Tiger Repeats at Target World Challenge

By Associated PressDecember 16, 2007, 5:00 pm
2006 Target World Challenge pres. by CountrywideTHOUSAND OAKS, Calif.-- Ten weeks later, nothing has changed with Tiger Woods and the rest of golf.
 
Woods won the final golf tournament of the year Sunday, closing with a 4-under 68 to match the tournament record at the Target World Challenge and set a record for the largest margin of victory, by seven shots over Masters champion Zach Johnson.
 
Woods had not played since Sept. 30 at the Presidents Cup, but he didn't show much rust in winning his tournament for the fourth time and becoming the first player to win in consecutive years.
 
'Doesn't help us, does it?' Colin Montgomerie said of Woods' long break. 'If he took a bloody year off, it would help. Never mind 10 weeks.'
 
Johnson closed with a 68, but the only challenge came from Jim Furyk.
 
Furyk got within two shots after nine holes, but the tournament changed abruptly on the 10th. Woods holed a 12-foot birdie putt, and Furyk three-putted for bogey from 4 feet on a downhill putt.
 
'Jimmy put a ton of heat on me the front nine,' Woods said. 'The whole tournament switched on the 10th. That was a big two-shot swing there.'
 
Woods finished at 22-under 266, tying the tournament record first set by Davis Love III in 2000. He earned $1.35 million, which he will donate to his Tiger Woods Foundation. Johnson, shut out at his first Skins Game last month, earned $840,000 for second. Furyk closed with a 71 and finished third, earning $570,000.
 
For the second straight day, Furyk made Woods sweat, even if it was only a drop.
 
Woods was six shots clear until a two-shot swing on the seventh hole, when Furyk made birdie and Woods three-putted for his first bogey. Furyk birdied the next hole, and Woods dropped a shot on the ninth when he failed to save par from a bunker.
 
Suddenly, the lead was two shots going to the back nine, and Furyk immediately applied pressure with a wedge that he hit with no spin to about 4 feet above the flag. Woods hit wedge that spun back 12 feet below the cup, and that made all the difference.
 
Woods calmly made the birdie putt, while Furyk's putt slid by the cup and rolled 4 feet by. He slapped at the face of his putter, then missed the par putt for a shocking two-shot swing.
 
Woods' lead was back to four, and he kept that margin until the par-3 15th.
 
Furyk was three shots behind Saturday until hitting 6-iron into the water. The final round was no different. Furyk found the water again for double bogey, and he was back to where he started, six shots behind.
 
The only question then was the margin of victory, and whether Rory Sabbatini made it safely to Hawaii.
 
Sabbatini, who was in last place going into the final round, withdrew from the 16-man field Sunday morning. He told the PGA Tour he was pulling out for 'personal reasons,' but his agent later said it was due to shin splints.
 
A locker room attendant said Sabbatini told him Saturday night he was leaving for Maui, and tournament officials were still looking for his courtesy car late Sunday afternoon.
 
The South African still received $170,000 for last place, but perhaps lost some respect along the way.
 
'I think I could have toughed it out one more round,' Mark Calcavecchia said. 'I don't think the fans missed him.'
 
Told that Sabbatini's agent said the reason was shin splints, Fred Couples wasn't buying.
 
'Of course, he did,' Couples said. 'And Roger Clemens' agent said he didn't do steroids.'
 
It certainly had no bearing on the tournament. Woods hasn't been seen at a golf tournament in 10 weeks, and it was as though he never left. His swing wasn't as polished as it was the first two rounds, but it was no different from his summer surge when it counted.
 
'I took four weeks off and struggled,' Paul Casey said after finishing 21 shots behind. 'We have a saying in England that he was Rolls-Roycing it. You fire up the car and it purrs perfectly. I'm very envious.'
 
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    Ko part of 5-way tie for Mediheal lead

    By Associated PressApril 27, 2018, 3:20 am

    DALY CITY, Calif. - Lydia Ko was back on top at Lake Merced.

    Ko shot a 4-under 68 on a chilly Thursday morning at the LPGA Mediheal Championship for a share of the first-round lead. Jessica Korda, Caroline Hedwall, In-Kyung Kim and Su Oh joined Ko atop the leaderboard in the LPGA's return to Lake Merced after a year away.

    ''This is a golf course where you need to drive the ball well and putt well,'' said Ko, the Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic winner at the course in 2014 and 2015.

    Ko eagled the par-5 fifth and had four birdies and a bogey. The New Zealander has 14 LPGA wins, the last in July 2016.

    ''It's nice to come back to a place where you feel super-welcomed,'' Ko said. ''It just brings back a lot of great memories. ... My family and friends are here this week, so I'm hoping that I'm going to continue the solid play.''

    She turned 21 on Tuesday.

    ''I don't think I feel a huge difference, but I know turning 21 is a huge thing in the U.S.,'' Ko said, ''So, I'm legal and I can do some fun things now.''

    Korda, playing alongside Kim a group ahead of Ko, also eagled the fifth and had four birdies and a bogey. Korda won in Thailand in February in her return from reconstructive jaw surgery.


    Full-field scores from the LPGA Mediheal Championship


    ''The score says one thing and my hands say another,'' Korda said. ''It was really cold out there today, so it was good that I stuck to kind of my process. ... Actually, this is still some of the nicer conditions that we've played in compared to the past. I'll take the cold as long as there's no rain.''

    Hedwall and Kim each had five birdies and a bogey.

    ''I just love the city. It's really nice,'' said Hedwall, from Sweden. ''It's sort of a European-style city with all the shopping going on downtown and stuff. I love it here. I even like this weather, suits me really well, too.''

    Oh had a bogey-free round. The Australian was the only one of the five players tied for the lead to play in the afternoon.

    ''It was cold and pretty windy out there and, because it's got a lot of elevation, it kind of swirls in the middle like in the low areas, so it was tough,'' Oh said. ''I hit the ball really solid today. Then the ones I missed, I made really good up-and-downs.''

    Lexi Thompson, Sei Young Kim, Charley Hull and Celine Herbin shot 69.

    ''This course is very challenging, especially when the wind picks up,'' the third-ranked Thompson said. ''It's chilly, so it's a little longer of a course. Some of the par 5s are reachable, so you try to take advantage of that, but pars were good and just take the birdie chances as you can get them.''

    Moriya Jutanugarn, the winner Sunday in Los Angeles for her first LPGA title, had a 71 playing with former Stanford student Michelle Wie and ANA Inspiration winner Pernilla Lindberg. Wie had a 74, and Lindberg shot 79. Ariya Jutanugarn matched her sister with a 71, playing in the group with Ko.

    Top-ranked Inbee Park matched playing partner Brooke Henderson with a 72. The third member of the afternoon group, second-ranked Shanshan Feng, shot 73.

    Juli Inkster shot 72. The 57-year-old Hall of Famer grew up in Santz Cruz, starred at San Jose State and lives in Los Altos. She won the last of her 31 LPGA titles in 2006.

    Stacy Lewis had a 74 after announcing that she is pregnant with a due date of Nov. 3. She plans to play through the Marathon Classic in July and return for a full season next year.

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    Glover, Reavie share Zurich lead with Chinese pair

    By Associated PressApril 27, 2018, 3:04 am

    AVONDALE, La. - Chez Reavie had quite a few good moments at TPC Louisiana on Thursday. So did teammate Lucas Glover.

    In best-ball format, the most important thing was those moments came on different holes.

    Reavie and Glover teamed to shoot a 12-under 60 for a share of the Zurich Classic lead with China's Zhang Xinjun and Dou Zecheng.

    ''Chez started well and I picked it up in the middle of the back nine,'' Glover said. ''He closed it off and then we both played really well on the front. Just kind of ham and egged it, I guess, as they would say.''

    Reavie and Glover each had six birdies in the best-ball format, pushing through soggy weather early in the round before conditions cleared at TPC Louisiana. Six teams are two shots back in a tie for third after shooting 62.

    ''We were just rolling,'' Reavie said. ''I think we're comfortable. We like to laugh and have a good time when we're playing golf, and it definitely helps.''

    Zhang and Dou birdied four of their final five holes. Dou made a 31-foot putt on No. 9 to cap the impressive rally and jump into the lead with Reavie and Glover.


    Full-field scores from the Zurich Classic of New Orleans

    Zurich Classic of New Orleans: Articles, photos and videos


    Tony Finau-Daniel Summerhays, Chris Paisley-Tommy Fleetwood, J.J. Henry-Tom Hoge, Michael Kim-Andrew Putnam, Kevin Kisner-Scott Brown and Troy Merritt-Brendon de Jonge shot 62. Jason Day and Ryan Ruffels shot 64.

    It's the first time since last year's Tour Championship that the reigning champs of all four majors have been in the same field. None of them were among the leaders after the first round.

    Masters champion Patrick Reed and Patrick Cantlay had a 65, and British Open winner Jordan Spieth and Ryan Palmer were at 66.

    ''I didn't feel like there was really any rust,'' Reed said. ''I felt like I hit the ball all right today. I felt I hit some good quality putts. A couple of them went in, a couple of them didn't.''

    This is the second year that two-player teams have competed at the Zurich Classic. The unusual tournament features best-ball play in the first and third rounds and alternate shot in the second and final rounds.

    U.S. Open champion Brooks Koepka and Marc Turnesa shot a 67. PGA Championship winner Justin Thomas and Bud Cauley shot a 70.

    There are 80 teams in the tournament and the top 35, along with ties, will make the cut after Friday's second round.

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    Lewis says she's expecting first child in November

    By Randall MellApril 27, 2018, 2:18 am

    Stacy Lewis is pregnant.

    The 12-time LPGA winner confirmed after Thursday’s first round of the Mediheal Championship that she and her husband, University of Houston women’s golf coach Gerrod Chadwell, are expecting their first child on Nov. 3.

    Lewis learned she was pregnant after returning home to Houston in late February following her withdrawal from the HSBC Women’s World Championship with a strained oblique muscle.

    “We're obviously really excited,” Lewis said. “It wasn't nice I was hurt, but it was nice that I was home when I found out with [Gerrod]. We're just really excited to start a family.”

    Lewis is the third big-name LPGA player preparing this year to become a mother for the first time. Suzann Pettersen announced last month that she’s pregnant, due in the fall. Gerina Piller is due any day.


    Full-field scores from the LPGA Mediheal Championship


    Piller’s husband, PGA Tour pro Martin Piller, withdrew from the Zurich Classic on Thursday to be with her. Piller and Lewis have been U.S. Solheim Cup partners the last two times the event has been played.

    “It's going to be fun raising kids together,” Lewis said. “Hopefully, they're best friends and they hang out. But just excited about the next few months and what it's going to bring.”

    Lewis, a former Rolex world No. 1 and two-time major championship winner, plans to play through the middle of July, with the Marathon Classic her last event of the year. She will be looking to return for the start of the 2019 season. The LPGA’s maternity leave policy allows her to come back next year with her status intact.

    “This year, the golf might not be great, but I've got better things coming in my life than a golf score.” Lewis said. “I plan on coming back and traveling on the road with the baby, and we'll figure it out as we go.”

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    Coach scores in NFL Draft and on golf course

    By Grill Room TeamApril 27, 2018, 1:47 am

    To say that Chicago Bears defensive coordinator Vic Fangio had a good day Thursday would be an understatement. Not only did his team snag one of the top defensive players in the NFL Draft - Georgia outside linebacker Roquan Smith, who the Bears took with the eighth pick of the first round - but earlier in the day Fangio, 59, made a hole-in-one, sinking a 9-iron shot from 125 yards at The Club at Strawberry Creek in Kenosha, Wis.

    Perhaps the ace isn't so surprising, though. In late May 2017, Fangio made another hole-in-one, according to a tweet from the Bears. The only information supplied on that one was the distance - 116 yards.