Deaf Golfer Hall Believes Hes Finally Arrived

By Associated PressJuly 23, 2005, 4:00 pm
US Bank Championship in MilwaukeeMILWAUKEE -- Kevin Hall, the deaf golfer who made his PGA Tour debut at the US Bank Championship, would love another sponsor exemption but says he won't be needing such passes some day.
 
``I had dreamed since I teed it up that I was going to play with the big boys. After college, I continued to dream about it. I wanted it to happen and it did happen!'' Hall wrote in an e-mail to The Associated Press on Saturday, a day after carding a 68-74 and missing the cut at Brown Deer Park.
 
``I felt like I arrived. It's only a matter of time before I get better and consistent enough to play out there.''

Hall, a 22-year-old from Cincinnati, said he has four stops scheduled on the Nationwide Tour. He's already made three starts on the circuit, including two as a pro, since winning the Big Ten championship at Ohio State in 2004.
 
When he was invited to Milwaukee on a sponsor's exemption, the PGA Tour searched unsuccessfully for records of any other professional golfers who were deaf.
 
A bout with meningitis stole Hall's hearing when he was a youngster, so it wasn't necessary for the marshals to raise the ``QUIET'' signs when he teed off. But they did anyway.
 
And he gathered as big a gallery as any of the other 155 golfers Friday. Fans gave him thumbs-up and high-fives between holes. He communicated with his parents via sign language and with his caddie and playing partners by reading lips and typing text messages into his cell phone/organizer.
 
Hall was one of 15 golfers who had to play 36 holes Friday because of thunderstorms the day before, and he tuckered out on his ``back 18,'' missing the cut by four strokes.
 
Playing the course twice ``wore me out,'' he wrote. ``I'm used to playing 36 holes in college but man, it's different on the PGA Tour with the pace of play, the crowd and the pin position. It takes a lot out of you mentally and physically.''
 
He said he had butterflies but quickly gained his composure.
 
``I was nervous on the first tee. I stood over the ball and the first thought was, 'What the heck did I get myself into?' and of course I blocked the ball way right,'' he wrote. ``I calmed down with a good swing on No. 3, a 7 iron from 165 that stopped 5 feet from the hole.
 
``The more people that came out to watch, the calmer I got. I got used to it.''
 
Related Links:
  • Leaderboard - US Bank Championship
  • Full Coverage - US Bank Championship in Milwaukee
     
    Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
  • Getty Images

    Watch: Gary Player tires people out with sit-ups

    By Grill Room TeamJune 24, 2018, 11:33 pm

    Well all know Gary Player is a fitness nut, and at 82 years young he is still in phenomenal shape.

    That's why it was incredible to see two mere mortals like us try to keep up with him in a sit-up competition at the BMW International Open.

    Watch the video below.

    The guy in blue makes the smart decision and bows out about halfway through. But give the other guy an "A" for effort, he stuck with Player for about 60 sit-ups, and then the nine-time major champion just starts taunting him.

    Getty Images

    Japan teen Hataoka rolls to NW Ark. win

    By Associated PressJune 24, 2018, 11:07 pm

    ROGERS, Ark. - Japanese teenager Nasa Hataoka ran away with the NW Arkansas Championship on Sunday for her first LPGA title

    The 19-year-old Hataoka won by six strokes, closing with an 8-under 63 at Pinnacle Country Club for a tournament-record 21-under 192 total. She broke the mark of 18 under set last year by So Yeon Ryu.

    Hataoka won twice late last year on the Japan LPGA and has finished in the top 10 in five of her last six U.S. LPGA starts, including a playof loss last month in the Kingsmill Championship.

    Hataoka began the round tied with Minjee Lee for the lead.

    Austin Ernst shot a 65 to finish second.

    Lee and third-ranked Lexi Thompson topped the group at 13 under.

    Getty Images

    Tour investigating DeChambeau's use of compass

    By Will GrayJune 24, 2018, 10:09 pm

    CROMWELL, Conn. – Bryson DeChambeau’s reliance on science to craft his play on the course is well known, but he took things to a new level this week at the Travelers Championship when television cameras caught him wielding a compass while looking at his yardage book during the third round.

    According to DeChambeau, it’s old news. He’s been using a compass regularly to aid in his preparation for nearly two years, dating back to the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open in October 2016.

    “I’m figuring out the true pin locations,” DeChambeau said. “The pin locations are just a little bit off every once in a while, and so I’m making sure they’re in the exact right spot. And that’s it.”


    Full-field scores from the Travelers Championship

    Travelers Championship: Articles, photos and videos


    But social media took notice this weekend, as did PGA Tour officials. DeChambeau explained that he was approached on the range Saturday and informed that the Tour plans to launch an investigation into whether or not the device is allowable in competition, with a decision expected in the next week.

    It’s not the first time the 24-year-old has gone head-to-head with Tour brass, having also had a brief run with side-saddled putting earlier in his career.

    “They said, ‘Hey, we just want to let you know that we’re investigating the device and seeing if it’s allowable,’” DeChambeau said. “I understand. It wouldn’t be the first time this has happened.”

    DeChambeau won earlier this month at the Memorial Tournament, and the Tour’s ruling would not have any retroactive impact on his results earlier this year. Playing alongside tournament winner Bubba Watson in the final round at TPC River Highlands, DeChambeau shot a final-round 68 to finish in a tie for ninth.

    “It’s a compass. It’s been used for a long, long time. Sailors use it,” DeChambeau said. “It’s just funny that people take notice when I start putting and playing well.”

    Getty Images

    Bubba fires 63 to win his third Travelers title

    By Nick MentaJune 24, 2018, 9:52 pm

    Bubba Watson fired a final-round 63 to storm from six back and steal the Travelers Championship. Here’s how Bubba came from behind once again at TPC River Highlands.

    Leaderboard: Bubba Watson (-17), Stewart Cink (-14), Beau Hossler (-14), J.B. Holmes (-14), Paul Casey (-14)

    What it means: This is Watson’s 12th PGA Tour win, his third of the season, and his third Travelers title. Watson picked up his first Tour victory at this event in 2010 – when he also came from six back – and won again in 2015 in a playoff victory over – guess who – Casey. Thinking he might need a round of 60 to scare the leader, Watson made eight birdies, the last of which came on the 72nd hole, giving him the outright lead by one. A short while later, Casey would bogey the 16th and 17th to end the drama and allow Bubba to breathe easy. With the win, Watson becomes the only Tour player to win three times this season. He moves to third in the FedExCup points race, behind two-time winners Justin Thomas and Dustin Johnson.

    Round of the day: Cink’s round was a stroke better, but Bubba earns this title for winning the title. The left-hander made the turn in 2-under 33 and then ripped off five birdies on his back nine to take the clubhouse lead, which he wouldn’t relinquish.

    Best of the rest: Cink looked as though he was going to record the second sub-60 round at the Travelers in the last three years. The 2009 champion golfer of the year played his first 10 holes in 7 under par on the par-70 layout. Cink added three more birdies but also added two bogeys to settle for 8-under 62, tying the round of the week. The 45-year-old has finished T-4 and T-2 in his last two starts.

    Biggest disappointment: Casey (2-over 72) began the day up four and couldn’t close. Even par on his round through 15 holes, he missed a 4-footer for par on 16 and found the water off the tee at 17, ending his chances. The Englishman, who ended a nine-year Tour winless drought earlier this season at the Valspar, is now 1 for 4 with a 54-hole lead on the PGA Tour.

    Shot of the day: Watson’s wedge from 77 yards at the 72nd hole, setting up his eighth and final birdie of the day.

    Quote of the day: “That’s the best shot you ever hit.” – caddie Ted Scott to Bubba Watson on his approach at 18