Tambellini Coasts to Six-Shot Win

By Sports NetworkSeptember 21, 2003, 4:00 pm
BOISE, Idaho -- Roger Tambellini coasted to a 3-under 68 Sunday to earn his first Nationwide Tour victory at the Albertsons Boise Open. Tambellini finished the event at 17-under-par 267.
 
'This feels amazing,' said Tambellini, who picks up $108,000 with the win. 'To finally be able to do this for my family, hometown and all of those who have supported me is fantastic.'
 
Tripp Isenhour, who won the Charity Pro-Am at The Cliffs earlier this year, carded a 7-under 64 to move to 11-under-par 273. He was joined there by Charles Warren, who closed with a 1-under 70. John Paul Curley, Ryan Palmer, Jeff Quinney and Tjaart van der Walt finished one stroke further back at minus-10.
 
Tambellini, who led by four entering the round, quickly extended that lead with back-to-back birdies from the second at Hillcrest Country Club. His lead continued to grow when he rolled in a 35-foot birdie putt at the sixth.
 
However, the wheels started to fall off a little from there. The 28-year-old dropped shots at the seventh and ninth to make the turn at 15 under. He later bogeyed the 13th to fall to 14 under and his lead was just two.
 
The Californian caught fire from there. He sank back-to-back birdies from the 15th and rolled in another birdie, from 12 feet out, at the last for the six-shot win.
 
'It has not sunk in yet,' said Tambellini. 'But then again I don't know what it is like for a win out here to sink in. Winning a Nationwide Tour event is a big deal.'
 
The win also moved Tambellini closer to his ultimate goal of playing on the PGA Tour. He needs to finish in the top 20 on the Nationwide Tour money list to gain his PGA card for next year.
 
'It is always in the back of your mind to get your PGA Tour card,' said Tambellini, who moved to 18th on the Nationwide Tour money list with the win. 'It is the ultimate goal of every guy out here to finish in the top 20 and play on the PGA Tour. But to actually get close to reaching your goal is unbelievable.'
 
Isenhour mixed two birdies and two bogeys over his first nine holes. His second birdie was on the ninth and that set him on a tear. Around the turn, he birdied the 10th, 11th and 12th to get to 7 under.
 
After dropping a shot at the par-3 13th, Isenhour ripped off five straight birdies to close out his round.
 
'That was fun,' Isenhour said. 'I just kept focusing on hitting good shots. Nine birdies in 10 holes, I don't think I've ever done that.'
 
Warren, who trailed by four entering the final round, parred his first 10 holes. He finally got on the board with a birdie at No. 11. His birdie on the 14th got him to minus-12, within two strokes of Tambellini.
 
However, Warren stumbled to two straight bogeys before birdieing the 17th for a share of second.
 
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    Watch: McIlroy gives Fleetwood a birthday cake

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 19, 2018, 2:58 pm

    Tommy Fleetwood turned 27 on Friday. He celebrated with some good golf – a 4-under 68 in Abu Dhabi, leaving him only two shots back in his title defense – and a birthday cake, courtesy of Rory Mcllroy.

    While giving a post-round interview, Fleetwood was surprised to see McIlroy approaching with a cake in hand.

    “I actually baked this before we teed off,” McIlroy joked.

    Fleetwood blew out the three candles – “three wishes!” – and offered McIlroy a slice.  

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    DJ shoots 64 to surge up leaderboard in Abu Dhabi

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 1:48 pm

    Dustin Johnson stood out among a star-studded three-ball that combined to shoot 18 under par with just one bogey Friday at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

    Shaking off a sloppy first round at Abu Dhabi Golf Club, Johnson matched the low round of the day with a 64 that put him within four shots of Thomas Pieters’ lead.

    “I did everything really well,” Johnson said. “It was a pretty easy 64.”

    Johnson made four bogeys during an even-par 72 on Thursday and needed a solid round Friday to make the cut. Before long, he was closer to the lead than the cut line, making birdie on three of the last four holes and setting the pace in a group that also included good rounds from Rory McIlroy (66) and Tommy Fleetwood (68).

    “Everyone was hitting good shots,” McIlroy said. “That’s all we were seeing, and it’s nice when you play in a group like that. You feed off one another.” 


    Full-field scores from the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship


    Coming off a blowout victory at Kapalua, Johnson is searching for his first regular European Tour title. He tied for second at this event a year ago.

    Johnson’s second-round 64 equaled the low round of the day (Jorge Campillo and Branden Grace). 

    “It was just really solid all day long,” Johnson said. “Hit a lot of great shots, had a lot of looks at birdies, which is what I need to do over the next two days if I want to have a chance to win on Sunday.” 

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    Closing eagle moves Rory within 3 in Abu Dhabi

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 12:57 pm

    What rust? Rory McIlroy appears to be in midseason form.

    Playing competitively for the first time since Oct. 8, McIlroy completed 36 holes without a bogey Friday, closing with an eagle to shoot 6-under 66 to sit just three shots back at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship.

    “I’m right in the mix after two days and I’m really happy in that position,” he told reporters afterward.

    McIlroy took a 3 ½-month break to heal his body, clear his mind and work on his game after his first winless year since 2008, his first full season as a pro.

    He's back on track at a familiar playground, Abu Dhabi Golf Club, where he’s racked up eight top-11s (including six top-3s) in his past nine starts there.


    Full-field scores from the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship


    McIlroy opened with a 69 Thursday, then gave himself even more chances on Day 2, cruising along at 4 under for the day when he reached the par-5 closing hole. After launching a 249-yard long iron to 25 feet, he poured in the eagle putt to pull within three shots of Thomas Pieters (65). 

    Despite the layoff, McIlroy edged world No. 1 Dustin Johnson, coming off a blowout victory at Kapalua, by a shot over the first two rounds. 

    “DJ is definitely the No. 1 player in the world right now, and one of, if not the best, driver of the golf ball," McIlroy said. "To be up there with him over these first two days, it proves to me that I’m doing the right things and gives me a lot of confidence going forward.”

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    Duke to fill in for injured Pavin at CareerBuilder

    By Ryan LavnerJanuary 19, 2018, 12:25 pm

    Ken Duke will fill in for Corey Pavin for the next two rounds of the CareerBuilder Challenge – with nothing at stake but his amateur partner’s position on the leaderboard.

    Pavin was 4 over par when he withdrew after 17 holes Thursday because of a neck injury. Tournament officials contacted Duke, the first alternate, and asked if he would take Pavin’s spot and partner with Luis Lopez for the next two rounds, even though he would not receive any official money.

    Duke accepted and explained his decision on Twitter:

    Playing on past champion’s status, the 48-year-old Duke has made only four starts this season, with a best finish of a tie for 61st at the RSM Classic.

    Pavin received a sponsor exemption into the event, his first PGA Tour start since the 2015 Colonial.