Does Lorena Have Wright Stuff

By Brian HewittApril 21, 2008, 4:00 pm
Among others now being chased by the emergent Lorena Ochoa is the great Mickey Wright.
Wrights dream season on the LPGA was 1963 when she won 13 times. Ochoa, who once again Sunday left the rest of the field in her rear view mirror ' this time at the Ginn Open ' has now won five times ' including her last four in a row ' in six 2008 starts.
Every tournament is different, Ochoa said before going outdueling a 19-year-old woman from Taiwan named Yani Tseng en route to a three-shot victory and her 19th career win.
But the results, more and more, are the same: Ochoa winning in romps.
Ochoas still alive for the womens Grand Slam, of course. Three majors remain on this seasons schedule. But because of her current form, people are now talking about her the same way they were talking about Tiger Woods about a month ago.
That was before Woods suffered his first loss of the year at Doral. He followed that with another dodgy putting week at the Masters Tournament earlier this month. Last Tuesday Woods underwent knee surgery and might not be back until the U.S. Open in June.
So the focus on professional golf is slowly shifting towards Ochoa and the womens game. And the experts are beginning to wonder if Mexicos Ochoa will lose again this year. If she wins in her next start, it will tie an LPGA record of five straight wins currently shared by Nancy Lopez (1978) and Sorenstam (2004-2005).
Meanwhile, back at Mickey Wright, her 13 victories in 1963 are the LPGAs single season record. Annika Sorenstam got to 11 in 2002 but couldnt better Wrights mark, once thought to be unassailable.
Asked Sunday how many times she thinks she can win this year, Ochoa didnt take the bait. Im not going to put a number, she said.
It should be noted that Wright played in 28 events in 1963 (27 top-10s). Ochoa is expected to play no more than 22 times this year. But the way she is playing'long, straight driving combined with solid wedge play and a confident putter'anything appears possible.
The 26-year-old Ochoa has said she wants to have a family one day and that she is not married to playing tournament golf indefinitely. Wright stopped playing at age 34 with 82 career wins, including 13 majors. At the time, she was suffering from foot problems, an adverse reaction to sunlight, and an aversion to flying.
But before she quit playing for pay, she won the Tiger Slam before Woods was even born. In 1961 Wright captured that seasons final two majors'the U.S. Womens Open and the LPGA Championship. Then she conquered the first two of what were then LPGA majors'the 1962 Titleholders Championship and the Western Open.
Sunday at the Ginn, played near Orlando at the Ginn Reunion Resort, it was close through nine holes. Then Ochoas short birdie putt on the 10th gave her a one-shot lead she never relinquished over the long-hitting Tseng. When Tseng bogeyed 13, 15 and 17 it turned the rest of the final round into little more than a victory lap for Ochoa.
Yes, I have another big trophy, said the unfailingly good-natured Ochoa afterward with a laugh. Im going to ask my mommy where we should put it.
One final note: For her victory Sunday in Florida Ochoa received a check for $390,000 in official prize money. For her entire career, Mickey Wright received checks totaling $368,770 in official prize money.
Yeah, said Tseng of Ochoa, shes really No. 1.
And then some.
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    Tiger Tracker: 147th Open Championship

    By Tiger TrackerJuly 20, 2018, 9:20 am

    Following an even-par 71 in the first round of the 147th Open Championship, Tiger Woods looks to make a move on Day 2 at Carnoustie.

    Getty Images

    McIlroy responds to Harmon's 'robot' criticism

    By Mercer BaggsJuly 20, 2018, 6:53 am

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Rory McIlroy said during his pre-championship news conference that he wanted to play more "carefree" – citing Jon Rahm’s approach now and the way McIlroy played in his younger days.

    McIlroy got off to a good start Thursday at Carnoustie, shooting 2-under 69, good for a share of eighth place.

    But while McIlroy admits to wanting to be a little less structured on the course, he took offense to comments made by swing coach Butch Harmon during a Sky Sports telecast.

    Said Harmon:

    “Rory had this spell when he wasn’t putting good and hitting the ball good, and he got so wrapped up in how he was going to do it he forgot how to do it.

    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

    “He is one of the best players the game has ever seen. If he would just go back to being a kid and playing the way he won these championships and play your game, don’t have any fear or robotic thoughts. Just play golf. Just go do it.

    “This is a young kid who’s still one of the best players in the world. He needs to understand that. Forget about your brand and your endorsement contracts. Forget about all that. Just go back to having fun playing golf. I still think he is one of the best in the world and can be No.1 again if he just lets himself do it.”

    McIlroy, who has never worked with Harmon, responded to the comments when asked about them following his opening round.

    “Look, I like Butch. Definitely, I would say I'm on the opposite end of the spectrum than someone that's mechanical and someone that's – you know, it's easy to make comments when you don't know what's happening,” McIlroy said. “I haven't spoken to Butch in a long time. He doesn't know what I'm working on in my swing. He doesn't know what's in my head. So it's easy to make comments and easy to speculate. But unless you actually know what's happening, I just really don't take any notice of it.”

    McIlroy second round at The Open began at 2:52 a.m. ET.

    Getty Images

    How The Open cut line is determined

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 20, 2018, 5:57 am

    Scores on Day 1 of the 147th Open Championship ranged from 5-under 66 to 11-over 82.

    The field of 156 players will be cut nearly in half for weekend play at Carnoustie. Here’s how the cut line works in the season’s third major championship:

    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

    • After 36 holes, the low 70 players and ties will advance to compete in the final two rounds. Anyone finishing worse than that will get the boot. Only those making the cut earn official money from the $10.5 million purse.

    • There is no 10-shot rule. That rule means anyone within 10 shots of the lead after two rounds, regardless of where they stand in the championship, make the cut. It’s just a flat top 70 finishers and ties.

    • There is only a single cut at The Open. PGA Tour events employ an MDF (Made cut Did not Finish) rule, which narrows the field after the third round if more than 78 players make the cut. That is not used at this major.

    The projected cut line after the first round this week was 1 over par, which included 71 players tied for 50th or better.

    Getty Images

    How to watch The Open on TV and online

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 20, 2018, 5:30 am

    You want to watch the 147th Open? Here’s how you can do it.

    Golf Channel and NBC Sports will be televising 182 hours of overall programming from the men's third major of the year at Carnoustie

    In addition to the traditional coverage, the two networks will showcase three live alternate feeds: marquee groups, featured holes (our new 3-hole channel) and spotlight action. You can also watch replays of full-day coverage, Thursday-Sunday, in the Golf Channel app, NBC Sports apps, and on  

    Here’s the weekly TV schedule, with live stream links in parentheses. You can view all the action on the Golf Channel mobile, as well. Alternate coverage is noted in italics:

    (All times Eastern; GC=Golf Channel; NBC=NBC Sports; or check the GLE app)

    Monday, July 16

    GC: 7-9AM: Morning Drive (

    GC: 9-11AM: Live From The Open (

    GC: 7-9PM: Live From The Open (

    Tuesday, July 17

    GC: 6AM-2PM: Live From The Open (

    Wednesday, July 18

    GC: 6AM-2PM: Live From The Open (

    Thursday, July 19

    GC: Midnight-1:30AM: Midnight Drive (

    GC: Day 1: The Open, live coverage: 1:30AM-4PM ( Day 1: The Open, Spotlight: 1:30AM-4PM ( Day 1: The Open, Marquee Groups: 4AM-3PM ( Day 1: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 4AM-3PM (

    GC: Live From The Open: 4-5PM (

    Friday, July 20

    GC: Day 2: The Open, live coverage: 1:30AM-4PM ( Day 2: The Open, Spotlight: 1:30AM-4PM ( Day 2: The Open, Marquee Groups: 4AM-3PM ( Day 2: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 4AM-3PM (

    GC: Live From The Open: 4-5PM (

    Saturday, July 21

    GC: Day 3: The Open, live coverage: 4:30-7AM (

    NBC: Rd. 3: The Open, live coverage: 7AM-3PM ( Day 3: The Open, Spotlight: 4:30AM-3PM ( Day 3: The Open, Marquee Groups: 5AM-3PM ( Day 3: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 5AM-3PM (

    GC: Live From The Open: 3-4PM (

    Sunday, July 22

    GC: Day 4: The Open, live coverage: 4:30-7AM (

    NBC: Rd. 4: The Open, live coverage: 7AM-2:30PM ( Day 4: The Open, Spotlight: 4:30AM-2:30PM ( Day 4: The Open, Marquee Groups: 5AM-2PM ( Day 4: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 5AM-2PM (

    GC: Live From The Open: 2:30-4PM (