Pettersen Leads by One at Wendys

By Associated PressAugust 21, 2004, 4:00 pm
2004 WendyDUBLIN, Ohio -- Playing through heavy showers was fine for Suzann Pettersen, who took a one-stroke lead at the Wendy's Championship for Children through the first two rounds. More than an inch of rain pounded Tartan Fields Golf Club, suspending play late in the afternoon for the second straight day.
 
'I don't really care. I'm from Norway,' Pettersen said. 'We grew up playing in this weather. I almost prefer playing in this than in 100-degree heat and 90 percent humidity.'
 
Pettersen just completed her round when the sirens sounded on Friday, beckoning those still on the course to wait out the storm in the clubhouse.
 
The 69 players - including three who never got to hit a shot in the second round because the first tee had to be squeegeed - waited another 90 minutes before play was again called off. They returned to finish the second round early Saturday.
 
Pettersen, one of 66 players unable to complete the first round Thursday, capped an opening 67 with two pars and a birdie early Friday. She avoided a bogey in both rounds, despite the stoppages in play, heavy rains, lightning and thunder. Her 68 left her at 9-under 135.
 
'I've been playing my 'A' game and I'm right up there, so I'm just trying to be patient and get something going,' she said.
 
Defending champion Hee-Won Han and Reilley Rankin were one shot back. Han finished off a 66 and then followed with a 70, while Rankin followed an opening 71 with a second-round 65.
 
Also moving into contention were teenage amateurs Paula Creamer and Michelle Wie.
 
Creamer, the 18-year-old player who came within a shot of a playoff at the ShopRite Classic in June, was at 2-under 142 after a second-round 70. Wie, the long-hitting 14-year-old golfer from Hawaii, was 3 over through 10 holes of the first round before battling back and shooting a 73. Then she climbed the leaderboard with a second-round 69 to share 15th place with Creamer.
 
'Coming from 3 over to 2 under, that's pretty good for a rainy day,' said Wie, who has made the cut in all six LPGA events she's played this year. 'Overall, I think I played great.'
 
Creamer watched a sterling round slip away when she bogeyed two of the final four holes. She remained confident she could become the first amateur to win an LPGA event since JoAnne Carner in 1969.
 
'I expect it of myself,' she said. 'Coming into these tournaments, I feel that I can win.'
 
Kristi Albers, who opened with a 67 and held the first-round lead before play was called off Thursday, had to come out early to play her final 14 holes of the second round. She completed a 70, to stand alone in fourth at 137.
 
Brandie Burton also was an early riser and finished a 66 - the lowest score of the second round - to move into fifth place at 138.
 
Tied for sixth at 4 under were Catriona Matthew, Marilyn Lovander and the 2002 and 2000 Wendy's winners, Mi Hyun Kim and Lorie Kane.
 
The group at 3 under included 2001 Wendy's winner Wendy Ward and U.S. Open champion Meg Mallon, who has won three times in her last five tournaments.
 
Pettersen, in her second full year as a pro, has two top-10 finishes in 12 LPGA starts this season.
 
As the rain came down harder, she seemed to play her best. She birdied the first two par-5 holes, then parred out, except for a 7-iron to 15 feet for another birdie at No. 12.
 
She relished the chance to sleep later after arising at 4:45 a.m. to finish the first round.
 
'Now I can kind of get some time off and prepare my brain for two new rounds,' she said.
 
Related Links:
  • Leaderboard - Wendy's Championship for Children
  • Full Coverage - Wendy's Championship for Children
     
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    Punch shot: Predictions for the 147th Open

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 18, 2018, 4:00 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – In advance of the 147th Open Championship, GolfChannel.com writers sound off on burning questions as players ready for a fast and firm test at Carnoustie. Here’s what our writers think about myriad topics:

    The Monday morning headline will be …

    REX HOGGARD: “Survival.” This one is easy. It always is at Carnoustie, which is widely considered The Open’s most demanding major championship test. Monday’s headline will be that the champion - pick a champion, any one will do - “survived” another dramatic Open. You don’t dominate Carnoustie; you endure.

    RYAN LAVNER: “DJ Bashes Way to Victory at Carnoustie.” If somehow a two-win season could be disappointing, it has been for DJ. He’s first in scoring average, birdie average, par-4 scoring, par-5 scoring, strokes gained: tee to green and proximity from the rough. Those last two stats are the most important, especially here at Carnoustie, with these dry conditions. The game’s preeminent long-and-straight driver, there’s a better-than-decent chance he rolls.

    MERCER BAGGS: “Rahm Tough: Spaniard charges to Open victory.” Jon Rahm will claim him maiden major title this week by powering his way through the winds and fescue at Carnoustie.

    JAY COFFIN: “Thomas wins second major, ascends to world No. 1 again.” Shortly after The Open last year, Thomas rolled through the end of the PGA Tour season. This is the time of year he likes best. Despite a poor Open record the last two years, he’s not remotely concerned. He’s a tad miffed he didn’t win in France two weeks ago and comes to Carnoustie refreshed, with a gameplan, and ready to pounce.



    Who or what will be the biggest surprise?

    HOGGARD: Style of play. Given Carnoustie’s reputation as a brute, the surprise will be how the champion arrives at his lofty perch. Unlike previous editions at Carnoustie, this week’s dry conditions will promote more aggressive play off the tee and the winner will defy the norm and power his way to victory.

    LAVNER: Tiger Woods. This is Woods’ best chance to win a major this year, and here’s believing he contends. His greatest strengths are his iron game and scrambling, and both aspects will be tested to the extreme at Carnoustie, helping separate him from some of the pretenders. With even a little cooperation from his putter, he should be in the mix.

    BAGGS: Padraig Harrington. He had a good opening round last week at the Scottish Open and has some good vibes being the 2007 Open champion at Carnoustie. He won’t contend for four rounds, but a few days in the mix would be a nice surprise.

    COFFIN: Alex Noren. Perhaps someone ranked 11th in the world shouldn’t be a surprise, but with so much focus on some of the bigger, household names, don’t be surprised when Noren is in contention on Sunday. He hasn’t finished worse than 25th since early May and won two weeks ago in France. He also tied for sixth place last year at Royal Birkdale.



    Who or what will be the biggest disappointment?

    HOGGARD: Jordan Spieth. Although he was brilliant on his way to victory last year at Royal Birkdale, Spieth is not the same player for this week’s championship, the byproduct of a balky putter that has eroded his confidence. Spieth said giving back the claret jug this week was hard, but his finish will be even tougher.

    LAVNER: Weather. This might sound a little sadistic, but one of the unique joys of covering this tournament is to watch the best in the world battle conditions they face only once a year – the bone-chilling cold, the sideways rain, the howling wind. It doesn’t appear as though that’ll happen this year. With only a few hours of light rain expected, and no crazy winds in the forecast, the biggest challenge for these stars will be judging the bounces on the hard, baked-out turf.

    BAGGS: Jordan Spieth. The defending champion is still trying to find his winning form and Carnoustie doesn’t seem the place to do that. As much as he says he loves playing in strong winds, there should be enough danger around here to frustrate Spieth into a missed cut.

    COFFIN: Rory McIlroy. I hope I’m wrong on this, because the game is better when Rory is in contention at majors. Putting always has been his issue and seemingly always will be. While there isn’t as much of a premium placed on putting this week because of slower greens, he may still have to hit it close. Super close.



    What will be the winning score?

    HOGGARD: 10 under. The last two Opens played at Carnoustie were won with 7-under and 6-over totals, but this week’s conditions will favor more aggressive play and lower scores. Expect to see plenty of birdies, but the great equalizer will come on Sunday when wind gusts are forecast to reach 25 mph.

    LAVNER: 15 under. An Open at Carnoustie has never produced a winner lower than 9 under (Tom Watson in 1975), but never have the conditions been this susceptible to low scores. Sure, the fairway bunkers are still a one-shot penalty, but today’s big hitters can fly them. The thin, wispy rough isn’t much of a deterrent. And the wind isn’t expected to really whip until the final day.

    BAGGS: 12 under. We aren’t going to see the same kind of weather we have previously witnessed at Carnoustie, and that’s a shame. Any players who catch relatively benign conditions should be able to go low, as long as they can properly navigate the fairway rollout.

    COFFIN: 14 under. Walked into a local golf shop in the town of Carnoustie wearing a Golf Channel logo and the man behind the counter said, “It’ll take 14 under to win this week.” Well, he’s been here for years and seen Carnoustie host The Open twice before. He knows more about it than I do, so I’ll stick with his number.

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    Watch: Na plays backwards flop and practices lefty

    By Grill Room TeamJuly 18, 2018, 3:16 pm

    Fresh off his victory at The Greenbrier, Kevin Na is taking a quite-literally-backwards approach to his Open prep.

    Caddie Kenny Harms has been sharing videos of Na's early work at Carnoustie.

    This one shows Na standing in a bunker and playing a flop shot over his own head (as opposed to someone else's):

    While it's unlikely he'll have a need for that exact shot this week, it's far more likely a player may have to think about turning his club over and playing from the wrong side of the ball, like so:

    Na has made 4 of 6 cuts at The Open and will look to improve on his best career finish, currently a T-22 in 2016 at Royal Troon.

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    McIlroy growing 'comfortable' on Open courses

    By Ryan LavnerJuly 18, 2018, 1:45 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – For a player who once complained about the vagaries of links golf, Rory McIlroy enters this Open with a dazzling record in the sport’s oldest championship.

    Though he missed the 2015 event because of an ankle injury, McIlroy has now posted three consecutive top-5 finishes in the year’s third major.

    “It’s surprising a little bit that my best form in major championships has been this tournament,” he said Wednesday, “but at the same time I’ve grown up these courses, and I’m comfortable on them. I think going to courses on The Open rota that I’ve played quite a lot. I think that helps. You have a comfort level with the golf course, and you’ve built up enough experience to know where to hit and where not to hit it.”


    Full-field tee times from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    McIlroy still regrets what happened in 2015, when he “did something slightly silly” and injured his ankle while playing soccer a few weeks before the event. That came a year after he triumphed at Royal Liverpool.

    “Since 2010, I couldn’t wait to play The Open at St. Andrews,” he said. “I thought that was one of my best chances to win a major.”

    He tied for 42nd at Carnoustie in 2007, earning low-amateur honors.  

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    Height of irony: Phil putts in front of 'rules' sign

    By Grill Room TeamJuly 18, 2018, 1:36 pm

    A picture is worth 1,000 words and potentially two strokes for playing a moving ball under Rule 14-5 but not Rule 1-2.

    Phil Mickelson has been having some fun during his Open prep at Carnoustie hitting flop shots over human beings, but the irony of this photo below is too obvious to go over anyone's head.

    Mickelson also tried tapping down fescue two weeks ago at The Greenbrier, incurring another two-shot penalty.

    And so we're left to wonder about what Phil asked himself back at Shinnecock Hills: "The real question is, ‘What am I going to do next?’”