Woods Nips Allenby to Advance

By Sports NetworkFebruary 23, 2006, 5:00 pm
2005 WGC Accenture Match PlayCARLSBAD, Calif. -- One day after establishing a new tournament record for shortest match, Tiger Woods needed a birdie at the 18th hole to move on to the third round at the World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship.
 
Woods, the No. 1 seed in the Bobby Jones bracket, destroyed Stephen Ames in Wednesday's first round to the tune of 9 and 8, but Thursday's second-round match was nothing like that. He defeated Robert Allenby, 1-up, but it came down to the last hole in regulation.
 
Phil Mickelson
Phil Mickelson knocked off fellow fan favorite John Daly in Round 2.
Woods dropped the first two holes on Thursday, but got one back with a short birdie putt at the third. The two-time winner of this event lost the fifth when his 10-footer for par came up short, but Woods rallied.
 
He won the seventh with a 9-foot birdie putt, then evened the match with a birdie at the par-5 eighth. Woods took his first lead when Allenby conceded the 10th, then the pair halved the next five holes.
 
At the par-3 16th, Allenby converted a 9-foot birdie putt to square the match. The duo halved 17 with pars to set up a showdown on La Costa's par-5 closing hole.
 
Both players found the fairway off the tee and Woods dumped his second in a left, greenside bunker. Allenby pushed his shot right of the green, which was a tough spot with the pin on that side.
 
Allenby pitched his third 40 feet past the hole. Woods blasted out to 8 feet and the Aussie lagged his birdie putt close enough for Woods to concede par. The No. 1 player in the world drained the birdie putt to move into the third round.
 
'What you did yesterday is no consequence for what you're going to do today. You have to block it out,' said Woods. 'I didn't get off to a good start today. I felt if I could turn the thing around, I could be up at the turn. That was my goal. I almost got there.'
 
Woods will face fellow American Chad Campbell in Friday's third round. Campbell, the fifth seed, advanced with a birdie at the 18th to top Henrik Stenson, 1-up.
 
The other half of the Jones bracket also features a pair of Americans. Defending champion David Toms won the 14th and 15th holes, then held on to beat two-time Masters champion Jose Maria Olazabal, 2 and 1. Toms, the second seed, will meet American Ryder Cup captain Tom Lehman. The No. 11 seed upset third-ranked Adam Scott, 1-up, on Thursday.
 
Phil Mickelson won the battle of gallery favorites. The reining PGA champion, seeded second in the Ben Hogan bracket, toppled John Daly, 2 and 1.
 
Mickelson was 2-up through seven holes, but Daly knotted things up by the turn. The lefthander took a 1-up lead with an eagle at the 11th and seemed poised to put things away with birdies and wins at 13 and 14.
 
Mickelson bogeyed 15 to give one back to Daly, but had a great opportunity to end the match at the par-3 16th. Mickelson missed a 5-foot birdie chance, but the two halved 17 to allow Mickelson to advance.
 
'I knew it was going to be a tough day,' admitted Mickelson. 'I thought I had a couple of chances to make it an easier day. He finds a way to make birdies when he has to, and I was lucky to get it in the end.'
 
Mickelson's third-round opponent will be third-seeded Englishman David Howell, who moved on with a 3-and-2 victory over Scott Verplank. The other match will feature No. 9 Mike Weir, a 1-up winner in 20 holes over Bernhard Langer, and Geoff Ogilvy, the 13th seed who beat Nick O'Hern, 1-up in 21 holes.
 
Vijay Singh had never made it past the second round in this event, but that changed on Thursday. He overcame a slow start to defeat Miguel Angel Jimenez, 2 and 1.
 
Singh, ranked first in the Gary Player side, will meet fifth-seeded Padraig Harrington. The Irishman birdied 16 and 17 to draw even with Angel Cabrera, then collected his 1-up victory on the first extra hole.
 
Chris DiMarco, the runner-up last year and the No. 2 seed in the Player bracket, pummeled Arron Oberholser, 6 and 5. DiMarco's third-round opponent will be Davis Love III, the sixth seed, who defeated Carl Pettersson, 1-up.
 
Retief Goosen, the top seed in the Sam Snead bracket, eliminated Ben Crane, 2 and 1. The two-time U.S. Open winner has a third-round match with fourth-seeded Luke Donald, who was a 4 and 3 winner over Shigeki Maruyama.
 
The other half of the bracket features two of the lowest seeds left in the tournament. Zach Johnson, ranked 15th, won 1-up against Sean O'Hair and will face No. 11 Shingo Katayama on Friday. Katayama earned a 3-and-2 victory over Colin Montgomerie in the second round.
 
Related Links:
  • Scoreboard - WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship
  • Full Coverage - WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship
  • Match Play Brackets
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    Ortiz takes Web.com Tour clubhouse lead in Bahamas

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

    Former Web.com 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 Web.com Tour victory. In 2014, the former University of North Texas standout earned a three-win promotion on his way to being voted Web.com 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.


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    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