Mickelson Leads Delayed PGA

By Sports NetworkAugust 14, 2005, 4:00 pm
2005 PGA ChampionshipSPRINGFIELD, N.J. -- Stormy weather pushed back the finish of the 87th PGA Championship until Monday.
Phil Mickelson holds the lead at four-under par through 13 holes in the final round. Steve Elkington, the 1995 PGA Champion, is one stroke back through 15 and he shares second place with Thomas Bjorn. The Dane has finished 14 holes.
Phil Mickelson
Despite being 2-over through 13, Phil Mickelson still holds a one stroke lead heading into Monday's finish.
Two-time PGA Champion Tiger Woods is the leader in the clubhouse at two-under- par 278 at Baltusrol Golf Club.
Defending champion Vijay Singh is also at minus-two through 15 holes. Davis Love III, the 1997 PGA winner, is minus-two through 13 holes.
There was a 39-minute weather delay during Sunday's round. Play was stopped at 6:37 p.m. (et) as more bad weather rolled into the area. Officials suspended play for the night a short time later and announced the final round will resume Monday morning at 10:00 a.m.
U.S. Open champion Michael Campbell is one stroke behind Woods at minus-one. He shot one-under 69 in the final round and he was tied there by Geoff Ogilvy, who also closed with a 69.
Retief Goosen, a two-time U.S. Open winner also stands at minus-one through 16 holes.
Woods got off to a rough start at the first when he went over the first green and that led to bogey. Then at the third, he lost his drive left into the trees and bogeyed that hole.
The No. 1 player in the game chipped in for par at the seventh after taking an unplayable lie as his drive came to rest under a tree. The first weather delay came as Woods was walking off the tee at seven and before the final two pairings had even teed off.
Woods got one stroke back with a short birdie putt on the eighth. He dropped in a birdie try on 14 to get back to even-par for the day and for the tournament.
The 29-year-old knocked his second shot over the green with an iron at the massive 650-yard par-five 17th. Woods got up and down for birdie to get into red figures at minus-one for the first time all week.
Woods also knocked his second shot over the green at the par-five last. He pitched within six feet and sank that for birdie to close at two-under.
'I did not get off to a very good start again today,' Woods said. 'I was two- over early and made it there on seven, some miracle fluke shot that should have been about 20 feet past, but went in, so I got lucky. From there I really played some good golf. I wish I would have gotten off to a better start. This golf course ain't easy, especially the first seven holes.'
Mickelson was having a tough day, mostly with his putter and his driver. He knocked his tee shot into the trees at the first, but managed to knock his second on the green, where he two-putted for par.
He left his approach shots short at the next two holes and walked away with pars both times. At the par-three fourth, Mickelson sank a difficult birdie putt to get to minus-seven. Things fell apart from there though.
Mickelson missed a six-foot par putt on six and then missed another short par putt at seven to slip to minus-five.
Elkington, who parred his first eight holes, moved to five-under and a share of the lead with an 18-foot birdie try on the ninth.
Mickelson missed the green at the par-three ninth and that led to the third bogey of his round.
The Australian Elkington playing ahead of Mickelson hit a poor chip shot at the 10th and that led to his first bogey. Elkington slipped into a tie for the lead at minus-four with Mickelson.
The 2004 Masters champion missed the fairway off the 10th tee with a 3-wood. His second came up short of the green and he could not save par either. Mickelson dropped to minus-three, one shot behind Elkington.
Elkington extended his lead to two with a chip-in birdie at the 11th to get to five-under. Mickelson stayed two shot back with a pars on 11 and 12.
The big swing was the 13th hole. Elkington three-putted for bogey, while Mickelson dropped in a 12-foot birdie putt to create a tie for the lead at minus-four.
Elkington parred 14, then missed the fairway at 15. He had a bad stance on the side of a fairway bunker and pulled his second shot left of the green. He was unable to save par from there to slip to minus-three.
Mickelson missed the fairway at 14 and had a terrible lie in the rough. He somehow managed to knocked his second within nine feet of the cup. The 35- year-old missed that putt.
Love, who like Mickelson had a par putt from within six feet at the 14th, stopped Mickelson as he read his par putt. Love saw lightning flash and told Mickelson to mark his ball. Within seconds, officials blew the horns to stop play.
'I felt like the course was playing tremendously harder,' Mickelson said. 'Every bogey that I made, I put myself in the proper spot to get up and down and I just didn't get up and down on some of those holes. So I don't feel like there were any spots where I couldn't save par or wasted a shot. I felt like I hit a few good shots towards the end there and we have got some birdie holes coming in.'
Elkington is playing in the season's final major for the first time since 2002. Along with his win at Riviera in 1995, Elkington shared third at Valhalla in 1996 and finished third in 1998 at Sahalee.
'It's a shame obviously that we didn't get to finish, but I didn't really want to play the last three holes into the wind either,' Elkington said. 'It was a bit of a to and fro situation going on out there with about three or four players, and it's a shame that the crowds didn't get to see the finish.'
Love had plenty of trouble of his own on Sunday. He knocked his tee ball into the trees on three and that led to a bogey. The 41-year-old had a difficult birdie putt on four and ran it well past the cup. He missed the come-backer and walked away with his second straight bogey.
The 18-time winner on the PGA Tour missed the green long at five and bogeyed that. Love stemmed the bad tide with a par on the sixth. He missed the fairway left at the seventh and managed to save bogey from 15 feet out.
Love finally got one stroke back with a birdie on the 10th. However, he dropped another stroke at the next.
Singh, who parred the first 17 holes before birdieing the last on Saturday, three-putted his way to a double-bogey on three to slip to minus-two. He again three-putted four for another bogey. He got one stroke back with a birdie on the eighth. Singh parred his next seven holes before weather halted play for the night.
Ted Purdy posted the best round of the day Sunday as he closed with a four- under 66. He moved into a tie for 10th at even-par 280. Purdy was tied there by Steve Flesch (70), Dudley Hart (71) and 2001 PGA Champion David Toms (68).
Pat Perez also stands at even-par, as he has completed 14 holes in the final round. There are five other players remaining on the course. Of those five, Stuart Appleby is closest to the leaders at one-over par.
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    Teenager Im wins Web.com season opener

    By Will GrayJanuary 16, 2018, 10:23 pm

    South Korea's Sungjae Im cruised to a four-shot victory at The Bahamas Great Exuma Classic, becoming just the second teenager to win an event on the Web.com Tour.

    Im started the final day of the season-opening event in a share of the lead but still with six holes left in his third round. He was one shot behind Carlos Ortiz when the final round began, but moved ahead of the former Web.com Player of the Year thanks to a 7-under 65 in rainy and windy conditions. Im's 13-under total left him four clear of Ortiz and five shots ahead of a quartet of players in third.

    Still more than two months shy of his 20th birthday, Im joins Jason Day as the only two teens to win on the developmental circuit. Day was 19 years, 7 months and 26 days old when he captured the 2007 Legend Financial Group Classic.

    Recent PGA Tour winners Si Woo Kim and Patrick Cantlay and former NCAA champ Aaron Wise all won their first Web.com Tour event at age 20.

    Other notable finishes in the event included Max Homa (T-7), Erik Compton (T-13), Curtis Luck (T-13) and Lee McCoy (T-13). The Web.com Tour will remain in the Bahamas for another week, with opening round of The Bahamas Great Abaco Classic set to begin Sunday.

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    Mickelson grouped with Z. Johnson at CareerBuilder

    By Will GrayJanuary 16, 2018, 8:28 pm

    He's not the highest-ranked player in this week's field, but Phil Mickelson will likely draw the biggest crowd at the CareerBuilder Challenge as he makes his first start of 2018. Here are a few early-round, marquee groupings to watch as players battle the three-course rotation in the Californian desert (all times ET):

    12:10 p.m. Thursday, 11:40 a.m. Friday, 1:20 p.m. Saturday: Phil Mickelson, Zach Johnson

    Mickelson is making his fourth straight trip to Palm Springs, having cracked the top 25 each of the last three times. In addition to their respective amateur partners, he'll play the first three rounds alongside a fellow Masters champ in Johnson, who tied for 14th last week in Hawaii and finished third in this event in 2014.

    11:40 a.m. Thursday, 1:20 p.m. Friday, 12:50 p.m. Saturday: Jon Rahm, Bubba Watson

    At No. 3 in the world, Rahm is the highest-ranked player teeing it up this week and the Spaniard returns to an event where he finished T-34 last year in his tournament debut. He'll play the first two rounds alongside Watson, who is looking to bounce back from a difficult 2016-17 season and failed to crack the top 50 in two starts in the fall.

    11:40 a.m. Thursday, 1:20 p.m. Friday, 12:50 p.m. Saturday: Patrick Reed, Brandt Snedeker

    Reed made the first big splash of his career at this event in 2014, shooting three straight rounds of 63 en route to his maiden victory. He'll be joined by Snedeker, whose bid for a Masters bid via the top 50 of the world rankings came up short last month and who hasn't played this event since a missed cut in 2015.

    1:10 p.m. Thursday, 12:40 p.m. Friday, 12:10 p.m. Saturday: Patton Kizzire, Bill Haas

    Kizzire heads east after a whirlwind Sunday ended with his second win of the season in a six-hole playoff over James Hahn in Honolulu. He'll play alongside Haas, who won this event in both 2010 and 2015 to go with a runner-up finish in 2011 and remains the tournament's all-time leading money winner.

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    Mackay still a caddie at heart, even with a microphone

    By Doug FergusonJanuary 16, 2018, 7:34 pm

    HONOLULU – All it took was one week back on the bag to remind Jim ''Bones'' Mackay what he always loved about being a caddie.

    It just wasn't enough for this to be the ultimate mic drop.

    Mackay traded in his TV microphone at the Sony Open for the 40-pound bag belonging to Justin Thomas.

    It was his first time caddying since he split with Phil Mickelson six months ago. Mackay was only a temporary replacement at Waialae for Jimmy Johnson, a good friend and Thomas' regular caddie who has a nasty case of plantar fasciitis that will keep him in a walking boot for the next month.

    ''The toughest thing about not caddying is missing the competition, not having a dog in the fight,'' Mackay said before the final round. ''There's nothing more rewarding as a caddie, in general terms, when you say, 'I don't like 6-iron, I like 7,' and being right. I miss that part of it.''

    The reward now?

    ''Not stumbling over my words,'' he said. ''And being better than I was the previous week.''

    He has done remarkably well since he started his new job at the British Open last summer, except for that time he momentarily forgot his role. Parts of that famous caddie adage – ''Show up, keep up, shut up'' – apparently can apply to golf analysts on the ground.

    During the early hours of the telecast, before Johnny Miller came on, Justin Leonard was in the booth.

    ''It's my job to report on what I see. It's not my job to ask questions,'' Mackay said. ''I forgot that for a minute.''

    Leonard was part of a booth discussion on how a comfortable pairing can help players trying to win a major. That prompted Mackay to ask Leonard if he found it helpful at the 1997 British Open when he was trying to win his first major and was paired with Fred Couples in the final round at Royal Troon.

    ''What I didn't know is we were going to commercial in six seconds,'' Mackay said. ''I would have no way of knowing that, but I completely hung Justin out to dry. He's now got four seconds to answer my long-winded question.''

    During the commercial break, the next voice Mackay heard belonged to Tommy Roy, the executive golf producer at NBC.

    ''Bones, don't ever do that again.''

    It was Roy who recognized the value experienced caddies could bring to a telecast. That's why he invited Mackay and John Wood, the caddie for Matt Kuchar, into the control room at the 2015 Houston Open so they could see how it all worked and how uncomfortable it can be to hear directions coming through an earpiece.

    Both worked as on-course reporters at Sea Island that fall.

    And when Mickelson and Mackay parted ways after 25 years, Roy scooped up the longtime caddie for TV.

    It's common for players to move into broadcasting. Far more unusual is for a caddie to be part of the mix. Mackay loves his new job. Mostly, he loves how it has helped elevate his profession after so many years of caddies being looked upon more unfavorably than they are now.

    ''I want to be a caddie that's doing TV,'' he said. ''That's what I hope to come across as. The guys think this is good for caddies. And if it's good for caddies, that makes me happy. Because I'm a caddie. I'll always be a caddie.''

    Not next week at Torrey Pines, where Mickelson won three times. Not a week later in Phoenix, where Mackay lives. Both events belong to CBS.

    And not the Masters.

    He hasn't missed Augusta since 1994, when Mickelson broke his leg skiing that winter.

    ''That killed me,'' he said, ''but not nearly as much as it's going to kill me this year. I'll wake up on Thursday of the Masters and I'll be really grumpy. I'll probably avoid television at all costs until the 10th tee Sunday. And I'll watch. But it will be, within reason, the hardest day of my life.''

    There are too many memories, dating to when he was in the gallery right of the 11th green in 1987 when Larry Mize chipped in to beat Greg Norman. He caddied for Mize for two years, and then Scott Simpson in 1992, and Mickelson the rest of the way. He was on the bag for Lefty's three green jackets.

    Mackay still doesn't talk much about what led them to part ways, except to say that a player-caddie relationship runs its course.

    ''If you lose that positive dynamic, there's no point in continuing,'' he said. ''It can be gone in six months or a year or five years. In our case, it took 25 years.''

    He says a dozen or so players called when they split up, and the phone call most intriguing was from Roy at NBC.

    ''I thought I'd caddie until I dropped,'' Mackay said.

    He never imagined getting yardages and lining up putts for anyone except the golfer whose bag he was carrying. Now it's for an audience that measures in the millions. Mackay doesn't look at it as a second career. And he won't rule out caddying again.

    ''It will always be tempting,'' he said. ''I'll always consider myself a caddie. Right now, I'm very lucky and grateful to have the job I do.''

    Except for that first week in April.

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    The Social: The end was nigh, then it wasn't

    By Jason CrookJanuary 16, 2018, 7:00 pm

    The star power at the Sony Open may have been overshadowed by a missile scare, but there were plenty of other social media stories that kept the golf world on its toes this week, including some insight on Tiger Woods from a round with President Obama and some failed trick shots.

    All that and more in this week's edition of The Social.

    By now you've undoubtedly heard about the false alarm in Hawaii on Saturday, where just about everyone, including most Sony Open participants, woke up to an emergency cell phone alert that there was a ballistic missile heading toward the islands.

    Hawaiian emergency management officials eventually admitted the original message was mistakenly sent out, but before they did, people (understandably) freaked out.

    As the situation unfolded, some Tour pros took to social media to express their confusion and to let the Twittersphere know how they planned on riding out this threat:

    While I would've been in that bathtub under the mattress with John Peterson, his wife, baby and in-laws (wait, how big is this tub?), here's how Justin Thomas reacted to the threat of impending doom:

    Yeah, you heard that right.

    “I was like ‘there’s nothing I can do,'” Thomas said. ”I sat on my couch and opened up the sliding door and watched TV and listened to music. I was like, if it’s my time, it’s my time.”

    Hmmm ... can we just go ahead and award him all the 2018 majors right now? Because if Thomas is staring down death in mid-January, you gotta like the kid's chances on the back nine Sunday at Augusta and beyond.

    Before the Hawaiian Missile Crisis of 2018, things were going about as well as they could at Waialae Country Club, starting with the Wednesday pro-am.

    Jordan Spieth might have been the third-biggest star in his own group, after getting paired with superstar singer/songwriter/actor Nick Jonas and model/actress Kelly Rohrbach.

    You'd be hard-pressed to find a more photogenic group out on the course, and the "Baywatch" star has a gorgeous swing as well, which makes sense, considering she was a former collegiate golfer at Georgetown.

    As impressive as that group was, they were somehow outshined by an amateur in another group, former NFL coach June Jones.

    Jones, who now coaches the CFL's Hamilton Tiger-Cats, played his round in bare feet and putted with his 5-iron, a remedy he came up with to battle the yips.

    Former NFL and current CFL coach June Jones: A master of 5-iron putting?

    A post shared by PGA TOUR (@pgatour) on

    Considering he made back-to-back birdies at one point during the day, it's safe to say he's won that battle.

    With Tiger Woods' return to the PGA Tour about a week away, that sound you hear is the hype train motoring full speed down the tracks.

    First, his ex-girlfriend Lindsey Vonn told Sports Illustrated that she hopes this comeback works out for him.

    “I loved him and we’re still friends. Sometimes, I wish he would have listened to me a little more, but he’s very stubborn and he likes to go his own way," the Olympic skiier said. "I hope this latest comeback sticks. I hope he goes back to winning tournaments.”

    Vonn also mentioned she thinks Woods is very stubborn and that he didn't listen to her enough. That really shouldn't shock anyone who watched him win the 2008 U.S. Open on one leg. Don't think there were a lot of people in his ear telling him that was a great idea at the time.

    We also have this report from Golf Channel Insider Tim Rosaforte, stating that the 14-time major champ recently played a round with former president Barack Obama at The Floridian in Palm City, Fla., where he received rave reviews from instructor Claude Harmon.

    The Farmers Insurance Open is sure to be must-see TV, but until then, I'm here for all of the rampant speculation and guesses as to how things will go. The more takes the better. Make them extra spicy, please and thanks.

    These poor New Orleans Saints fans. Guess the only thing you can do is throw your 65-inch TV off the balcony and get 'em next year.

    Here's two more just for good measure.

    Farts ... will they ever not be funny?

    Perhaps someday, but that day was not early last week, when Tommy Fleetwood let one rip on his European teammates during EurAsia Cup team photos.

    Fleetwood went 3-0-0 in the event, helping Europe to a victory over Asia, perhaps by distracting his opponents with the aid of his secret weapon.

    Also, how about the diabolical question, "Did you get that?"

    Yeah Tommy, we all got that.

    Ahhh ... golf trick shot videos. You were fun while you lasted.

    But now we’ve officially come to the point in their existence where an unsuccessful attempt is much more entertaining than a properly executed shot, and right on cue, a couple of pros delivered some epic fails.

    We start with Sony Open runner-up James Hahn’s preparation for the event, where for some reason he thought he needed to practice a running, jumping, Happy Gilmore-esque shot from the lip of a bunker. It didn’t exactly work out.

    Not to be outdone, Ladies European Tour pro Carly Booth attempted the juggling-drive-it-out-of-midair shot made famous by the Bryan Bros, and from the looks of things she might have caught it a little close to the hosel.

    PSA to trick-shot artists everywhere: For the sake of the viewing public, if you feel a miss coming on, please make sure the camera is rolling.

    Seriously, though, who cares? Definitely not these guys and gals, who took the time to comment, "who cares?" They definitely do not care.