Notes Hoffmans Wild Ride Water Woes

By Associated PressMay 11, 2007, 4:00 pm
2007 THE PLAYERSPONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. -- Charley Hoffman could have expressed a number of emotions after his first hole at THE PLAYERS Championship.
He chose to laugh.
One day and 35 holes later, he was still able to smile about his quintuple-bogey 9 on the par-4 10th Thursday. Of course, it helped that he had moved considerably closer to the leaders.
Hoffman shot a 3-under 69 in the second round Friday and moved to even-par 144, five shots behind leader Phil Mickelson. It was quite a feat given the way Hoffman opened the tournament.
'If you would have told me I would be even par after making 9 on the first hole, I probably wouldn't have believed you,' Hoffman said.
Anyone watching probably felt the same way.
Hoffman pulled his tee shot left, hit a tree limb and plugged into a bunker. He tried to blast his second shot back into the fairway, but bladed it across the green. But neither Hoffman nor the 25 spectators could find the ball, so he had to take a penalty.
He tried to reach the green with his fourth shot, but it hit a tree and ricocheted 50 yards left, stopping just short of another hazard. Still, he had to punch out from there.
His sixth shot landed in a greenside bunker -- another plug -- but he managed to chip onto the green and two-putt for a 9.
'I was happy I didn't make a 10,' Hoffman said.
The hole could have ruined his round, his week, even his return trip home. But the 30-year-old, long-haired Californian simply laughed it off.
'I wasn't too disappointed,' he said. 'I was actually pretty much just laughing. It took me until the next tee to figure out what I made.'
Hoffman stayed calm the rest of the opening round, finished 3 over, and then got to 1 under before a bogey on his final hole Friday.
'I think it got me focused and got me ready to play the next 35 holes,' said Hoffman, who won the Bob Hope Chrysler Championship in January for his first PGA TOUR title.
The famed island green at the TPC Sawgrass was less daunting Friday -- wind gusts near 40 mph subsided considerably -- but the par-3 17th was still troubling enough to break the tournament record for water-soaked shots.
After a record 50 shots landed in the water in the opening round, only 21 found the murky lagoon Friday. Still, the two-day total of 71 broke the tournament record of 67 set in four rounds in 2005.
First-round co-leader Rory Sabbatini and Chris Couch each hit two balls into the water. Sabbatini made a quadruple-bogey 7, the only one of the day.
'I didn't feel like I hit that bad of a tee shot,' said Sabbatini, who shot 79 and was seven strokes off the lead. 'It trickled off the green and into the water. I compounded the mistake by hitting poor shots from there.'
Jose Maria Olazabal was asked the difference between his first two rounds.
'Twelve strokes,' he replied, and he wasn't kidding.
Olazabal matched his worst score ever at THE PLAYERS by opening with a 78. He followed that Friday with a terrific run along the signature holes, including a 50-foot birdie on the par-3 17th -- the famed island green -- and four straight birdies when he made the turn.
'I didn't hit the ball much different than yesterday, meaning that I didn't strike the ball all that well,' the two-time Masters champion said. 'When those putts go in, it makes the difference.'
The chips went in, too, such as the 45-footer from off the green at No. 3. He finished his big run with a 30-foot birdie on No. 4, then finished with all pars for a 66, matching the best score of this tournament.
Better yet, it put him in contention on a course that he has never felt comfortable playing. One reason he feels that way is because there is no room to bail out, and Olazabal doesn't always hit it where he's aiming.
Maybe a 66 will give a little more peace. Or maybe not.
'I have to be realistic,' he said. 'The game of golf is a game of feel, and how you feel with your swing. That's what counts.'
Defending champion Stephen Ames shot 77-79 and missed the cut, becoming the sixth defending champ to miss the cut and the first since Nick Price in 1994. Calvin Peete (1986), Sandy Lyle (1988), Jodie Mudd (1991) and Steve Elkington (1992) are the others. ... Hunter Mahan holed out from 227 yards on the par-5 11th, recording a rare double eagle and the first in tournament history. He didn't enjoy it for very long, though, because he missed the cut. ... Tom Lehman ended a streak of 55 consecutive tee shots at No. 17 without hitting the water.
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    Rose's Saturday 64 matches Carnoustie Open record

    By Ryan LavnerJuly 21, 2018, 1:03 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Justin Rose needed to sink a 14-foot putt on the final hole Friday just to make the cut on the number at The Open.

    Freewheeling when he came to the course Saturday, Rose tied the lowest score ever recorded in an Open at Carnoustie.

    Entering the weekend nine shots off the lead, the world No. 3 carded a bogey-free, 7-under 64 to at least make things interesting. It won’t be known for several hours how many shots Rose will be behind, but his back-nine 30 gives him an opportunity, if the wind blows 25 mph Sunday as forecast, to challenge the leaders.

    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

    After all, Paul Lawrie was 10 shots back entering the final round here in 1999.

    “I think the birdie on 18 last night freed me up, and I’m just very happy to be out on this golf course and not down the road somewhere else this morning,” said Rose, who is at 4-under 209. “So that might have been part of the shift in mindset today. I had nothing to lose from that point of view.”

    Rose’s 64 matched Steve Stricker and Richard Green’s record score at Carnoustie (2007).

    It also was Rose’s career-low round in a major.

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    Tiger Tracker: 147th Open Championship

    By Tiger TrackerJuly 21, 2018, 12:45 pm

    Tiger Woods, in search of his 15th career major championship title, started the weekend six off the lead at Carnoustie. We're tracking him in Round 3 of The Open.

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    Watch: Full replays of The Open coverage

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 21, 2018, 12:20 pm

    NBC Sports and Golf Channel are showcasing nearly 50 hours of live coverage of the 147th Open. Missed anything? Well, you can catch up right here. Click on the links below for replays from Carnoustie, broken down into daily segments:

    Saturday, Day 3 (Times ET)

    4:30-7AM (Watch): Sunny skies and birdies were on the menu early in Round 3, as Justin Rose made his way around Carnoustie in 64 strokes. Click here or on the image below to watch.

    Friday, Day 2 (Times ET)

    8:20AM-3PM (Watch): As the skies cleared on Friday afternoon, defending champion Jordan Spieth made a run to try and regain the claret jug. Click here or on the image below to watch. Also, click here to watch the full replay of the marquee group: Jordan Spieth, Justin Rose and Kiradech Aphibarnrat.

    1:30-8:20AM (Watch): On a rainy Friday morning at Carnoustie, Rory McIlroy shot 69 to reach 4 under, while Zach Johnson fired a 67 for the early lead. Click here or on the image below to watch. Also, click here to watch the full replay of the marquee group: Brooks Koepka, Ian Poulter and Cameron Smith.

    Thursday, Day 1 (Times ET)

    Noon-4PM (Watch): Tiger Woods was up and down in the afternoon, as winds picked up a little and no one could catch Kevin Kisner. Click here or on the image below to watch. Also, click here to watch the full replay of the marquee group: Woods, Russell Knox and Hideki Matsuyama.

    1:30-8:25AM (Watch): Defending champion Jordan Spieth got off to a good start, while Kevin Kisner (66) set the early pace. Click here or on the image below to watch. Also, click here to watch the full replay of the marquee group: Rickie Fowler, Jon Rahm and Chris Wood.

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    How to watch The Open on TV and online

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 21, 2018, 8:30 am

    You want to watch the 147th Open? Here’s how you can do it.

    Golf Channel and NBC Sports will be televising 182 hours of overall programming from the men's third major of the year at Carnoustie

    In addition to the traditional coverage, the two networks will showcase three live alternate feeds: marquee groups, featured holes (our new 3-hole channel) and spotlight action. You can also watch replays of full-day coverage, Thursday-Sunday, in the Golf Channel app, NBC Sports apps, and on  

    Here’s the weekly TV schedule, with live stream links in parentheses. You can view all the action on the Golf Channel mobile, as well. Alternate coverage is noted in italics:

    (All times Eastern; GC=Golf Channel; NBC=NBC Sports; or check the GLE app)

    Monday, July 16

    GC: 7-9AM: Morning Drive (

    GC: 9-11AM: Live From The Open (

    GC: 7-9PM: Live From The Open (

    Tuesday, July 17

    GC: 6AM-2PM: Live From The Open (

    Wednesday, July 18

    GC: 6AM-2PM: Live From The Open (

    Thursday, July 19

    GC: Midnight-1:30AM: Midnight Drive (

    GC: Day 1: The Open, live coverage: 1:30AM-4PM ( Day 1: The Open, Spotlight: 1:30AM-4PM ( Day 1: The Open, Marquee Groups: 4AM-3PM ( Day 1: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 4AM-3PM (

    GC: Live From The Open: 4-5PM (

    Friday, July 20

    GC: Day 2: The Open, live coverage: 1:30AM-4PM ( Day 2: The Open, Spotlight: 1:30AM-4PM ( Day 2: The Open, Marquee Groups: 4AM-3PM ( Day 2: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 4AM-3PM (

    GC: Live From The Open: 4-5PM (

    Saturday, July 21

    GC: Day 3: The Open, live coverage: 4:30-7AM (

    NBC: Rd. 3: The Open, live coverage: 7AM-3PM ( Day 3: The Open, Spotlight: 4:30AM-3PM ( Day 3: The Open, Marquee Groups: 5AM-3PM ( Day 3: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 5AM-3PM (

    GC: Live From The Open: 3-4PM (

    Sunday, July 22

    GC: Day 4: The Open, live coverage: 4:30-7AM (

    NBC: Rd. 4: The Open, live coverage: 7AM-2:30PM ( Day 4: The Open, Spotlight: 4:30AM-2:30PM ( Day 4: The Open, Marquee Groups: 5AM-2PM ( Day 4: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 5AM-2PM (

    GC: Live From The Open: 2:30-4PM (