Rookie OHair Leads Byron Nelson

By Sports NetworkMay 14, 2005, 4:00 pm
IRVING, Texas -- PGA Tour rookie Sean O'Hair carded a 3-under 67 on Saturday to take the outright lead through three rounds of the EDS Byron Nelson Championship. O'Hair finished 54 holes at 12-under-par 198.
Todd Hamilton
Todd Hamilton is in search of his first tour win since the 2004 British Open.
Reigning British Open champion Todd Hamilton shot a 65 to finish one shot back at 11-under-par 199. Scott Verplank, Ted Purdy and Doug Barron are knotted at 10-under-par 200.
O'Hair has enjoyed a solid start to his career on the PGA Tour and has come on in recent weeks with seven straight cuts made. O'Hair is still seeking his first top-10 finish, but a strong third round has left him in position for much more than that.
'I am very excited,' said O'Hair. 'Just going to try to play like I've been playing, and that's been just play for pars and let the birdies come my way. I'm pretty happy with the way I handled myself.'
The 22-year-old parred his first three holes of the day at the TPC at Four Seasons Resort until a birdie at the par-4 fourth lifted him to 10 under par. He gave that shot back with a bogey at the par-5 seventh but maintained his composure and made a move on the inward half.
'I really struggled at the beginning of the day,' he said. 'I was nervous, but I definitely wasn't feeling well.'
O'Hair hit his second shot to the back fringe at the par-4 11th but rolled in a 16-foot putt from off the green for a birdie. O'Hair then played his second shot inside 18 feet at the par-4 12th and drained the birdie try to jump to minus-11.
He hit an errant drive at the 13th that almost found the water but he steadied himself to par the hole. O'Hair followed with pars on each of the next two holes and stayed ahead of his challengers with a birdie at the par-5 16th.
O'Hair hit his tee shot to 15 feet at the par-3 17th but was unable to convert. He added a par at the closing hole to secure a one-stroke lead with one round to play.
'I think eventually I was going to be in this situation, at least that's the goal for everybody who plays out here,' said O'Hair. 'I thought eventually I'd be contending at least for an event. So it's nice to be in this situation, especially this event.'
Hamilton jumped out of the gate with three birdies over his first four holes. He stumbled to a bogey at the par-3 fifth but responded with a birdie at the par-5 seventh.
The 39-year-old hit his second shot to 10 feet for a birdie at the par-4 10th and added a birdie at the par-5 16th to finish alone in second place.
'I haven't played well lately,' said Hamilton. 'I've been doing some things this week that I haven't really been doing this year. I've been making some putts here and there, saving pars when I need to for the most part. Hopefully I can continue one more day.'
Jaxon Brigman fired a 64 to join Shigeki Maruyama and Bob Tway at 8-under-par 202. Nick Price, John Rollins, Jay Williamson and J.J. Henry were one shot further back at 7-under-par 203.
Vijay Singh managed a one-under 69 on Saturday to move to 6-under-par 204 along with Luke Donald, Brett Wetterich, Jesper Parnevik, Stuart Appleby, Bo Van Pelt, Ben Crane, Omar Uresti and Heath Slocum.
Related Links:
  • Leaderboard - EDS Byron Nelson Championship
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    Ortiz takes Tour clubhouse lead in Bahamas

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 16, 2018, 2:19 am

    Former Tour Player of the Year Carlos Ortiz shot a bogey-free, 4-under-par 68 Monday to take the clubhouse lead in The Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals Emerald Bay.

    Four other players - Lee McCoy, Brandon Matthews, Sung Jae Im and Mark Anderson - were still on the course and tied with Ortiz at 6-under 210 when third-round play was suspended by darkness at 5:32 p.m. local time. It is scheduled to resume at 7:15 a.m. Tuesday.

    Ortiz, a 26-year-old from Guadalajara, Mexico, is in search of his fourth Tour victory. In 2014, the former University of North Texas standout earned a three-win promotion on his way to being voted Tour Player of the Year.

    McCoy, a 23-year-old from Dunedin, Fla., is looking to become the first player to earn medalist honors at Q-School and then win the opening event of the season.

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    Randall's Rant: Can we please have some rivalries?

    By Randall MellJanuary 16, 2018, 12:00 am

    Memo to the golf gods:

    If you haven’t finalized the fates of today’s stars for the new year, could we get you to deliver what the game has lacked for so long?

    Can we get a real, honest-to-goodness rivalry?

    It’s been more than two decades since the sport has been witness to one.

    With world No. 1 Dustin Johnson and former world No. 1 Rory McIlroy at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship this week, an early-season showdown would percolate hope that this year might be all about rivalries.

    It seems as if the stars are finally aligned to make up for our long drought of rivalries, of the recurring clashes you have so sparingly granted through the game’s history.

    We’re blessed in a new era of plenty, with so many young stars blossoming, and with Tiger Woods offering hope he may be poised for a comeback. With Johnson, McIlroy, Jordan Spieth, Jason Day, Justin Thomas, Jon Rahm, Hideki Matsuyama, Brooks Koepka and Rickie Fowler among today’s dynamic cast, the possibility these titans will time their runs together on the back nine of Sundays in majors excites.

    We haven’t seen a real rivalry since Greg Norman and Nick Faldo sparred in the late '80s and early '90s.

    Woods vs. Phil Mickelson didn’t really count. While Lefty will be remembered for carving out a Hall of Fame career in the Tiger era, with 33 victories, 16 of them with Tiger in the field, five of them major championships, we get that Tiger had no rival, not in the most historic sense.

    CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos

    Phil never reached No. 1, was never named PGA Tour Player of the Year, never won a money title and never dueled with Woods on Sunday on the back nine of a major with the title on the line.  Still, it doesn’t diminish his standing as the best player not named Tiger Woods over the last 20 years. It’s a feat so noteworthy it makes him one of the game’s all-time greats.

    We’ve been waiting for an honest-to-goodness rivalry since Faldo and Norman took turns ruling at world No. 1 and dueling in big events, including the back nine of multiple majors. 

    In the '70s, we had Nicklaus-Watson. In the '60s, it was Nicklaus-Palmer. In the '40s and '50s, it was Hogan, Snead and Nelson in a triumvirate mix, and in the '20s and '30s we had Hagen and Sarazen.

    While dominance is the magic ingredient that can break a sport out of its niche, a dynamic rivalry is the next best elixir.

    Dustin Johnson looks capable of dominating today’s game, but there’s so much proven major championship talent on his heels. It’s hard to imagine him consistently fending off all these challengers, but it’s the fending that would captivate us.

    Johnson vs. McIlroy would be a fireworks show. So would Johnson vs. Thomas, or Thomas vs. Day or McIlroy vs. Rahm or Fowler vs. Koepka ... or any of those combinations.

    Spieth is a wild card that intrigues.

    While he’s not a short hitter, he isn’t the power player these other guys are, but his iron game, short game, putter and moxie combine to make him the most compelling challenger of all. His resolve, resilience and resourcefulness in the final round of his British Open victory at Royal Birkdale make him the most interesting amalgam of skill since Lee Trevino.

    Woods vs. any of them? Well, if we get that, we promise never to ask for anything more.

    So, if that cosmic calendar up there isn’t filled, how about it? How about a year of rivalries to remember?

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    McIlroy: 2018 may be my busiest season ever

    By Will GrayJanuary 15, 2018, 6:28 pm

    With his return to competition just days away, Rory McIlroy believes that the 2018 season may be the most action packed of his pro career.

    The 28-year-old has not teed it up since the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in early October, a hiatus he will end at this week's Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship. It will be the start of a busy spring for the Ulsterman, who will also play next week in Dubai before a run of six PGA Tour events leading up to the Masters.

    Speaking to the U.K.'s Telegraph, McIlroy confirmed that he will also make a return trip to the British Masters in October and plans to remain busy over the next 12 months.

    "I might play more times this year than any before. I played 28 times in 2008 and I'm on track to beat that," McIlroy said. "I could get to 30 (events), depending on where I'm placed in the Race to Dubai. But I'll see."

    McIlroy's ambitious plan comes in the wake of a frustrating 2017 campaign, when he injured his ribs in his first start and twice missed chunks of time in an effort to recover. He failed to win a worldwide event and finished the year ranked outside the top 10, both of which had not happened since 2008.

    But having had more than three months to get his body and swing in shape, McIlroy is optimistic heading into the first of what he hopes will be eight starts in the 12 weeks before he drives down Magnolia Lane.

    "I've worked hard on my short game and I'm probably feeling better with the putter than I ever have," McIlroy said. "I've had a lot of time to concentrate on everything and it all feels very good and a long way down the road."

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    What's in the Bag: Sony Open winner Kizzire

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 15, 2018, 6:05 pm

    Patton Kizzire earned his second PGA Tour victory by winning a six-hole playoff at the Sony Open in Hawaii. Take a look inside his bag.

    Driver: Titleist 917D3 (10.5 degrees), with Fujikura Atmos Black 6 X shaft

    Fairway Wood: Titleist 917F2 (16.5 degrees), with Aldila Tour Blue 95 TX shaft

    Hybrid: Titleist 913H (19 degrees), with UST Mamiya AXIV Core 100 Hybrid shaft

    Irons: Titleist 718 T-MB (4), 718 CB (5-6), 718 MB (7-9), with True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 shafts

    Wedges: Titleist SM7 prototype (47, 52, 56, 60 degrees), with True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 shafts

    Putter: Scotty Cameron GoLo Tour prototype

    Ball: Titleist Pro V1x