Rollins rolls by Villegas leads Buick - COPIED

By Associated PressFebruary 7, 2009, 5:00 pm
2006 Buick InvitationalSAN DIEGO ' John Rollins caught up to Camilo Villegas again, and this time kept right on going until he finished off a 2-under 70 that gave him a three-shot lead Saturday in the Buick Invitational.
 
Rollins, who lost a share of the lead with a bogey on the final hole of the second round, made up for that quickly with two birdies in the first four holes to take the lead, then surged farther ahead when the Colombian struggled from the sand and on the greens.
 
The margin could have been even wider if not for three three-putt bogeys by Rollins over the final seven holes, including the par-5 18th that raised hopes of Villegas and a few others who still need some help on Sunday.
 
Rollins was at 12-under 204, his first outright lead going into the last round in his nine years on the PGA Tour.
 
Villegas capped off an ugly front nine with a double bogey when his bunker shot sailed over the green, leaving him five shots behind. He steadied himself for a 2-over 74, at least leaving him in range.
 
Nick Watney had a 71 and was at 7-under 209, putting him in the final group.
 
Paul Goydos nearly holed out a wedge on the final hole and tapped in for birdie for a 72, putting him at 210 with Luke Donald (71).
 
The group another shot behind included Charley Hoffman, who grew up in San Diego and provided his hometown fans with the wrong kind of treat when they were able to watch him tee off twice on the opening hole.
 
Hoffmans first tee shot went into a pine tree and never came out. He spotted one ball with a pair of binoculars, tossed an umbrella to dislodge it from the tree, but it wasnt hit. After five minutes, he had to trudge back to the tee box and reload, opening with a triple bogey. He made up those shots five holes later, but ultimately settled for a 74.
 
The only disappointment for Rollins came from his three-putts, none stinging as much as the last one.
 
He only had a sand wedge for his third shot on the par-5 18th, but with the pin on the top ridge and a bunker behind the green, he left his shot on the bottom shelf, then rammed his first putt some 4 feet by the hole. The par putt dipped into the cup and spun back at him.
 
Rollins has won twice on tour, both times coming from behind on the last day. He has had a share of the 54-hole lead three times without winning, but it helps to have a three-shot margin.
 
Even so, Rollins knows how quickly that can disappear.
 
This course can grab you if you dont pay attention to what youre doing, he said.
 
He watched that happen to Villegas on the par-5 ninth, when he ran into trouble off the tee and was in the bunker after three shots. Villegas tried to get his bunker shot to the top shelf at the pin, switching from a 53-degree to a 58-degree sand wedge. But he was too aggressive, caught it think and watched it fly into the gallery, leaving him no hope of getting it close.
 
The 27-year-old Colombian kept from going south, however, with a 3-iron into 8 feet for a birdie on the par-3 11th, followed by a solid par on the 12th hole, where Rollins three-putted down the hill.
 
That stretch is among the toughest on the South Course, and it enabled Villegas to stay in the game.
 
Golf tournaments are four days, Villegas said.
 
Phil Mickelsons hopes ended on Saturday when he failed to get going and shot a 73, leaving him 11 shots behind.
 
Not what I was hoping for, Mickelson said. I thought a good round would get me back in it, and I didnt get off to the best start, but it was playing tough today, and I just didnt quite put it together.
 
British Open and PGA champion Padraig Harrington had another 74 and was at 3-over 219.
 
Charles Warren and Lucas Glover, teammates at Clemson were at 5-under 211, and only one of them expected to be in the hunt when the week began. Warren, who lost his full card last year, began his season on the easier North Course and opened with a 74.
 
But he stayed alive with a 69 on the South on Friday, then followed that with a 68.
 
If you play well, you can shoot a good score, Warren said.
 
Rollins didnt get much notice from a gallery torn between Hoffmans hometown fans and Villegas with his magazine-cover looks.
 
But they began paying attention when his 6-iron from a bunker stopped 10 feet away from a dangerous hole location on the fourth for a birdie that gave him the lead, and he never gave it back.
 
Divots: Jason Gore winced over most of his shots because of severe back pain that he first felt on the opening hole. Starting the round at 5 under, he wound up with an 80. Because 85 players made the cut, there was a 54-hole cut to low 70 and ties, eliminating 14 players Saturday. That group included Chris Stroud, who was tied for 12th until shooting an 82.
 
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    Lincicome grouped with two rookies in Barbasol

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 17, 2018, 9:54 pm

    Brittany Lincicome will tee it up with a pair of rookies when she makes her first start in a PGA Tour event Thursday at the Barbasol Championship at Keene Trace Golf Club in Nicholasville, Ky.

    Lincicome, an eight-time LPGA winner, is scheduled to go off the 10th tee at 9:59 a.m. ET in the first round with Sam Ryder, 28, and Conrad Shindler, 29. They’re off the first tee Friday at 2:59 p.m. ET

    Lincicome will become just the sixth woman to play in a PGA Tour event, joining Babe Zaharias, Shirley Spork, Annika Sorenstam, Suzy Whaley and Michelle Wie.

    “The first three or four holes, I’ll be a nervous wreck, for sure,” Linicome said.

     

     

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    Lincicome thrilled by reception from male pros

    By Randall MellJuly 17, 2018, 8:31 pm

    Brittany Lincicome wondered how PGA Tour pros would greet her when she arrived to play the Barbasol Championship this week.

    She wondered if there would be resentment.

    She also wondered how fans at Keene Trace Golf Club in Nicholasville, Ky., would receive her, and if a social media mob would take up pitchforks.

    “I can’t stop smiling,” Lincicome said Tuesday after her first practice round upon arriving. “Everyone has been coming up to me and wishing me luck. That means a lot.”

    PGA Tour pro Martin Piller, husband of LPGA pro Gerina Piller, welcomed her immediately.

    Other pros sought her out on the practice putting green.

    She said she was also welcomed joining pros at a table in player dining.

    Fans have been stopping her for autographs.

    “It has been an awesome reception,” said Dewald Gouws, her husband, a former long-drive competitor. “I think it’s put her much more at ease, seeing the reception she is getting. There’s a lot of mutual respect.”

    Lincicome, 32, wasn’t sure if she would be playing a practice round alone Tuesday morning, but when she made her way to the first tee, Domenico Geminiani was there, just about to go off.

    He waved Lincicome over.

    “He said, `Hey, Brittany, do you want to join me?’” Gouws said. “Come to find out, Dom’s a pretty cool guy.”

    Geminiani made it into the field as a Monday qualifier.

    “The two of us were both trying to figure things out together,” Lincicome said.

    Keene Trace will play to 7,328 yards on the scorecard. That’s more than 800 yards longer than Highland Meadows, where Lincicome finished second at the LPGA’s Marathon Classic last weekend. Keene Trace was playing even longer than its listed yardage Tuesday, with recent rains softening it.

    Nicknamed “Bam Bam,” Lincicome is one of the longest hitters in the women’s game. Her 269.5 yard average drive is 10th in the LPGA ranks. It would likely be dead last on the PGA Tour, where Brian Stuard (278.2) is the last player on the stats list at No. 201.

    “I think if I keep it in the fairway, I’ll be all right,” Lincicome said.

    Lincicome is an eight-time LPGA winner, with two major championships among those titles. She is just the sixth woman to compete in a PGA Tour event, the first in a decade, since Michelle Wie played the Reno-Tahoe Open, the last of her eight starts against the men.

    Lincicome will join Babe Zaharias, Shirley Spork, Annika Sorenstam, Suzy Whaley and Wie in the elite ranks.

    Zaharias, by the way, is the only woman to make a 36-hole cut in PGA Tour history, making it at the 1945 L.A. Open before missing a 54-hole cut on the weekend.

    What are Lincicome’s expectations?

    She would love to make the cut, but . . .

    “Just going to roll with it and see what happens,” she said. “This is once in a lifetime, probably a one-and-done opportunity. I’m just going to enjoy it.”

    Lincicome grew up playing for the boys’ golf team at Seminole High on the west coast of Florida. She won a couple city championships.

    “I always thought it would be cool to compete against the guys on the PGA Tour,” Lincicome said. “I tend to play more with the guys than women at home. I never would have gone out and told my agent, `Let’s go try to play in a PGA Tour event,’ but when Tom Murray called with this opportunity, I was really blown away and excited by it. I never in a million years thought I would have this opportunity.”

    Tom Murray, the president of Perio, the parent company of Barbasol and Pure Silk, invited Lincicome to accept one of the tournament’s sponsor exemptions. Lincicome represents Pure Silk.

    Lincicome said her desire to play a PGA Tour event is all about satisfying her curiosity, wanting to know how she would stack up at this level. She also wants to see if the experience can help take her to the next level in the women’s game.

    As a girl growing up, she played Little League with the boys, instead of softball with the girls. She said playing the boys in golf at Seminole High helped her get where she is today.

    “The guys were better, and it pushed me to want to be better,” Lincicome said. “I think playing with the guys [on the PGA Tour], I will learn something to take to LPGA events, and it will help my game, for sure.”

    Lincicome has been pleased that her fellow LPGA pros are so supportive. LPGA winner Kris Tamulis is flying into Kentucky as moral support. Other LPGA pros may also be coming in to support her.

    The warm fan reception Lincicome is already getting at Keene Trace matters, too.

    “She’s already picked up some new fans this week, and hopefully she will pick up some more,” Gouws said. “I don’t think she’s putting too much expectation on herself. I think she really does just want to have fun.”

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    Stunner: Inbee Park steps aside for Int. Crown

    By Randall MellJuly 17, 2018, 4:00 pm

    There was a big surprise this week when the LPGA announced the finalized lineups for the UL International Crown.

    Rolex world No. 1 Inbee Park won’t be teeing it up for the host South Koreans Oct. 4-7 in Incheon.

    She has withdrawn, saying she wanted another Korean to be able to experience the thrill of representing her country.

    It’s a stunner given the importance the LPGA has placed on taking the UL International Crown to South Korea and its golf-crazy allegiance to the women’s game in the Crown’s first staging outside the United States.

    Two-time major champion In Gee Chun will replace Park.

    "It was my pleasure and honor to participate in the first UL International Crown in 2014 and at the 2016 Olympics, and I cannot describe in one word how amazing the atmosphere was to compete as a representative of my country,” Park said. “There are so many gifted and talented players in Korea, and I thought it would be great if one of the other players was given the chance to experience the 2018 UL International Crown.”

    Chun, another immensely popular player in South Korea, was the third alternate, so to speak, with the world rankings used to field teams. Hye Jin Choi and Jin Young Ko were higher ranked than Chun but passed because of commitments made to competing in a Korean LPGA major that week. The other South Koreans who previously qualified are So Yeon Ryu, Sung Hyun Park and I.K. Kim.

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    Na: I can admit, 'I went through the yips'

    By Rex HoggardJuly 17, 2018, 3:35 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Following his victory two weeks ago at A Military Tribute at the Greenbrier, Kevin Na said his second triumph on the PGA Tour was the most rewarding of his career.

    Although he declined to go into details as to why the victory was so gratifying at The Greenbrier, as he completed his practice round on Tuesday at the Open Championship, Na shed some light on how difficult the last few years have been.

    “I went through the yips. The whole world saw that. I told people, 'I can’t take the club back,'” Na said on Tuesday at Carnoustie. “People talked about it, 'He’s a slow player. Look at his routine.' I was admitting to the yips. I didn’t use the word ‘yip’ at the time. Nobody wants to use that word, but I’m over it now so I can use it. The whole world saw it.”


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    Na, who made headlines for his struggles to begin his backswing when he found himself in the lead at the 2012 Players Championship, said he asked other players who had gone through similar bouts with the game’s most dreaded ailment how they were able to get through it.

    “It took time,” he said. “I forced myself a lot. I tried breathing. I tried a trigger. Some guys will have a forward press or the kick of the right knee. That was hard and the crap I got for it was not easy.”

    The payoff, however, has steadily arrived this season. Na said he’d been confident with his game this season following a runner-up showing at the Genesis Open and a fourth-place finish at the Fort Worth Invitational, and he felt he was close to a breakthrough. But being able to finish a tournament like he did at The Greenbrier, where he won by five strokes, was particularly rewarding.

    “All good now,” he smiled. “I knew I was good enough to win again, but until you do it sometimes you question yourself. It’s just the honest truth.”