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Outside U.S. Open bubble, putting fails Scott

By Will GrayMay 19, 2018, 10:35 pm

DALLAS – With the course firming up and a more difficult breeze in play, Adam Scott stumbled out of contention at the AT&T Byron Nelson. But even afforded the option to lay some blame at the feet of the conditions, Scott put it squarely on a familiar culprit.

“I just didn’t putt well today,” Scott said. “I wish I could blame it on the wind. Maybe I can. I just hit putts, and they just didn’t really roll into the hole.”

Scott lost nearly two strokes to the field on the greens during a 1-over 72 Saturday, a score that dropped him from a spot inside the top 10 into a tie for 19th, eight shots behind co-leaders Marc Leishman and Aaron Wise. He didn’t make a putt longer than 7 feet all day, missing a 5-footer for birdie on No. 7 and three-putting for bogey on the next hole.

After opening with a birdie on the par-5 first hole, he made only one other birdie the rest of the way.

Full-field scores from the AT&T Byron Nelson

AT&T Byron Nelson: Articles, photos and videos

“I played fairly well, and I just didn’t putt very well,” Scott said. “And that’s tough on a day when you’re going to be out of position a little bit, and you need to scramble and you need to make a few putts. And I didn’t really make any.”

Scott faces an uphill battle to get back into the title mix, but the Aussie still has plenty to play for in the final round. Entering the week ranked No. 65 in the world, Scott needs to crack the top 60 in the next rankings to earn a spot into next month’s U.S. Open and continue a streak of consecutive major appearances that dates back to 2001.

Based on the latest projections, Scott needs to finish ninth or better to have a chance to move into the top 60, a fact of which he is well aware. But he’s also cognizant that a second top-60 cutoff looms next month after the FedEx St. Jude Classic, should he need it to qualify.

“I have lots to play for. I’d love to be at Shinnecock,” he said. “I can get it done tomorrow, I think, with a really good round. I’ve had two good rounds out here, and if I can have one more then I’ll have a good chance to get it done. But if I don’t, then I’ll get another chance in a few weeks.”

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Watch: Hahn slam-dunks ace on 11th hole

By Golf Channel DigitalJune 23, 2018, 7:20 pm

There are aces, and there are slam-dunk aces. No question which one this one by James Hahn on the 154-yard 11th hole was.

It was Hahn's first ace on the PGA Tour.

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Els' nephew Rebula wins Amateur Championship

By Golf Channel DigitalJune 23, 2018, 7:05 pm

Ernie Els is one proud uncle.

His nephew, Jovan Rebula, won the Amateur Championship on Saturday at Royal Aberdeen to become the first South African to capture the title since Bobby Cole in 1966.

Rebula, a junior at Auburn, will join his famous uncle in Carnoustie next month for The Open. He also will get invites to the 2019 Masters and the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach.

Rebula defeated Ireland's Robin Dawson, 3 and 2, in the 36-hole final.

"It’s unreal," Rebula said. "It’s really something that is hard to describe. I feel like many have been in this position before but it’s an unreal feeling. It hasn’t sunk in quite yet but hopefully tomorrow morning I can wake up and I will feel a little different."

Rebula received plenty of texts from Els throughout the week, and the encouragement paid off. Rebula opened a 1-up lead after 18 holes, and he extended his advantage by winning the 26th and 27th holes. He was 5 up with six to play before finally closing out Dawson on the 16th hole with an up-and-down from the bunker.

"It’s been a long week and especially today," Rebula said. "I should have finished maybe a couple of holes earlier, but it’s been awesome. A very tiring week. I’m standing here right now and there’s so much adrenaline pumping through me."

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Squirrel gets Rory's round off to a rocky start

By Will GrayJune 23, 2018, 6:42 pm

CROMWELL, Conn. – Rory McIlroy’s third round at the Travelers Championship got off to a peculiar start before he even hit a shot.

McIlroy had just been introduced on the first tee at TPC River Highlands and was ready to unload on his opening drive of the day when a squirrel ran across the tee box a few feet in front of him.

McIlroy stopped his swing and laughed it off, but the squirrel continued to linger for several seconds, criss-crossing from one side of the packed tee box to the other. And while this was no black cat, the pump-fake to start his round didn’t exactly help the Ulsterman.

McIlroy ultimately blocked his drive into the right rough after enduring his brief rodent delay en route to an opening bogey, and amid soft conditions at TPC River Highlands he played his first five holes in 2 over. McIlroy started the day at 7 under, three shots behind leader Brian Harman.

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Kaymer in six-way tie for BMW International lead

By Associated PressJune 23, 2018, 5:29 pm

PULHEIM, Germany - Danish golfer Lucas Bjerregaard shot a 5-under 67 to equal the week's lowest round for a six-way share of the lead after the third round of the BMW International Open on Saturday.

Bjerregaard had eight birdies, a double bogey and a bogey to finish on 5-under 211 - jumping 23 places and joining local favorites Martin Kaymer and Maximilian Kieffer, England's Chris Paisley and Aaron Rai, and Australia's Scott Hend at the top of the leaderboard.

Bjerregaard was fortunate to play before the wind picked up again later in the afternoon.

Full-field scores from the BMW International Open

Kaymer, the 2008 champion, delighted the home supporters with two birdies in his last three holes for a 71.

Finland's Mikko Korhonen and Chile's Nico Geyger were one shot off the lead after rounds of 69 and 73, respectively.

Defending champion Andres Romero equaled the week's best round (67) to be among a large group two shots off the lead going into Sunday, including three-time European Tour winner Andy Sullivan.

Romero is bidding to be the first player to retain the title.