Sorenstam Back After Weekend Off

By Associated PressMay 17, 2006, 4:00 pm
2006 Sybase ClassicNEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. -- Annika Sorenstam had two unexpected days off last weekend.
Instead of checking leaderboards and reading greens at the Michelob Ultra Open, she was home spending time with friends in Orlando, Fla., after missing the cut in an LPGA Tour event for the first time since 2002.
Annika Sorenstam
Annika Sorenstam gets consoled by her caddie after missing the cut at the Michelob Ultra Open.
'It wasn't really something I enjoyed. I mean, I'm glad I went home. It was the second-best thing I could have done, get to go home instead of play the weekend,' Sorenstam said Wednesday after playing in the pro-am for this week's Sybase Classic at Wykagyl Country Club. 'It happens. It's golf. I'm just lucky it hasn't happened to me too often, and I hope it doesn't happen again. It got my attention and I'm back.'
Sorenstam has dominated the LPGA Tour for years. Her 67 career victories are third on the all-time list and she has led the tour in wins each of the last five years. Last week was the first time in 69 events since the 2002 Women's British Open she failed to make the cut. It was only the second time in 143 events she failed to make the cut, dating to June 1999, and the first time in 198 non-major events.
The last time she missed the cut in a non-major was the Jamie Farr Toledo Classic in July 1994. She also missed the cut in the PGA Tour's 2003 Colonial.
'I'm not worried about my game. I feel like I'm playing really good golf, obviously,' said Sorenstam, who has won four of her last 10 starts, including the MasterCard Classic in Mexico in March. 'I'm just waiting to come out with a big bang. It should be a fun part of the season, if you know what I mean.'
The $1.3 million Sybase Classic, with a first prize of $195,000, starts a six-week stretch that includes two majors -- the LPGA Championship and the U.S. Women's Open.
The last time Sorenstam missed a cut she won the next three tournaments and 27 of her next 65 starts.
'I know what I'm capable of. I got one win this year, so I'm not going to be too hard on myself,' said the 35-year-old, who is playing in this event for the first time since 2002. She won the Sybase in 1998 and 2000.
'Sometimes things go your way, sometimes they don't,' she said. 'At the moment, my golf is not going my way, but outside the golf course, everything else is going my way. I'm not going to trade anything for it. I'm just going to wait, be patient and everything will turn around.'
Paula Creamer's young career turned around at this tournament last year when she holed an 18-foot birdie putt on the final hole to become the youngest winner of a multiround LPGA event. She took the trophy to her high school graduation four days later, and went on to win another tournament in taking her place as one of the rising stars on tour.
'This is my first chance to repeat and it's a totally different feeling,' said Creamer, who will turn 20 in August. 'I feel very relaxed, like this is my home type of thing.'
Creamer won with a 6-under 278 last year, closing with a 70 for a one-stroke victory over Jeong Jang and Gloria Park.
'Everything has happened so fast, but I'm excited things have fallen into place,' Creamer said.
Eight of the tour's 10 leading money-winners and eight former champions are in the field.
Wykagyl, a traditional Northeast golf course, hasn't undergone major changes in recent years but the number of trees on the par-71, 6,227-yard course has decreased.
'They have taken a lot of trees away, but it puts a big premium on ball-striking with small greens and tough par-3s,' Sorenstam said. 'The greens are in great shape. I like old-style golf courses. I'm happy to be back here.'
The other former champions in the field are Juli Inkster (1992), Beth Daniel (1994), Michele Redman (1997), Sherri Steinhauer (1999, 2004), Park (2002), Hee-Won Han (2003). ... The official charity of the tournament is The Greater New York City Affiliate of the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. ... Lorena Ochoa, second on the money list to Karrie Webb, has finished second in the last three tour events and she had a second and a first in the two she played before that. ... Webb and No. 4 Cristie Kerr are the only members of the top 10 not in the field. ... The tournament will be on ESPN2 all four days.
Related Links:
  • Full Coverage - Sybase Classic
  • TV Airtimes
  • Getty Images

    M. Jutanugarn eyeing first win with L.A. Open lead

    By Associated PressApril 21, 2018, 1:50 am

    LOS ANGELES - Moriya Jutanugarn took the lead into the weekend at the Hugel-JTBC L.A. Open in her latest bid to join younger sister Ariya as an LPGA winner.

    Moriya Jutanugarn shot a bogey-free 5-under 66 on Friday at Wilshire Country Club to get to 8-under 134 in the LPGA Tour's first event in Los Angeles since 2005. The 23-year-old from Thailand started fast with birdies on the par-5 second, par-4 third and par-3 fourth and added two more on the par-4 11th and par-5 13th.

    Ariya Jutanugarn has seven LPGA victories.

    Marina Alex was second after a 68.

    Full-field scores from the Hugel-JTBC Open

    So Yeon Ryu was 6 under after a 69, and fellow South Korean players Inbee Park(71) and Eun-Hee Ji (69). Park was the first-round leader at 66. Lexi Thompsonwas 3 under after a 71.

    Top-ranked Shanshan Feng followed her opening 74 with a 67 to get to 1 under.

    Ariya Jutanugarn (71) was even par, and Michelle Wie (70) was 1 over. Brooke Henderson, the Canadian star who won last week in Hawaii, had a 79 to miss the cut.

    Getty Images

    Johnson, Moore co-lead Valero Texas Open through 36

    By Associated PressApril 21, 2018, 1:00 am

    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 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.

    They had a one-shot lead over Grayson Murray (69) and Andrew Landry (67).

    Ben Crane (66), Martin Laird (65) and David Hearn (68) were three shots behind. Billy Horschel and Keegan Bradley shot 71 and were four shots behind at 5-under 139.

    Full-field scores from the Valero Texas Open

    Valero Texas Open: Articles, photos and videos

    Sergio Garcia, who consulted Greg Norman on the design of the AT&T Oaks Course at the TPC San Antonio, had a short 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.

    Garcia finished at 2-over 146 and missed the cut.

    It was the first time since 2010 that Garcia missed the cut in successive starts. That was the PGA Championship and, 10 weeks later, the Castello Masters in Spain. This time, he missed the cut in the Masters and Texas Open three weeks apart.

    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.

    The cut was at 1-over 145, and because 80 players made the cut, there will be a 54-hole cut on Saturday.

    Getty Images

    Garcia tosses driver, misses Valero cut

    By Will GrayApril 21, 2018, 1:00 am

    It wasn't quite to the level of his watery meltdown earlier this month at the Masters, but Sergio Garcia still got frustrated during the second round of the Valero Texas Open - and his driver paid the price.

    Garcia had a hand in redesigning the AT&T Oaks Course along with Greg Norman several years ago, but this marked his first return to TPC San Antonio since 2010. After an opening-round 74, Garcia arrived to the tee of the short par-4 fifth hole and decided to get aggressive with driver in hand.

    When his shot sailed well left, a heated Garcia chucked the club deep into the bushes that lined the tee box:

    It took considerable effort for Garcia to find and retrieve the club amid the branches, and once he did things only got worse. He appeared to shank a chip once he got up to his ball, leading to a bogey on one of the easiest holes on a demanding track.

    Garcia closed out his round with four straight pars, and at 2 over he eventually missed the cut by a shot. It marks the first time he has missed consecutive cuts on the PGA Tour since 2003, when he sat out the weekend at the AT&T Byron Nelson, Fort Worth Invitational and Memorial Tournament in successive weeks.

    Garcia entered the week ranked No. 10 in the world, and he was the only top-20 player among the 156-man field. He missed the cut at the Masters in defense of his title after carding an octuple-bogey 13 on the 15th hole during the opening round.

    Getty Images

    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.