Cejka maintains top spot at Turning Stone

By Associated PressAugust 8, 2010, 2:17 am

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VERONA, N.Y. – Alex Cejka shot a 5-under 67 to move to 15 under and take a two-stroke lead after Saturday’s third round at the Turning Stone Resort Championship.

Chris Couch tied the course record with a 63 and was alone in second place at 13 under. Billy Mayfair birdied six holes on the front nine and was in third place at 12 under after a 66.

Charles Warren, Bill Lunde, Robert Garrigus and Chris Tidland were tied for fourth place at 11 under. Warren recorded the first 63 of the day after he had seven birdies and eagled the par-5 12th hole in a bogey-free round. Peter Lonard set the course record at the 2009 Turning Stone Resort Championship when he carded a final-round 63.Cejka, from the Czech Republic, is trying to become the first foreign-born winner in the four-year history of the event.

International players have won 11 of the last 15 PGA Tour events. Cejka – the second-round leader – is winless in 227 previous starts on tour. He has finished second twice.

“I still have to go out there tomorrow and try hard and try to shoot a couple under,” Cejka said. “I cannot rely on my two-shot lead and trying to go out there and just shoot even par. I don’t think that would do it.”

Sunshine, mild temperatures and a gentle breeze left the 7,482-yard Atunyote Golf Club almost defenseless. Just three of the 72 players that made Friday’s cut shot over par.

Cejka had a shaky start on the second hole, where he three-putted for just his third bogey of the week. He recovered with a birdie on the par-4 fourth with a second shot that spun back to tap-in range. On No. 5, he reached the par 5 in two and two-putted from 28 feet for another birdie.

Cejka’s next birdie came on another par 5 at No. 12. This time he laid up 77 yards short of the green with his second shot and landed his third three feet from the hole.

Cejka got to 13 under with a birdie putt from inside seven feet on the par-3 16th. His second shot on 17 ended up less than four feet from the cup for another birdie as he became the first player to reach 14-under. At the 615-yard closing hole, he was on the back fringe in two and two-putted for his sixth birdie of the day. He hit 17 greens in regulation.

“I’d rather be two in front than four behind,” Cejka said. “Doesn’t matter what happens tomorrow. The others will have to come, too, but it’s always nice to have the lead. It doesn’t matter by how many.”

Cejka played his first PGA Tour event in 1996 and is competing in his 228th event, but has never won. He finished second at the 2004 International and tied for second at the 2003 B.C. Open. This marks the third time in his career he has held the 54-hole lead, including the 2001 British Open. He has 11 international victories.

“I think in the past I was struggling a little bit with the putter the first couple holes when I had the lead, and suddenly the lead was gone after three, four holes because you make one bad shot, you make a three-putt and suddenly someone makes a birdie and you’re not in the lead,” he said. “I hope I learned something out of it in the past and it will show tomorrow.”

Mayfair has improved his score each day after he opened with a 70 and followed with a 68 on Friday. He has the most success of anyone in the top seven with five victories and 15 runner-up finishes in 23 years on the PGA Tour. However, his last win was in 1998, when he finished on top at the Nissan Open and the Buick Open.

“It was a great temperature out there,” Mayfair said. “The golf course is in great shape, and it was definitely conditions for some good scoring. I took advantage of it on the first nine holes. I didn’t play as good on the back, but six under, I’ll take it.”

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Lewis hopes to win at Volvik with baby on the way

By Randall MellMay 27, 2018, 12:55 am

Stacy Lewis was listening to more than her caddie on her march up the leaderboard Saturday at the Volvik Championship.

Pregnant with her first child, she is listening to her body in a new way these days.

And she could hear a message coming through loud and clear toward the end of her round at Travis Point Country Club in Ann Arbor, Mich.

“The little one was telling me it’s dinnertime,” Lewis said.

Lewis birdied five of the last six holes to shoot 5-under-par 67 and move into position to make a Sunday run at winning her 13th LPGA title. She is two shots behind the leader, Minjee Lee, whose 68 moved her to 12 under overall.

Sunday has the makings of a free for all with 10 players within three shots of the lead.


Full-field scores from the LPGA Volvik Championship


Lewis, 33, is four months pregnant, with her due date Nov. 3. She’s expecting to play just a few more times before putting the clubs away to get ready for the birth. She said she’s likely to make the Marathon Classic in mid-July her last start of the season before returning next year.

Of course, Lewis would relish winning with child.

“I don’t care what limitations I have or what is going on with my body, I want to give myself a chance to win,” she told LPGA.com at the Kingsmill Championship last week.

Lewis claimed an emotional victory with her last title, taking the Cambia Portland Classic late last summer after announcing earlier in the week that she would donate her entire winnings to the Hurricane Harvey relief efforts in her Houston hometown.

A victory Sunday would also come with a lot of emotion.

It’s been an interesting year for Lewis.

There’s been the joy of learning she’s ready to begin the family she has been yearning for, and the struggle to play well after bouncing back from injury.

Lewis missed three cuts in a row before making it into the weekend at the Kingsmill Championship last week. That’s one more cut than she missed cumulatively in the previous six years. In six starts this year, Lewis hasn’t finished among the top 50 yet, but she hasn’t felt right, either.

The former world No. 1 didn’t make her second start of 2018 until April, at the year’s first major, the ANA Inspiration. She withdrew from the HSBC Women’s World Championship in late February with a strained right oblique muscle and didn’t play again for a month.

Still, Lewis is finding plenty to get excited about with the baby on the way.

“I kind of had my first Mother’s Day,” Lewis told LPGA.com last week. “It puts golf into perspective. It makes those bad days not seem so bad. It helps me sleep better at night. We are just really excited.”

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Rose hasn't visited restroom at Colonial - here's why

By Nick MentaMay 27, 2018, 12:20 am

In case you're unaware, it's pretty hot in Texas.

Temperatures at Colonial Country Club have approached 100 degrees this week, leaving players to battle both the golf course and potential dehydration.

With the help of his caddie Mark Fulcher, Fort Worth Invitational leader Justin Rose has been plenty hot himself, staking himself to a four-shot lead.


Full-field scores from the Fort Worth Invitational

Fort Worth Invitational: Articles, photos and videos


"Yeah, Fulch has done a great job of just literally handing me water bottle after water bottle. It seems relentless, to be honest with you," Rose said Saturday.

So just how much are players sweating the heat at Colonial? Well, it doesn't sound like all that water is making it all the way through Rose.

"I haven't even seen the inside of a restroom yet, so you can't even drink quick enough out there," he shared.

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Up four, Rose knows a lead can slip away

By Nick MentaMay 26, 2018, 11:21 pm

Up four shots heading into Sunday at the Fort Worth Invitational, Justin Rose has tied the largest 54-hole lead of his PGA Tour career.

On the previous two occasions he took a 54-hole Tour lead into the final round, he closed.

And yet, Rose knows just how quickly a lead can slip away. After all, it was Rose who erased a six-shot deficit earlier this season to overtake Dustin Johnson and win the WGC-HSBC Championship. 

"I think I was in the lead going into the final round in Turkey when I won, and I had a four-shot lead going into the final round in Indonesia in December and managed to put that one away," Rose said Saturday, thinking back to his two other victories late last year.

"I was five, six back maybe of DJ, so I've got experience the other way. ... So you can see how things can go both ways real quick. That's why there is no point in getting too far ahead of myself."


Full-field scores from the Fort Worth Invitational

Fort Worth Invitational: Articles, photos and videos


Up one to start the third round Saturday, Rose extended his lead to as much as five when he birdied four of his first six holes.

He leads the field in strokes gained: tee-to-green (+12.853) and strokes gained: approach-the-green (+7.931).

Rose has won five times worldwide, including at the 2016 Rio Olympics, since his last victory in the United States, at the 2015 Zurich Classic.

With a win Sunday, he'd tie Nick Faldo for the most PGA Tour wins by an Englishman post-World War II, with nine.

But he isn't celebrating just yet.

"It is a big lead, but it's not big enough to be counting the holes away. You've got to go out and play good, you've got to go out positive, you've got to continue to make birdies and keep going forward.

"So my mindset is to not really focus on the lead, it's to focus on my game tomorrow and my performance. You know, just keep executing the way I have been. That's going to be my challenge tomorrow. Going to look forward to that mindset."

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Grillo still hunting follow-up to debut win

By Nick MentaMay 26, 2018, 10:53 pm

Following a round of 1-under 69 Saturday, Emiliano Grillo will enter Sunday's final round at Colonial four shots behind leader Justin Rose.

Grillo is hunting his first win since he took the 2015 Safeway Open in his rookie debut as a PGA Tour member. 

The young Argentinian finished 11th in the FedExCup points race that season, contending in big events and finishing runner-up at the 2016 Barclays.

In the process, Grillo had to learn to pace himself and that it can be fruitless to chase after success week to week.

"That was a hot run in there," Grillo said Saturday, referring to his rookie year. "I played, in 2016, I played the majors very well. I played the big tournaments very well. I was in contention after two, three days in most of the big events.


Full-field scores from the Fort Worth Invitational

Fort Worth Invitational: Articles, photos and videos


"I think, you know, I wanted to do better. I pushed for it. Some of the tournaments I ended up being 50th or 60th just because I wanted to play. I wanted to play well so badly. That played against me, so I learned from that. In that rookie year, I learned that."

Grillo was still plenty successful in his sophomore season, advancing to the BMW Championship last fall.

But now he's beginning to regain some of that form that made him such an immediate success on Tour. Grillo has recorded four top-10 finishes year - a T-9 at Mayakoba, a T-8 at Honda, a T-3 at Houston, and a T-9 at Wells Fargo - and will now look to outduel U.S. Open champs in Rose and Brooks Koepka on Sunday at Colonial.

"Well, he's top 10 in the world, so everything he does he does it pretty well," Grillo said of Rose. "You know, he does his own thing. Like I say, he's top 10 in the world. Nothing wrong with his game. ...

"He's in the lead on a Sunday. Doesn't matter where you're playing, he's got to go out and shoot under par. He's got 50 guys behind him trying to reach him, and I'm one of those. I've just got to go out and do what he did today on those first five or six holes and try to get him in the early holes."