Press Pass US Womens Open

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Press PassEach week, GOLF CHANNEL experts and analysts offer their thoughts and opinions on hot topics in the world of golf with the Press Pass.
 
Hot Topic
Do you like the 3-hole cumulative playoff system at this years U.S. Womens Open or the traditional 18-hole playoff like at the mens U.S. Open?
 
Brian Hewitt Brian Hewitt - Columnist, GOLFCHANNEL.com:
Give me the one that ends on Sunday. Monday, unfortunately, becomes too much of an anti-climax. By the way, coming soon to a U.S. Open near you, a Sunday playoff format just like the women now have. It's inevitable.
 
Steve Sands Steve Sands - Reporter, GOLF CHANNEL:
The traditional 18-hole playoff. I like the fact that all of the major championship playoff formats are different. I'd rather see the USGA stick to it's traditional format.
 
Steve Duemig Steve Duemig - Panelist, Grey Goose 19th Hole:
I must still be Old School because I continue to like the 18-hole playoff. One bad swing in a shortened playoff dooms you! At least one can recover somewhat in 18 holes.
 
Mark Rolfing Mark Rolfing - Analyst, GOLF CHANNEL:
I like the three-hole system. It makes it difficult for the players, fans and everybody else involved with staging a tournament to have a Monday finish.
 
Mercer Baggs Mercer Baggs - Senior Producer, GOLFCHANNEL.com:
Definitely the three-hole system. I'd much rather see a tournament, particularly a major championship, end on Sunday -- especially if I'm covering the event.
 
Hot Topic
Who is your pick and why to win this week's U.S. Women's Open at Pine Needles?
 
Hewitt:
I think Lorena Ochoa will carry her momentum from Wegmans to Pine Needles. I also think her main competition will come from Karrie Webb, who won there in 2001. The best story? Annika winning. She won at Pine Needles in this event in 1996.
 
Sands:
Lorena Ochoa. She is too good not to break through with her first major championship victory and is coming in hot off her playoff win Sunday. She's the best woman in the world right now and I'll think she'll hold off Karrie Webb to win at Pine Needles.
 
Duemig:
Morgan Pressel is my selection for this week's Open. She returns to the place where she first qualified and played as a 12-year-old. Her game seems to be suited best for the tougher courses.
 
Rolfing:
Lorena Ochoa. I think this is the week she breaks through for a major. Pine Needles tests every aspect of a player's game and I think, right now, Lorenas overall game is at the highest level. But dont count out Brittany Lincicome.
 
Baggs:
Karrie Webb. Webb won the last time the Women's Open was contested at Pine Needles in 2001. Even though she hasn't won on tour this season, she did manage to finish runner-up at the McDonald's LPGA. She should have plenty of confidence this week. I think she beats Morgan Pressel in a three-hole playoff.
 
Hot Topic
Everyone is wondering how fatherhood will affect Tiger. So, how many majors will Tiger win before Sam Alexis turns 1 year old?
 
Hewitt:
I am going to predict 'only' two, mainly because I don't think Carnoustie and Southern Hills set up particularly well for his game. Augusta National and Torrey Pines South are right in his wheelhouse.
 
Sands:
None, which means he'll probably win three. I think we're in one of those runs where Tiger is close; he's been runner-up two consecutive majors, but someone else wins. No reason, really. Just a hunch.
 
Duemig:
I am not wondering that at all. Is Tiger the first tour player or star to ever have a kid? Didn't think so. But since you are asking, he will win three.
 
Rolfing:
At least one major, maybe two. He didnt play particularly well at Southern Hills (site of this year's PGA Championship) in the U.S. Open in 2001, but he will certainly be the favorite at Augusta next year and to me an overwhelming favorite at Torrey Pines for the U.S. Open.
 
Baggs:
Tiger has a habit of reeling off wins when something significant happens in his personal life, like getting married or the death of his father. I think, however, that he will only net one major before his daughter turns 1 and that will come at the U.S. Open at Torrey Pines,
 
What's the ONE thing you are most looking forward to this week in the world of golf?
 
Hewitt:
The Women's Open. So many stories to follow: Ochoa, Sorenstam, Wie just to name a few.
 
Sands:
Can Lorena Ochoa handle Sunday pressure at a major? She has all the talent in the world but has yet to win her first big one. It's time for Lorena to prove her No. 1 ranking in the world.
 
Duemig:
How that Wie kid performs.
 
Rolfing:
Can Michelle Wie turn it around at the U.S. Womens Open!
 
Baggs:
Annika's comeback has been pointing to this title defense. I am very curious to see how she performs in her biggest event of the year.
 
Related Links:
  • Full Coverage - U.S. Women's Open