Mickelson Loses at Loch Lomond in Playoff

By Associated PressJuly 15, 2007, 4:00 pm
2006 Barclays Scottish OpenGLASGOW, Scotland -- This time, Phil Mickelson got a do-over after hitting a wayward tee shot at the 72nd hole.
 
The next one was even worse.
 
A faulty driver cost Lefty his first European Tour win, as France's Gregory Havret rallied to win the Scottish Open on the first playoff hole Sunday.
 
Gregory Havret
Gregory Havret is doused with champagne after his victory. (Getty Images)
Not exactly the sort of finish Mickelson wanted heading to the British Open, which begins Thursday at Carnoustie, about a two-hour drive away.
 
He's still trying to erase the memory of that U.S. Open meltdown at Winged Foot 13 months ago, where a terrible drive on the 72nd hole led to a double-bogey -- and left him one stroke behind winner Geoff Ogilvy.
 
'I really struggled off the tee and the back nine was a fight for me,' said Mickelson, who bogeyed three of his last five holes at Loch Lomond, including the 18th twice.
 
Havret qualified for his first major, clinching the win with an up-and-down from a greenside bunker. He sank a 6-footer for par in the playoff, then was doused with champagne by countryman Thomas Levet.
 
Now it's on to Carnoustie, where another Frenchman, Jean van de Velde, improbably squandered a three-stroke lead on the final hole of regulation at the 1999 British Open. He went on to lose to Paul Lawrie in a playoff.
 
Havret almost won his place in the Open last Sunday at The K Club, but he finished third in the European Open.
 
'I was disappointed but I knew I had another chance, especially on a course like this that I love so much,' he said.
 
With a one-stroke lead going to the final hole of regulation, Mickelson drove into thick rough along the right side of the fairway. He needed a chip shot and two putts for bogey, while Havret got down in two from 15 feet to force the playoff, both players at 14-under 270 as they headed back to the tee box at 18.
 
Mickelson's redo drive plopped into the shin-high reeds along the water on the left side of the fairway, forcing him to hit an awkward shot that skidded sideways back into the fairway. His third shot wound up on the fringe at the back of the green, leading to another bogey.
 
'I just tried to make a good swing and blocked it left,' Mickelson said. 'I hit a good shot out of the swamp, but I hit the third shot way too hard.'
 
Mickelson, who shot a 2-under 69 in the final round, also bogeyed the 14th and 16th holes in regulation. He bounced back with birdies at the 15th and 17th.
 
'Greg played very solid golf and I played very erratic golf,' Mickelson said. 'I made birdies and bogeys and he just played steady with solid pars and ultimately that won out in the playoff because he was just much more consistent.'
 
Ernie Els (65) finished one shot back at 271, taking third with a 40-foot birdie on the final hole. It was his fourth straight birdie on the 18th.
 
Luke Donald (64), Richard Sterne (64), Pelle Edberg (66) and Louis Oosthuizen (68) tied for fourth at 273.
 
Mickelson, whose only victory abroad was in the 1993 Perrier Open in Paris, a second-tier event, began the day with a one-stroke lead. He stayed in front until the 14th hole, when his bogey combined with Havret's birdie left them tied for the lead.
 
Havret closed with a 68.
 
'When Greg plays solid like that,' Mickelson said, 'not only does he deserve to win, but he makes himself very tough to beat.'
 
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    Five-time Open champ Thompson passes at 88

    By Associated PressJune 20, 2018, 1:35 am

    MELBOURNE, Australia - Golf Australia says the family of five-time Open Championship winner Peter Thomson has announced his death. He was 88.

    Thomson had been suffering from Parkinson's disease for more than four years and died at his Melbourne home surrounded by family members on Wednesday morning.

    Born on Aug, 23, 1929, Thomson was two months short of his 89th birthday.

    The first Australian to win the British Open, Thomson went on to secure the title five times between 1954 and 1965, a record equaled only by American Tom Watson.

    On the American senior circuit. he won nine times in 1985.

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    USC's Gaston leaves to become head coach at A&M

    By Ryan LavnerJune 19, 2018, 11:00 pm

    In a major shakeup in the women’s college golf world, USC coach Andrea Gaston has accepted an offer to become the new head coach at Texas A&M.

    Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

    Gaston, who informed her players of her decision Monday night, has been one of the most successful coaches over the past two decades, leading the Trojans to three NCAA titles and producing five NCAA individual champions during her 22-year reign. They have finished in the top 5 at nationals in an NCAA-record 13 consecutive seasons.

    This year was arguably Gaston’s most impressive coaching job. She returned last fall after undergoing treatment for uterine cancer, but a promising season was seemingly derailed after losing two stars to the pro ranks at the halfway point. Instead, she guided a team with four freshmen and a sophomore to the third seed in stroke play and a NCAA semifinals appearance. Of the four years that match play has been used in the women’s game, USC has advanced to the semifinals three times.  

    Texas A&M could use a coach with Gaston’s track record.

    Last month the Aggies fired coach Trelle McCombs after 11 seasons following a third consecutive NCAA regional exit. A&M had won conference titles as recently as 2010 (Big 10) and 2015 (SEC), but this year the team finished 13th at SECs.

    The head-coaching job at Southern Cal is one of the most sought-after in the country and will have no shortage of outside interest. If the Trojans look to promote internally, men’s assistant Justin Silverstein spent four years under Gaston and helped the team win the 2013 NCAA title.  

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    Spieth 'blacked out' after Travelers holeout

    By Will GrayJune 19, 2018, 9:44 pm

    CROMWELL, Conn. – It was perhaps the most-replayed shot (and celebration) of the year.

    Jordan Spieth’s bunker holeout to win the Travelers Championship last year in a playoff over Daniel Berger nearly broke the Internet, as fans relived that raucous chest bump between Spieth and caddie Michael Greller after Spieth threw his wedge and Greller threw his rake.

    Back in Connecticut to defend his title, Spieth admitted that he has watched replays of the scene dozens of times – even if, in the heat of the moment, he wasn’t exactly choreographing every move.


    Travelers Championship: Articles, photos and videos


    “Just that celebration in general, I blacked out,” Spieth said. “It drops and you just react. For me, I’ve had a few instances where I’ve been able to celebrate or react on a 72nd, 73rd hole, 74th hole, whatever it may be, and it just shows how much it means to us.”

    Spieth and Greller’s celebration was so memorable that tournament officials later shipped the rake to Greller as a keepsake. It’s a memory that still draws a smile from the defending champ, whose split-second decision to go for a chest bump over another form of celebration provided an appropriate cap to a high-energy sequence of events.

    “There’s been a lot of pretty bad celebrations on the PGA Tour. There’s been a lot of missed high-fives,” Spieth said. “I’ve been part of plenty of them. Pretty hard to miss when I’m going into Michael for a chest bump.”

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    Pregnant Lewis playing final events before break

    By Randall MellJune 19, 2018, 9:27 pm

    Stacy Lewis will be looking to make the most of her last three starts of 2018 in her annual return to her collegiate roots this week.

    Lewis, due to give birth to her first child on Nov. 3, will tee it up in Friday’s start to the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship at Pinnacle Country Club in Rogers, Arkansas. She won the NCAA individual women’s national title in 2007 while playing at the University of Arkansas. She is planning to play the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship next week and then the Marathon Classic two weeks after that before taking the rest of the year off to get ready for her baby’s arrival.

    Lewis, 33, said she is beginning to feel the effects of being with child.

    “Things have definitely gotten harder, I would say, over the last week or so, the heat of the summer and all that,” Lewis said Tuesday. “I'm actually excited. I'm looking forward to the break and being able to decorate the baby's room and do all that kind of stuff and to be a mom - just super excited.”

    Lewis says she is managing her energy levels, but she is eager to compete.

    “Taking a few more naps and resting a little bit more,” she said. “Other than that, the game's been pretty good.”

    Lewis won the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship in 2014, and she was credited with an unofficial title in ’07, while still a senior at Arkansas. That event was reduced to 18 holes because of multiple rain delays. Lewis is a popular alumni still actively involved with the university.