McCullough Wins Playoff at Emerald Coast

By Sports NetworkMarch 25, 2001, 5:00 pm
Mike McCullough parred the first playoff hole on Sunday to defeat Andy North and win the Emerald Coast Classic. He posted a 5-under 65 to finish the tournament at 10-under-par 200.
 
This marks the second victory of the year for McCullough, who won the Mexico Senior Classic in February for his first career Senior Tour title. He became the second multiple winner on the Senior Tour this season, joining Larry Nelson, who captured the MasterCard Championship and the Royal Caribbean Classic at the beginning of the season.
 
Jim Ahern finished alone in third at 7-under, while Jose Maria Canizares and first and second-round leader John Schroeder shared fourth place at minus six.
 
McCullough and North returned the par-4 18th to begin the playoff. North drove into a bunker and had to lay up while McCullough, who found the fairway off the tee, hit a 4-iron to 40 feet.
 
After North knocked his third shot with a 9-iron 20 feet from the pin, McCullough rolled his third to within four feet for par. North's par effort rolled over the lip and McCullough drained his for the win.
 
'I'm anxious to have a chance to win again,' said McCullough, who pocketed $210,000 for the victory. 'I'm happy because I'm continuing to progress as a player. I just continued to try to make birdies in the last few holes. I focused on making birdies every chance I could.'
 
McCullough got to 10-under after he drilled a 40-foot birdie putt at the 15th in regulation. North matched him at that score at the 17th when he wedged his approach to 25 feet and converted the putt.
 
McCullough had his problems on the way to playoff, driving into the rough at No. 17 and missing the green from 135 yards out with an 8-iron. He was was able to get up and down for the save, then hit a 5-iron into the green at No. 18 and two-putted for par.
 
He began the day tied for third, three shots behind Schroeder. McCullough got into red figures early with a 30-footer at the second for birdie. He added an eight-foot putt for birdie at the 5th before he drained a 50-foot birdie bomb at No. 6.
 
'It seems like I made a lot of lengthy putts today. I got a couple of breaks early and boom, at the sixth hole I was right in it.'
 
McCullough missed two birdie opportunities at Nos. 7 and 8 when he failed to convert on birdie attempts from 15 and eight feet, respectively. He made birdie at the 11th, and then holed a 25-foot par save at the next hole after a poor second shot.
 
McCullough sank the birdie at 15 and tallied pars the rest of the way for a spot in the playoff.
 
North was tied with McCullough before the round began and birdied the second hole. He parred the next five holes before he holed an 18- foot fringe putt for birdie at No. 8.
 
North got his back nine off to a good start with a 12-foot birdie at the 10th. He missed a 15-foot birdie at No. 12 and then hit a 9-iron to three feet for a birdie at the 13th.
 
He wedged his approach to 25 feet at No. 17 and ran home the birdie to grab the lead, but McCullough soon matched him at 10-under. Although North struggled in the playoff, his runner-up finish marked his highest Senior Tour showing since joining the circuit last year.
 
'I thought I made the par putt on the playoff hole,' said North, an analyst for ESPN. 'I didn't hit the drive I needed to in the playoff.
 
North claimed $123,200 for second place, the largest check of his career. He took home his previous best of $103,000 for winning the 1985 U.S. Open at Oakland Hills.
 
North, a three-time winner on the PGA Tour, also captured the 1978 U.S. Open at Cherry Hills in Colorado.
 
'It was great to be in it today. I'm disappointed I didn't win, but I feel I'm going in the right direction.'
 
Ahern triple-bogeyed the 10th but rebounded a bit with three birdies the rest of the way for an even-par 70. Schroeder could not get it going on Sunday, mixing three bogeys with a birdie for a 72.
 
Defending champion Gil Morgan posted a 4-under 66 to share sixth place with Nelson, Gary McCord, Tom Wargo, Graham Marsh and Bruce Fleisher.
 
Full-Field Scores from the Emerald Coast Classic
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Cabreras win PNC Father/Son Challenge

By Associated PressDecember 17, 2017, 11:36 pm

ORLANDO, Fla. - Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. closed with a 12-under 60 for a three-shot victory in their debut at the PNC Father/Son Challenge.

The Cabreras opened with a 59 at The Ritz-Carlton Golf Club and were challenged briefly by the defending champions, David Duval and Nick Karavites, in the scramble format Sunday. The Argentines went out in 30, and they had a two-shot lead with Cabrera's son came within an inch of chipping in for eagle on the final hole.

They finished at 25-under 199 for a three-shot victory over Duval and Karavites, and Bernhard Langer and Jason Langer. The Langer team won in 2014.

Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara tied for fourth at 21 under with Jerry Pate and Wesley Pate.

Cabrera wasn't even in the field until two-time U.S. Open champion Curtis Strange and his son, Tom Strange, had to withdraw.

Duval and his stepson went out in 28, but the Cabreras regained control by starting the back nine with back-to-back birdies, and then making birdies on the 13th, 14th and 16th. The final birdie allowed them to tie the tournament scoring record.

''This is certain my best week of the year,'' said Cabrera, the 2009 Masters champion and 2007 U.S. Open champion at Oakmont. ''To play alongside all the legends ... as well as playing alongside my son, has been the greatest week of the year.''

The popular event is for players who have won a major championship or The Players Championship. It is a scramble format both days.

In some cases, the major champions lean on the power of their sons for the distance. O'Meara said Saturday that his ''little man'' hit it 58 yards by him on the 18th. And on Sunday, Stewart Cink said son Reagan told him after outdriving him on the opening four holes, ''In this tournament I may be your son, but right now I'm your Daddy!''

Jack Nicklaus played with his grandson, G.T. They closed with a 64 and tied for 15th in the field of 20 teams.

Rose wins; Aphibarnrat earns Masters bid in Indonesia

By Will GrayDecember 17, 2017, 1:59 pm

Justin Rose continued his recent run of dominance in Indonesia, while Kiradech Aphibarnrat snagged a Masters invite with some 72nd-hole dramatics.

Rose cruised to an eight-shot victory at the Indonesian Masters, carding bookend rounds of 10-under 62 that featured a brief run at a 59 during the final round. The Englishman was the highest-ranked player in the field and he led wire-to-wire, with Thailand's Phachara Khongwatmai finishing second.

Rose closes out the year as perhaps the hottest player in the world, with top-10 finishes in each of his final 10 worldwide starts. That stretch includes three victories, as Rose also won the WGC-HSBC Champions and Turkish Airlines Open. He hasn't finished outside the top 10 in a tournament since missing the cut at the PGA Championship.

Meanwhile, it took until the final hole of the final tournament of 2017 for Aphibarnrat to secure a return to the Masters. The Thai entered the week ranked No. 56 in the world, with the top 50 in the year-end world rankings earning invites to Augusta National. Needing an eagle on the 72nd hole, Aphibarnrat got just that to snag solo fifth place.

It means that he is projected to end the year ranked No. 49, while Japan's Yusaku Miyazato - who started the week ranked No. 58 and finished alone in fourth - is projected to finish No. 50. Aphibarnrat finished T-15 in his Masters debut in 2016, while Miyazato will make his first appearance in the spring.

The results in Indonesia mean that American Peter Uihlein and South Africa's Dylan Frittelli are projected to barely miss the year-end, top-50 cutoff. Their options for Masters qualification will include winning a full-point PGA Tour event in early 2018 or cracking the top 50 by the final March 25 cutoff.

Cabreras take 1-shot lead in Father/Son

By Associated PressDecember 16, 2017, 11:23 pm

ORLANDO, Fla. - Two-time major champion Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. birdied their last three holes for a 13-under 59 to take a one-shot lead Saturday in the PNC Father-Son Challenge.

Cabrera, a Masters and U.S. Open champion, is making his debut in this popular 36-hole scramble. His son said he practiced hard for 10 days. What helped put him at ease was watching his father make so many putts.

''We combined very well,'' Cabrera said. ''When I hit a bad shot, he hit a good one. That's the key.''

They had a one-shot lead over Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara, who are playing for the first time. That included a birdie on the last hole, which O'Meara attributed to the strength of his son.

''My little man hit it 58 yards by me on the 18th,'' said O'Meara, the Masters and British Open champion in 1998. ''It's a little easier coming in with a 6-iron.''

Defending champions David Duval and Nick Karavites rallied over the back nine at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club for a 61. They are trying to become the first father-son team to repeat as winners since Bernhard and Stefan Langer in 2006. Larry Nelson won two years in a row in 2007 and 2008, but with different sons.

''I'd imagine we have to break 60 tomorrow to have a chance to win, but hey, stranger things have happened,'' Duval said. ''I've even done it myself.''

Duval shot 59 at the Bob Hope Classic to win in 1999 on his way to reaching No. 1 in the world that year.

Duval and his stepson were tied with Bernhard Langer and 17-year-old Jason Langer, who made two eagles on the last five holes. This Langer tandem won in 2014.

Jack Nicklaus, playing with grandson G.T., opened with a 68.

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Woods' 2018 schedule coming into focus ... or is it?

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 16, 2017, 5:46 pm

Two weeks after his successful return to competition at the Hero World Challenge, Tiger Woods’ 2018 schedule may be coming into focus.

Golfweek reported on Saturday that Woods hopes to play the Genesis Open in February according to an unidentified source with “direct knowledge of the situation.”

Woods’ agent Mark Steinberg declined to confirm the 14-time major champion would play the event and told GolfChannel.com that Woods – who underwent fusion surgery to his lower back in April – is still formulating his ’18 schedule.

Woods’ foundation is the host organization for the Genesis Open and the event supports the Tiger Woods Learning Center in Anaheim, Calif.

The Genesis Open would be Woods’ first start on the PGA Tour since he missed the cut last January at the Farmers Insurance Open.