Wie Annika Share 54-Hole Lead

By Associated PressJuly 2, 2006, 4:00 pm
2006 U.S. Womens OpenNEWPORT, R.I. -- Michelle Wie's 10-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole hung on the edge of the cup and kept her from the outright lead Sunday in the U.S. Women's Open. Instead, she will be in a three-way tie going into the final round for the second straight year, this time under tougher circumstances.
She was tied with Annika Sorenstam, the No. 1 player in women's golf, and big-hitting Brittany Lincicome.
And the leaders had no more than 25 minutes to grab lunch before heading out for another 18 holes at Newport Country Club, where they were dealing with wind gusts up to 20 mph and the pressure of trying to capture the biggest prize in women's golf.
Lincicome, the first-round leader at The Orchards two years ago, had the best score of the third round at 2-under 69, one of only three players who broke par.
Wie, the 16-year-old from Hawaii with another chance to become the youngest major champion in golf history, traded two birdies with two bogeys, but kept her round together with key par saves along the way and shot 71.
A year ago, Wie was tied for the lead with Morgan Pressel and Karen Stupples until getting stuck in the rough and missing short putts, collapsing to an 82. In the first two majors this year, she finished one shot out of a playoff at the Kraft Nabisco Championship and two shots out of the playoff at the LPGA Championship.
Sorenstam also was poised to capture the U.S. Women's Open for the third time, ending a 10-year drought in the major. She got up-and-down for birdie on the par-5 first hole, but that was her only birdie. She dropped three more shots along the way, and threw her head back in disbelief when a 25-foot birdie on the 18th turned away.
They were at even-par 213, and at this rate, the winning score looked as though it would be over par for the second straight year.
It was the first 36-hole final at the U.S. Women's Open since 1990, brought on by fog that wiped out play Thursday.
The loudest cheers on a warm, sunny morning along the Atlantic were for Juli Inkster, the 46-year-old matriarch of this championship. Inkster won in 1999 and 2002, the latter memorable for her taking down Sorenstam in the final round at Prairie Dunes.
Inkster was among five players who had at least a share of the lead at one point in the third round, getting through the front nine in even par before hitting her stride. She holed a 15-foot birdie putt at No. 10, missed from 5 feet on the 12th, then joined the leaders with a chip-in for birdie from about 25 feet behind the 15th green.
But her tee shot on the par-3 17th skidded off a mound and into a bunker, and she missed a 6-foot par putt. Then she missed the fairway on the 18th, had to lay up, missed the green and had to hole a 6-foot putt to escape with bogey. Despite the back-to-back bogeys to end her round at 71, Inkster was one shot behind at 214, along with Stacy Prammanasudh, who birdied the 18th for a 71.
Pat Hurst was tied with Sorenstam to start the third round and among the five players atop the leaderboard until a bogey-bogey finish dropped her to a 75. She was still two shots behind at 215.
Sophie Gustafson, who got married two weeks ago to former LPGA Tour commissioner Ty Votaw, shot 71 as she continued her strong affection for Newport. It is a links-styled golf course, and the tall Swede, one of the longest hitters in the women's game, has had great success on the links of the Women's British Open.
Among those still in the hunt were LPGA Championship winner Se Ri Pak. She struggled to a 74, but with 18 holes remaining, was only four shots behind. Pak kept it together on the back nine with an unlikely par save from deep rough and the bunker at No. 12, then recovering from bogeys with birdies, including a 10-footer on the last hole.
Wie holed birdie putts from 6 feet on the second hole and from 10 feet on the eighth, while three-putting from 20 feet at the par-3 fourth and failing to save par from the bunker right of the par-3 13th green. But she stayed near or in the lead by getting up-and-down from in front of the ninth green, and hitting a short-sided bunker shot at No. 12 that barely climbed out of the trap, skidded through the rough and onto the green to 3 feet.
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    Koepka watches as named engraved again on U.S. Open trophy

    By Golf Channel DigitalJune 18, 2018, 12:10 am

    For the second consecutive year, Brooks Koepka won the U.S. Open. So, once again he got to watch as his name was forever etched onto the trophy.

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    Masters champ Reed: 'I definitely had a chance'

    By Will GrayJune 17, 2018, 11:55 pm

    SOUTHAMPTON, N.Y. – Patrick Reed’s Grand Slam bid made it all the way to the closing stretch of the final round at the U.S. Open.

    Reed had never cracked the top 10 in a major championship before a runner-up finish at last year’s PGA Championship, and he followed that with a convincing victory at the Masters in April. In the U.S. Open, despite starting the final round three shots behind a quartet of co-leaders, he made a concerted effort to add a second major title.

    With Shinnecock Hills declawed in response to third-round conditions that bordered on unplayable, Reed birdied each of his first three holes and five of his first seven to move to 1 over and within a shot of Brooks Koepka’s lead. He could get no closer, though, as three bogeys in a four-hole stretch on Nos. 9-12 effectively ended his title bid.

    Reed finished alone in fourth place at 4 over, three shots behind Koepka after closing with a 2-under 68.

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    “Of course, Grand Slam would have been nice. But you know, I mean honestly, to me, that was really the last thing on my mind,” Reed said. “It was go out, play some solid golf, try to post a number and see if you can get the job done. I had a chance. I definitely had a chance.”

    It’s the third top-15 finish at the U.S. Open in the last four years for Reed, who tied for 13th at Chambers Bay and finished T-14 last year at Erin Hills.

    Reed was bidding to erase a nine-shot deficit after 36 holes, which would have been the second-largest comeback in tournament history. He was also looking to join Craig Wood, Ben Hogan, Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods and Jordan Spieth on the short list of players to capture the Masters and U.S. Open in the same year.

    “Of course it’s disappointing,” Reed said. “But at the same time … To finish in the top 10 my last three majors, and to have a chance to really win all three of them and to close one off, it means a lot.”

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    Watching Koepka, Fleetwood knew he was one shot short

    By Will GrayJune 17, 2018, 11:33 pm

    SOUTHAMPTON, N.Y. – In the end, even a record-tying performance wasn’t enough for Tommy Fleetwood at the U.S. Open.

    Fleetwood started the final round at Shinnecock Hills six shots off the pace, but he quickly moved up the board with a run of four birdies over his first seven holes. He added four more in a row on Nos. 12-15, and he had a 9-footer for birdie on No. 18 to become the first player to ever shoot a 62 in the U.S. Open.

    He missed, and that proved to be the difference – for both the record and the tournament.

    Fleetwood waited around in player hospitality for the next three hours while the leaders finished, alternating between watching the golf (with sandwich in hand) and playing with his newborn son, Frankie. He was on the chipping green when Brooks Koepka completed play at 1-over 281, successfully defending his title and finishing one shot ahead of Fleetwood.

    “Brooks kept giving me like a little bit of hope, and then he’d hole a putt just to stab you in the stomach a little bit,” Fleetwood said. “I always just had that feeling that I was one shy, so I never really got massively, massively excited.”

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    This was the first year the U.S. Open would have gone to a two-hole, aggregate playoff, so Fleetwood needed to stay loose for a possible overtime that in previous years would have instead been an 18-hole playoff on Monday. He emerged from the locker room and headed to the range to warm up after Koepka birdied No. 16 to take a two-shot lead with two holes to play.

    “I just thought, 'I should really go up, because you never know,'” Fleetwood said. “I mean, the worst thing that could happen is if something did happen and I wasn’t really ready, so it’s better warming up with that intention.”

    The solo runner-up is a career-best major finish for Fleetwood, who also finished fourth last year at Erin Hills. He now shares a piece of tournament history, becoming just the sixth player to shoot a 63, joining a list that includes Jack Nicklaus, Tom Weiskopf, Johnny Miller, Vijay Singh and Justin Thomas.

    And after torching a demanding layout to the tune of eight birdies, he insisted he won’t dwell much on the final putt that got away – even though Koepka’s closing bogey meant that it ultimately made the difference.

    “The putt on 18, I actually wanted more for the 62 at the time, and then it became a thing for the tournament,” Fleetwood said. “Obviously, that’s the putt that will play on your mind because that was the last shot you hit and that was your chance. But I missed some putts in the week, and I made some putts. I think everybody did. And your score is your score. And for me, just getting that close to winning a major again, I think that is the ultimate thing I’ll take from it.”

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    DJ and more congratulate Koepka on social media

    By Golf Channel DigitalJune 17, 2018, 11:31 pm

    Brooks Koepka won his second consecutive U.S. Open title at Shinnecock Hills. Dustin Johnson, his friend and playing competitor on Sunday, was quick to congratulate Koepka. And he wasn't alone.