Stat attack!: Shell Houston Open review

By John AntoniniApril 6, 2014, 9:56 pm

Matt Jones, ranked 90th on the World Ranking, rolled in a 46-foot putt on the last hole and wound up in a playoff at the Shell Houston Open. He then made a 42-yard chip on the first extra hole for his first PGA Tour win and a spot in this week’s Masters.

He’s the fourth Australian winner on Tour this year (third in the last four weeks) and continues a trend of journeymen coming back to defeat the best players in the world in the final round. Seven of last eight PGA Tour winners were ranked 90th or higher when they won. And they weren’t all beating fellow grinders. First Russell Henley beat Rory McIlroy at the Honda Classic, then Matt Every toppled Adam Scott and Keegan Bradley at Bay Hill, and now Jones stunned Kuchar. What’s next? Thorbjorn Olesen edging Phil Mickelson at Augusta? Don’t laugh. Stranger things have happened.

World Ranking of PGA Tour winners since the Florida Swing

 Rank Player Tournament Runner-up
 90 Matt Jones Shell Houston Open Matt Kuchar
 339 Steven Bowditch Valero Texas Open Will MacKenzie, Daniel Summerhays
 94 Matt Every Arnold Palmer Invitational         Keegan Bradley
 123 John Senden Valspar Championship         Kevin Na
 92 Chesson Hadley Puerto Rico Open Danny Lee
 44 Patrick Reed WGC-Cadillac Championship           Jamie Donaldson, Bubba Watson
 110 Russell Henley Honda Classic Rory McIlroy, Russell Knox

Jones has been grinding his way on tour for seven years. He was 32nd on the FedEx Cup standings a year ago thanks to a runner-up finish at the Greenbrier Classic. His breakout win was a long time coming.

Matt Jones PGA Tour record

 Year Starts Top-10s Top-25s Cuts made Fedex Rank Money rank Earnings
 2014 12 1 4 9 16 18 $1,605,598
 2013 24 5 9 18 32 48 1,724,707
 2012 19 1 2 8 184 172 300,254
 2011 25 1 5 10 127 133 602,392
 2010 27 5 8 17 63 72 1,215,743
 2009 17 2 4 12 126 134 593,313
 2008 31 2 5 17 127 135 775,899
 2005 1 0 0 0 0 0 0

Jones managed to win Sunday despite hitting just five fairways, although he did manage to find 15 greens in regulation. For the week he was second in the field in GIR with 58. He also led the field in strokes gained-putting and only missed one putt from less than 10 feet. Like many PGA Tour winners, he improved dramatically in the stats in which he had been having the most trouble.

Matt Jones PGA Tour stats at Houston and entering the week

  GIR percentage Strokes gained/putting Putting from less than 10 feet
 Houston 80.56% (2) 2.528 (1) 93.39% (2)
 the week
65.64% (106) -.096 (107) 84.56% (161)

Jones also led the field in par-3 scoring at 2.69. He was the first player to win while leading the field in scoring on the one-shot holes since Harris English at the Mayakoba Classic. Like English, Jones will be making his first Masters appearance this week. The Aussie is the 24th first-timer to qualify for Augusta National (a tournament-record, discounting, of course, the inaugural event in 1934). He’s the sixth player to earn his Masters berth by virtue of winning on Tour this season.

2013-14 Tour winners, whose victory got them into the Masters

 Player 2013-14 win Previous majors
 Steven Bowditch Valero Texas Open 1
 Matt Every Arnold Palmer Invitational 3
 Matt Jones Shell Houston Open 3
 Chris Kirk McGladrey Classic 4
 Kevin Stadler WM Phoenix Open 6
 Jimmy Walker Frys.Com Open 6

Does winning the week before the Masters improve your chances of winning at Augusta? It’s not likely. Only four Masters champs won the week before the Masters, and in the last five years only Anthony Kim in 2010 finished in the top-10 at the Masters.

Masters winners who won the week prior to the Masters

 Year Player Tournament
 2006 Phil Mickelson Bell South Classic
 1988 Sandy Lyle Kmart Greater Greensboro Open
 1959 Art Wall Azalea Open
 1939 Ralph Guldahl Greater Greensboro Open

How prior-week winners fared at the Masters: 2009-2013

  Year Player Masters finish
 2013 Martin Laird Missed cut
 2012 Hunter Mahan T-12
 2011 Phil Mickelson T-27
 2010 Anthony Kim 3
 2009 Paul Casey T-20

As for Kuchar, does losing the Shell Houston Open impact his Masters odds? The runner-up the week before the Masters hasn’t always been invited to Augusta, but when he does play his success is a mixed bag. Of seven players, five made the cut and two had top-10 finishes. Two players missed the cut.

How the prior week runner-up fared at the Masters: 2004-2013

 Year Player Runner-up Masters finish
 2013 Rory McIlroy Valero Texas Open T-25
 2008 Geoff Ogilvy Shell Houston Open T-39
 2007 Stuart Appleby Shell Houston Open T-7
 2006 Zach Johnson Bell South Classic T-32
 2006 Jose Maria Olazabal Bell South Classic T-3
 2005 Rich Beem Bell South Classic MC
 2005 Jose Maria Olazabal Bell South Classic MC




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Tiger Tracker: 147th Open Championship

By Tiger TrackerJuly 21, 2018, 9:00 am

Tiger Woods shot his second consecutive 70 on Friday at Carnoustie and enters weekend play at even par for the championship, still in contention for major No. 15.

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How to watch The Open on TV and online

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 21, 2018, 8:30 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 (

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Storms halt Barbasol before Lincicome tees off

By Associated PressJuly 20, 2018, 11:29 pm

NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - Brittany Lincicome will have to wait until the weekend to resume her bid to make the cut in a PGA Tour event.

Overnight storms delayed the start of the second round Friday in the Barbasol Championship, and an afternoon thunderstorm suspended competition for good. The round will resume Saturday morning with much of the field still to play.

The second stoppage at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came 20 minutes before Lincicome's scheduled tee time.

Lincicome was near the bottom of the field after opening with a 6-over 78 on Thursday. The first LPGA player since Michelle Wie in 2008 to start a PGA Tour event, she needs a huge rebound to join Babe Zaharias (1945) as the only female players to make the cut.

Troy Merritt had the clubhouse lead at 15 under, following an opening 62 with a 67.

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Third-round tee times for the 147th Open

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 20, 2018, 9:05 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Eighteen major champions made the cut at The Open and will be playing the weekend at Carnoustie, including 60-year-old ageless wonder Bernhard Langer, and both major champs so far this year, Patrick Reed and Brooks Koepka.

Twenty-four-year-old Gavin Green will be first off solo Saturday at 4:15 a.m. ET. Reed and Rhys Enoch will follow along 10 minutes later.

Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods, both at even par for the tournament, six shots behind leaders Zach Johnson and Kevin Kisner, are in consecutive groups. Mickelson is playing with Austin Cook at 8:05 a.m. and Woods is with South Africa’s Shaun Norris at 8:15 a.m.

Jordan Spieth and Rickie Fowler, both three shots off the lead, are also in consecutive groups. Fowler is at 10 a.m. with Thorbjorn Olesen and Spieth is 10 minutes later with Kevin Chappell. Rory McIlroy, looking to win his first major since the 2014 PGA Championship, is at 10:40 a.m. with Xander Schauffele. McIlroy is two shots behind.

Johnson and Kisner are last off at 11 a.m.

4:15AM ET: Gavin Green

4:25AM ET: Rhys Enoch, Patrick Reed

4:35AM ET: Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Justin Rose

4:45AM ET: Yusaku Miyazato, Tyrrell Hatton

4:55AM ET: Ross Fisher, Keegan Bradley

5:05AM ET: Ryan Fox, Jason Dufner

5:15AM ET: Bryson DeChambeau, Henrik Stenson

5:25AM ET: Tom Lewis, Sam Locke (a)

5:35AM ET: Paul Casey, Chris Wood

5:45AM ET: Bernhard Langer, Rafa Cabrera Bello

6:00AM ET: Paul Dunne, Brett Rumford

6:10AM ET: Masahiro Kawamura, Shubhankar Sharma

6:20AM ET: Cameron Smith, Brendan Steele

6:30AM ET: Marc Leishman, Lee Westwood

6:40AM ET: Byeong Hun An, Kevin Na

6:50AM ET: Julian Suri, Adam Hadwin

7:00AM ET: Gary Woodland, Si-Woo Kim

7:10AM ET: Yuta Ikeda, Satoshi Kodaira

7:20AM ET: Marcus Kinhult, Thomas Pieters

7:30AM ET: Beau Hossler, Haotong Li

7:45AM ET: Cameron Davis, Sean Crocker

7:55AM ET: Louis Oosthuizen, Stewart Cink

8:05AM ET: Phil Mickeslon, Austin Cook

8:15AM ET: Tiger Woods, Shaun Norris

8:25AM ET: Lucas Herbert, Michael Kim

8:35AM ET: Jason Day, Francesco Molinari

8:45AM ET: Sung Kang, Webb Simpson

8:55AM ET: Patrick Cantlay, Eddie Pepperell

9:05AM ET: Matthew Southgate, Brooks Koepka

9:15AM ET: Kyle Stanley, Adam Scott

9:30AM ET: Charley Hoffman, Alex Noren

9:40AM ET: Ryan Moore, Brandon Stone

9:50AM ET: Luke List, Danny Willett

10:00AM ET: Thorbjorn Olesen, Rickie Fowler

10:10AM ET: Jordan Spieth, Kevin Chappell

10:20AM ET: Zander Lombard, Tony Finau

10:30AM ET: Matt Kuchar, Erik Van Rooyen

10:40AM ET: Rory McIlroy, Xander Schauffele

10:50AM ET: Pat Perez, Tommy Fleetwood

11:00AM ET: Kevin Kisner, Zach Johnson