Under the radar Glover goes for another US Open

By Associated PressJune 16, 2010, 3:07 pm

2010 U.S. OpenPEBBLE BEACH, Calif. – He may be the defending U.S Open champion but Lucas Glover knows he still is not in the league with the likes of Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson.

And that is not something the 30-year-old South Carolinian is expecting.

“I’ve always tried to focus on working on my weaknesses and getting better,” he said. “And I didn’t see a point in changing me or my golf swing or anything like that.”

The Glover win was part of a strange 2009 at the majors – a year where the runners-up, in many ways, made bigger news than the winners.

–  Y.E. Yang stood toe to toe with Woods at the PGA Championship and became the first player to beat Woods after he had led entering the final round of a major.

–  Stewart Cink broke the heart of 59-year-old Tom Watson and golf fans everywhere at the British.

–  Angel Cabrera beat out Chad Campbell and 48-year-old fan favorite Kenny Perry at the Masters.

–  Glover was steady over five days of rain and muck at Bethpage and beat out Mickelson and David Duval, the former world No. 1 who came in ranked 882nd and, like Mickelson, held a share of the lead on the back nine.

It marked Glover’s second career victory, and though he hasn’t won since, he did finish third at The Players Championship last month, yet another sign that he can no longer be ignored.

He opened last year at Bethpage with a double-bogey. He knew the only way to recover at a U.S. Open, “the toughest test in golf,” was to stay patient, which he did – all the way through his 3-over 73 in the final round that was good enough to seal the win. Anticlimactic? Maybe. But for Glover, it was a sign of how far he’d come.

“Had that been two or three years ago, I don’t think I would have even recovered and made the cut,” he said of his double-bogey start. “But that was from working between the ears a little bit, and just realizing that it had to be that way to succeed.”

The game plan will almost certainly have to be the same this year.

The tournament is being held at Pebble Beach, but this is hardly the same course that hosts an annual PGA Tour stop – the famous AT&T National Pro-Am – every February.

The rough is growing, the greens are drying out. The wind off the Pacific blew during practice rounds Tuesday, foreshadowing the threat of a speedy, greenish-brown course where club selection will be difficult. Players could need anything from a 6-iron to a sand wedge at the famous, downhill, 109-yard, par-3 seventh.

“You just have to understand that it’s a long haul,” Woods said. “It’s a long grind. It’s different than most major championships. You’re not going to make a lot of birdies and the whole idea is to not make any big numbers because it’s hard to get them back.”

Woods, of course, set the standard for U.S. Open success 10 years ago – here at Pebble Beach.

In a nearly flawless week of golf, he shot 12-under par and won by 15 strokes – a couple of records that don’t figure to be matched anytime soon.

Not even by him – at least not this week, if the results during this, an abbreviated season so far, are any indicator.

Since his fourth-place finish at the Masters, Woods has missed a cut at Quail Hollow, pulled out of The Players Championship with a neck injury and finished 19th at the Memorial.

Asked about the state of his game Tuesday, he sounded like a man trying to convince himself everything was OK.

“The more I play, the more I get my feel back,” Woods said. “Where I was in the beginning of June is where a lot of the guys are in January and February  – the amount of rounds they competed and played in. So I’m just starting to get my feel back. And I know I have to be patient. It’s coming along.”

As everyone knows, the U.S. Open is not the place to be rounding into shape. It’s an unpredictable endurance test, and because of that, it’s not the easiest place to pick a winner. For every Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods and Tom Watson, there’s a Jack Fleck, Michael Campbell and, yes, a Lucas Glover.

Going from a one-time surprise to something even bigger is the defending champion’s next goal.

“It’s been a good year and it’s hard to believe it’s been a year,” Glover said, “but that reality set in when I had to send the trophy back.”

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Lewis hopes to win at Volvik with baby on the way

By Randall MellMay 27, 2018, 12:55 am

Stacy Lewis was listening to more than her caddie on her march up the leaderboard Saturday at the Volvik Championship.

Pregnant with her first child, she is listening to her body in a new way these days.

And she could hear a message coming through loud and clear toward the end of her round at Travis Point Country Club in Ann Arbor, Mich.

“The little one was telling me it’s dinnertime,” Lewis said.

Lewis birdied five of the last six holes to shoot 5-under-par 67 and move into position to make a Sunday run at winning her 13th LPGA title. She is two shots behind the leader, Minjee Lee, whose 68 moved her to 12 under overall.

Sunday has the makings of a free for all with 10 players within three shots of the lead.


Full-field scores from the LPGA Volvik Championship


Lewis, 33, is four months pregnant, with her due date Nov. 3. She’s expecting to play just a few more times before putting the clubs away to get ready for the birth. She said she’s likely to make the Marathon Classic in mid-July her last start of the season before returning next year.

Of course, Lewis would relish winning with child.

“I don’t care what limitations I have or what is going on with my body, I want to give myself a chance to win,” she told LPGA.com at the Kingsmill Championship last week.

Lewis claimed an emotional victory with her last title, taking the Cambia Portland Classic late last summer after announcing earlier in the week that she would donate her entire winnings to the Hurricane Harvey relief efforts in her Houston hometown.

A victory Sunday would also come with a lot of emotion.

It’s been an interesting year for Lewis.

There’s been the joy of learning she’s ready to begin the family she has been yearning for, and the struggle to play well after bouncing back from injury.

Lewis missed three cuts in a row before making it into the weekend at the Kingsmill Championship last week. That’s one more cut than she missed cumulatively in the previous six years. In six starts this year, Lewis hasn’t finished among the top 50 yet, but she hasn’t felt right, either.

The former world No. 1 didn’t make her second start of 2018 until April, at the year’s first major, the ANA Inspiration. She withdrew from the HSBC Women’s World Championship in late February with a strained right oblique muscle and didn’t play again for a month.

Still, Lewis is finding plenty to get excited about with the baby on the way.

“I kind of had my first Mother’s Day,” Lewis told LPGA.com last week. “It puts golf into perspective. It makes those bad days not seem so bad. It helps me sleep better at night. We are just really excited.”

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Rose hasn't visited restroom at Colonial - here's why

By Nick MentaMay 27, 2018, 12:20 am

In case you're unaware, it's pretty hot in Texas.

Temperatures at Colonial Country Club have approached 100 degrees this week, leaving players to battle both the golf course and potential dehydration.

With the help of his caddie Mark Fulcher, Fort Worth Invitational leader Justin Rose has been plenty hot himself, staking himself to a four-shot lead.


Full-field scores from the Fort Worth Invitational

Fort Worth Invitational: Articles, photos and videos


"Yeah, Fulch has done a great job of just literally handing me water bottle after water bottle. It seems relentless, to be honest with you," Rose said Saturday.

So just how much are players sweating the heat at Colonial? Well, it doesn't sound like all that water is making it all the way through Rose.

"I haven't even seen the inside of a restroom yet, so you can't even drink quick enough out there," he shared.

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Up four, Rose knows a lead can slip away

By Nick MentaMay 26, 2018, 11:21 pm

Up four shots heading into Sunday at the Fort Worth Invitational, Justin Rose has tied the largest 54-hole lead of his PGA Tour career.

On the previous two occasions he took a 54-hole Tour lead into the final round, he closed.

And yet, Rose knows just how quickly a lead can slip away. After all, it was Rose who erased a six-shot deficit earlier this season to overtake Dustin Johnson and win the WGC-HSBC Championship. 

"I think I was in the lead going into the final round in Turkey when I won, and I had a four-shot lead going into the final round in Indonesia in December and managed to put that one away," Rose said Saturday, thinking back to his two other victories late last year.

"I was five, six back maybe of DJ, so I've got experience the other way. ... So you can see how things can go both ways real quick. That's why there is no point in getting too far ahead of myself."


Full-field scores from the Fort Worth Invitational

Fort Worth Invitational: Articles, photos and videos


Up one to start the third round Saturday, Rose extended his lead to as much as five when he birdied four of his first six holes.

He leads the field in strokes gained: tee-to-green (+12.853) and strokes gained: approach-the-green (+7.931).

Rose has won five times worldwide, including at the 2016 Rio Olympics, since his last victory in the United States, at the 2015 Zurich Classic.

With a win Sunday, he'd tie Nick Faldo for the most PGA Tour wins by an Englishman post-World War II, with nine.

But he isn't celebrating just yet.

"It is a big lead, but it's not big enough to be counting the holes away. You've got to go out and play good, you've got to go out positive, you've got to continue to make birdies and keep going forward.

"So my mindset is to not really focus on the lead, it's to focus on my game tomorrow and my performance. You know, just keep executing the way I have been. That's going to be my challenge tomorrow. Going to look forward to that mindset."

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Grillo still hunting follow-up to debut win

By Nick MentaMay 26, 2018, 10:53 pm

Following a round of 1-under 69 Saturday, Emiliano Grillo will enter Sunday's final round at Colonial four shots behind leader Justin Rose.

Grillo is hunting his first win since he took the 2015 Safeway Open in his rookie debut as a PGA Tour member. 

The young Argentinian finished 11th in the FedExCup points race that season, contending in big events and finishing runner-up at the 2016 Barclays.

In the process, Grillo had to learn to pace himself and that it can be fruitless to chase after success week to week.

"That was a hot run in there," Grillo said Saturday, referring to his rookie year. "I played, in 2016, I played the majors very well. I played the big tournaments very well. I was in contention after two, three days in most of the big events.


Full-field scores from the Fort Worth Invitational

Fort Worth Invitational: Articles, photos and videos


"I think, you know, I wanted to do better. I pushed for it. Some of the tournaments I ended up being 50th or 60th just because I wanted to play. I wanted to play well so badly. That played against me, so I learned from that. In that rookie year, I learned that."

Grillo was still plenty successful in his sophomore season, advancing to the BMW Championship last fall.

But now he's beginning to regain some of that form that made him such an immediate success on Tour. Grillo has recorded four top-10 finishes year - a T-9 at Mayakoba, a T-8 at Honda, a T-3 at Houston, and a T-9 at Wells Fargo - and will now look to outduel U.S. Open champs in Rose and Brooks Koepka on Sunday at Colonial.

"Well, he's top 10 in the world, so everything he does he does it pretty well," Grillo said of Rose. "You know, he does his own thing. Like I say, he's top 10 in the world. Nothing wrong with his game. ...

"He's in the lead on a Sunday. Doesn't matter where you're playing, he's got to go out and shoot under par. He's got 50 guys behind him trying to reach him, and I'm one of those. I've just got to go out and do what he did today on those first five or six holes and try to get him in the early holes."