Fans able to bring cell phones to Wyndham Championship
Defending champion Ryan Moore hopes to give them something to talk about.
Tournament officials said Tuesday that they would allow fans to use mobile phones at Sedgefield Country Club – as long as the devices are kept in silent mode and calls are made only in designated areas around the course. Also, fans won’t be allowed to take pictures or video during the four competitive rounds.
Tournament director Mark Brazil, a member of the PGA Tour’s tournament advisory council, said the group discussed changing the cell phone policy after some fans complained they were out of touch with their families and businesses without their mobile devices. He said the tour has confidence in his event’s network of volunteers and security workers to enforce the trial rules.
“We’re going to be kind of the guinea pig tournament on allowing this,” Brazil said. “We’re just going to test it here.”
Though wireless devices have long been a no-no on the tour, Moore said he usually hears rings from contraband cell phones roughly once or twice per tournament. He joked that he might send some text messages from the course, then said he expects fans to use their phones responsibly.
“People are going to sneak (phones) in anyways, somehow get them in. It’s adults. I feel like if you let them actually bring them out there, they’ll probably respect the fact that you let them have it and actually go use those (designated) areas a lot more,” he said. “People appreciate the fact that you’re not treating them like a 10-year-old: ‘You’re not responsible enough to do this.’ They’re actually letting them have it, and just say, ‘Please, just be respectful of play.’ I think people will do that, for the most part. I really do.”
Moore said he wants to give fans more reasons to reach for their phones and text their buddies.
'I’m going to do everything I can to come out of the way and play this event every single year,” he said, and not just because he claimed his first tour victory here last year. Rather, it’s a gesture of gratitude to the people who gave him his first shot on the tour six years ago.
He hadn’t yet turned pro in 2004 but had just won the U.S. Amateur when he was invited to play that year’s Greensboro event, which at the time was held in the fall across town at Forest Oaks Country Club. Since finishing tied for 24th that year, he has skipped the tour stop in the North Carolina Triad only once.
“When people take care of you and treat you right, you remember it,” Moore said. “That’s how this tournament has been for me.”
But for Moore, nothing topped last year. He beat Kevin Stadler with a birdie on the third hole of a sudden death playoff to claim his only win on tour. His best result this year was his second-place finish at the AT&T National earlier this month.
“What the win did for me last year, it wasn’t quite what I thought it would do for me – it actually showed me a little bit more of how far off I was, which is weird,” Moore said. “I simply just came in here, this is a golf course that fits my game … and I just kind of got some good momentum and I played some really good golf that week.”
High school seniors win U.S. Amateur Four-Ball
TEQUESTA, Fla. - The 18-year-old Hammer, from Houston, is set to play at Texas next fall. Barber, from Stuart, Fla., also is 18. He's headed to LSU.
''Growing up watching U.S. Opens and U.S. Amateurs on TV, I just knew being a USGA champion is something that I desperately wanted,'' said Hammer, who qualified for a U.S. Open three years ago at 15. ''And to finally do it, it feels incredible. It feels as good, if not better, than I thought it would. And especially being able to do it with Garrett. It's really cool to share this moment.''
Hammer and Cole won the par-4 eighth with a birdie to take a 2-up lead. They took the par-4 10th with a par, won the par-5 13th with an eagle - Barber hit a 4-iron from 235 yards to 3 feet - and halved the next two holes to end the match.
''Cole didn't want me to hit 4-iron,'' Barber said. ''He didn't think I could get it there. I was like, 'I got it.' So I hit it hard, hit pretty much a perfect shot. It was a crazy shot.''
The 32-year-old Dull is from Winter Park, Fla., and the 42-year-old Brooke from Altamonte Springs, Fla.
''Cole Hammer is a special player,'' Brooke said. ''Obviously, he's going to Texas (and) I'm not saying he is Jordan Spieth, but there are certain things that he does.''
In the morning semifinals, Hammer and Barber beat Idaho high school teammates Carson Barry and Sam Tidd, 5 and 4, and Brooke and Dull topped former Seattle University teammates Kyle Cornett and Patrick Sato, 4 and 3.
Watch: Pumped up Beef deadlifts 485 lbs.
Andrew "Beef" Johnston has been playing some solid golf on the European Tour this season, and he is clearly pumped up for one of the biggest weeks of the year at the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth.
Judging from the video below, Beef will have no problems lifting the trophy on Sunday as he reportedly deadlifted 220 kg ... (Googles kilogram to pounds converter, enters numbers) ... that's 485 lbs!
Arizona captures NCAA DI Women's Championship
STILLWATER, Okla. – Turns out this match-play format provides fireworks. Almost always.
In the four years since the women’s NCAA Championship has switched from the stale, 72-hole stroke-play format the championship matches have been pure magic.
This year, for the third time in the past four years, the final outcome came down to the last match and Arizona took home its third title with a 3-2 victory over Alabama on Wednesday when junior Haley Moore defeated senior Lakareber Abe on the 19th hole.
The Wildcats also won NCAA titles in 1996 and 2000, the latter when current Arizona coach Laura Ianello was on the team as a player.
“Arizona is my home, it is where I went to school and [the championship] needs to be back home,” Ianello said. “So I am so proud to be the coach to bring it back.”
Two days ago, Arizona was in the midst of an epic collapse. The Wildcats were safely in the third position after 54 holes of stroke play and needed only to be inside the top eight after 72 holes to advance to the match-play portion of the event.
But they played the worst round of the day and were on the outside looking in with one hole remaining when junior Bianca Pagdanganan made eagle on the par-5 18th hole. That propelled the Wildcats into a playoff against Baylor that they ultimately won.
On the first day of match play, Arizona continued to ride the wave of momentum by defeating Pac-12 rivals UCLA, the top seed, and Stanford, a match-play stalwart the past three years.
Next up for Arizona was Alabama, the top-ranked team in the country and the second seed this week after stroke play.
“Win or lose tomorrow, this has been a hell of a ride,” Ianello said, attempting to take pressure off her team, which, on paper, looked like an underdog.
But you know the saying, anything can happen in match play, and often does.
Alabama coach Mic Potter put out his three first-team All-Americans in the first three spots hoping to jump out to an early lead. Junior Lauren Stephenson played poorly in the opening match and lost, 4 and 3, to freshman Yu-Sang Hou.
Kristen Gillman and Cheyenne Knight dispatched Wildcats Gigi Stoll and Pagdanganan easily in the second and third matches.
Arizona’s Sandra Nordaas beat Angelica Moresco, 1 up, in the fourth match meaning the fifth and final match, which was all square after 16 holes, was going to decide the NCAA title.
Lakareber lost the 17th hole when her approach shot sailed well short and right of the green in thick, gnarly rough. She attempted to advance the ball but could not and headed to the final hole 1 down.
With seemingly every golf fan in Stillwater on site, including several men’s teams here to participate in next week’s championship, Abe hit a laser second shot into the par-5 18th hole setting up a 12-foot look for eagle. Moore missed her birdie putt and Abe won the hole to set up extra holes to decide the championship.
In the extra frame, Moore was left of the green in two shots and Abe was short in the greenside bunker. Moore chipped to 4 feet and Abe’s bunker shot was 6 feet away. Abe missed, Moore made and Arizona walked away with the hardware.
“It means so much, it’s actually like a dream,” Moore said. “I’m just so happy for my team right now.”
Potter has been a head coach for 35 years – at both Furman and Alabama – and finally was able to collect his first NCAA Championship in 2012. Being so close to a second one will sting for quite a while but he will be able to live with the outcome for one simple reason.
“They fought their hearts out all year,” Potter said. “I just want to congratulate them for the way they battled, not only today, but in match play. Everyone gave their best on every shot - that’s all we can ask.”
Arizona def. Alabama, 3-2
Yu-Sang Hou (AZ) def. Lauren Stephenson (AL), 4 and 3
Kristen Gillman (AL) def. Gigi Stoll (AZ), 4 and 3
Cheyenne Knight (AL) def. Bianca Pagdanganan, 4 and 2
Sandra Nordaas (AZ) def. Angelica Moresco (AL), 1 up
Haley Moore (AZ) def. Lakareber Abe (AL), 19th hole
Elway to play in U.S. Senior Open qualifier
Tony Romo is not the only ex-QB teeing it up against the pros.
Denver Broncos general manager and Hall of Fame quarterback John Elway will try to qualify for the U.S. Senior Open next week, according to the Denver Post.
And why not? The qualifier and the senior major will be held in Colorado Springs at the Broadmoor. Elway is scheduled to tee off May 28 at 12:10 p.m. ET. The top two finishers will earn a spot in the U.S. Senior Open, June 27 to July 1.