Wie captures Lotte title, ends 4-year drought

By Associated PressApril 20, 2014, 3:31 am

KAPOLEI, Hawaii - Michelle Wie rallied from four strokes back entering the day to shoot a 5-under 67 on Saturday and win the LPGA Lotte Championship.

The 24-year-old American finished at 14-under 274 after coming into the final round trailing third-round leader Angela Stanford by four shots after Friday's play. It was Wie's third career LPGA victory and first since taking the CN Canadian Women's Open in 2010.

And, Wie did it at home.

''I'm just having fun out there,'' said Wie, who grew up in Honolulu. ''I was out there and nervous. Every time I felt nervous out there, I was looking around, I felt there was no place I'd rather be.''

Stanford had her worst round of the tournament, shooting a 1-over 73 that put her at 12-under 276 and two shots behind Wie. Top-ranked Inbee Park finished third with an 11-under 277.

''Today, just didn't make the putts that I've been making,'' Stanford said. ''I wasn't hitting it great today. Just mis-clubbed a couple of times. Just didn't make good decisions.''


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Wie came to Lotte and her home state of Hawaii coming off a runner-up finish two weeks ago in the Kraft Nabisco Championship when she closed with a 71 for her best position of the season.

''The highlight of this week was to come back home,'' Wie said. ''There wasn't just one moment. From the first tee shot that I made to the last putt, the aloha that I felt from everyone was unbelievable.''

Stanford, the leader after the second and third rounds at breezy Ko Olina, came out strong with a birdie on the par-4 third hole to set herself up at 14 under early in the day. A bogey for Stanford and a birdie for Wie on the par-4 sixth closed the gap to within a stroke.

The par-3 eighth brought Stanford, Wie and South Korea's Hyo Joo Kim to a tie at 12 under.

A birdie for Wie on the par-3 12th gave her the outright lead, and she gave a small triumphant fist pump to the crowd. Another birdie on the par-5 13th put Wie two strokes ahead of Stanford and three strokes ahead of Kim.

Stanford and Kim were unable to close that gap.

''She's been playing great,'' Stanford said. ''She's having a great year, so it was bound to happen. I just happened to be the one that caught the buzz saw.''

Trade winds continued to challenge golfers all day, gusting upward of 20 mph, according to the National Weather Service.

''Well, my caddie isn't one for pep talks, but he gave a good one today,'' Wie said. ''He said, 'It's windy out there today, but play your game,' and that's really what I did. I didn't try to force anything. I had a number in my head that I thought I needed to shoot, and I got it.

Kim came in fourth with 1-under 71 for 10-under 278 overall.

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Woods leads by three; McIlroy in final group

By Doug FergusonSeptember 22, 2018, 10:41 pm

ATLANTA – Tiger Woods is three shots ahead and one round away from capping his comeback season with a victory.

Woods played the most dynamic golf he has all year with six birdies in his opening seven holes, building as much as a five-shot lead before he cooled off for a 5-under 65 and a three-shot lead over Rory McIlroy in the Tour Championship.

He has the 54-hole lead for the first time since his last victory in 2013 at the Bridgestone Invitational. He has never lost an official tournament when leading by more than two shots.

Woods has never been in better position to show he's all the way back.

It will be the first time Woods and McIlroy (66) play in the final group Sunday on the PGA Tour.

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Tiger Tracker: Tour Championship

By Tiger TrackerSeptember 22, 2018, 10:25 pm

Tiger Woods fired a 5-under 65 on Saturday to build a three-stroke lead over Justin Rose and Rory McIlroy at the Tour Championship. We tracked him.


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Highlights: Tiger fires 65, takes 3-shot lead at East Lake

By Nick MentaSeptember 22, 2018, 10:25 pm

Following a Saturday 65 at East Lake, Tiger Woods will take a three-shot lead over Rory McIlroy and Justin Rose into the final round of the Tour Championship.

Woods, 12 under for the week, will be paired with McIlroy in the final round on Sunday, as he hunts his 80th PGA Tour victory and his first win in five years.

The 14-time major winner ran away from the field early, making birdie on six of his first seven holes to go ahead by as many as five.

Woods immediately claimed the outright lead with a birdie at No. 1, whipping the Atlanta crowd into an early frenzy.

Following a 4-foot par save at the second, Woods moved ahead by two and reached 9 under par when he played this approach from 144 yards and sank this 8-footer for birdie at the third.

One hole later, Woods reached double digits at 10 under par when he poured in a bending 21-footer that just crept over the lip.

He made it four birdies in his first five holes when he bombed a 320-yard drive, wedged to 7 feet, and converted again.

He looked in danger of not capitalizing on his first crack at a par-5 after he came out of a fairway wood on his second shot, but a splash from the bunker and a make from 6 feet gave him his fifth circle in six holes.

He went Vintage Tiger at the seventh, playing this fairway bunker shot from 172 yards to 5 feet, setting up his sixth birdie in his first seven holes and advancing him to 13 under, five clear.

Looking to make the turn in 29, Woods instead missed the green at the par-3 ninth, failed to get up and down for par, and had to settle for 5-under 30.

Following pars at 10 and 11, he started looking this approach up and down at the 12th, leading to his seventh birdie of the day.

Woods saw his lead decrease from five to three when he bogeyed the par-4 16th and Rose birdied. Woods missed the fairway and green and then failed to pull off an aggressive flop shot up a steep slope.

Woods looked in position to pick up one more stroke at the par-5 18th, but proved unable to get up and down for birdie from the back bunker. Instead, he wrapped up a closing par and back-nine 35.

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DEFCON Tiger: Woods' Saturday lights Twitter ablaze

By Golf Channel DigitalSeptember 22, 2018, 8:15 pm

Tiger Woods grabbed the Tour Championship lead and the sports world by the throat Saturday, making birdie on six of his first seven holes in his third round and sending social media into a frenzy.

Here's a sampling from athletes, journalists and celebrtiies, and we'll start with two-time NBA MVP Steph Curry.