Teske in Front at Nabisco Championship

By Sports NetworkMarch 24, 2001, 5:00 pm
Australia's Rachel Teske turned in a tournament-low 66 to grab the lead heading into Sunday's final round of the Nabisco Championship. Teske's three-day total of 5-under-par 211 has her one shot up on the second-place trio of Annika Sorenstam, Akiko Fukushima and second-round leader Pat Hurst.
Teske, a three-time winner on the LPGA Tour, tallied six birdies and no bogeys Saturday to put her in position to win her first major championship.
'I guess today I was focused on playing well because Pat was out there at 6-under,' said Teske, who trailed Hurst by seven shots coming into round three. 'I really had to get out there and play well today. I was really determined to do that.'
Teske climbed back to even for the tournament with a 20-foot birdie putt at the opening hole. She used a 7-wood off the tee and an 8-iron for her approach at the 352-yard 6th, where she sank a six-footer for birdie. She made it two straight birdies with a 15-foot putt at No. 7 and rounded the turn in 3-under 33.
She carried a hot putter over to the second nine, rolling in birdies of 15, six and 20 feet over a four-hole stretch from the 12th to the 15th to vault atop the leaderboard.
Teske, who played as Rachel Hetherington from her rookie year of 1997 through 2000, posted her maiden victory after defeating Sorenstam on the first playoff hole at the 1998 Betsy King Classic. She ran her playoff record to 2-0 with a win over Lorie Kane in the 1999 Chick- fil-A Charity Championship, then captured a title in regulation the following week at the Myrtle Beach Classic.
She recorded two runner-up finishes in 2000, including a loss to Sorenstam on the second hole of sudden death at the Kroger Classic.
Teske twice tied for 16th at the du Maurier Classic, her highest finish in a major, while her best showing at the Nabisco was a tie for 21st in 1999. She'll have history on her side on Sunday, however, as 14 of the last 18 third-round leaders have gone on to victory here at Mission Hills Country Club.
'I really feel since the off-season, this is the one tournament where I really wanted to play well,' she said. 'I feel this year I want to play better in the majors.'
But first Teske will have to go head-to-head with Sorenstam, the LPGA's hottest golfer with wins in each of the last two events. Sorenstam, who last week became the first woman to shoot 59 in a tournament, is on a mission to win her first major title since she captured back-to-back U.S. Women's Opens in 1995-96.
'This tournament means a lot to me. I know tomorrow I've got to give it all,' said Sorenstam, who admitted Saturday she is suffering from a cold. 'Let's put it this way, I think I only have one round of golf left in me. I'm going to try and gather all the energy I can and try and hit the best shots that I can. I mean, it's so close.'
Sorenstam may have had the 54-hole lead were it not for a pair of three-putt bogeys. She also posted four birdies for a 2-under 70 and a share of second at 4-under 212.
Fukushima, a two-time LPGA winner and a former No. 1 player on the Japanese Tour, rebounded from an early bogey with three birdies for a 70. Hurst, who has had at least a share of the lead since the first round, rang up four bogeys due to a combination of errant driving and poor putting. She added two birdies to finish with a 74.
Two-time Nabisco winners Juli Inkster and Dottie Pepper shot 68 and 71, respectively, and are knotted in fifth place at 3-under. Laura Diaz, Tina Barrett, Janice Moodie, Michele Redman and Carin Koch are together at minus two.
Se Ri Pak, who took the outright lead at 6-under with her fourth birdie of the day at the 13th, plummeted from the leaderboard with three bogeys and a double-bogey over her last four holes. She wound up with a third-round 73 and a four-way tie at 1-under with Mi Hyun Kim, Brandie Burton and defending champion Karrie Webb.
Full Field Scores from the Nabisco Championship

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.

Getty Images

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.

Getty Images

Wie takes shot at LPGA dress code in crop top

By Grill Room TeamDecember 10, 2017, 5:33 pm

The new LPGA dress code got mixed reviews when it was announced in July, and Michelle Wie is taking full advantage of her offseason with no restrictions.

The 28-year-old former U.S. Women's Open champion is keeping her game sharp while back in her home state of Hawaii, but couldn't help taking a shot at the rules while doing it, posting a photo to Instagram of her playing golf in a crop top with the caption, "Offseason = No dress code fine."

Offseason = No dress code fines #croptopdroptop

A post shared by Michelle Wie (@themichellewie) on

Wie isn't the first to voice her displeasure with the rules. Lexi Thompson posted a similar photo and caption to Instagram shortly after the policy was announced.