BC Open Ready for Final Run

By Associated PressJuly 19, 2006, 4:00 pm
2006 B.C. OpenVERONA, N.Y. -- Jason Bohn qualified for the British Open, but he's staying stateside.
Instead of competing in the major on the other side of the Atlantic, Bohn is defending his B.C. Open title. The fact this is the final year for the tournament after more than three decades on the PGA TOUR was key to a difficult decision.
'I really wanted to try and support the B.C. Open,' said Bohn, who shot a record 24-under 264 last year for his only win on the PGA TOUR after bouncing around for years on mini tours and the Canadian Tour. 'I wanted to come back and say thanks to the people who put it on, let them know that they changed my life forever.
'I know there will be another British Open, so I felt like this was the right thing for me to do,' said Bohn, who ranks 51st on the money list with just under $900,000.
Normally, a defending champion would have a bit of an edge. Not so this year. For the first time since the B.C. Open became a regular tour stop in 1972, it won't be played in Broome County at En-Joie Golf Club in Endicott.
Flooding in late June on the Susquehanna River inundated En-Joie and forced PGA Tour officials to move the tournament about 90 miles northeast to the Oneida Indian Nation's Turning Stone Resort.
For Alex Alexander, switching the B.C. Open to Turning Stone's Atunyote Golf Club was a bittersweet development. It was Alexander who founded the tournament and convinced the PGA TOUR it could meet the demands of a regular stop.
'This isn't the way that I thought we would go out,' Alexander said Wednesday. 'But these people were nice enough to offer us a place to play, and that's good. I'm happy about that. They've been very cooperative.'
The quaint, small-town feel that has been the charm of the B.C. Open was an anomaly on a circuit dominated by big-money corporate sponsors and network television contracts.
The B.C. Open, which has raised over $8 million for charity, never had a corporate sponsor to underwrite tournament costs and bolster its smallest-on-tour purse, which this year amounts to $3 million. And since 2003, it has been staged opposite the British Open, which assured it would be dominated by players at the lower reaches of the PGA money list or from the minor leagues of professional golf.
Still, the demise of a unique community event is a sad moment for many in this weekend's field of 132.
'All the people in the Broome County area have put so much effort into it,' said 1993 B.C. Open champ Blaine McCallister, who in a little over two years will turn 50 and be eligible for the Champions Tour. 'Time has just gone by it -- the old car got put in for a new car -- and I think it's unfortunate. They've always been battling to keep in the game and they've always succeeded at it.
'To say goodbye is the hardest thing to do because of the fact that we have so many friends there. I keep confident that maybe we'll come back.'
So does Alexander. He remained optimistic En-Joie could replace the B.C. Open with a stop on the Champions Tour and said a decision was imminent.
'When I quiz Alex about it, there's still a slight twinkle in his eye,' said Joey Sindelar, who along with Brad Faxon is one of the two players to win the B.C. Open twice. 'If he's still kicking, I'm happy.'
Bohn became the 13th player to make the B.C. Open his first PGA Tour win. He was the first since Spike McRoy in 2002. ... Sindelar, who is playing in his 23rd B.C. Open, has recorded seven top 10s in the event, including a T9 last year. He has made 17 cuts in 22 career starts. ... The last four B.C. Open winners -- Jonathan Byrd, Craig Stadler, McRoy and Bohn -- each won by one stroke, and Jeff Sluman's victory in 2001 came in a playoff over Paul Gow.
Related Links:
  • Full Coverage - B.C. Open
  • Getty Images

    Koepka watches as named engraved again on U.S. Open trophy

    By Golf Channel DigitalJune 18, 2018, 12:10 am

    For the second consecutive year, Brooks Koepka won the U.S. Open. So, once again he got to watch as his name was forever etched onto the trophy.

    Getty Images

    Masters champ Reed: 'I definitely had a chance'

    By Will GrayJune 17, 2018, 11:55 pm

    SOUTHAMPTON, N.Y. – Patrick Reed’s Grand Slam bid made it all the way to the closing stretch of the final round at the U.S. Open.

    Reed had never cracked the top 10 in a major championship before a runner-up finish at last year’s PGA Championship, and he followed that with a convincing victory at the Masters in April. In the U.S. Open, despite starting the final round three shots behind a quartet of co-leaders, he made a concerted effort to add a second major title.

    With Shinnecock Hills declawed in response to third-round conditions that bordered on unplayable, Reed birdied each of his first three holes and five of his first seven to move to 1 over and within a shot of Brooks Koepka’s lead. He could get no closer, though, as three bogeys in a four-hole stretch on Nos. 9-12 effectively ended his title bid.

    Reed finished alone in fourth place at 4 over, three shots behind Koepka after closing with a 2-under 68.

    U.S. Open: Tee times | Full coverage

    “Of course, Grand Slam would have been nice. But you know, I mean honestly, to me, that was really the last thing on my mind,” Reed said. “It was go out, play some solid golf, try to post a number and see if you can get the job done. I had a chance. I definitely had a chance.”

    It’s the third top-15 finish at the U.S. Open in the last four years for Reed, who tied for 13th at Chambers Bay and finished T-14 last year at Erin Hills.

    Reed was bidding to erase a nine-shot deficit after 36 holes, which would have been the second-largest comeback in tournament history. He was also looking to join Craig Wood, Ben Hogan, Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods and Jordan Spieth on the short list of players to capture the Masters and U.S. Open in the same year.

    “Of course it’s disappointing,” Reed said. “But at the same time … To finish in the top 10 my last three majors, and to have a chance to really win all three of them and to close one off, it means a lot.”

    Getty Images

    Watching Koepka, Fleetwood knew he was one shot short

    By Will GrayJune 17, 2018, 11:33 pm

    SOUTHAMPTON, N.Y. – In the end, even a record-tying performance wasn’t enough for Tommy Fleetwood at the U.S. Open.

    Fleetwood started the final round at Shinnecock Hills six shots off the pace, but he quickly moved up the board with a run of four birdies over his first seven holes. He added four more in a row on Nos. 12-15, and he had a 9-footer for birdie on No. 18 to become the first player to ever shoot a 62 in the U.S. Open.

    He missed, and that proved to be the difference – for both the record and the tournament.

    Fleetwood waited around in player hospitality for the next three hours while the leaders finished, alternating between watching the golf (with sandwich in hand) and playing with his newborn son, Frankie. He was on the chipping green when Brooks Koepka completed play at 1-over 281, successfully defending his title and finishing one shot ahead of Fleetwood.

    “Brooks kept giving me like a little bit of hope, and then he’d hole a putt just to stab you in the stomach a little bit,” Fleetwood said. “I always just had that feeling that I was one shy, so I never really got massively, massively excited.”

    U.S. Open: Scores | Live blog | Full coverage

    This was the first year the U.S. Open would have gone to a two-hole, aggregate playoff, so Fleetwood needed to stay loose for a possible overtime that in previous years would have instead been an 18-hole playoff on Monday. He emerged from the locker room and headed to the range to warm up after Koepka birdied No. 16 to take a two-shot lead with two holes to play.

    “I just thought, 'I should really go up, because you never know,'” Fleetwood said. “I mean, the worst thing that could happen is if something did happen and I wasn’t really ready, so it’s better warming up with that intention.”

    The solo runner-up is a career-best major finish for Fleetwood, who also finished fourth last year at Erin Hills. He now shares a piece of tournament history, becoming just the sixth player to shoot a 63, joining a list that includes Jack Nicklaus, Tom Weiskopf, Johnny Miller, Vijay Singh and Justin Thomas.

    And after torching a demanding layout to the tune of eight birdies, he insisted he won’t dwell much on the final putt that got away – even though Koepka’s closing bogey meant that it ultimately made the difference.

    “The putt on 18, I actually wanted more for the 62 at the time, and then it became a thing for the tournament,” Fleetwood said. “Obviously, that’s the putt that will play on your mind because that was the last shot you hit and that was your chance. But I missed some putts in the week, and I made some putts. I think everybody did. And your score is your score. And for me, just getting that close to winning a major again, I think that is the ultimate thing I’ll take from it.”

    Getty Images

    DJ and more congratulate Koepka on social media

    By Golf Channel DigitalJune 17, 2018, 11:31 pm

    Brooks Koepka won his second consecutive U.S. Open title at Shinnecock Hills. Dustin Johnson, his friend and playing competitor on Sunday, was quick to congratulate Koepka. And he wasn't alone.