Back to the Beach

By Golf Channel NewsroomFebruary 3, 2003, 5:00 pm
The 2002 AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am offered a definitive winner and a distinct loser.
 
First, there was Matt Gogel.
 
The unassuming Midwesterner nearly won this event in his rookie season of 2000, but was victimized by a ruthless Tiger Woods. Woods made up seven strokes in seven holes to bypass Gogel, who shot 40 on the back nine that Sunday.
 
The following year, Gogel took a three-shot lead into the weekend only to shot 81 in the third round and vanish into the Pacific mist.
 
Then came 2002. He entered the final hole trailing by one, made a hair-raising 25-foot birdie, and amazingly won by three.
 
That brings us to Pat Perez.
 
The tour rookie, who started Sunday with a four-stroke lead, experienced a final round bumpier than the grainy Pebble greens.
 
But through it all, he led by one ' that was before he teed off on the par-5 18th. Perezs drive flew the gallery on the right and narrowly finished out of bounds. Needing to save par to force a playoff, his 3-wood fourth shot landed in the ocean.
 
He took triple bogey and shot 76.
 
I dont know what it is about this town, said Perez, who had a four-stroke lead going into the final round of the 2000 Buy.Com Monterey Peninsula Classic, but closed in 77 to finish third.
 
To his credit, Perez regrouped for a strong first season. He earned another runner-up finish, at the Buick Classic, and finished 40th on the money list.
 
On the other hand, Gogel failed to ride the momentum of his victory, instead wiping out on the wave.
 
He had only two other top-10s and added just $269,482 to the $720,000 he won at Pebble.
 
I think I just kind of got frustrated throughout the middle of last year. I still had some nice tournaments, but overall I was a little disappointed with how my consistency was throughout the year, and thats my goal for 03, obviously to win, but to be more consistent throughout the year, Gogel said while preparing for the 2003 season at the Mercedes Championships.
 
This years Pro-Am field will be more notable for its absentees.
 
Woods will be skipping the tournament for the first time since turning professional. He is still on the mend after Dec. 12 knee surgery.
 
Only six of the top 20 players in the Official World Golf Ranking are present: Phil Mickelson, Vijay Singh, Rocco Mediate, Jim Furyk, 2001 champion Davis Love III and last week's winner Mike Weir.
 
This is the second week in a row that the pro-am format is in effect. Professionals played alongside amateurs in last weeks Bob Hope Chrysler Classic.
 
This time, though, the rules are quite different.
 
As opposed to last week, when amateur teams of three rotated professionals the first four days of the 90-hole event, each amateur will have the same professional partner over the first three days this time.
 
The two will team together over three different courses ' Pebble Beach Golf Links, Spyglass Hill and Poppy Hills ' and try to make the 54-hole cut. The low 25 pro-am teams will play on Sunday to determine the winner.
 
Of course, the elements are always a concern around this time of the year on the Monterey Peninsula.
 
A full 72 holes have been played each of the last three years, something thats not taken for granted after the tournament was cancelled in 1996, and reduced to 54 holes in 98 and 99.
 
This years forecast is much like the year before: chilly, yet dry.
 
Related Links
  • PGA Tour Statistical Preview
  • Full coverage of the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am
  • Getty Images

    Edoardo, other pros congratulate Francesco on Twitter

    By Grill Room TeamJuly 22, 2018, 6:54 pm

    Francesco Molinari played a bogey-free weekend at Carnoustie to claim Italy's first claret jug.

    His rock-solid performance in the final round earned him his share of social media plaudits.

    Here's a collection of Twitter hat-tips, and we start off with Frankie's brother, Dodo.

    Getty Images

    Woods: Fan who yelled had 'tipped back a few'

    By Jay CoffinJuly 22, 2018, 6:37 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Tiger Woods stood on the 18th tee and thought he needed birdie to have a chance to win The Open. He pulled driver out of his bag, a sign he wanted to boot the ball as far down the fairway as possible.

    Woods took a mighty swat and - right in the middle of his downswing - someone yelled. Woods flinched.

    Luckily his ball still found a decent spot just off the right of the fairway.


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    “I’ve had things like that happen a lot in my career with people who just tried to time it,” Woods said Sunday at Carnoustie after shooting 71 to tie for sixth place. “They tipped back a few, and it’s late in the day.

    “Unfortunately, that’s part of what we have to deal with in today’s game. People are trying to yell out things to try to be on TV or be in social media or whatever it may be. That was too close to the game of play.”

    Woods hit his approach to 6 feet and missed the birdie putt. He tapped in for par to shoot even par and finish 5 under for the week, in a tie for sixth.

    Getty Images

    Pros melt down on Twitter as they watch Tiger

    By Grill Room TeamJuly 22, 2018, 6:30 pm

    Tiger Woods mounted a final-round charge and, for a little while, took the outright lead at Carnoustie on Sunday.

    His fellow pros were watching and tweeting like your average fans.

    We compiled some of their missives below:

    Woods would go on to finish in a tie for sixth at 5 under par for the week.

    Getty Images

    Woods shares emotional embrace with his kids

    By Jay CoffinJuly 22, 2018, 6:21 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Tiger Woods missed a birdie putt on the last hole that would’ve vaulted him into a tie for second place at The Open. It was a difficult way to end an otherwise successful week for the 14-time major champion, who is just happy to playing majors again.

    Then he walked off the 18th, saw his two children, daughter Sam and son Charlie, and they all took a moment for a long embrace. Turns out, that was the perfect way to end the week.

    “I told them I tried and I said, 'Hopefully you’re proud of your pops for trying as hard as I did,'” Woods said Sunday after putting the finishing touches on an even-par 71 to end at 5 under for the week.


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    “It’s pretty emotional because they gave me some pretty significant hugs there and squeezed. I know that they know how much this championship means to me and how much it feels good to be back playing again.”

    In 2008, when Woods won his last major, the U.S. Open at Torrey Pines, Sam was a year old and Charlie was not yet born. They don’t know how much their father used to dominate this game, especially majors. The last time Woods won a PGA Tour event was five full years ago. Woods has joked in the past that they only know him as a YouTube sensation.

    “So, for them to understand what I was doing early in my career,” he said. “The only thing they’ve seen is my struggles and the pain I was going through. Now they just want to go play soccer with me. Man, it’s just such a great feeling.”