Howell shares top spot at Turning Stone

By Associated PressOctober 4, 2008, 4:00 pm
Turning Stone Resort ChampionshipVERONA, N.Y. ' Tag Ridings missed a short par putt on the final hole Saturday to fall into a tie for the lead with Charles Howell III after the third round of the Turning Stone Resort Championship.
 
Ridings (71), winless in 154 starts on the PGA Tour, finished with a 1-under 71 to match Howell (69) at 8-under 208.
 
Jeff Overton (73), who led both the first and second rounds by one shot, was tied for third at 7 under with Brian Davis (69), Jason Day (71) and Kyle Thompson (69).
 
Another shot behind were Dustin Johnson (70) and Robert Allenby (71), while Davis Love III (66), Charles Warren (67), and Mark Hensby (72) were tied at 5 under.
 
Because of two weather delays on Friday, 23 players failed to finish the second round and had to complete it Saturday morning. Love, coming back from an ankle injury suffered a year ago, then reeled off four straight birdies on the back nine to start the third round and move into contention, an early indication the 7,482-yard Atunyote Golf Club course might be playing easier because the weather wasnt quite so harsh. The players also were allowed to lift and clean their balls.
 
Ridings trailed Overton by one shot at the start of play and played the front nine to even par with a pair of birdies and two bogeys. He sank a 23-foot birdie putt to reach 8 under at the par-3 11th hole and gained a two-shot lead with a 16-foot birdie putt at No. 15 as the sun broke through and the temperature made it into the mid-50s.
 
Ridings, who has missed 12 cuts this year, including six in a row, had sole possession of the lead until he mishit a 6-foot putt at No. 18.
 
Overton never mounted a charge. He bogeyed No. 1, reeled off 13 straight pars, and made bogey at 15 to fall to 6 under as he sputtered with his putter for the second straight day. Overton, who needed 34 putts on Friday, had 32 on Saturday but rallied with birdie at 16, his only birdie of the day.
 
Hensby, who began the day three shots behind, made three birdies on the front side and another at the par-5 12th hole to take sole possession of the lead at 9 under, one shot ahead of Ridings and Thompson.
 
Hensbys lead didnt last long. He bogeyed Nos. 13 and 14, just as Thompson had done only moments earlier. Thompson sank a 58-foot birdie putt at No. 15 to join a logjam of six players at 7 under.
 
You could take all the putts I made Thursday and Friday and they wouldnt add up to that one, said Thompson, who finished with his third straight birdie at 18.
 
The first two days were plagued by temperatures in the 40s, 20 mph wind, rain, and even a brief shower of hail that caused one of two delays Friday.
 
The fickle conditions continued Saturday. Although there was just a slight breeze and the sun was in and out of the overhanging clouds, a misting rain again began falling while the lead threesome was playing the front nine and the temperature hovered around 50, forcing the players to again wear layers and fight to keep warm and loose.
 
It was not nice. I can tell you the holes it was warm on, said Love, who hadnt played a tournament since mid-August and whose best finish this year is a tie for 19th at the British Open. Ive got to get my confidence back, get into contention and win a few tournaments.
 
Love opened the tournament with a 3-over 75 that included 37 putts. Aside from a 15-footer and a 6-footer, the longest putt he made on the day was 3 feet and his total distance of made putts added up to only 47 feet.
 
It was much different Saturday. Love, who began the day nine shots off the lead and started at the 10th hole, made a strong charge from the start. He hit to 5 feet and made birdie at the par-4 10th hole, rolled in a 27-foot birdie putt at the par-3 11th hole, hit to 7 feet and made birdie at the par-5 12th, and finished the rush by hitting inside 3 feet at the par-4 13th hole.
 
That had Love at 5 under for the day at the turn, and Overtons group had yet to tee off. Love reached 6 under at No. 4, hitting out of the deep left rough from 125 yards to inside 11 feet and curling in another birdie putt, and carded his sixth birdie at the par-5 fifth hole by two-putting from 92 feet.
 
Loves luck ran out when he drove into the primary rough at the par-4 seventh hole and three-putted for bogey from 40 feet.
 
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    DJ, McIlroy, Spieth listed as PGA betting favorites

    By Will GrayJuly 23, 2018, 1:38 pm

    Three majors are in the books, but there's still one more trophy up for grabs in two weeks' time.

    While next year The Open will signal the end of the 2019 major season amid a revamped calendar, this is the final year that the PGA Championship will be held in August. The tournament returns next month to Bellerive Country Club outside St. Louis, which last hosted the PGA when Nick Price won in 1992 and hasn't hosted a PGA Tour event since Camilo Villegas won the 2008 BMW Championship.

    Oddsmakers at the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook published PGA betting odds shortly after the final putt dropped at Carnoustie and Francesco Molinari left with the claret jug. Topping the board are a trio of major champions: Dustin Johnson, Rory McIlroy and Jordan Spieth, all listed at 12/1.

    McIlroy won the PGA in both 2012 and 2014, while Spieth needs only the Wanamaker Trophy to round out the career Grand Slam. Johnson has recorded four top-10s in the PGA, notably a T-5 finish at Whistling Straits in 2010 when a few grains of sand kept him out of a playoff with Martin Kaymer and Bubba Watson.

    Fresh off a T-6 finish in Scotland, Tiger Woods headlines the group listed at 16/1, behind only the three co-favorites as he looks to win a 15th career major.

    Here's a look at the betting odds for a number of contenders, with the opening round of the PGA just 17 days away:

    12/1: Dustin Johnson, Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth

    16/1: Tiger Woods, Justin Thomas, Rickie Fowler

    18/1: Justin Rose

    20/1: Brooks Koepka, Jon Rahm

    25/1: Tommy Fleetwood, Francesco Molinari, Jason Day

    30/1: Patrick Reed, Hideki Matsuyama

    40/1: Henrik Stenson, Alex Noren, Paul Casey

    50/1: Phil Mickelson, Bubba Watson, Sergio Garcia, Tony Finau, Xander Schauffele, Matt Kuchar

    60/1: Marc Leishman, Branden Grace, Louis Oosthuizen, Patrick Cantlay, Bryson DeChambeau, Webb Simpson

    80/1: Adam Scott, Zach Johnson, Kevin Kisner

    100/1: Ian Poulter, Thomas Pieters, Tyrrell Hatton, Rafa Cabrera-Bello, Daniel Berger, Kevin Chappell, Brian Harman, Brandt Snedeker, Charley Hoffman

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    Molinari moves to No. 6 in world with Open win

    By Will GrayJuly 23, 2018, 12:31 pm

    After breaking through for his first career major title, Francesco Molinari reached some rarified air in the latest installment of the Official World Golf Rankings.

    The Italian's two-shot win at Carnoustie moved him up nine spots to No. 6 in the world, not surprisingly a new career high. But it's also a quick ascent for Molinari, who has now won three of his last six worldwide starts and was ranked No. 33 in the world after missing the cut at The Players Championship two months ago.

    A share of second place helped Xander Schauffele jump from No. 24 to No. 18 in the updated standings, while the same result meant Kevin Kisner went from No. 33 to No. 25. Justin Rose and Rory McIlroy both went up one spot after T-2 finishes to No. 2 and No. 7, respectively - a new career high for Rose.

    The drama in the rankings unfolded at No. 50, as Tiger Woods moved up 21 spots to exactly No. 50 following his T-6 finish. While some projections had him moving to 51st, Woods was able to sneak into the top 50 just in time to qualify for a return to the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, as the top 50 in the rankings both this week and next qualify for Akron.

    That includes Zach Johnson, last year's runner-up who was not yet qualified but moved from No. 52 to No. 49 this week. It also includes Kevin Chappell, who went from 61st to 47th with a T-6 finish in Scotland.

    Despite missing the cut at Carnoustie, Dustin Johnson remains world No. 1 for another week followed by Rose, Justin Thomas, Brooks Koepka and Jon Rahm. Molinari is now at No. 6, with McIlroy, Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler and Jason Day rounding out the top 10.

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    Simpson overtakes DeChambeau in Ryder Cup race

    By Will GrayJuly 23, 2018, 12:09 pm

    A T-12 finish at The Open allowed Webb Simpson to move past Bryson DeChambeau into the eighth and final automatic qualifying spot in the U.S. Ryder Cup points race with just three weeks to go.

    Simpson finished the week at 3 under, five shots behind winner Francesco Molinari. Adding another strong result to his win at TPC Sawgrass and T-10 finish at the U.S. Open, he's now edged in front of DeChambeau by less than 41 points. But with players earning one point per $1,000 each of the next two weeks and 1.5 points per $1,000 at the PGA Championship, the race is far from over.

    Jordan Spieth's T-9 finish strengthened his position at No. 6, as the top six players are essentially assured of qualifying automatically. Rickie Fowler held onto his spot at No. 7, while Xander Schauffele and Kevin Kisner both moved onto the bubble following T-2 finishes at Carnoustie. After a T-6 finish, Tiger Woods jumped from 31st to 20th.

    Here's a look at the updated American standings, with the top eight after the PGA qualifying automatically and captain Jim Furyk adding four picks in September:

    1. Brooks Koepka

    2. Dustin Johnson

    3. Patrick Reed

    4. Justin Thomas

    5. Bubba Watson

    6. Jordan Spieth

    7. Rickie Fowler

    8. Webb Simpson

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    9. Bryson DeChambeau

    10. Phil Mickelson

    11. Xander Schauffele

    12. Matt Kuchar

    13. Kevin Kisner

    14. Tony Finau

    15. Brian Harman

    On the European side, Molinari was already in position to qualify automatically but is now assured of a spot on Thomas Bjorn's roster this fall. Fellow major champs Justin Rose and Rory McIlroy also solidified their footing with runner-up performances.

    Here's a look at how things look for the Europeans, with the top four from each list after the PGA Championship qualifying automatically:

    European Points

    1. Francesco Molinari

    2. Justin Rose

    3. Tyrrell Hatton

    4. Tommy Fleetwood

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    Thorbjorn Olesen

    Russell Knox

    Eddie Pepperell

    World Points

    1. Jon Rahm

    2. Alex Noren

    3. Rory McIlroy

    4. Paul Casey

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    Matthew Fitzpatrick

    Sergio Garcia

    Ian Poulter

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    Weather extends Barbasol to Monday finish

    By Associated PressJuly 23, 2018, 12:25 am

    NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - A thunderstorm has suspended the fourth round of the PGA Tour's Barbasol Championship until Monday morning.

    Sunday's third stoppage of play at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came with the four leaders - Hunter Mahan, Robert Streb, Tom Lovelady and Troy Merritt at 18 under par - and four other contenders waiting to begin the round.

    The tournament will resume at 7:30 a.m. on Monday. Lightning caused one delay, and play was stopped earlier in the afternoon to clear water that accumulated on the course following a morning of steady and sometimes-heavy rain.

    Inclement weather has plagued the tournament throughout the weekend. The second round was completed Saturday morning after being suspended by thunderstorms late Friday afternoon.

    The resumption will mark the PGA Tour's second Monday finish this season. Jason Day won the Farmers Insurance Open in January after darkness delayed the sixth playoff hole, and he needed just 13 minutes to claim the victory.