Notes Down Under Aussie Caddie Smackdown

By Associated PressJune 15, 2008, 4:00 pm
2008 U.S. OpenSAN DIEGO -- Stuart Appleby was, uh, down under in a hurry in the third round of the U.S. Open.
 
The leader by one shot after 36 holes at Torrey Pines South Course, the Australian began to fall apart on the 37th hole. By the time he finished his bogey-strewn round of 8-over 79, he was an also-ran at 5-over 218. That was eight shots behind Tiger Woods, who had a 1-under 70 on a painful left knee to take the lead at 3-under 210.
 
The final damage for Appleby: seven bogeys and one double bogey. His only birdie came way, way too late, on the 18th.
 
Teeing off with Rocco Mediate in the final group, Appleby set the tone for his awful afternoon by making bogey from the bunker on the first hole by missing a 5-foot putt.
 
This is the first Open played on a city-owned course, and at the worst possible time Appleby looked like a muni-course player.
 
He four-putted No. 5 for his double bogey. On No. 9, he turned a three-foot birdie chance into a three-putt bogey.
 
After rolling in a 10-foot birdie putt on 18, he raised his arms'yes, he can make one, and yes, it was finally over. He had 34 putts, tied for 68th in the 80-man field.
 
A day earlier on 18, Appleby sank a 45-foot birdie putt to take his first lead in a major since he was one shot ahead of Woods going into the final round of the 2007 Masters.
 
He and Woods played together that day at Augusta. Woods finished second to Zach Johnson while Appleby made a 6 on the first hole, trudged through a cold, windy day and wound up shooting 75 to finish seventh.
 
SURGING SERGIO
Imagine where Sergio Garcia would be if he hadnt made such a mess of his first seven holes at the U.S. Open.
 
The tournament had barely started Thursday and Garcia already was in danger of missing the cut. Two double bogeys put him 6 over before hed even made his first turn.
 
Sergio has been surging ever since, going 3 under on his last 47 holes, including consecutive rounds of 1-under 70 on Friday and Saturday at Torrey Pines South Course.
 
Garcia was tied with Mike Weir, Ernie Els and John Merrick at 3-over 216 going into Sundays final round. That was six shots behind Tiger Woods, who had a 70 on a sore left knee Saturday to take the lead at 3-under 210. A lot of ground to make up, for sure, especially considering Woods has never lost a major from the lead.
 
Recovering from his early mistakes has been nice. Garcia wishes theyd never happened.
 
That definitely wasnt the plan, I can tell you that, said the Spaniard, who just flat-out missed fairways and greens in his first seven holes. But, yeah, you know, when youre comfortable with your game, when you have confidence in your game, you know you can come back.
 
Garcias only bogeys Saturday were on Nos. 6 and 8, sandwiched around the first of three birdies.
 
I would love to be a couple better, just to make sure that I was a little closer, he said. But, you know, every time you shoot under par here you shouldnt be too greedy, I guess. So its not too bad, and thats what I did the last few days. Unfortunately I just had a bad start on Thursday. But Im slowly coming back.
 
Garcia had a nice birdie on the par-5 13th, the hole where Phil Mickelson imploded with a quadruple-bogey 9 and Woods wowed the crowd with an eagle.
 
Garcia hit a strong drive just down the right side of the fairway, a 5-iron that landed short of the pin and ran about 25 feet beyond, then two-putted for birdie.
 
Its getting there, Garcia said. Like I said, I played very nicely yesterday. I felt very, very good yesterday. Today I felt like I hit a lot of good shots, maybe not as many as yesterday, but its not easy. Its a U.S. Open. Thats why its a major. But Im pretty happy and looking forward to hopefully having a good finish tomorrow.
 
THERES ALWAYS NEXT YEAR
San Diego native Phil Mickelson looked like hed just seen a ghost when he walked off Torrey Pines South Course on Saturday, his 5-over 76 having dropped him to 9-over 222.
 
Yeah, his quadruple-bogey 9 on the 13th hole was supernatural, all right, something he hadnt done at city-owned Torrey Pines since he was kid.
 
He had waited six years to play for the national championship on a course he had grown up playing, and now the chance to win it was gone.
 
After cooling down for about 15 minutes, that sly Mickelson grin had partially returned.
 
I think its an exciting Open, Lefty said. Im certainly disappointed that Im not in the mix right now. That was the goal. So Im going to come out tomorrow, enjoy my final round. And Bethpage is one of the best places ever' one of the best memories in the game of golf Ive ever had. I get to go back there next year for the U.S. Open. So Im excited about the chance to try to break through and win my first U.S. Open there.
 
In 2002, Mickelson finished second to Tiger Woods at Bethpage Black, which is owned by the state of New York and became the first truly public course to host an Open. Torrey Pines is the second.
 
CADDIE SMACKDOWN
The USGA decided there was no need to beef up security around the Phil Mickelson-Adam Scott pairing Saturday, one day after Scotts caddie went into the gallery to confront a heckler at the U.S. Open.
 
That group has had extra security the whole time as it is, said Dan Hoban, the USGAs director of security. We have 50,000 people and we just had two drunks that got out of control. As far as were concerned, its over.
 
It might not be over for caddie Tony Navarro, who could face disciplinary action for leaving the field of play and striking a fan.
 
On the final hole of play for the threesome of Tiger Woods, Mickelson and Scott on Friday, two fans, a father and a son, were arrested by San Diego police for investigation of public intoxication. Thomas W. Campbell, 62, of Upland, Calif., and Thomas J. Campbell, 37, of Apple Valley, Calif., spent the night in detox, Hoban said.
 
After hearing a fan verbally abuse him and his golfer, Scotts caddie went under the ropes that separate the fans from the field of play on the ninth hole and head-butted the younger Campbell, according to witnesses. The two wrestled to the ground and Mickelsons caddie, Jim Mackay, went through the ropes to assist Navarro and summon police.
 
The Campbells were handcuffed and taken away, and the 7-year-old son of the younger Campbell was placed in the care of an aunt, Hoban said.
 
BIG BOAT
America, the 139-foot replica of the schooner that gave the Americas Cup its name, was sailing on the Pacific Ocean just off Torrey Pines on Saturday, flying a giant American flag from its mainmast. Operated by businessman Troy Sears, America is berthed at a downtown marina on San Diego Bay.
 
The U.S. Open is the first major played in San Diego. The city has previously been host to three Super Bowls, the Americas Cup three times, two World Series and one Final Four.
 
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    Johnson, Moore co-lead Valero Texas Open through 36

    By Associated PressApril 20, 2018, 11:32 pm

    SAN ANTONIO - Zach Johnson was going nowhere in the Valero Texas Open when it all changed with one putt.

    He made an 8-foot par putt on the 13th hole of the opening round to stay at 2 under. He followed with a big drive, a hybrid into 12 feet and an eagle. Johnson was on his way, and he kept right on going Friday to a 7-under 65 and a share of the early 36-hole lead with Ryan Moore.

    ''You just never know. That's the beauty of this game,'' Johnson said. ''I felt like I was hitting some solid shots and wasn't getting rewarded, and you've just got to stay in it. You've got to persevere, grind it out, fight for pars. You just never know.''

    Moore had three birdies over his last five holes for a 67 and joined Johnson at 9-under 135.

    Ben Crane (66), Martin Laird (65) and David Hearn (68) were three shots out of the lead among those who played Friday morning. Billy Horschel and Keegan Bradley shot 71 and were four shots behind at 5-under 139.

    Sergio Garcia, who consulted Greg Norman on the design of the AT&T Oaks Course at the TPC San Antonio, might have a long stay in his first time at the Texas Open since 2010. Garcia shot an even-par 72, and at one point became so frustrated he threw his driver into the shrubs.


    Full-field scores from the Valero Texas Open

    Valero Texas Open: Articles, photos and videos


    Garcia finished at 2-over 146 and was outside the cut. He was in jeopardy of missing his second straight cut, depending on afternoon scoring.

    Johnson, a two-time winner of the Texas Open, appeared to be headed to a short week until the key par save on the 13th hole, followed by his eagle, par and three straight birdies. He began the second round Friday with five birdies in a six-hole stretch on the back nine, a sixth birdie on the par-4 first hole, and then an eagle on the short par-4 fifth when he holed out from a greenside bunker.

    The only sour taste to his second round was a three-putt bogey from about 30 feet on his final hole. Even so, the view was much better than it was Thursday afternoon.

    Moore thought he had wasted a good birdie opportunity on the par-5 14th hole when he left his 50-foot eagle putt about 6 feet short. But he made that, and then holed a similar putt from 8 feet for birdie on the next hole and capped his good finish with a 15-foot putt on the 17th.

    ''That was a huge momentum putt there,'' Moore said of the 14th. ''It was a tough putt from down there with a lot of wind. That green is pretty exposed and ... yeah, really short and committed to that second putt really well and knocked it right in the middle.''

    The birdies on the 14th and 15th were important to Moore because he missed a pair of 10-foot birdie tries to start the back nine.

    ''So it was nice to get those and get going in the right direction on the back,'' he said.

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    Daly-Allen team grabs Legends of Golf lead on Day 2

    By Associated PressApril 20, 2018, 11:14 pm

    RIDGEDALE, Mo. - John Daly and Michael Allen took the second-round lead Friday in the cool and breezy Bass Pro Shops Legends of Golf.

    Daly and Allen shot an 8-under 46 on the Top of the Rock par-3 course with wind gusting to 15 mph and the temperature only in the high-50s at Big Cedar Lodge. They had three birdies on the front nine in alternate-shot play and added five more on the back in better-ball play to get to 13 under.

    ''Michael and I go back to the South African days in the late 80s and playing that tour,'' Daly said. ''We've been buddies since. He's just fun to play with. We feed off each other pretty good. And if he's not comfortable guinea-pigging on one hole, I'll go first.''

    On Thursday, they opened with a 66 on the regulation Buffalo Ridge course. They will rotate to the 13-hole Mountain Top par-3 course on Saturday, and return to Top of the Rock for the final round Sunday.

    ''I went to high school in Jeff City, so it's cool to have the fans behind us,'' Daly said.

    Allen won the PGA Tour Champions team event with David Frost in 2012 and Woody Austin in 2016.

    ''I'm just here to free up John,'' Allen said. ''It was fun. Luckily, I started making good putts today. We just want to keep the good times rolling.''


    Full-field scores from the Bass Pro Shops Legends of Golf


    Defending champions Vijay Singh and Carlos Franco were a stroke back along with Bernhard Langer-Tom Lehman and Paul Broadhurst-Kirk Triplett. Singh and Franco had a 7-under 32 in best-ball play at Mountain Top, and Lehman-Langer and Broadhurst-Tripplet each shot 6-under 48 at Top of the Rock.

    ''Part of the issue here is all the tees are elevated, so you're up high hitting to a green that's down below and the wind is blowing, and there is more time for that wind to affect it,'' Lehman said. ''If you guess wrong on the wind, you can hit a really good shot and kind of look stupid.''

    Former UCLA teammates Scott McCarron and Brandt Jobe were two strokes back at 11 under with Steve Flesch and David Toms and the Spanish side of Jose Maria Olazabal and Miguel Angel Jimenez. McCarron-Jobe had a 47, and Jimenez-Olazabal a 48 at Top of the Rock, and Tom Flesch shot 34 at Mountain Top.

    First-round leaders Jeff Maggert and Jesper Parnevik had a 52 at Top of the Rock to fall three shots back at 10 under. Madison, Wisconsin, friends Steve Stricker and Jerry Kelly also were 10 under after a 32 at Mountain Top. Jay Haas aced the 131-yard seventh hole at Mountain Top with a gap wedge. Haas and fellow 64-year-old Peter Jacobsen were 8 under after a 32.

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    Football coach hates golf: Don't need practice swearing

    By Jason CrookApril 20, 2018, 10:15 pm

    Some football coaches are a little more talkative than others. On one side of the spectrum, there's Bill Belichick. On the other sits Washington State football coach Mike Leach.

    Leach always delivers the goods, and when asked recently if he liked golf, he didn't hold back:

    As wrong as the 57-year-old is on the topic (golf is awesome), the man makes some hilarious points:

    • “It’s boring. I don’t care where that ball goes.”

    • "Golfers are always practicing their swing. But you know what I never did? I never practice fishing in my living room.”

    • "They'll line up over the ball and they'll say they're going to do something that you can't do with a sniper rifle and a scope, but they're going to do it with a stick and a ball."

    • “Golf’s pretty much for people that don’t swear effectively enough or need practice. And so there are people that need golf, and I don’t think I do.”

    So in conclusion, it's confirmed: Mike Leach - not a golf guy.

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    Quiros takes 1-shot lead in Morocco

    By Associated PressApril 20, 2018, 8:22 pm

    RABAT, Morocco - Alvaro Quiros shot a solid 2-under 70 in windy conditions to push into a one-shot lead after two rounds of the Trophee Hassan II in Morocco on Friday.

    Quiros fought the elements, carding seven birdies and five bogeys to move to 7 under overall and take the outright lead at the halfway point of the European Tour event.

    The Spaniard was one clear of Andrew Dodt, who moved into contention with a 4-under 68 at the Royal Golf Dar Es Salam course. Dodt dropped two shots in his first six holes but the Australian recovered from that shaky start to collect four birdies and an eagle.


    Full-field scores from the Trophee Hassan II


    Erik van Rooyen of South Africa was another shot back in third on 5 under after his 71.

    Bradley Dredge of Wales, who shared the first-round lead with Quiros, slipped off the pace with a 1-over 73. He's tied for fourth with Austin Connelly of Canada (71), 4 under par and three shots behind Quiros.