Symetra playoff ends with eagle; '15 LPGA cards awarded

By Bailey MosierSeptember 21, 2014, 9:45 pm

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - Ten LPGA cards for the 2015 season were on the line Sunday afternoon at LPGA International, but as far as drama goes, that's only the half of it.

Former "Big Break Florida" winner Jackie Stoelting, Symetra Tour rookie Demi Runas and 54th-ranked Marita Engzelius all finished at 10-under 278 and went into a three-way playoff for the Symetra Tour Championship. They replayed the par-5 18th at LPGA International, and despite great birdies by Stoelting and Runas, they both came up short. 

[[{"type":"media","view_mode":"media_original","fid":"808116","attributes":{"alt":"","class":"media-image media-image-left","height":"297","style":"float: left;","typeof":"foaf:Image","width":"600"}}]]

Engzelius knocked her second shot to 5 feet and made the putt for eagle to win her first Symetra Tour title. She didn't get her card for next season, but the $22,500 first-place prize moved her to 15th on the season-long money list and makes her exempt into the third stage of LPGA Q-School.

Stoelting's runner-up finish (thanks to an 8-under 64) marks her third of the season and seventh top 10. She is the Symetra Tour's highest earner ($60, 452) in a single season without a win.

Runas was 15th on the money list entering this week and didn't know what she had to do to earn her card. She didn't realize she earned her way onto the LPGA next year until after the playoff was complete. "It's a dream come true," Runas said, who shot 7-under 65 Sunday to get into the playoff.

In the second round, Runas got bit by a fire ant and had to go to the ER - she's incredibly allergic to bug bites. The doctors gave her some shots and told her to take it easy for a few days, but she knew that wasn't an option.

"My ankle swoll up and was the size of my calf. I had a cankle," Runas said.


To keep her bug bite out of the sun, Runas decided to wear long socks for the weekend. After her near-win Sunday, she said she's considering wearing long socks going forward. And for those concerned souls out there - the swelling has gone down and her cankle is no more!

Runas was the only player from outside the top 10 at the beginning of the week to jump into the top 10. Runas knocked out previously 10th-ranked Veronica Felibert, who finished in a tie for 34th and 11th on the money list, $940 behind No. 10 on the money list, Mallory Blackwelder.

The 10 ladies who earned their 2015 LPGA cards on Sunday are:


1. Marissa Steen ($75,348)
2. Min Seo Kwak ($69,143)
3. Jackie Stoelting ($60,452)
4. Sadena Parks ($57,597)
5. Min Lee ($57,011)
6. Wei-Ling Hsu ($53,004)
7. Yueer Cindy Feng ($51,992)
8. Kendall Dye ($47,684)
9. Demi Runas ($45,095)
10. Mallory Blackwelder ($41,381)

Getty Images

Lyle birdies last hole in likely his final Open start

By Ryan LavnerJuly 20, 2018, 4:32 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – If this was Sandy Lyle’s final Open appearance, he went out in style.

Playing on the final year of his automatic age exemption, the 60-year-old Scot buried a 30-foot birdie on the last hole. He missed the cut after shooting 9-over 151 over two rounds.

“I was very light-footed,” he said. “I was on cloud nine walking down the 18th. To make birdie was extra special.”

Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

Lyle, who also won the 1988 Masters, has missed the cut in his last eight majors, dating to 2014. He hasn’t been competitive in The Open since 1998, when he tied for 19th.

To continue playing in The Open, Lyle needed to finish in the top 10 here at Carnoustie. He’d earn a future exemption by winning the Senior British Open.

“More punishment,” he said.

Getty Images

DJ, Thomas miss cut at Open; No. 1 up for grabs

By Ryan LavnerJuly 20, 2018, 3:35 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – The top two players in the world both missed the cut at The Open, creating the possibility of a shakeup at the top of the rankings by the end of the weekend.

Dustin Johnson became the first world No. 1 since Luke Donald in 2011 to miss the cut at the year’s third major.

Johnson played solidly for all but the closing stretch. Over two rounds, he was 6 over par on the last three holes. He finished at 6-over 148.

Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

Thomas added to what’s been a surprisingly poor Open record. Just like last year, when he struggled in the second round in the rain at Royal Birkdale, Thomas slumped to a 77 on Friday at Carnoustie, a round that included three consecutive double bogeys on Nos. 6-8. He finished at 4-over 146.

It’s Thomas' first missed cut since The Open last year. Indeed, in three Open appearances, he has two missed cuts and a tie for 53rd.  

With Johnson and Thomas out of the mix, the No. 1 spot in the rankings is up for grabs this weekend.

Justin Rose, Brooks Koepka and Jon Rahm all can reach No. 1 with a victory this week.

Getty Images

TT Postscript: Woods (71) makes cut, has work to do

By Tiger TrackerJuly 20, 2018, 3:32 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Here are a few things I think I think after Tiger Woods shot a second consecutive even-par 71 Friday in the second round. And yes, he made the cut:

• Tiger said all 71s are not created equal. On Thursday, he made three birdies and three bogeys. On Friday, he made four birdie and four bogeys. Which round was better? The first. His theory is that, despite the rain, conditions were easier in the second round and there were more scoring opportunities. He didn't take advantage.

• This is the first time since the 2013 Open at Royal Lytham & St. Annes that Tiger shot par or better in each of the first two rounds of a major. That’s quite a long time ago.

• Stat line for the day: 11 of 15 fairways, 13 of 18 greens, 32 total putts. Tiger hit one driver and two 3-woods on Thursday and four drivers on Friday, only one which found the fairway. An errant drive at the second led to him sniping his next shot into the gallery


Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

• In his own words: “I could have cleaned up the round just a little bit. I got off to not exactly the best start, being 2 over through three, but got it back. The golf course was a little bit softer today, obviously. It rains, and we were able to get the ball down a little bit further, control the ball on the ground a little bit easier today, which was nice.”

• At some point Tiger is going to have to be more aggressive. He will be quite a few shots off the lead by day’s end and he'll have a lot of ground to make up. Hitting irons off the tee is great for position golf, but it’s often leaving him more than 200 yards into the green. Not exactly a range for easy birdies.

• Sure, it’s too soon to say Tiger can’t win a fourth claret jug, but with so many big names ahead of him on the leaderboard, it’s unlikely. Keep in mind that a top-six finish would guarantee him a spot in the WGC: Bridgestone Invitational in two weeks. At The Players, he stated that this was a big goal.

• My Twitter account got suspended momentarily when Tiger was standing over a birdie putt on the 17th green. That was the most panicked I’ve been since Tiger was in contention at the Valspar.

Getty Images

Woods fires shot into crowd: 'I kept moving them back'

By Ryan LavnerJuly 20, 2018, 3:14 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – It added up to another even-par round, but Tiger Woods had an eventful Friday at The Open.

His adventure started on the second hole, when he wiped a drive into the right rough. Standing awkwardly on the side of a mound, he prepared for a quick hook but instead fired one into the crowd that was hovering near the rope line.

“I kept moving them back,” he said. “I moved them back about 40 yards. I was trying to play for the grass to wrap the shaft around there and hit it left, and I was just trying to hold the face open as much as I possibly could. It grabbed the shaft and smothered it.

Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

“I was very, very fortunate that I got far enough down there where I had a full wedge into the green.”

Woods bogeyed the hole, one of four on the day, and carded four birdies in his round of 71 at Carnoustie. When he walked off the course, he was in a tie for 30th, six shots off the clubhouse lead.

It’s the first time in five years – since the 2013 Open – that Woods has opened a major with consecutive rounds of par or better. He went on to tie for sixth that year at Muirfield.