Daly switching putters in effort to spark Sunday run

By Mercer BaggsMay 7, 2016, 9:42 pm

THE WOODLANDS, Texas – John Daly made a 25-foot putt on Saturday at the last. At last.

“I needed that one,” he said walking off the green. “First one I’ve made today.”

Daly birdied the par-4 18th in Round 2 of the Insperity Invitational to finish off a 1-over 73. He dropped to 1 under for the event, tied for 21st and six off the lead held by Jesper Parnevik and Jeff Maggert.

Prior to the start of the tournament, Daly lamented his short game, particularly his putting. After needing 31 putts on Day 1, he took 35 on Day 2 – and that’s with three less greens hit in regulation.

Daly continued to strike the ball well, finding 11 fairways and 13 greens. But that putter …

"It was kind of like yesterday. I didn't hit it real close today, but the wind was a little tricky on the back nine," Daly said.

"But, all in all, I hung in there. I mean, I had some opportunities."

That putter won’t see the light of day tomorrow. Daly said he is switching out this Scotty Cameron 8802 model with a heavier version for Sunday’s final round.

"This one is a little lighter and the greens are quick. I feel like my stroke is getting a little long. It might be decelerating," he said. "So I have one that's a lot heavier that might shorten my stroke. Maybe I can hit my putts a little more on line tomorrow, I hope."

Daly also said he might be a little more aggressive, using driver on a couple of extra holes. He’s stuck to a game plan of five drivers and nine irons off the tee box, on par 4s and 5s, for each of his first two rounds. That's one of the few similarities between Saturday and Friday.

If the Day 1 vibe was festive, Day 2 was business. Daly’s debut included an introductory cake and the presentation of a bottle of vodka on the first tee. There were lots of laughs along the way, playing alongside good friends Peter Jacobsen and Fuzzy Zoeller.

Daly was grouped with Kevin Sutherland and Esteban Toledo in Round 2.

"Kevin and Esteban are great guys, but they are not  they are totally different than Peter and Fuzzy. Everybody is. But they are great guys. I enjoyed playing with them," Daly said.

There was also a noticeable difference in the crowd. The gallery off the first tee wasn’t quite as deep and the following not quite as long, as on Friday. There were more khakis and solids than garish garb.

But it was still an impressive gathering, with hundreds watching Daly. He got off to a great start with a birdie at the par-5 first. He parred his way to the eighth, where the previous round he made birdie. This time he made bogey. He then bogeyed the ninth, which he had also birdied on Day 1. And then came two more bogeys on Nos. 10 and 11.

"Just bad execution, bad chips, bad putts," Daly said of the four dropped shots in four holes.

After steadying himself with three consecutive pars, Daly birdied the par-5 15th with two putts and then made the lengthy one to cap things off.

“Longest putt I’ve made so far on the Champions Tour,” he said.

It’s been a long week for the freshly-turned 50-year-old. He’s played six consecutive rounds, dating back to a quartet of pro-ams to begin his week.

After signing his scorecard and signing every autograph he possibly could, Daly said he was ready for an early night – after fulfilling one more sponsor obligation, of course.

"I'm going to cook out for the Loudmouth people," he said, "and then I'm going to bed."

He'll have plenty of time to sleep in. Daly tees off at 12:58 p.m. ET with Billy Andrade and Mark O'Meara in the final round.

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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

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Facial hair Fowler's new good-luck charm

By Rex HoggardJuly 20, 2018, 8:12 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Before, during and after the Fourth of July, Rickie Fowler missed a few appointments with his razor.

He arrived in the United Kingdom for last week’s Scottish Open still unshaved and he tied for sixth place. Fowler, like most golfers, can give in to superstition, so he's decided to keep the caveman look going for this week’s Open Championship.

“There could be some variations,” he smiled following his round on Friday at Carnoustie.

Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

At this rate, he may never shave again. Fowler followed an opening 70 with a 69 on Friday to move into a tie for 11th place, just three strokes off the lead.

Fowler also has some friendly competition in the beard department, with his roommate this week Justin Thomas also going for the rugged look.

“I think he kind of followed my lead in a way. I think he ended up at home, and he had a little bit of scruff going. It's just fun,” Fowler said. “We mess around with it. Obviously, not taking it too seriously. But like I said, ended up playing halfway decent last week, so I couldn't really shave it off going into this week.”

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Spieth (67) rebounds from tough Round 1 finish

By Ryan LavnerJuly 20, 2018, 7:55 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Guess whose putter is starting to heat up again at a major?

Even with a few wayward shots Friday at Carnoustie, Jordan Spieth made a significant climb up the leaderboard in the second round, firing a 4-under 67 to move just three shots off the lead.

Spieth showed his trademark grit in bouncing back from a rough finish Thursday, when he mis-clubbed on the 15th hole, leading to a double bogey, and ended up playing the last four holes in 4 over.

“I don’t know if I actually regrouped,” he said. “It more kind of fires me up a little.”

Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

Spieth missed more than half of his fairways in the second round, but he was able to play his approach shots from the proper side of the hole. Sure, he “stole a few,” particularly with unlikely birdies on Nos. 10 and 11 after errant drives, but he took advantage and put himself in position to defend his claret jug.

Spieth needed only 25 putts in the second round, and he credited a post-round adjustment Thursday for the improvement. The tweak allows his arms to do more of the work in his stroke, and he said he felt more confident on the greens.

“It’s come a long way in the last few months, no doubt,” he said.

More than anything, Spieth was relieved not to have to play “cut-line golf” on Friday, like he’s done each start since his spirited run at the Masters.

“I know that my swing isn’t exactly where I want it to be; it’s nowhere near where it was at Birkdale,” he said. “But the short game is on point, and the swing is working in the right direction to get the confidence back.”