Notes Kim a Favorite Marriage Proposals to Creamer

By Associated PressSeptember 10, 2005, 4:00 pm
2005 Solheim CupCARMEL, Ind. -- The Solheim Cup atmosphere has given Christina Kim license to loosen up. As if she needed permission.
 
The 21-year-old California native with one LPGA Tour victory and a wealth of comedic talent is known for her unusual antics. But at this week's international event, Kim has become Crooked Stick's fan favorite.
 
In Kim's world, nothing is out of line and the stodgy, old rulebook is history.
 
She trades high-fives with fans between holes, usually talks to the ball like she is former American League Rookie of the Year Mark Fidrych and urges fans to make more noise. So in this tailgate-party atmosphere, Kim feels right at home.
 
``She's a firecracker, I just love her,'' said U.S. captain Nancy Lopez, a Hall of Famer. ``She gets everybody fired up. The team loves her.''
 
Saturday was a perfect example of Kim's versatility.
 
She played some wonderful shots, overcame a few mistakes and made what she called the best putt of her life: A par-saving 10-footer on No. 15 that kept the Americans 3-up against European rookies Ludivine Kreutz and Gwladys Nocera.
 
The celebration was purely Kim, too -- a flamboyant wave of the cap, a quick kick of the leg and a sprint from the 15th green to 16th tee before playing partner Natalie Gulbis fixed the ribbon in her pigtail. Then Kim sent her caddy, her father, back to retrieve the ball-marker that had fallen off the hat.
 
Kim took time in the morning to acknowledge a small group of fans on the 11th fairway who wore her trademark driving cap, and played team doctor in the afternoon by applying a bandage to partner Pat Hurst's foot.
 
Her fun-loving approach has kept teammates, such as Gulbis, relaxed. Gulbis smiled all day and sometimes laughed when Kim stuck out her tongue or bantered with the large gallery. Gulbis responded with her smoothest round in three matches.
 
And when they finally won the match 4-and-2 on No. 16, Kim jumped on top of a cooler, flailed her arms and implored the crowd to cheer louder even as Juli Inkster and Paula Creamer waited to play their approach shots on No. 16.
 
By the time, Inkster and Creamer arrived, the crowd was in a frenzy -- and, thanks in part to Kim, the Americans were ready to wrap up another match.
 
``I was kind of upset they were playing fourth today because I wanted them to be first again,'' Lopez said after putting her in the first afternoon group. ``But she says, 'Hey, we'll be cleanup. That's awesome. I love that attitude.''
 
PRACTICE PUTTING:
Laura Davies prefers to play quickly, and she was annoyed when she had to wait on several holes as the second game of the alternate-match session.
 
The culprit was Natalie Gulbis, playing in the match ahead, who practiced putting on just about every green.
 
``Why are we practice putting? We've been here since Monday,'' Davies said to Maria Hjorth as they approached the third green and Gulbis. ``It makes no sense. It's maddening.''
 
Three holes later, Davies arrived on the sixth tee and saw a familiar sight -- Gulbis alone on the green.
 
``She's doing it again,'' Davies said in disbelief.
 
Players are allowed to practice after the hole is completed, as long as they do not unduly hold up play.
 
Gulbis also practiced her putting after finishing holes Friday, and, at one point Friday afternoon, Gulbis' group was instructed to speed up play.
 
ROOKIE FATES:
European captain Catrin Nilsmark decided to keep two rookies, Ludivine Kreutz and Gwladys Nocera, out of action Friday so they could adapt to the pressure.
 
It didn't help.
 
The French playing partners lost two of the first three holes, trailed by as many as four and never got closer than two in a rout.
 
If Nilsmark had her way, they may not have played at all. But a rule adopted in 1994 requires team captains to play all 12 players before Sunday's singles matches.
 
Lopez, in contrast, thought she would need her three rookies to play well, so she got them acclimated Friday. The payoff came Saturday morning when all three -- Christina Kim, Natalie Gulbis and Paula Creamer -- won alternate-shot matches. Gulbis is now 2-1, Kim 1-0-1 and Creamer 1-1-1.
 
MARRIAGE PROPOSAL:
Two men standing beside the fourth tee, both with pot bellies and too much time on their hands, had a question for Paula Creamer.
 
One held a cardboard sign that said, ``Paula, will you marry me?'' with a box to be checked. The other held a cardboard sign that said, ``Or me?'' with another box.
 
Every player but Creamer saw the men and laughed. After Creamer split the middle with her tee shot, she looked over and started laughing.
 
``If you live in Utah, she could go with the both of you,'' Inkster said.
 
SURPRISE:
Annika Sorenstam is usually Europe's most reliable Solheim Cup players. Not Saturday morning.
 
Sorenstam, playing with Scotland's Catriona Matthew, had chances to extend their 2-up lead at Nos. 7, 8 and 9, but failed.
 
``If she had made a couple of those, I think they would have run away with the match,'' Nilsmark said.
 
Instead, Americans Michele Redman and Pat Hurst rallied with wins at Nos. 9 and 10 to square the match, and won on the 18th hole when Sorenstam hit her tee shot into the water.
 
DIVOTS:
The U.S. is now 25-28-8 all-time in the alternate-shot format. The Americans enter Sunday with a record of 48-33-7 in singles play. ... For the second consecutive day, the tee times for the best-ball were revised because the morning round went so long. ... The back nine that proved so costly for the Americans on Friday was a little more friendly Saturday morning. After losing 21 of 31 holes on Day 1, the Americans won 11 holes on the back side in the morning compared with eight for the Europeans.
 
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    Five-time Open champ Thomson passes at 88

    By Associated PressJune 20, 2018, 1:35 am

    MELBOURNE, Australia – Five-time Open Championship winner Peter Thomson has died, his family said Wednesday. 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 Open Championship, Thomson went on to secure the title five times between 1954 and 1965, a record equaled only by Tom Watson.

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

    Thomson also served as president of the Australian PGA for 32 years, designing and building courses in Australia and around the world, helping establish the Asian Tour and working behind the scenes for the Odyssey House drug rehabilitation organization where he was chairman for five years.

    He also wrote for newspapers and magazines for more than 60 years and was patron of the Australian Golf Writers Association.

    In 1979 he was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) for his service to golf and in 2001 became an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for his contributions as a player and administrator and for community service.

    Thomson is survived by his wife Mary, son Andrew and daughters Deirdre Baker, Pan Prendergast and Fiona Stanway, their spouses, 11 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

    Funeral arrangements were to be announced over the next few days.

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    Gaston leaves USC to become head coach at Texas 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.