Glorys Last Shot in play this weekend

By Randall MellJuly 30, 2010, 10:14 pm

“Glory’s Last Shot' gains potentially more spectacular meaning starting Sunday at Whistling Straits.

That’s the day the Wisconsin resort course closes to the public and the world’s best players are expected to begin parading in for scouting trips for the PGA Championship.

Count Whistling Straits head professional Michael O’Reilly among the curious spectators eager to see how the significant design changes at the 18th hole will heighten drama if players go for glory with their last full shots in a round.

While a small hand full of club professionals have visited this summer, O'Reilly hasn't been able to see how the game’s elite plan to play the 18th because so few have made scouting trips, but that promises to change beginning this weekend.

“Glory’s Last Shot” may never be a more appropriate moniker for the championship if the new test at the 18th plays out the way Whistling Straits founder Herb Kohler and architect Pete Dye hope.

Kohler and Dye overhauled the 500-yard finishing hole since the last time the PGA Championship was played there in 2004. Dye opened up the left side of this slight dogleg to entice a bold play to cut the corner and shorten the hole.

With a little gorge running across the fairway, the safe play is a layup to the right, leaving players anywhere from 180 to 200 yards for their approach shots. The new shortcut offers a giant reward and giant trouble. The choice can mean the difference between a 6-iron and a pitching wedge, depending on the winds.

“It’s about 290 to 295 yards to carry the bunkers on the left, to where the ball can kick and run downhill to a flat area about 120 yards from the hole,” O’Reilly said.

With deep bunkers and deep grasses, a miscalculated gamble can leave a player pitching out sideways. 

Much will depend on the wind direction, where PGA officials set the tees, but nobody’s quite sure if the world’s best will ultimately deem the gamble worth the heavy risk. That’s what will make the practice rounds so interesting beginning Sunday. Even Kerry Haigh, the PGA’s managing director of championships who’s in charge of course setups, is curious to see what players conclude about the risk in practice rounds.

Imagine this, though. Imagine Phil Mickelson on the 72nd hole of the PGA Championship one shot off the lead. What would he do? “Glory’s Last Shot” might find a new golden moment.

Getty Images

NCAA DI Women's Champ.: Scoring, TV times

By Golf Channel DigitalMay 22, 2018, 5:00 pm

The NCAA Division I Women's Golf Championship is underway at Kartsen Creek Golf Club in Stillwater, Okla.

After three days of stroke play, eight teams have advanced to the match-play portion of the championship. Quarterfinals and semifinals will be contested on Tuesday, with the finals being held on Wednesday. Golf Channel is airing the action live.

Wake Forest junior Jennifer Kupcho won the individual title. Click here for live action, beginning at 4 p.m. ET.

Scoring:

TV Times (all times ET):

Tuesday
11AM-conclusion: Match-play quarterfinals (Click here to watch live)
4-8PM: Match-play semifinals

Wednesday
4-8PM: Match-play finals

Getty Images

UCLA junior Vu named WGCA Player of the Year

By Golf Channel DigitalMay 22, 2018, 3:23 pm

UCLA junior Lilia Vu was named Player of the Year on Tuesday by the Women’s Golf Coaches Association (WGCA).

Vu recorded the lowest full-season scoring average (70.37) in UCLA history. Her four tournament wins tied the school record for most victories in a single season.

Vu was also named to the WGCA All-America first team. Here's a look at the other players who joined her on the prestigious list:

WGCA First Team All-Americans

  • Maria Fassi, Junior, University of Arkansas
  • Kristen Gillman, Sophomore, University of Alabama
  • Jillian Hollis, Junior, University of Georgia
  • Cheyenne Knight, Junior, University of Alabama
  • Jennifer Kupcho, Junior, Wake Forest University
  • Andrea Lee, Sophomore, Stanford University
  • Leona Maguire, Senior, Duke University
  • Sophia Schubert, Senior, University of Texas
  • Lauren Stephenson, Junior, University of Alabama
  • Maddie Szeryk, Senior, Texas A&M University
  • Patty Tavatanakit, Freshman, UCLA
  • Lilia Vu, Junior, UCLA
Chris Stroud and caddie Casey Clendenon Getty Images

Stroud's caddie wins annual PGA Tour caddie tournament

By Rex HoggardMay 22, 2018, 3:15 pm

Casey Clendenon, who caddies for Chris Stroud, won the gross division of the annual PGA Tour caddie tournament on Monday, shooting a 5-under 66 at Trinity Forest Golf Club, site of last week’s AT&T Byron Nelson.

Scott Tway (65), who caddies for Brian Harman, won the net division by two strokes over Wayne Birch, Troy Merritt’s caddie.

Kyle Bradley, Jonathan Byrd’s caddie, took second place with a 71 in the gross division.

The tournament was organized by the Association of Professional Tour Caddies, and proceeds from the event went to two charities. The APTC donated $20,000 to Greg Chalmers’ charity, MAXimumChances.org, which aids families living with autism. The association also donated $10,000 to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. 

Getty Images

Bjorn adds four Ryder Cup veterans as vice captains

By Will GrayMay 22, 2018, 1:05 pm

European Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn has added a quartet of vice captains for the biennial matches this fall in Paris.

Bjorn had already named Robert Karlsson as his first assistant, and he announced Tuesday at the BMW PGA Championship that his group of advisors will also include major champions Padraig Harrington and Graeme McDowell, and former world No. 1s Lee Westwood and Luke Donald.

Westwood is among Europe's most decorated Ryder Cup players, and his addition in this role signals he likely won't participate as a player in the matches for the first time since 1995. The Englishman has spoken openly about his desire to captain the European squad at Whistling Straits in 2020, but he's been quiet on the course in recent months, with a missed secondary cut at the Houston Open his only start since mid-February.

Harrington is seen as another possible captain for the 2020 matches, and he'll don an earpiece for the third straight Ryder Cup, having represented Europe as a player on six straight teams from 1999-2010.

Donald played on four Ryder Cup teams from 2004-12, with the Europeans winning each time he was on the roster. This will mark his first stint as a vice captain, as Donald announced last month that he would be sidelined indefinitely while recovering from a back injury.

At age 38, McDowell will be the youngest vice captain in the room, having holed the winning putt eight years ago at Celtic Manor. He won the French Open in both 2013 and 2014 at Le Golf National, site of this year's matches, and will also be making his debut as a vice captain.