Molder Gets First Nwide Win

By Sports NetworkOctober 29, 2006, 5:00 pm
2006 Miccosukee ChampionshipMIAMI, Fla. -- Bryce Molder birdied three holes in a row down the stretch Sunday en route to a 3-under 68 and his first win at the Nationwide Tour at the Miccosukee Championship. He finished at 14-under-par 270 for a one-shot win over Boo Weekley.
 
'That felt pretty good,' said Molder, who pocketed $90,000 for the victory. 'It's been a long time since I've won a golf tournament. You take things for granted.'
 
Molder was pegged by most to be a PGA TOUR star after becoming one of four players in Division I history to be a four-time, first-team All American at Georgia Tech.
 
That certainly did not happen as Sunday's win was the first for the 27-year-old, and it was an important one. He moved to 21st on the Nationwide Tour money list, and the top 20 players after the Nationwide Tour Championship in two weeks earn PGA TOUR cards for 2007.
 
'I'll look forward to the challenge in a couple of weeks,' acknowledged Molder. 'If I play well, great. If I don't, then that's fine. I'm learning a lot.'
 
Weekley had a 12-foot birdie putt on the 72nd hole at Miccosukee Golf and Country Club, but missed. He also shot a 3-under 68 to finish in second at minus-13.
 
Jason Dufner posted a 5-under 66 early on Sunday and watched as both Molder and Weekley passed him. Dufner took third place at 12-under-par 272.
 
Since this was the final full-field event before the Nationwide Tour Championship, it was the last chance for players to move into the top-62 on the money list and gain entry to the field.
 
Cameron Beckman began the week in 71st place on the money list. He carded a 2-under 69 on Sunday and tied for fourth place with Cliff Kresge (70) and Tim O'Neal (72). The trio came in at minus-11.
 
Beckman earned enough for his share of fourth place to move into the top 62. Gary Christian started the week one spot out of the Nationwide Tour Championship field, but a tie for 10th was enough for him to move inside the number.
 
Chez Reavie and Jason Caron were knocked out of the top 62.
 
Molder was already safely in the field in two weeks, but faced the task of winning for the first time. He did not do much early on with a birdie at nine and a bogey at the 11th.
 
Luckily for Molder, no one in the field got too far ahead of him. He had close to 30 feet for eagle at the 14th and as the ball veered toward the hole, Molder raised his arms in celebration. Unfortunately, the ball lipped out of the hole and Molder settled for a tap-in birdie and a share of the lead with Dufner and Weekley at 12 under par.
 
Weekley took the lead next with a 5-foot birdie putt at the 16th. Molder answered with an awesome approach shot to 2 feet from the rough at 15. He kicked in a short birdie putt to match Weekley at minus-13.
 
Weekley saved a nice par at the 17th when his 45-foot birdie putt ran 6 feet past the hole. Molder, in the group behind Weekley, played another amazing second shot, this time at 16. He rolled in the 2-footer for birdie, and when Weekley two-putted from 12 feet at 18, Molder only needed par at the last to win.
 
Molder hit his approach close to where Weekley was earlier. Molder narrowly missed his birdie chance, but tapped in for par and the win.
 
Molder played the best in the end, but Weekley committed a critical error. After the round, he acknowledged he did not look at leaderboards and though his putt on 18 was to win the championship.
 
'It's aggravating,' said Weekley. 'I looked at the boards one time on the back side and that was when I walked off 15. I didn't know that last putt was to tie.'
 
Overnight leader Chad Collins struggled on Sunday. He shot a 3-over 74 and tied for seventh with Matt Kuchar (66) and Stephen Marino (68) at 10-under-par 274.
 
Christian was joined in 10th place by Parker McLachlin (66) and Darron Stiles (69).
 
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    McCoy earns medalist honors at Web.com Q-School

    By Will GrayDecember 11, 2017, 12:30 am

    One year after his budding career was derailed by a car accident, Lee McCoy got back on track by earning medalist honors at the final stage of Web.com Tour Q-School.

    McCoy shot a final-round 65 at Whirlwind Golf Club in Chandler, Ariz., to finish the 72-hole event at 28 under. That total left him two shots ahead of Sung-Jae Im and guaranteed him fully-exempt status on the developmental circuit in 2018.

    It's an impressive turnaround for the former University of Georgia standout who finished fourth at the 2016 Valspar Championship as an amateur while playing alongside Jordan Spieth in the final round. But he broke his wrist in a car accident the day before second stage of Q-School last year, leaving him without status on any major tour to begin the year.

    McCoy was not the only player who left Arizona smiling. Everyone in the top 10 and ties will be exempt through the first 12 events of the new Web.com Tour season, a group that includes former amateur standouts Curtis Luck (T-3), Sam Burns (T-10) and Maverick McNealy (T-10).

    Players who finished outside the top 10 but inside the top 45 and ties earned exemptions into the first eight events of 2018. That group includes Cameron Champ (T-16), who led the field in driving at this year's U.S. Open as an amateur, and Wyndham Clark (T-23).

    Everyone who advanced to the final stage of Q-School will have at least conditional Web.com Tour status in 2018. Among those who failed to secure guaranteed starts this week were Robby Shelton, Rico Hoey, Jordan Niebrugge, Joaquin Niemann and Kevin Hall.

    Els honored with Heisman Humanitarian Award

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 10, 2017, 11:41 pm

    The annual Heisman Trophy award ceremony is one of the biggest moments in any football season, but there was a touching non-football moment as well on Saturday night as Ernie Els received the Heisman Humanitarian Award.

    The award, which had been announced in August, recognized Els' ongoing efforts on behalf of his Els for Autism foundation. Els received the award at Manhattan's PlayStation Theater, where Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield won the Heisman Trophy.

    Els, 47, founded Els for Autism in 2009 with his wife after their son, Ben, was diagnosed with autism. Their efforts have since flourished into a 26-acre campus in Jupiter, Fla., and the creation of the Els Center for Excellence in 2015.

    The Heisman Humanitarian Award has been given out since 2006. Past recipients include NBA center David Robinson, NFL running back Warrick Dunn, soccer star Mia Hamm and NASCAR driver Jeff Gordon.

    A native of South Africa, Els won the U.S. Open in 1994 and 1997 and The Open in 2002 and 2012. He has won 19 times on the PGA Tour and was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2011.

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    Monday finish for Joburg Open; Sharma leads by 4

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 10, 2017, 8:57 pm

    Rain, lightning and hail pushed the Joburg Open to a Monday finish, with India’s Shubhankar Sharma holding a four-stroke lead with 11 holes to play in Johannesburg.

    Play is scheduled to resume at 7:30 a.m. local time.

    South Africa’s Erik van Rooyen will have a 3-foot putt for birdie to move within three shots of Sharma wen play resumes at the Randpark Golf Club. Sarma is at 22 under par.

    Tapio Pulkkanen of Finland and James Morrison of England are tied for third at 14 under. Pulkkanen has 10 holes remaining, Morrison 11.

    The top three finishers who are not already exempt, will get spots in next year’s Open Championship at Carnoustie.

     

     

    Stricker, O'Hair team to win QBE Shootout

    By Will GrayDecember 10, 2017, 8:55 pm

    It may not count in the official tally, but Steve Stricker is once again in the winner's circle on the PGA Tour.

    Stricker teamed with Sean O'Hair to win the two-person QBE Shootout, as the duo combined for a better-ball 64 in the final round to finish two shots clear of Graeme McDowell and Shane Lowry. It's the second win in this event for both men; Stricker won with Jerry Kelly back in 2009 while O'Hair lifted the trophy with Kenny Perry in 2012.

    Stricker and O'Hair led wire-to-wire in the 54-hole, unofficial event after posting a 15-under 57 during the opening-round scramble.

    "We just really gelled well together," Stricker said. "With his length the first day, getting some clubs into the greens, some short irons for me, we just fed off that first day quite a bit. We felt comfortable with one another."


    Full-field scores from the QBE Shootout


    Stricker won 12 times during his PGA Tour career, most recently at the 2012 Tournament of Champions. More recently the 50-year-old has been splitting his time on the PGA Tour Champions and captained the U.S. to a victory at the Presidents Cup in October. O'Hair has four official Tour wins, most recently at the 2011 RBC Canadian Open.

    Pat Perez and Brian Harman finished alone in third, four shots behind Stricker and O'Hair. Lexi Thompson and Tony Finau, the lone co-ed pairing in the 12-team event, finished among a tie for fourth.