McNulty Cruises to SBC Victory

By Sports NetworkOctober 17, 2004, 4:00 pm
2004 SBC ChampionshipSAN ANTONIO, Texas -- Mark McNulty fired a 6-under 65 on Sunday to cruise to victory at the SBC Championship. He posted an 18-under-par 195 total to win by eight over Gary McCord at Oak Hills Country Club.
 
McCord shot a 2-under 69 for his highest finish this season. Bobby Wadkins posted a 4-under 67 and took third alone at 9-under-par 204. The $108,000 third-place check moved him into the top-30, thus getting him a spot in next week's Charles Schwab Cup Championship.
 
McNulty's three-day total of 195 broke Craig Stadler's old tournament record of 198 from last year. The win was McNulty's second of the 2004 season to go along with the Outback Steakhouse Pro-Am.
 
'I'm very delighted with my performance today,' said McNulty, who pocketed $225,000 for the victory. 'I'm a pretty good front-runner. Four shots is a tricky position to be in. It's a smelly lead to have.'
 
McNulty parred his first two holes on Sunday, then sank a 10-foot par save at No. 3 to keep his round going. From there, McNulty put the tournament away with a 12-foot birdie putt at four and a short birdie putt at five to reach 14 under par for the championship.
 
At the seventh, McNulty hit a 9-iron to 15 feet to set up his third birdie of the round. He closed his front nine with another birdie, this time from a foot away thanks to another spectacular 9-iron shot.
 
McNulty parred his first four holes on the back nine, but rolled in a 30-foot birdie putt at the 14th. He missed the green with his second at the par-5 15th, but chipped to 4 feet and made the putt for his second birdie in a row.
 
At the 16th, McNulty knocked a wedge to 10 feet and sank the birdie putt. He stood on the 17th tee at 19 under par and with an eye-opening 10-stroke advantage.
 
McCord birdied the 17th, and McNulty bogeyed the last to make the final margin eight shots. That missed the Champions Tour record for largest margin of victory by a shot, but McNulty did not seem to mind. Nor does he seem to care that he is now in the mix for Champions Tour Rookie of the Year after becoming the sixth multiple winner on the elder circuit.
 
'I'm not too concerned with the Rookie of the Year race,' said McNulty. 'I was fortunate enough to hit some quality shots during the round. I knew it would be hard to catch me.'
 
McCord, better known as an analyst for CBS, tallied two birdies over her first five holes, but dropped shots at six and seven. He added birdies at 11 and 17 to get the solo second.
 
Wadkins was 2 under after his front nine, but got the round going with a tap-in eagle at the par-5 10th. He collected an 8-foot birdie putt at 11, but mixed two bogeys and a birdie the rest of the way.
 
It was still enough to get Wadkins in the field next week.
 
'I sort of knew I had to finish solo third to have a chance,' said Wadkins. 'It's hunting season and I was ready to go home. I came here to do some fishing and play a little golf.'
 
Tom Kite (68), Dave Stockton (68) and Bruce Fleisher (70) tied for fourth place at 8-under-par 205. Larry Nelson (67), Dana Quigley (72) and Morris Hatalsky (72) shared seventh at minus-7.
 
Hale Irwin began the tournament with a one-point lead over Stadler in the Charles Schwab Cup race, which gives a $1 million, tax-free annuity. He shot a final-round 69 to tie for 10th place with Darrell Kestner (70) at 6-under-par 207. Irwin picked up 38 points in the Schwab Cup race that will be finalized after next week's event.
 
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  • 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.”

    Getty Images

    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.

    LPGA:

    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