Petersen on Top in Arkansas

By Sports NetworkApril 24, 2003, 4:00 pm
Nationwide TourFORT SMITH, Ark. -- Scott Petersen took advantage of the calm conditions early Thursday morning as he shot a 6-under-par 64 to grab a one-stroke lead after the opening round of the Rheem Classic. Brian Claar, Zach Johnson and Franklin Langham share second place at 5-under-par 65.
The conditions worsened as the day went on, with winds whipping through the course and occasionally gusting as high as 30 m.p.h. The morning group of players combined to shoot 28-over par, while the afternoon set of players were an incredible 175-over par. The players were able to take advantage of lift-clean-and-place rules, however, after heavy overnight rain soaked the course.
'Any time you can get your hands on the ball, that makes it easier,' said Petersen. 'Sometimes you get that feeling on the greens. I got that today and started thinking I would make them all.'
Boo Weekley and Stephen Gangluff both fired rounds of 4-under-par 66 to share fifth place with Brad Fabel, Ryuji Imada and Bruce Vaughan.
Petersen, who teed off in the first group in the morning, began his round on the back nine of the Hardscrabble Country Club. He struggled with his consistency as he carded three birdies and two bogeys on that nine.
He started well with birdies at the 11th and 13th, but dropped a shot with a bogey at the par-4 14th. Peterson quickly recovered with another birdie at the next, but faltered again with a bogey at the 16th.
Around the turn, Petersen settled down. He birdied the par-4 first to get to 2-under for his round. He began his climb up the leaderboard with consecutive birdies from the par-5 third.
Petersen went on to birdie the par-5 sixth before rolling in his final birdie at the par-4 seventh.
'The rough is so deep here. Luckily, I avoided it,' said Petersen, who won the 2000 Inland Empire Open. 'I've been here in the past when we played the tournament in August when there isn't any rough. It's a whole different golf course this time around.'
Johnson also began his round on the back nine and would have had the lead by himself if not for a double bogey on No. 18. He started quickly by notching three birdies in a four-hole span from the 11th, but had trouble at the last.
On 18, Johnson's tee ball found the rough. He tried to run his shot onto the green, but only advanced his second shot 10 feet.
'I played dumb on 18,' said Johnson, who is searching for his first Nationwide Tour victory. 'I got greedy and tried to hit a 5-iron out of the rough and run it up there. I wound up hitting it about 10 feet. Then I had to gouge it out again with a sand wedge. The rough is very penalizing.'
On the front side, Johnson birdied the first and third to get back to minus-3. He later rolled in back-to-back birdies from the fifth to join Langham and Claar in second place.
Claar and Langham had similar opening rounds. They both posted five birdies, two bogeys and an eagle. Claar began on the back nine with a bogey at the 10th. He then eagled the 11th, before running off three straight birdies from the 12th to move to minus-4.
After a birdie at No. 18, Claar recorded four straight pars. He then birdied the par-4 fifth. However, he dropped a shot at the seventh which cost him a chance at the lead.
Langham started his round with a bogey at the 10th. He made up for that mistake with back-to-back birdies from the 11th. He dropped back to even par, however, with a bogey at the par-4 14th.
Around the turn, Langham caught fire. He eagled the par-5 third and later rolled off three straight birdies from the sixth to finish in a tie for second.
Eric Meeks and Hunter Haas both fired rounds of 3-under-par 67 to share 10th place with David Edwards, Kevin Johnson, Matt Peterson, Mike Sullivan, Scott Gump and Emlyn Aubrey.
Related Links
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    Watch: Tiger throws dart, pours in birdie at 8

    By Golf Channel DigitalMarch 18, 2018, 7:31 pm

    Starting Sunday five off the lead, Tiger Woods teed off his final round of the Arnold Palmer Invitational with a laced 2-iron and a par at No. 1.

    Woods hit the green at the par-3 second but left himself a 50-foot birdie putt and a 6-footer to save par, which we walked in.

    A two-putt 4 at the par-5 fourth gave Woods his first birdie of the day and moved him to 8 under for the week. Apparently energized, Tiger pulled driver at the short par-4 fifth and unleashed this violent swing.

    A pitch from the thick rough hit a sprinkler head and stopped on the apron, leading to this birdie try, which fortunately hit the pin but unfortunately didn't fall.

    Looking to pick up another stroke - or two - at the par-5 sixth, Woods took his drive 317 yards over the water and hit this second shot from 227 yards to 13 feet, leading to another two-putt birdie when his eagle try burned the right edge.

    Returning to his trusty 2-iron, Tiger found the fairway at par-4 eighth and then threw this dart from 176 yards to 6 feet and rolled in his third birdie putt of the day to move to 10 under.

    (More coming...)

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    Tiger Tracker: Arnold Palmer Invitational

    By Tiger TrackerMarch 18, 2018, 5:00 pm

    Tiger Woods will start Sunday five off the lead at the Arnold Palmer Invitational. How will he follow up last week's runner-up? We're tracking him at Bay Hill.

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    McIlroy: Time for Tour to limit alcohol sales on course

    By Ryan LavnerMarch 18, 2018, 1:50 pm

    ORLANDO, Fla. – Rory McIlroy suggested Saturday that the PGA Tour might need to consider curbing alcohol sales to stop some of the abusive fan behavior that has become more prevalent at events.

    McIlroy said that a fan repeatedly yelled his wife’s name (Erica) during the third round at the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

    “I was going to go over and have a chat with him,” McIlroy said. “I think it’s gotten a little much, to be honest. I think they need to limit the alcohol sales on the course, or they need to do something, because every week it seems like guys are complaining about it more and more.

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    “I know that people want to come and enjoy themselves, and I’m all for that, but sometimes when the comments get personal and people get a little bit rowdy, it can get a little much.”

    This isn’t the first time that McIlroy has voiced concerns about fan behavior on Tour. Last month at Riviera, he said the rowdy spectators probably cost Tiger Woods a half-shot a round, and after two days in his featured group he had a splitting headache.

    A week later, at the Honda Classic, Justin Thomas had a fan removed late in the final round.

    McIlroy believes the issue is part of a larger problem, as more events try to replicate the success of the Waste Management Phoenix Open, which has one of the liveliest atmospheres on Tour.

    “It’s great for that tournament, it’s great for us, but golf is different than a football game, and there’s etiquette involved and you don’t want people to be put off from bringing their kids when people are shouting stuff out,” he said. “You want people to enjoy themselves, have a good day.”

    As for a solution, well, McIlroy isn’t quite sure.

    “It used to be you bring beers onto the course or buy beers, but not liquor,” he said. “And now it seems like everyone’s walking around with a cocktail. I don’t know whether (the solution) is to go back to letting people walking around with beers in their hands. That’s fine, but I don’t know.”

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    Confident Lincicome lurking after 54 holes at Founders

    By Randy SmithMarch 18, 2018, 2:45 am

    PHOENIX – Brittany Lincicome is farther back than she wanted to be going into Sunday at the Bank of Hope Founders Cup, but she’s in a good place.

    She’s keeping the momentum of her season-opening Pure Silk Bahamas Classic victory going this year.

    Her confidence is high.

    “Last year, I won in the Bahamas, but then I didn't do anything after that,” Lincicome said. “I don't even know if I had a top 10 after my win in the Bahamas. Obviously, this year, I want to be more consistent.”

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    Missy Pederson, Lincicome’s caddie, is helping her player keep that momentum going with more focus on honing in the scoring clubs.

    “One of our major goals is being more consistent,” Pederson said. “She’s so talented, a once in a generation talent. I’m just trying to help out in how to best approach every golf course.”

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    Pederson has helped Lincicome identify the clubs they’re likely to attack most with on the particular course they are playing that week, to spend more time working with those clubs in practice. It’s building confidence.

    “I know the more greens we hit, and the more chances we give ourselves, the more our chances are to be in contention,” Pederson said. “Britt is not big into stats or details, so I have to figure out how to best consolidate that information, to get us exactly where we need to be.”

    Lincicome’s growing comfort with clubs she can attack with is helping her confidence through a round.

    “I’ve most noticed consistency in her mental game, being able to handle some of the hiccups that happen over the course of a round,” Pederson said. “Whereas before, something might get under her skin, where she might say, `That’s what always happens,’ now, it’s, `All right, I know I’m good enough to get this back.’ I try to get her in positions to hit the clubs we are really hitting well right now.”

    That’s leading to a lot more birdies, fewer bogeys and more appearances on leaderboards in the start to this year.