "I'm there listening and I'm like, 'Man, I hope we're never paired together for anything because I can't think like this. I would not be able to play golf like that. But for me to listen to all that is really fun."

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    DJ changes tune on golf ball distance debate

    By Will GrayJanuary 17, 2018, 9:16 pm

    World No. 1 Dustin Johnson is already one of the longest hitters in golf, so he's not looking for any changes to be made to golf ball technology - despite comments from him that hinted at just such a notion two months ago.

    Johnson is in the Middle East this week for the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship, and he told BBC Sport Wednesday that he wouldn't be in favor of making changes to the golf ball in order to remedy some of the eye-popping distances players are hitting the ball with ever-increasing frequency.

    "It's not like we are dominating golf courses," Johnson said. "When was the last time you saw someone make the game too easy? I don't really understand what all the debate is about because it doesn't matter how far it goes; it is about getting it in the hole."

    Johnson's rhetorical question might be answered simply by looking back at his performance at the Sentry Tournament of Champions earlier this month, an eight-shot romp that featured a tee shot on the 433-yard 12th hole that bounded down a slope to within inches of the hole.

    Johnson appeared much more willing to consider a reduced-distance ball option at the Hero World Challenge in November, when he sat next to tournament host Tiger Woods and supported Woods' notion that the ball should be addressed.

    "I don't mind seeing every other professional sport, they play with one ball. All the pros play with the same ball," Johnson said. "In baseball, the guys that are bigger and stronger, they can hit a baseball a lot further than the smaller guys. ... I think there should be some kind of an advantage for guys who work on hitting it far and getting that speed that's needed, so having a ball, like the same ball that everyone plays, there's going to be, you're going to have more of an advantage."

    Speaking Wednesday in Abu Dhabi, Johnson stood by the notion that regardless of whether the rules change or stay the same, he plans to have a leg up on the competition.

    "If the ball is limited then it is going to limit everyone," he said. "I'm still going to hit it that much further than I guess the average Tour player."

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    LPGA lists April date for new LA event

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 17, 2018, 8:18 pm

    The LPGA’s return to Los Angeles will come with the new Hugel-JTBC Open being played at Wilshire Country Club April 19-22, the tour announced Wednesday.

    When the LPGA originally released its schedule, it listed the Los Angeles event with the site to be announced at a later date.

    The Hugel-JTBC Open will feature a 144-player field and a $1.5 million purse. It expands the tour’s West Coast swing, which will now be made up of four events in California in March and April.

    The LPGA last played in Los Angeles in 2005. Wilshire Country Club hosted The Office Depot in 2001, with Annika Sorenstam winning there.