Calcavecchia Frost tied on top in Minnesota

By Associated PressAugust 8, 2010, 2:13 am

Champions TourBLAINE, Minn. – David Frost and Mark Calcavecchia were a stark contrast coming off the 18th green Saturday, even though they are tied for the lead after two rounds of the 3M Championship.

Calcavecchia held a three-shot lead after 16 holes, but bogeyed the final two holes to finish with a 66. Frost, playing a bogey-free tournament, birdied No. 18 to also finish with a 66.

“I putted quite well yesterday and today,” Frost said, casually sitting back in a chair.

“I’m glad there’s no more holes because I’d probably bogey the next one too as (upset) as I am,” Calcavecchia said. “Some days you leave the course happy, some days you don’t. Today’s one of those days where I’m not.”

On the par-3 17th, Calcavecchia couldn’t get up and down from the rough. His second shot on the par-5 18th – which ranked as the day’s second-easiest hole – landed in a greenside bunker. His chip went about 75 feet past the hole and he three-putted from there.

“I hit four bad shots in two days and made four bogeys,” he said. “It’s getting old.”

Playing with Calcavecchia for the second straight day, Frost made three birdies in a four-hole stretch on the front nine, before going six holes without another. He made two more in the final four holes.

“It was a day you had to think a little bit more than yesterday because the wind was coming at a little different angle. … It was always across, especially on the back nine. It made it interesting,” said Frost, who, like Calcavecchia, has yet to win on the Champions Tour.

Frost has five top-10s in his first full year on the tour, including a playoff loss at the Senior PGA Championship in May. Calcavecchia is playing in his fifth event after turning 50 on June 12.

Neither is putting extra pressure on themselves.

“You need to keep playing well week in and week out, and the win will take care of itself,” said Frost, who noted that he beat Calcavecchia 9 and 8 in a 1977 junior tournament in South Africa the first time they met.

“His game hasn’t changed over the years. He’s been a great player because his putting has just been fabulous,” Calcavecchia said. “He’s got one of the purest strokes I’ve ever seen.”

John Cook (67), Kirk Hanefeld (64) and David Peoples (66) are two shots back.

Cook, who tied for third at last week’s U.S. Senior Open, shot a 5 under 67. He was 3 under on the front and made birdies at Nos. 13 and 14 to get within one shot of the lead, but he bogeyed No. 16.

Hanefeld was 4 under on the front, and birdied No. 10, 12, 16 and 18 on the back nine. He also has yet to make a bogey in the tournament, which has the potential to be his best ever. He has one top-25 in 10 starts this year, and his best finish in 52 career events is a fifth-place tie at The 2008 Principal Charity Classic.

“I just said to myself, ‘There’s really no reason I shouldn’t be playing good again today.’ I got off to a good start, nothing spectacular, and then I made a couple birdies and I said to myself ‘There’s a lot of birdies out here, I might as well try to make them.”’

Steve Haskins eagled No. 18 for a 66, and was joined by Jeff Sluman (68) three shots behind.

First-round leader Tommy Armour III was just 1 under for the day, and was four shots back along with Mark O’Meara (66), who birdied seven of eight holes in one stretch, Ross Cochran (67) and Bruce Vaughan (67).

The openness of the TPC Twin Cities has been a welcome relief for tour players. The last two events were the British Senior Open in Scotland and the U.S. Senior Open at Sahalee Country Club outside Seattle, two unforgiving tracts were poor shots equaled poor results.

A few sprinkles fell on the course early in the day before humid conditions took over, further softening the greens and allowing players to continue taking aim directly at the pin. Forty-seven of the 78 players broke par, two more than Friday.

“If you don’t have any elements to deal with these guys are going to go real deep,” Hanefeld said. “The fairways are wide and the greens are fairly big so there’s some room for error. There’s a lot of birdies to be made, and you have to if you want to have a chance.”

Defending champion Bernhard Langer knows he won’t repeat. He is one of four players that is seven shots back.

“You need to be at least 10 under to have a chance,” he said. No champion has defended his title in the event’s 18-year history.

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Davies headlines field at Senior LPGA at French Lick

By Golf Channel DigitalOctober 14, 2018, 10:40 pm

Laura Davies will be looking to win her second senior major championship this year when she tees it up in Monday’s start of the Senior LPGA Championship at French Lick Resort in Indiana.

Davies, who won the inaugural U.S. Senior Women’s Open in July, will join a field that includes fellow World Golf Hall of Famer Jan Stephenson, who was announced last week with Peggy Kirk Bell as the Hall’s newest members. Hall of Famers Juli Inkster and Hollis Stacy are also in the 54-hole event.

Trish Johnson is back to defend her title after winning the inaugural Senior LPGA Championship a year ago. Brandi Burton, Jane Geddes, Helen Alfredsson and Liselotte Neumann are also in the field of 81 players who will compete for a $600,000 purse, with $90,000 going to the winner.

Golf Channel will televise all three rounds live from 4-6 p.m. ET on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.

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Langer (65) wins regular-season finale by six

By Associated PressOctober 14, 2018, 10:07 pm

CARY, N.C. – Bernhard Langer ran away with the SAS Championship on Sunday to take the points lead into the PGA Tour Champions' Charles Schwab Cup playoffs

Langer shot a bogey-free 7-under 65 for a six-stroke victory in the regular-season finale.

''I just played very solid all day long,'' Langer said. ''Putted well, hit the ball where I was looking and did everything exceptionally well.''

The 61-year-old German star has 38 victories on the 50-and-over tour, also winning this year near Houston. He has a record four victories after turning 60.

''I don't have anything to prove, but I still have golf,'' Langer said. ''I still want to improve my own game. I still want to play to the best Bernhard Langer can play. I don't think I need to prove anything, but I love competing, I love winning or being in the hunt. As long as I can do that, I think you're going to see me out here.''

Langer finished with a tournament-record 22-under 194 total at Prestonwood Country Club, the tree-lined layout softened by heavy rain Thursday from Hurricane Michael. He opened with a 62 on Friday to match Gene Sauers and Tom Lehman for the lead, and had a 67 on Saturday to remain atop the leaderboard with Sauers.

Full-field scores from the SAS Championship

''The 10 under was amazing,'' Langer said. ''I couldn't believe there were two other guys who shot 10 under.''

The four-time Charles Schwab Cup winner also won at Prestonwood in 2012.

''It's always fun to go back to where you've won before because you feel like you know how to play the course and you're somewhat comfortable and that's certainly the case here,'' Langer said. ''I've been probably 50, 70 times now around this golf course and I know how to play every hole.''

Scott Parel was second, closing with a double bogey for a 65.

''Bernhard is just in his own world this week,'' Parel said.

Jerry Kelly had a 68 to finish third at 15 under, and Lehman followed at 13 under after a 71.

Sauers shot a 75 to tie for fifth with Miguel Angel Jimenez (68) at 12 under.

The top 72 players in the Schwab Cup standings qualified for the playoffs, the three-event series that begins next week with the Dominion Energy Charity Classic in Richmond, Va. Dan Forsman tied for 56th to jump from 74th to 72nd, edging John Huston for the final spot by $932. Huston tied for 46th.

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Pepperell captures British Masters, eyes Augusta

By Associated PressOctober 14, 2018, 5:29 pm

WALTON HEATH, England -- Eddie Pepperell won his second European Tour title with a two-shot victory at the British Masters on Sunday and likely secured the even bigger prize of a place in next year's Masters at Augusta National.

The Englishman shot an even-par 72 and held off his playing partner, Sweden's Alexander Bjork (71), as the pair went to the 72nd hole at a wet and windy Walton Heath with Pepperell just a stroke in front.

Pepperell finished on 9-under 279.

Herbert Lucas (69) and Jordan Smith (73) were tied for third, another two shots behind Bjork.

English pair Sam Horsfield (69) and Tom Lewis (70) along with American Julian Suri (74) tied for fifth, one shot in front of tournament host Justin Rose (70).

The victory takes Pepperell into the world's top 35 and almost certainly secures a first appearance at Augusta in 2019. The top 50 at the end of the year are guaranteed a place in the first major of the year in April.

Ryder Cup star Tommy Fleetwood (72) finished 2 under in a seven-way tie for ninth.

Full-field scores from the British Masters

A top-two finish on Sunday would have seen Rose reach the top of the world rankings for the second time this season, the 38-year-old having spent two weeks as No. 1 in September

Pepperell was ranked outside the top 500 as recently as May last year, but won the Qatar Masters in February and followed a runner-up finish in the Scottish Open with a tie for sixth in the British Open seven days later, carding a closing 67 at Carnoustie despite saying he had a hangover.

His three-shot overnight lead was down to a single stroke on Sunday when Bjork covered the front nine in 34 and Pepperell three-putted the ninth, the same hole where he enjoyed a spectacular hole-in-one on Thursday.

However, the 27-year-old Pepperell promptly holed his second shot to the 10th from 122 yards for an eagle to move three clear and a par save from off the green on the 14th looked to have sealed the win.

There was still time for some late drama, though, as Pepperell dropped shots on Nos. 15 and 16 to see his lead cut to a single shot, but Bjork bogeyed the 18th after driving into the heather and Pepperell saved par from a greenside bunker.

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Disappointed Sharma fades to T-10 at CIMB

By Will GrayOctober 14, 2018, 1:46 pm

For the second time this year, India's Shubankhar Sharma watched an opportunity for a breakthrough win turn into a learning experience.

Sharma burst onto the scene in March, taking a two-shot lead into the final round of the WGC-Mexico Championship only to fade to a tie for ninth. It was a similar story Sunday at the CIMB Classic in Malaysia, where Sharma started the final round in a three-way tie for the lead but struggled to an even-par 72 that dropped him into a tie for 10th.

"Disappointing, not really happy with the way I finished," Sharma told reporters.

Full-field scores from CIMB Classic

CIMB Classic: Articles, photos and videos

The 22-year-old was 1 over for his first six holes, but he battled back with four straight birdies on Nos. 7-10 to get within three shots of eventual winner Marc Leishman. But his tee shot at the par-3 11th found the water, leading to the first of three straight bogeys that ended any hopes of victory.

"That was probably one of the worst swings of the day," Sharma said. "That 11th hole I think killed the momentum for me. A par there would have gone a long way, and I probably could have made more birdies after that."

Sharma remained optimistic this spring following his final-round fade in Mexico, and he retained a positive mindset despite a rough afternoon as he eyes upcoming starts at both the CJ Cup in South Korea and the WGC-HSBC Champions in China.

"Great experience. Very, very good to have two top-10s on the PGA Tour, so that's a good way of looking at it," he said. "Also, it pushes me to keep playing well. I feel like I have it in me to win out there on the PGA Tour, and I've given myself two opportunities. Game is in a decent place now."