Three tied for LPGA lead; Creamer, Kerr one back

By Associated PressJune 8, 2012, 12:05 am

PITTSFORD, N.Y. – Yani Tseng isn't accustomed to this: 4-over par in an LPGA Tour major.

Luckily for the 23-year-old Taiwanese star, the winner of five majors already, there are three rounds to play on a course she dominated a year ago.

Tseng is chasing a trio of unlikely leaders in Beatriz Recari, Ryann O'Toole, and Giulia Sergas, who each shot 3-under 69 on Thursday to tie after the opening round of the LPGA Championship.

Despite matching her worst score of the year at 76, Tseng, the top women's player in the world, was only seven shots off the lead after a round that included six bogeys and only two birdies.

'I just couldn't hit a shot, couldn't hit on the green, couldn't hit on the fairway,' Tseng said. 'It was really tough for me out there. I was very disappointed. I love the golf course and I know I can have a low score here.'

She did just that a year ago, shooting 19 under and winning by 10 shots. Duplicating the feat will be a challenge if she doesn't snap out of her recent slump. In the Sybase Match Play Championship, she was knocked out in the round of 16, and last week tied for 12th at the ShopRite LPGA Classic – nine strokes behind winner Stacy Lewis.

'I know it's my mental problem,' said Tseng, who won three of the first five tournaments on the LPGA Tour this year. 'I'm hitting so well on the driving range, and when I get on the first tee there's something wrong. I need to get my mental setup like before at the beginning of this year.'

The second major of the season was shaping up as a tight affair. Only 16 players broke par on a sun-splashed day that had only the hint of a breeze, and there was a virtual logjam behind the leaders.

Jeong Jang reached 5 under but bogeyed four of her final five holes to finish in a tie at 70 with Mika Miyazato, Cristie Kerr, Se Ri Pak, Na Yeon Choi, Ai Miyazato, and Paula Creamer. Lewis, who has won two of her last three starts, had a 72.

Michelle Wie, trying to break out of a season-long slump, opened with a 74.

Hitting it straight off the tee is always critical on the narrow Locust Hill Country Club course, especially this year because the rough is measurably more difficult than it's been in the past.

'It's just gobbling up the golf balls,' said Kerr, the winner by a record 12 strokes in 2010. 'Even with sand wedges, it's a lot tougher.'

Tseng, who started at No. 10, had three bogeys on the difficult back nine, managing to hit just two fairways before making the turn.

One of Tseng's birdies came at the par-4 third hole, but she gave it right back at No. 5, an uphill par 3. Lewis made a tap-in birdie after a brilliant tee shot and Creamer settled for par after lipping out a long birdie try, but Tseng's tee shot had sailed well past the pin and she three-putted for bogey after leaving her initial putt well short of the hole.

Tseng hit six of 14 fairways and needed 30 putts.

'I didn't play well. The course is pretty easy out there with no wind,' Tseng said. 'It was really tough. I didn't make putts. If you can't hit it on the fairway on this course, it's kind of tough to hit a low score. I was very surprised the scores didn't go very low today, so at least I have a little chance to get it back tomorrow.'

Recari, from Spain, bogeyed No. 11, her second hole, made great par saves at the next two holes, then rolled in three straight birdies to make the turn at 2 under.

'It definitely feels great. It feels almost relieving because I have been playing really well for a long time,' Recari said. 'The scores didn't happen the way I wanted. I would sum up the round as very confident off the tee. I had a great feeling on the greens. I was just seeing the line, putting a good stroke and most of them dropped in.'

Kerr had four birdies on the front nine, using her 7-iron to set up three of them. After driving into the rough at the par-5 fourth hole, she hit to 8 feet and made birdie, then sank a 3-foot putt for birdie at No. 5 and made the turn at 3 under after a 10-foot birdie putt at No. 9.

Three bogeys, the last at the par-5 17th hole after she hooked her second shot under a tree in the rough, put something of a damper on her round. Kerr was pleased with the result, nonetheless.

'I just managed well. I ended up being patient, and I'm happy with that,' said Kerr, who finished her round with a nifty chip for a par save. 'If I got in trouble, I played smart, which is what you have to do.'

Pak, sidelined since early April with a slight tear in the labrum of her left shoulder, bogeyed Nos. 3 and 6 to start, then reeled off three straight birdies to start the back nine and move up the leaderboard.

'I feel great to be back,' Pak said. 'I never expected it would be a solid round today. I'm trying to get the feel for it. Low expectations help a lot. Even though I feel 100 percent perfect, you never know.'

Cheyenne Woods, niece of Tiger Woods and playing on a sponsor's exemption, shot a 3-over 75 in her first event as a professional. Woods, who played here as an amateur in 2009, also qualified last week for the U.S. Women's Open and was beaming despite an erratic round.

'I've been waiting, waiting for this moment. I couldn't wait to get out here,' said Woods, who had three birdies, four bogeys and a double bogey. 'I was a little nervous starting off, but it felt good to be out there and finally playing.

'I'm pretty happy with how I played. I had a few blips. There's a lot more eyes on me right now, but I've been having to deal with media for a long time having the last name of Woods. It's nothing I'm not used to.'

Kerr also shot 19 under in her blowout victory in 2010. After one round and with that thick rough beckoning at every turn, another runaway didn't seem so likely.

'It's a lot tougher,' she said.

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Storms halt Barbasol before Lincicome tees off

By Associated PressJuly 20, 2018, 11:29 pm

NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - Brittany Lincicome will have to wait until the weekend to resume her bid to make the cut in a PGA Tour event.

Overnight storms delayed the start of the second round Friday in the Barbasol Championship, and an afternoon thunderstorm suspended competition for good. The round will resume Saturday morning with much of the field still to play.

The second stoppage at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came 20 minutes before Lincicome's scheduled tee time.

Lincicome was near the bottom of the field after opening with a 6-over 78 on Thursday. The first LPGA player since Michelle Wie in 2008 to start a PGA Tour event, she needs a huge rebound to join Babe Zaharias (1945) as the only female players to make the cut.

Troy Merritt had the clubhouse lead at 15 under, following an opening 62 with a 67.

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Third-round tee times for the 147th Open

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 20, 2018, 9:05 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Eighteen major champions made the cut at The Open and will be playing the weekend at Carnoustie, including 60-year-old ageless wonder Bernhard Langer, and both major champs so far this year, Patrick Reed and Brooks Koepka.

Twenty-four-year-old Gavin Green will be first off solo Saturday at 4:15 a.m. ET. Reed and Rhys Enoch will follow along 10 minutes later.


Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods, both at even par for the tournament, six shots behind leaders Zach Johnson and Kevin Kisner, are in consecutive groups. Mickelson is playing with Austin Cook at 8:05 a.m. and Woods is with South Africa’s Shaun Norris at 8:15 a.m.

Jordan Spieth and Rickie Fowler, both three shots off the lead, are also in consecutive groups. Fowler is at 10 a.m. with Thorbjorn Olesen and Spieth is 10 minutes later with Kevin Chappell. Rory McIlroy, looking to win his first major since the 2014 PGA Championship, is at 10:40 a.m. with Xander Schauffele. McIlroy is two shots behind.

Johnson and Kisner are last off at 11 a.m.

4:15AM ET: Gavin Green

4:25AM ET: Rhys Enoch, Patrick Reed

4:35AM ET: Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Justin Rose

4:45AM ET: Yusaku Miyazato, Tyrrell Hatton

4:55AM ET: Ross Fisher, Keegan Bradley

5:05AM ET: Ryan Fox, Jason Dufner

5:15AM ET: Bryson DeChambeau, Henrik Stenson

5:25AM ET: Tom Lewis, Sam Locke (a)

5:35AM ET: Paul Casey, Chris Wood

5:45AM ET: Bernhard Langer, Rafa Cabrera Bello

6:00AM ET: Paul Dunne, Brett Rumford

6:10AM ET: Masahiro Kawamura, Shubhankar Sharma

6:20AM ET: Cameron Smith, Brendan Steele

6:30AM ET: Marc Leishman, Lee Westwood

6:40AM ET: Byeong Hun An, Kevin Na

6:50AM ET: Julian Suri, Adam Hadwin

7:00AM ET: Gary Woodland, Si-Woo Kim

7:10AM ET: Yuta Ikeda, Satoshi Kodaira

7:20AM ET: Marcus Kinhult, Thomas Pieters

7:30AM ET: Beau Hossler, Haotong Li

7:45AM ET: Cameron Davis, Sean Crocker

7:55AM ET: Louis Oosthuizen, Stewart Cink

8:05AM ET: Phil Mickeslon, Austin Cook

8:15AM ET: Tiger Woods, Shaun Norris

8:25AM ET: Lucas Herbert, Michael Kim

8:35AM ET: Jason Day, Francesco Molinari

8:45AM ET: Sung Kang, Webb Simpson

8:55AM ET: Patrick Cantlay, Eddie Pepperell

9:05AM ET: Matthew Southgate, Brooks Koepka

9:15AM ET: Kyle Stanley, Adam Scott

9:30AM ET: Charley Hoffman, Alex Noren

9:40AM ET: Ryan Moore, Brandon Stone

9:50AM ET: Luke List, Danny Willett

10:00AM ET: Thorbjorn Olesen, Rickie Fowler

10:10AM ET: Jordan Spieth, Kevin Chappell

10:20AM ET: Zander Lombard, Tony Finau

10:30AM ET: Matt Kuchar, Erik Van Rooyen

10:40AM ET: Rory McIlroy, Xander Schauffele

10:50AM ET: Pat Perez, Tommy Fleetwood

11:00AM ET: Kevin Kisner, Zach Johnson

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Facial hair Fowler's new good-luck charm

By Rex HoggardJuly 20, 2018, 8:12 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Before, during and after the Fourth of July, Rickie Fowler missed a few appointments with his razor.

He arrived in the United Kingdom for last week’s Scottish Open still unshaved and he tied for sixth place. Fowler, like most golfers, can give in to superstition, so he's decided to keep the caveman look going for this week’s Open Championship.

“There could be some variations,” he smiled following his round on Friday at Carnoustie.


Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


At this rate, he may never shave again. Fowler followed an opening 70 with a 69 on Friday to move into a tie for 11th place, just three strokes off the lead.

Fowler also has some friendly competition in the beard department, with his roommate this week Justin Thomas also going for the rugged look.

“I think he kind of followed my lead in a way. I think he ended up at home, and he had a little bit of scruff going. It's just fun,” Fowler said. “We mess around with it. Obviously, not taking it too seriously. But like I said, ended up playing halfway decent last week, so I couldn't really shave it off going into this week.”

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Spieth (67) rebounds from tough Round 1 finish

By Ryan LavnerJuly 20, 2018, 7:55 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Guess whose putter is starting to heat up again at a major?

Even with a few wayward shots Friday at Carnoustie, Jordan Spieth made a significant climb up the leaderboard in the second round, firing a 4-under 67 to move just three shots off the lead.

Spieth showed his trademark grit in bouncing back from a rough finish Thursday, when he mis-clubbed on the 15th hole, leading to a double bogey, and ended up playing the last four holes in 4 over.

“I don’t know if I actually regrouped,” he said. “It more kind of fires me up a little.”


Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


Spieth missed more than half of his fairways in the second round, but he was able to play his approach shots from the proper side of the hole. Sure, he “stole a few,” particularly with unlikely birdies on Nos. 10 and 11 after errant drives, but he took advantage and put himself in position to defend his claret jug.

Spieth needed only 25 putts in the second round, and he credited a post-round adjustment Thursday for the improvement. The tweak allows his arms to do more of the work in his stroke, and he said he felt more confident on the greens.

“It’s come a long way in the last few months, no doubt,” he said.

More than anything, Spieth was relieved not to have to play “cut-line golf” on Friday, like he’s done each start since his spirited run at the Masters.

“I know that my swing isn’t exactly where I want it to be; it’s nowhere near where it was at Birkdale,” he said. “But the short game is on point, and the swing is working in the right direction to get the confidence back.”