Nallen Cruises to Record Win

By Sports NetworkOctober 10, 2004, 4:00 pm
04 Gila River Golf ClassicCHANDLER, Ariz. -- Chris Nallen closed with a 1-under 71 on Sunday, but it was more than enough to win the Gila River Golf Classic. Nallen finished the event at 24-under-par 264, eight strokes clear of the field.
 
Nallen made a little bit of history with the win. Prior to this, no player had won as a Monday-qualifier in his first career start. He became the 17th Monday-qualifier to go on to win a Nationwide event and the 10th to win in their first start, but no one had done both.
 
If that weren't enough, he became the 19th wire-to-wire winner in Nationwide Tour history. No one had ever done two of these things in one week, let alone all three. The eight-stroke win was also the largest winning margin of the season.
 
'It's pretty cool,' said Nallen, who picked up $85,000 for the victory. 'Everything went right this week and that doesn't happen much. When it does, you just ride it and enjoy it.'
 
Troy Matteson took second place at 16-under-par 272 after closing with a 70 at Whirlwind Golf Club's Cattail Course. Jason Schultz also posted a final-round 70 to close at minus-15. Matthew Jones and Kevin Stadler, a two-time winner this season, finished at 13-under-par 275.
 
Nallen tripped to a bogey at the first, but bounced right back with a birdie at two. He moved to 24 under with a birdie at the par-4 fifth.
 
The 22-year-old coasted to the back side with six consecutive pars. Nallen got up-and-down for birdie at the par-5 12th.
 
Thankfully Nallen had a large lead, as he stumbled to bogeys at each of the next two holes after missing the green each time. He settled down to par the next three holes.
 
Nallen, a four-time All-American at the University of Arizona, closed the tournament in style as he chipped in for birdie at the last.
 
'It's awesome to finish that way and birdie the last hole,' said Nallen. 'I wanted to get it up there close and have a good look at par. It was tracking the whole way, hit the pin and dropped in. It was a great way to end.'
 
The win jumps Nallen all the way to No. 63 on the Nationwide Tour money list with just two full-field events left. The top-60 money winners will qualify for the Tour Championship in three weeks.
 
Matteson made a big move early, but late troubles kept him from making a serious run at Nallen. Matteson opened with back-to-back birdies to move to minus-16. He again sank consecutive birdies from the fourth.
 
After a bogey at six, the 24-year-old Matteson dropped in birdies at the seventh and eighth to get to 19 under. He faltered to bogeys on nine and 10 and his run at Nallen was all but done. He parred his next seven holes before bogeying the last.
 
Scott Petersen, Brent Schwarzrock, Darron Stiles, Jason Buha, Steven Alker and Tyler Williamson shared sixth place at 12-under-par 276.
 
Related Links:
  • TGC Airtimes
  • Leaderboard - Gila River Golf Classic
  • Full Coverage - Gila River Golf Classic
  • Getty Images

    Perez skips Torrey, 'upset' with Ryder Cup standings

    By Will GrayJanuary 24, 2018, 2:19 am

    Pat Perez is unhappy about his standing on the U.S. Ryder Cup points list, and his situation won't improve this week.

    Perez won the CIMB Classic during the fall portion of this season, and he followed that with a T-5 finish at the inaugural CJ Cup. But he didn't receive any Ryder Cup points for either result because of a rule enacted by the American task force prior to the 2014 Ryder Cup which only awards points during the calendar year of the biennial matches as well as select events like majors and WGCs during the prior year.

    As a result, Perez is currently 17th in the American points race - behind players like Patrick Reed, Zach Johnson, Bill Haas and James Hahn, none of whom have won a tournament since the 2016 Ryder Cup - as he looks to make a U.S. squad for the first time at age 42.

    "That kind of upset me a little bit, the fact that I'm (17) on the list, but I should probably be (No.) 3 or 4," Perez told Golf Digest. "So it kind of put a bitter taste in my mouth. The fact that you win on the PGA Tour and you beat some good players, yet you don't get any points because of what our committee has decided to do."

    Perez won't be earning any points this week because he has opted to tee it up at the European Tour's Omega Dubai Desert Classic. The decision comes after Perez finished T-21 last week at the Singapore Open, and it means that the veteran is missing the Farmers Insurance Open in his former hometown of San Diego for the first time since 2001.

    Perez went to high school a few minutes from Torrey Pines, and he defeated a field that included Tiger Woods to win the junior world title on the South Course in 1993. His father, Tony, has been a longtime starter on the tournament's opening hole, and Perez was a runner-up in 2014 and tied for fourth last year.

    Getty Images

    Woods favored to miss Farmers Insurance Open cut

    By Will GrayJanuary 24, 2018, 1:54 am

    If the Las Vegas bookmakers are to be believed, folks in the San Diego area hoping to see Tiger Woods this week might want to head to Torrey Pines early.

    Woods is making his first competitive start of the year this week at the Farmers Insurance Open, and it will be his first official start on the PGA Tour since last year's event. He missed nearly all of 2017 because of a back injury before returning with a T-9 finish last month at the Hero World Challenge.

    But the South Course at Torrey Pines is a far different test than Albany, and the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook lists Woods as a -180 favorite to miss the 36-hole cut. It means bettors must wager $180 to win $100, while his +150 odds to make the cut mean a bettor can win $150 with a $100 wager.

    Woods is listed at 25/1 to win. He won the tournament for the seventh time in 2013, but in three appearances since he has missed the 36-hole cut, missed the 54-hole cut and withdrawn after 12 holes.

    Here's a look at the various Woods-related prop bets available at the Westgate:

    Will Woods make the 36-hole cut? Yes +150, No -180

    Lowest single-round score (both courses par 72): Over/Under 70

    Highest single-round score: Over/Under 74.5

    Will Woods finish inside the top 10? Yes +350, No -450

    Will Woods finish inside the top 20? Yes +170, No -200

    Will Woods withdraw during the tournament? Yes +650, No -1000

    Getty Images

    Monahan buoyed by Tour's sponsor agreements

    By Rex HoggardJanuary 24, 2018, 12:27 am

    SAN DIEGO – Farmers Insurance announced on Tuesday at Torrey Pines a seven-year extension of the company’s sponsorship of the Southern California PGA Tour event. This comes on the heels of Sony extending its sponsorship of the year’s first full-field event in Hawaii through 2022.

    Although these might seem to be relatively predictable moves, considering the drastic makeover of the Tour schedule that will begin with the 2018-19 season, it is a telling sign of the confidence corporations have in professional golf.

    “It’s a compliment to our players and the value that the sponsors are achieving,” Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said.

    Monahan said that before 2014 there were no 10-year title sponsorship agreements in place. Now there are seven events sponsored for 10-years, and another five tournaments that have agreements in place of at least seven years.

    “What it means is, it gives organizations like the Century Club [which hosts this week’s Farmers Insurance Open], when you have that level of stability on a long-term basis that allows you to invest in your product, to grow interest and to grow the impact of it,” Monahan said. “You experienced what this was like in 2010 or seen other tournaments that you don’t know what the future is.S o to go out and sell and inspire a community and you can’t state that we have a long-term agreement it’s more difficult.”

    Events like this year’s Houston Open, Colonial in Fort Worth, Texas, and The National all currently don’t have title sponsors – although officials at Colonial are confident they can piece together a sponsorship package. But even that is encouraging to Monahan considering the uncertainty surrounding next season’s schedule, which will include the PGA Championship moving to May and The Players to March as well as a pre-Labor Day finish to the season.

    “When you look back historically to any given year [the number of events needing sponsors] is lower than the typical average,” Monahan said. “As we start looking to a new schedule next year, you get excited about a great schedule with a great group of partners.”

    Getty Images

    Day WDs from Farmers pro-am because of sore back

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 24, 2018, 12:07 am

    SAN DIEGO – Jason Day has withdrawn from the Wednesday pro-am at the Farmers Insurance Open, citing a sore back.

    Day, the 2015 champion, played a practice round with Tiger Woods and Bryson DeChambeau on Tuesday at Torrey Pines, and he is still expected to play in the tournament.

    Day was replaced in the pro-am by Whee Kim. 

    Making his first start since the Australian Open in November, Day is scheduled to tee off at 1:30 p.m. ET Thursday alongside Jon Rahm and Brandt Snedeker.