Rookie Wins In Debut
Kang, who came into the final round with a three-shot lead at eight-under-par 134, picked up right where she left off yesterday. Playing in the last group, Kang added three birdies to her scorecard on two, four, and seven, making respective six, 10, and five-foot putts. She bogeyed eight, but added two more birdies on 12 and 14 and jumped to 12-under-par for the tournament. Kang bogeyed 15, but recovered with a one-foot birdie putt on the par four 310-yard 16th, to end at 12-under-par 201.
'I just can not believe that I won,' smiled Kang, who picked up the $8,400 first-place check. 'I came out here hoping that I would make the cut. I never thought I would win. I was really nervous being out here by myself because I am always with one of my parents. There were many spectators here that returned from yesterday to cheer me on. I was so thankful and excited to have them here. It made the day really unbelievable. I wanted to play well not just for me, but for the fans.'
Ochoa, who was tied with Beisiegel and two others at 5-under-par 137 after 36-holes, recorded birdies on one and six and a bogey on five. She turned at 6-under-par for the tournament, four shots behind Kang who was playing in the same group. Ochoa turned hot on the back nine with birdies on 10, 12, 14, 16, and 18 to come within one shot of Kang at 11-under-par for the tournament. But it wasnt enough and Ochoa carded her third runner-up finish of the season.
Beisiegel sizzled on the front nine, carding five straight birdies beginning on hole three, and was tied with Kang at 10-under-par through nine holes. She continued with a birdie on 11 to remain in contention for her first win, but double-bogeyed 15 to fall three shots back of Kang. She was unable to recover and finished alone in third at 204 (-9).
Kang joins Ochoa and Soo Young Kim of Chung Nam, South Korea, as the only rookies to win on the 2002 Futures Tour. She turned professional June 26, 2002, after two successful years at Arizona State University. A resident of Scottsdale, Arizona, Kang entered the collegiate scene ranked 24th in the country before competing in her first event. Two years later and 13 top 10 collegiate finishes, the former Sun Devil decided that she needed to take the next step.
'I have been seriously thinking about turning professional since my freshman year,' stated Kang, an emotional player who loves to interact with spectators cheering her on. 'Leaving college wasnt easy. I made good grades and I was successful on the golf course. I wanted to go when I was ready and I believe in my heart that I chose the perfect time. This is what I have always wanted to do. '
Kangs professional career began three weeks ago at the 57th U.S. Womens Open Championship, her third appearance at the prestigious event. She missed the 36-hole cut, but her spirits didnt bring her down.
Kang stated, 'I was just so happy to be there amongst the greatest golfers in the world. That experience taught me what I needed to expect of myself as a professional golfer. I realized just how important each stroke is, especially when you are playing for money.'
Kangs goal is to make it to the LPGA Tour for next season. She will attempt to qualify via LPGA Final Qualifying Tournament this October. Kang will compete in two weeks at the Betty Puskar Futures Golf Classic in Morgantown, W. Va., the second to last tournament of the 2002 Futures Tour season. She is using her experience on the Futures Tour to practice and get acclimated to the life of a professional golfer. She is already having a great time adjusting.
Romo turns in even in PGA Tour debut
After stumbling out of the gates, Tony Romo has found his footing in his PGA Tour debut.
Playing in the Corales Punta Cana Resort & Club Championship on a sponsor exemption, Romo shot an even-par 36 for his opening nine holes in the Dominican Republic. The former NFL quarterback bogeyed his first two holes, but steadied the ship with three birdies from Nos. 4-8 while playing alongside Dru Love and Denny McCarthy.
The early highlight of the round came at the par-4 fifth hole, where Romo drained a putt from across the green for his second straight birdie:
Romo has played as an amateur partner in the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, and has played individually in U.S. Open local qualifiers and mini-tour events as an amateur. But this marks his first attempt to gauge his game against the best players in the world who are not in Austin for the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play.
Romo, who plays to a plus-0.3 handicap, said earlier in the week that he expected some jitters once it came time to put a tee in the ground.
"You'll be nervous on Thursday on the first tee. Just going to be," Romo said. "I've got to get through the first three or four holes. If I can handle the nerves on the first three or four holes, I think that I'll settle in and hopefully just play the way I've been playing."
Click here to watch live first-round action on Golf Channel.
Kim's missing clubs show up at sporting goods store
More than a month after they were lost on an American Airlines flight, the clubs I.K. Kim used to win last year's Ricoh Women's British Open turned up on the sale rack of a California sporting goods store.
Kim's clubs became lost in late January when she flew from Miami to San Diego, with the airline suggesting she simply rent a new set. A few weeks later, Kim shot a "What's in the bag" television segment which according to a Golfweek report caught the eye of three good samaritans in the San Diego area.
The three men recognized Kim's clubs for sale at a local Play It Again Sports, with the major winner's tools listed at $60 each. The store even had Kim's tour bag, complete with her LPGA player badge. Kim filmed the reunion with her bag - containing wedges and a few hybrids, minus the head covers - at the Carlsbad police station:
What’s in my bag now?! They were selling at Play it again ... only $60 each in San Diego. Jack, Jeff, Paul watched my video with @alisonwhitaker1 in Singapore and found my remaining clubs and brought it back to me @lpga_tour this week at Aviara!! Btw... Where is the head covers? They might sell separately?Never mind.
Kim was back in southern California this week for the Kia Classic, where she'll begin play Thursday morning at Aviara Golf Club in Carlsbad.
WGC-Dell Match Play: Scoring, live stream, standings
New dad Garcia removes shoes, wins match
AUSTIN, Texas – In one of the day’s most explosive matches, Sergio Garcia rolled in an 8-footer for birdie at the 18th hole to defeat Shubhankar Sharma, 1 up, at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play.
The duo halved just nine holes on Day 1 at Austin Country Club, with Garcia going from 2 up through four holes to 1 down with five holes to play.
But the Spaniard rallied with five birdies over his final eight holes and pushed his record to 20-17-1 in the Match Play. He also gave himself his best chance to advance out of pool play since the format began in 2015.
The victory continued what has already been a memorable week for Garcia, whose wife, Angela, gave birth to the couple’s first child last Wednesday.
“I already feel like I’m a winner after what happened on Wednesday,” Garcia said. “Obviously, it's something that we're so, so happy and proud of and enjoying it as much as possible.”
The highlight of Garcia’s round on Wednesday came at the 12th hole when he took a drop on a cart path. After considering his options, he removed his shoes and hit his approach from 212 yards to 29 feet for a two-putt birdie to halve the hole.
“I have spikes. So if I don't take my shoes off, I'm going to slip. It's not the kind of shot that you want to slip,” Garcia said. “I had tried it a couple of times on practice swings and I was already slipping a little bit. So I thought I would just take my shoes off, try to get a little bit in front of the hole and it came out great.”