Notes Big Dreams for Wie

By Associated PressJuly 6, 2004, 4:00 pm
2004 U.S. WomenSOUTH HADLEY, Mass. -- Michelle Wie doesn't need a special exemption for the next U.S. Women's Open because she finished in the top 20 at Orchards Golf Club.

That doesn't mean she won't experience U.S. Open qualifying.

B.J. Wie said his daughter likely will enter the 18-hole local qualifier for the men's U.S. Open, part of the plan for the 14-year-old from Hawaii to compete more against the men next summer.
 
Wie, who tied for 13th place at the Orchards with 17-year-old Paula Creamer, tried to qualify for the U.S. Amateur Public Links and missed by one shot. It was her fourth time playing against the men. She previously missed the cut on the Canadian, Nationwide and PGA Tour, although her 68 at the Sony Open to miss by one shot turned heads.

Next year, she is expected to play in the Western Amateur and try the Publinx qualifying again.

'She learns a lot when she plays against the men,' said B.J. Wie, as he prepared for a 10-day break away from golf while visiting family in Los Angeles. 'The only thing she wants is to get better than she was the year before.'

The USGA took some heat for giving Wie an exemption instead of having her go through 36 holes of sectional qualifying like Creamer, Erica Blasberg and the rest of the Curtis Cup team.

What would have happened had Wie finished outside the top 20?

She might have received another exemption next year, anyway.

'The slate is wiped clean from this moment forward, ' USGA executive director David Fay said Sunday as Wie was about to start her final round. 'I hope we are in a situation where we have amateurs that, by their play, earn consideration for a special exemption.'

And what of Creamer?

The senior-to-be at Leadbetter Golf Academy tied for second and finished 13th in consecutive weeks on the LPGA Tour. That came after the field was set for the Women's Open, and Fay said Creamer's performance the last two weeks might have been considered for an exemption next year.

Alas, none of it matters. Both secured spots in the field at Cherry Hills in Denver. But the USGA made it clear that they are looking as much at amateurs as they are past major champions, such as Betsy King and Dottie Pepper.

The question for Creamer is whether she shows up at Cherry Hills as an amateur.

Her father, Paul Creamer, said she has a multitude of options that include going to Q-school in the fall but still finishing up her senior year of high school. Creamer already has taken college visits to Arizona and Arizona State, and plans more visits this fall.
 

ORCHARDS FUTURE
USGA executive director and baseball fanatic David Fay referred to Orchards Golf Club as a late-season acquisition for the U.S. Women's Open.

Lake Merced pulled out of the rotation about the time Orchards inquired about hosting another U.S. Junior Girls. Fay knew the course because his wife is a Mount Holyoke alum, and he gave it the biggest event in women's golf.

It turned out to be a great week. The Donald Ross course was well-received and there were record crowds.

The Women's Open is scheduled to visit well-known courses such as Cherry Hills, Oakmont, Interlachen and Pebble Beach over the next several years. Where would a quaint course like the Orchards fit in?

Somewhere in the schedule, most likely.

'It is linked to the oldest women's college in America, built by a father for his daughter. It works,' Fay said. 'Given the success here, if the college invites us back, this would have to be given consideration -- unless we don't want to go to places where you have the most crowds ever and the players think it's an exceptional course.'
 
ONE YEAR LATER
Dan Wilson has a unique perspective on how much Michelle Wie has matured in one year -- not just her golf at the U.S. Women's Open, but her etiquette.

Wilson caddied for Pat Hurst last week and they played final two rounds with Wie. A year ago, he was working for Danielle Ammaccapane when fireworks went off the first two days at Pumpkin Ridge. The teenager hit out of turn and her father-caddie, B.J. Wie, was accused of moving around the green as others were trying to putt.

Wilson said there was no trouble at the Orchards, and that Wie was no different than any other player.

'It was a joy to be paired with them,' he said. 'It was a totally different experience from last year.'

Wilson didn't want to talk about the incidents last year that led to B.J. Wie accusing Ammaccapane of bumping his daughter, and Ammaccapane berating Wie in the scoring tent. But he said he was a little apprehensive about the weekend pairing, and pleasantly surprised how it went.

'She was great,' he said.

Ammaccapane did not play at Orchards because she is pregnant.
 
GRAND OPENING
Now this is how you break in a golf course.

Tom Lehman played a tournament to commemorate the opening of Arroyo Trabuco Golf Club in Mission Viejo, Calif., which he co-designed with architect Casey O'Callaghan. When he got to the 231-yard fourth hole, Lehman hit a 5-iron that looked good all the way -- a hole-in-one.

So, what does Lehman think of the hole?

'Too easy,' he told The Orange County Register. 'I need to redesign it.'
 
DIVOTS
Natalie Gulbis has released her 2005 calendar that features the California blonde in swimwear, casual clothes and athletic outfits. It came out last week at the U.S. Women's Open, where she tied for 37th. Meantime, the equally fetching Paula Creamer, 17, tied for 13th and shared low amateur honors with Michelle Wie. ... Tiger Woods (7) and Retief Goosen (2) are the only players with multiple majors since 1999. On the LPGA Tour, they share the wealth. Karrie Webb has won six majors since 1999, followed by Annika Sorenstam (5), Juli Inkster (4) and Meg Mallon and Se Ri Pak with two each. ... The USGA is looking for a golf course in Britain for U.S. Open qualifying next year. Among the issues is making sure the club's membership does not discriminate against women.
 
STAT OF THE WEEK
Michelle Wie and Paula Creamer have played four LPGA Tour events this year. Had they not been amateurs, Wie would have earned $191,526 and Creamer would have made $190,236.
 
FINAL WORD
'Because I was too fat.' -- Darren Clarke, when asked why he went on a diet. Clarke has lost 44 pounds and 6 inches around his waist since September.
 
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    Garcia among bubble boys keeping playoff hopes alive

    By Randall MellAugust 18, 2018, 12:34 am

    Sergio Garcia gave himself a chance to keep his perfect FedExCup Playoffs record going with his rally Friday at the Wyndham Championship.

    D.A. Points moved into position to make a historic leap into the postseason.

    And Johnson Wagner dunked his last shot of the day from long range to keep his hopes of making the playoffs alive.

    But the day didn’t end nearly as well for Tyrone Van Aswegen’s FedExCup hopes.

    Van Aswegen didn’t do himself any favors trying to hold on to the 125th spot on the FedExCup points list. He missed the cut by a shot.

    Only the top 125 advance to The Northern Trust and next week’s start to the playoffs.

    Van Aswegen wasn’t alone among “bubble boys” missing the cut. No. 122 Jhonattan Vegas, No. 123 Seamus Power, No. 124 Martin Piller, No. 126 Chad Campbell and No. 127 Robert Garrigus all failed to make the weekend.

    Garcia is among 13 players who have advanced to the FedExCup Playoffs every year since they began in 2007, but his run was in jeopardy of ending starting the week. He’s 131st on the FedExCup points list

    With a 65 Friday following his opening round 66, Garcia is in more than a great position to advance. He’s in position to win the Wyndham. He is tied for fourth, five shots off the lead. The day ended with Garcia projected to move up to 118th on the FedExCup points list.


    Wyndham Championship: Full-field scores | Full coverage

    Current FedExCup points list


    “I'm just going to try to keep building on the things that I did well these first two days,” Garcia said. “Whatever happens, happens. Like I said at the beginning of the week, if I have a great weekend, then it will be great. If I don't have a great weekend, it will still be great because

    I'll get to rest.”

    Points started the week 214th on the FedExCup points list. With back-to-back 64s, he trails only Brandt Snedeker going into the weekend. He’s projected to move to 81st in points. Nobody has ever started the Wyndham Championship that far back in points and qualified for the playoffs. Davis Love III was 186th when he won and advanced in 2015.

    Wagner, 136th on the FedExCup points list, went to spectacular lengths Friday to keep his playoff hopes alive. He was outside the cut line until holing his 153-yard approach at the last.

    Bill Haas, who is among those 13 players to have qualified for the playoffs every year, started the week 150th in points. He can keep his perfect playoff record going with a big weekend. He shot 68 Friday to make the cut. He’s tied for 52nd in the tournament.

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    Points two back after missing 16 of 17 cuts

    By Randall MellAugust 17, 2018, 11:54 pm

    What’s the better story come Sunday?

    Brandt Snedeker turning his 59 in the opening round into a victory at the Wyndham Championship?

    Or D.A. Points winning after missing 16 cuts in his last 17 starts?

    They’re both scripts in the works at Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro, N.C.

    Points, who has been struggling this season with a herniated disc that causes numbness in his fingers, has broken through his season-long funk to shoot back-to-back 64s. He starts the weekend in second place, two shots behind Snedeker.


    Full-field scores from Wyndham Championship

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    “It's been difficult,” Points said of his slump. “It's been hard on my family. I was in this position a couple years ago, and I clawed my way back and won in Puerto Rico.

    “I had that big downturn, and I clawed my way out of it just to find myself way back down in another deep hole again.”

    Points, 41, is a three-time PGA Tour winner. He won his first title playing alongside Bill Murray at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am in 2011 and two years later won the Shell Houston Open. He slipped into a three-year funk after that, before rebuilding his game and winning the Puerto Rico Open last year.

    “Hopefully, this is my way of starting to claw back out,” Points said.

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    New 'Mr. 59' Snedeker needs Day 2 rally to keep Wyndham lead

    By Randall MellAugust 17, 2018, 11:24 pm

    Brandt Snedeker struggled coming off the emotional high that comes with shooting 59, but it didn’t stop him from rallying Friday to try to turn his historic round into a victory at the Wyndham Championship.

    After a sluggish start to the second round, Snedeker caught fire on the back nine at Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro, N.C., to take the lead going into the weekend.

    With a 3-under 67, Snedeker moved to 14 under overall, two shots ahead of D.A. Points (64).

    “I knew it was going to be tough” Snedeker said. “It wasn't going to be the same way it was yesterday. Kind of battling the emotion of everybody pulling hard for you, wanting to see you do it again. So the front nine was disappointing.”

    A day after becoming the ninth player in PGA Tour history to post a sub-60 tournament round, Snedeker opened with three bogeys and two birdies on the front nine. He said it was a struggle to begin anew.


    Full-field scores from Wyndham Championship

    Wyndham Championship: Articles, photos and videos


    “You hear people telling you every two seconds, `Mr. 59,’ or saying how cool it was to watch it,” Snedeker said. “Phone's still blowing up this morning, guys in the locker room are still talking to me about it. So, yes, totally on your mind. You can't ignore it. You can't try to forget about it. Hardest thing is trying to get back into a rhythm.”

    Snedeker did with an eagle and two birdies on the back nine. Rolling in a 30-foot eagle putt at the 15th gave him back the lead he lost earlier in the round.

    “To see that go in was huge,” Snedeker said.

    Not every player to break 60 on the PGA Tour has gone on to win. In fact, Snedeker is looking to become just the fifth player to do so.

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    Garwood (64) leads Dick's Sporting Goods Open

    By Associated PressAugust 17, 2018, 9:53 pm

    ENDICOTT, N.Y. - Doug Garwood birdied the final three holes for an 8-under 64 and the first-round lead Friday in the Dick's Sporting Goods Open.

    The 55-year-old Garwood had nine birdies and a bogey, playing his final nine holes - the front nine at En-Joie Golf Club - in 6-under 31.

    ''Drove it well, hit the irons well, pitched well, putted well, thought well,'' Garwood said. ''I got to a point I was just making birdies and I kind of lost track of how it was going,'' Garwood said. ''That's always a good thing.''

    He won the 2016 SAS Championship for his lone PGA Tour Champions title.


    Full-field scores from the Dick’s Sporting Goods Open


    "I haven't been playing great this year, but I've been working hard on my game and things I've been working on are paying off,'' Garwood said. ''My golf, I take it a shot at a time, don't think about too far in advance because you really can't control, you know, the 13th hole tomorrow. It's just about the tee shot on No. 1.''

    Michael Bradley and Marco Dawson shot 65, Woody Austin and Clark Dennis followed at 66, and Bob Estes and Tom Gillis were at 67.

    ''It was a good day,'' Bradley said. ''I've traditionally not driven the ball well here and you've got to drive the ball good here to shoot a good score. I drove the ball well and made a few putts, so that was that.''

    Kenny Perry, the 3M Championship winner two weeks ago in Minnesota, had a 68. Bernard Langer and Miguel Angel Jimenez each shot 70. Langer won the 2014 tournament. Jimenez is coming off a victory at St. Andrews in the British Senior Open.

    Defending champion Scott McCarron had a 72. Kevin Sutherland also had a 72. He shot the only 59 in PGA Tour Champions history in the 2014 event. John Daly, the winner of the PGA Tour's 1992 B.C. Open at En-Joie, opened with a 73.