Frazar shoots 59 in fourth round at Q-School

By Associated PressDecember 6, 2008, 5:00 pm
PGA Tour (75x100)LA QUINTA, Calif. ' Harrison Frazar realized that every birdie he made on the back nine kept pushing him closer to golfs magic number of 59 in the PGA Tour qualifying tournament Saturday.
He didnt care about his score, only that each birdie improved his chances of earning a PGA Tour card.
Im here to make as many birdies as I can for 108 holes, then get back on tour where I can play, Frazar said.
But when he rolled in his seventh straight birdie, a 35-foot putt on the 17th hole of the Nicklaus Tournament course at PGA West, he knew he needed only a par on the final hole to shoot 59.
I wanted to shoot 59 for me, just to say I did it, he said. And those were the two best swings Ive hit in a long time.
Frazar calmed his nerves and drove into the fairway, hit a wedge to the green and took two putts to become only the second player to shoot a 59 at Q-School.
Better yet, it put him at 24-under 264 and gave him a four-shot lead with only two rounds to play.
Ive got to try to remember what it is Im trying to do and accomplish that, said Frazar, winless in 300 starts in his PGA Tour career. A 59 is great, and its something Ill always say I was able to do. But its not why Im here. We still have two more rounds, and thats the bigger goal.
The only other player to shoot 59 at Q-School was David Gossett in 2000, although he failed to earn his PGA Tour card.
Tyler Aldridge had a 64 on the Nicklaus course was four shots behind, with Jay Williamson (66) another two shots back at 18-under 270. Glen Day went 58 consecutive holes without a bogey until making one on the 18th hole Saturday, but he managed a 70 and was tied for fourth at 17 under.
The top 25 players and ties will earn PGA Tour cards on Monday.
Frazar was 6 under over a six-hole stretch on the front nine, including an eagle, to go out and 30. His string of birdies began on the par-5 11th with a 10-foot birdie putt. Of the next six birdies, only one of them was inside 15 feet.
I kept having good, comfortable yardages on the second shots, he said. I never thought I had to ease into one, or get cute or fancy. I kept hitting it solid and pounding away. Fortunately, some putts went in. Ive played this well and putts dont go in, and you dont shoot that kind of number.
Frazars score will not count in the Tour record books because Q-School is not an official event. Al Geiberger, Chip Beck and David Duval are the only players with a 59 in official play. Annika Sorenstam is the only LPGA player with a 59.
John Huston, who opened with a 74, continued his rally with a second straight 65 that put him in a tie for 10th. D.J. Brigman also made a big move with a 63, moving into a tie for 15th.
Among those going the wrong direction were Joe Durant, a four-time Tour winner who shot a 78 and was tied for 106th; and former PGA champion Mark Brooks, the only major champion at Q-school, who shot 72 and was tied for 42nd.
There was no 72-hole cut. Those who failed to finish in the top 25 will get either full or conditional status on the Nationwide Tour.
Related Links:
  • Leaderboard - PGA Tour Q-School
  • Full Coverage - PGA Tour Q-School
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    Johnson begins Open week as 12/1 betting favorite

    By Will GrayJuly 16, 2018, 5:15 pm

    Dustin Johnson heads into The Open as the top-ranked player in the world, and he's also an understandable betting favorite as he looks to win a second career major.

    Johnson has not played since the U.S. Open, where he led by four shots at the halfway point and eventually finished third. He has three top-10 finishes in nine Open appearances, notably a T-2 finish at Royal St. George's in 2011.

    Johnson opened as a 12/1 favorite when the Westgate Las Vegas Superbook first published odds for Carnoustie after the U.S. Open, and he remains at that number with the first round just three days away.

    Here's a look at the latest odds on some of the other top contenders, according to the Westgate:

    12/1: Dustin Johnson

    16/1: Rory McIlroy, Rickie Fowler, Justin Rose

    20/1: Jordan Spieth, Justin Thomas, Tommy Fleetwood, Brooks Koepka, Jon Rahm

    25/1: Jason Day, Henrik Stenson, Tiger Woods

    30/1: Sergio Garcia, Francesco Molinari, Paul Casey, Alex Noren, Patrick Reed

    40/1: Hideki Matsuyama, Marc Leishman, Branden Grace, Tyrrell Hatton

    50/1: Phil Mickelson, Ian Poulter, Matthew Fitzpatrick

    60/1: Russell Knox, Louis Oosthuizen, Matt Kuchar, Bryson DeChambeau, Zach Johnson, Tony Finau, Bubba Watson

    80/1: Lee Westwood, Adam Scott, Patrick Cantlay, Rafael Cabrera-Bello, Thomas Pieters, Xander Schauffele

    100/1: Shane Lowry, Webb Simpson, Brandt Snedeker, Ryan Fox, Thorbjorn Olesen

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    Woods needs top-10 at Open to qualify for WGC

    By Will GrayJuly 16, 2018, 4:34 pm

    If Tiger Woods is going to qualify for the final WGC-Bridgestone Invitational at Firestone Country Club, he'll need to do something he hasn't done in five years this week at The Open.

    Woods has won eight times at Firestone, including his most recent PGA Tour victory in 2013, and has openly stated that he would like to qualify for the no-cut event in Akron before it shifts to Memphis next year. But in order to do so, Woods will need to move into the top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking after this week's event at Carnoustie.

    Woods is currently ranked No. 71 in the world, down two spots from last week, and based on projections it means that he'll need to finish no worse than a tie for eighth to have a chance of cracking the top 50. Woods' last top-10 finish at a major came at the 2013 Open at Muirfield, where he tied for sixth.

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    There are actually two OWGR cutoffs for the Bridgestone, July 23 and July 30. That means that Woods could theoretically still add a start at next week's RBC Canadian Open to chase a spot in the top 50, but he has said on multiple occasions that this week will be his last start of the month. The WGC-Bridgestone Invitational will be played Aug. 2-5.

    There wasn't much movement in the world rankings last week, with the top 10 staying the same heading into the season's third major. Dustin Johnson remains world No. 1, followed by Justin Thomas, Justin Rose, Brooks Koepka and Jon Rahm. Defending Open champ Jordan Spieth is ranked sixth, with Rickie Fowler, Rory McIlroy, Jason Day and Tommy Fleetwood rounding out the top 10.

    Despite taking the week off, Sweden's Alex Noren moved up three spots from No. 14 to No. 11, passing Patrick Reed, Bubba Watson and Paul Casey.

    John Deere Classic champ Michael Kim went from No. 473 to No. 215 in the latest rankings, while South African Brandon Stone jumped from 371st to 110th with his win at the Scottish Open.

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    Spieth takes familiar break ahead of Open defense

    By Rex HoggardJuly 16, 2018, 3:50 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – As his title chances seemed to be slipping away during the final round of last year’s Open Championship, Jordan Spieth’s caddie took a moment to remind him who he was.

    Following a bogey at No. 13, Michael Greller referenced a recent vacation he’d taken to Mexico where he’d spent time with Michael Phelps and Michael Jordan and why he deserved to be among that group of singular athletes.

    Spieth, who won last year’s Open, decided to continue the tradition, spending time in Cabo again before this week’s championship.

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    “I kind of went through the same schedule,” Spieth said on Monday at Carnoustie. “It was nice to have a little vacation.”

    Spieth hasn’t played since the Travelers Championship; instead he attended the Special Olympics USA Games earlier this month in Seattle with his sister. It was Spieth’s first time back to the Pacific Northwest since he won the 2015 U.S. Open.

    “I went out to Chambers Bay with [Greller],” Spieth said. “We kind of walked down the 18th hole. It was cool reliving those memories.”

    But most of all Spieth said he needed a break after a particularly tough season.

    “I had the itch to get back to it after a couple weeks of not really working,” he said. “It was nice to kind of have that itch to get back.”

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    Harrington: Fiery Carnoustie evokes Hoylake in '06

    By Ryan LavnerJuly 16, 2018, 3:45 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – One course came to mind when Padraig Harrington arrived on property and saw a firm, fast and yellow Carnoustie.

    Hoylake in 2006.

    That's when Tiger Woods avoided every bunker, bludgeoned the links with mid-irons and captured the last of his three Open titles.

    So Harrington was asked: Given the similarity in firmness between Carnoustie and Hoylake, can Tiger stir the ghosts this week?

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    “I really don’t know,” Harrington said Monday. “He’s good enough to win this championship, no doubt about it. I don’t think he could play golf like the way he did in 2006. Nobody else could have tried to play the golf course the way he did, and nobody else could have played the way he did. I suspect he couldn’t play that way now, either. But I don’t know if that’s the strategy this week, to lay up that far back.”

    With three days until the start of this championship, that’s the biggest question mark for Harrington, the 2007 winner here. He doesn’t know what his strategy will be – but his game plan will need to be “fluid.” Do you attack the course with driver and try to fly the fairway bunkers? Or do you attempt to lay back with an iron, even though it’s difficult to control the amount of run-out on the baked-out fairways and bring the bunkers into play?

    “The fairways at Hoylake are quite flat, even though they were very fast,” Harrington said. “There’s a lot of undulations in the fairways here, so if you are trying to lay up, you can get hit the back of a slope and kick forward an extra 20 or 30 yards more than you think. So it’s not as easy to eliminate all the risk by laying up.”