Sorenstam Defeats Creamer in a Playoff

By Associated PressApril 27, 2008, 4:00 pm
Stanford International Pro-AmAVENTURA, Fla. --On the green at the first playoff hole, Paula Creamer and Annika Sorenstam couldnt have had more varying emotions.
 
A first-time playoff participant, Creamer said her hands shook grasping her putter.
 
Sorenstam was the polar opposite, exuding nothing but cool confidence. And it showed.
 
Sorenstams par on the lone extra hole Sunday was good enough to beat Creamer and win the Stanford International Pro-Am, the Swedes 71st career victory on the LPGA Tour and one where she rallied from a one-shot deficit in the final two holes of regulation.
 
Thats what I love. Thats why I do this, Sorenstam said. Not to say I want to have playoffs every week, but its a lot of drama and you have to hit that certain shot when it counts.
 
Alas, that was Creamers downfall.
 
After a wayward 9-iron off the tee'a careless shot, she said' followed by a poor pitch, Creamer made bogey at the par-3 17th to lose the outright lead with a hole left in regulation. At the par-5 18th, Creamer pulled her chip from just inside of 100 yards and was left with a 25-foot birdie putt, which stayed out and forced her to settle for par.
 
Both laid up at the 18th in the playoff, with Creamer facing a tricky downhill birdie putt from just off the fringe, and Sorenstam leaving herself a birdie try from almost the same spot where she missed a potential winner in regulation.
 
Sorenstam missed, but Creamers 6-foot comebacker for par stopped short and gave the Swede the victory'her 16th in 22 career playoff appearances.
 
Its very disappointing, Creamer said. But at the same time, Im going against one of the best players in the world ever to play golf. Theres a lot to learn from that.
 
Creamer closed with a 69, and Sorenstam shot a 70. They finished at 8 under.
 
It was the first time in five weeks someone other than Lorena Ochoa won on the LPGA Tour. The top-ranked Ochoa skipped this event.
 
Young Kim (69) and Karrie Webb, who turned in the round of the week with a 7-under 64, tied for third, one shot behind Sorenstam and Creamer. Momeko Ueda (71) finished alone in fifth at 5 under.
 
It was Webbs best finish since placing second at last years LPGA Championship, 17 events ago.
 
Its a good finish for me, Webb said. I would have liked to made the one on the last, but I feel great about things. As much as Ive been down on myself, I knew that if I could get my putter going, it just sort of goes to the rest of your game. I know my swings been close, but when you feel like you cant make putts, you cant go at pins. Its a good start. Hopefully theres more to come.
 
Webbs charge started early, with five consecutive birdies on holes 2-6 vaulting her into serious contention. Lindsey Wright was 6 under for the day through 12, but that wasnt enough nearly enough to close the gap. Young Kim had consecutive double-bogeys late on her front side, which proved quite costly.
 
By late afternoon, it was a two-woman race.
 
I made more mistakes than she did, Creamer said. Obviously, I made more birdies than her and I knew going into it that I could make a lot of birdies out there. It was just the mistakes. She always plots herself around the golf course and thats why shes as good as she is. She doesnt make those bogeys. I just made too many.
 
Creamer made two birdies in her first three holes to take the lead by one, until Sorenstam answered with a birdie at the sixth'ending a run of 26 pars in a stretch of 29 holes. Creamer blinked on the next hole, hitting one into a hazard and needing to remove her right shoe before splashing the ball out on the way to a bogey.
 
One hole later, Creamer rebounded with a birdie, tying Sorenstam again at 8 under.
 
They were both 9 under when Sorenstam pushed a 4-foot par try wide at the 13th, the mistake putting Creamer again alone in front. She stayed there until the bogey at 17 and that set up the nailbiter of a finish.
 
Even though I was trailing by one for the last four or five holes, I knew anything could happen, Sorenstam said.
 
Notes
 
Ochoa is expected to play next week when the tour heads to Broken Arrow, Okla. for the SemGroup Championship. Moira Dunn, who went to college at nearby Florida International University, made a quad at the par-3 7th, then closed her day with a triple at the par-5 18th to finish 13 over. Christina Kim, who led through 17 holes Thursday before a triple at the 18th, made bogey there Sunday, which was an improvement. For the week, she played three trips to the Soffer courses finishing hole in 8 over, including a quadruple-bogey Saturday.
 
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    Weather extends Barbasol to Monday finish

    By Associated PressJuly 23, 2018, 12:25 am

    NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - A thunderstorm has suspended the fourth round of the PGA Tour's Barbasol Championship until Monday morning.

    Sunday's third stoppage of play at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came with the four leaders - Hunter Mahan, Robert Streb, Tom Lovelady and Troy Merritt at 18 under par - and four other contenders waiting to begin the round.

    The tournament will resume at 7:30 a.m. on Monday. Lightning caused one delay, and play was stopped earlier in the afternoon to clear water that accumulated on the course following a morning of steady and sometimes-heavy rain.

    Inclement weather has plagued the tournament throughout the weekend. The second round was completed Saturday morning after being suspended by thunderstorms late Friday afternoon.

    The resumption will mark the PGA Tour's second Monday finish this season. Jason Day won the Farmers Insurance Open in January after darkness delayed the sixth playoff hole, and he needed just 13 minutes to claim the victory.

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    Watch: Spectator films as Woods' shot hits him

    By Will GrayJuly 23, 2018, 12:07 am

    It was a collision watched by millions of fans on television, and one that came at a pivotal juncture as Tiger Woods sought to win The Open. It also gave Colin Hauck the story of a lifetime.

    Hauck was among dozens of fans situated along the left side of the 11th hole during the final round at Carnoustie as the pairing of Woods and Francesco Molinari hit their approach shots. After 10 holes of nearly flawless golf, Woods missed the fairway off the tee and then pulled his iron well left of the target.

    The ball made square contact with Hauck, who hours later tweeted a video showing the entire sequence - even as he continued to record after Woods' shot sent him tumbling to the ground:

    The bounce initially appeared fortuitous for Woods, as his ball bounded away from thicker rough and back toward the green. But an ambitious flop shot came up short, and he eventually made a double bogey to go from leading by a shot to trailing by one. He ultimately shot an even-par 71, tying for sixth two shots behind Molinari.

    For his efforts as a human shield, Hauck received a signed glove and a handshake from Woods - not to mention a firsthand video account that will be sure to spark plenty of conversations in the coming years.

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    Molinari retirement plan: coffee, books and Twitter

    By Will GrayJuly 22, 2018, 9:35 pm

    After breaking through for his first career major, Francesco Molinari now has a five-year exemption on the PGA Tour, a 10-year exemption in Europe and has solidified his standing as one of the best players in the world.

    But not too long ago, the 35-year-old Italian was apparently thinking about life after golf.

    Shortly after Molinari rolled in a final birdie putt to close out a two-shot victory at The Open, fellow Tour player Wesley Bryan tweeted a picture of a note that he wrote after the two played together during the third round of the WGC-HSBC Champions in China in October. In it, Bryan shared Molinari's plans to retire as early as 2020 to hang out at cafes and "become a Twitter troll":

    Molinari is active on the social media platform, with more than 5,600 tweets sent out to nearly 150,000 followers since joining in 2010. But after lifting the claret jug at Carnoustie, it appears one of the few downsides of Molinari's victory is that the golf world won't get to see the veteran turn into a caffeinated, well-read troll anytime soon.

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    Molinari had previously avoided Carnoustie on purpose

    By Rex HoggardJuly 22, 2018, 9:17 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Sometimes a course just fits a player’s eye. They can’t really describe why, but more often than not it leads to solid finishes.

    Francesco Molinari’s relationship with Carnoustie isn’t like that.

    The Italian played his first major at Carnoustie, widely considered the toughest of all The Open venues, in 2007, and his first impression hasn’t really changed.

    “There was nothing comforting about it,” he said on Sunday following a final-round 69 that lifted him to a two-stroke victory.


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    In fact, following that first exposure to the Angus coast brute, Molinari has tried to avoid Carnoustie, largely skipping the Dunhill Links Championship, one of the European Tour’s marquee events, throughout his career.

    “To be completely honest, it's one of the reasons why I didn't play the Dunhill Links in the last few years, because I got beaten up around here a few times in the past,” he said. “I didn't particularly enjoy that feeling. It's a really tough course. You can try and play smart golf, but some shots, you just have to hit it straight. There's no way around it. You can't really hide.”

    Molinari’s relative dislike for the layout makes his performance this week even more impressive considering he played his last 37 holes bogey-free.

    “To play the weekend bogey-free, it's unthinkable, to be honest. So very proud of today,” he said.