NY Lacking Love for Glover

By Jay CoffinJune 21, 2009, 4:00 pm
2009 U.S. OpenFARMINGDALE, N.Y. ' With all due respect to the New York galleries, they got this one wrong.
 
When Lucas Glover hit his approach on the 16th hole to 4 feet Sunday afternoon in the third round of the U.S. Open, the applause was minimal. Ditto 10 minutes later when he drained the birdie putt to pull within a shot of Ricky Barnes lead.
 
The New Yorkers are knowledgeable and theyre passionate, but there isnt a discernible reason why their interest overwhelmingly lies with Barnes over Glover.
 
Lucas Glover
Lucas Glover is in contention for his first major championship. (Getty Images)
Hes got cooler pants than me, Glover quipped when asked why Bethpage Black has adopted his playing partner. Glover and Barnes are tied for the lead at 7 under after 55 holes and will resume Monday morning at 9 a.m.
 
Perhaps it is Glovers demeanor, which at times can come across as businesslike, uninterested and somewhat edgy. Theres that cold stare, the way he wears his hat low on his head and the quick walk. Throw all the elements together and they dont exactly scream fun.
 
The perception of Lucas Glover and the reality of Lucas Glover couldnt be any different, said longtime Clemson coach Larry Penley.
 
Reality is that Glover, as much as most anyone else on the PGA Tour, is so well-rounded that people can relate to him for one reason or another. Growing up in South Carolina is where he developed his distinct ' but not obnoxious ' drawl, his love for fishing and his love for sports, namely Clemson football.
 
But while you may expect to see him roll up to the golf course in a pickup truck thats blaring George Strait, he prefers to drive a luxury car and listen to Sinatra. Glover has read four books during the myriad rain delays this week, yet is bummed that he hasnt reached his normal average of six per week.
 
Hes a complex guy, he has a lot of interests and hes a student about everything he does, Penley said Sunday from his summer golf camp in South Carolina. He loves Clemson and is probably their biggest fan. I bet he knows the football depth chart better than our coaching staff. Hes just a real neat guy.
 
Knowing the name of Clemsons third-string quarterback isnt going to help Glover much in his attempt Monday to hang with Barnes, who is built more like Clemsons linebacker than punter. What will help is that hes been in the heat of battle more often, having won once on both the PGA and Nationwide tours.
 
But the U.S. Open has always been Glovers bugaboo. That hes never made the cut in three previous Opens, yet is tied for the lead with 17 holes remaining, can be attributed to putting and patience, something he worked on diligently with his Sea Island (Ga.) swing guru Mike Taylor.
 
Glover, 29, has always been a guy who fought his emotions and had difficulty focusing on the task. More than eight years ago during a college tournament Glover walked over to yours truly and said, you know how much fun I could have with a fishing pole right now? That wouldnt normally be considered an odd conversation, except that in this instance, Glover was standing on the 17th tee (surrounded by water) and had a one-shot lead.
 
Renewed focus and a new flatstick have proved to be an impressive combination for Glover this year, which translated to this week. He switched to a new Nike prototype putter during the offseason and his putting improved overnight. Glover is ranked 23rd in putts per round and 32nd in putting average, a huge leap from 2008 where he was 116th and 107th respectively. His 28.31 putts per round in 2009 are more than a full putt lower than last years 29.46 average. And hes ranked seventh in putts made from between 15-20 feet, a distance constantly faced in a U.S. Open.
 
Poise and putting have led to improved results as Glover has made 11 of 14 cuts and tied for third at the Buick Invitational and tied for second at Quail Hollow, a course regarded good enough to host an Open.
 
That same poise paid huge dividends midway through the third round when Glover found himself six shots behind Barnes and leaking oil after he played a three-hole stretch in 4 over. But he birdied Nos. 10, 11 and 16 and pulled to within a shot of the lead. Barnes then bogeyed the first hole to begin the final round and is tied with Glover.
 
Hes won a tournament and hes been in contention a lot, but this was his next step, Penley said. Its fun to watch him in this environment. He seems composed, his swing looks great and hes handled it really well.
 
If it continues Monday here at Bethpage Black, the galleries wont have a choice but to applaud.
 
I feel like I try to be nice to everybody and hopefully they are nice back, Glover said.
 
Whats not to like New York?
 
Related Links:
  • Full U.S. Open Scores
  • Full Coverage - The 109th U.S. Open
  • Getty Images

    Garcia among bubble boys keeping playoff hopes alive

    By Randall MellAugust 18, 2018, 12:34 am

    Sergio Garcia gave himself a chance to keep his perfect FedExCup Playoffs record going with his rally Friday at the Wyndham Championship.

    D.A. Points moved into position to make a historic leap into the postseason.

    And Johnson Wagner dunked his last shot of the day from long range to keep his hopes of making the playoffs alive.

    But the day didn’t end nearly as well for Tyrone Van Aswegen’s FedExCup hopes.

    Van Aswegen didn’t do himself any favors trying to hold on to the 125th spot on the FedExCup points list. He missed the cut by a shot.

    Only the top 125 advance to The Northern Trust and next week’s start to the playoffs.

    Van Aswegen wasn’t alone among “bubble boys” missing the cut. No. 122 Jhonattan Vegas, No. 123 Seamus Power, No. 124 Martin Piller, No. 126 Chad Campbell and No. 127 Robert Garrigus all failed to make the weekend.

    Garcia is among 13 players who have advanced to the FedExCup Playoffs every year since they began in 2007, but his run was in jeopardy of ending starting the week. He’s 131st on the FedExCup points list

    With a 65 Friday following his opening round 66, Garcia is in more than a great position to advance. He’s in position to win the Wyndham. He is tied for fourth, five shots off the lead. The day ended with Garcia projected to move up to 118th on the FedExCup points list.


    Wyndham Championship: Full-field scores | Full coverage

    Current FedExCup points list


    “I'm just going to try to keep building on the things that I did well these first two days,” Garcia said. “Whatever happens, happens. Like I said at the beginning of the week, if I have a great weekend, then it will be great. If I don't have a great weekend, it will still be great because

    I'll get to rest.”

    Points started the week 214th on the FedExCup points list. With back-to-back 64s, he trails only Brandt Snedeker going into the weekend. He’s projected to move to 81st in points. Nobody has ever started the Wyndham Championship that far back in points and qualified for the playoffs. Davis Love III was 186th when he won and advanced in 2015.

    Wagner, 136th on the FedExCup points list, went to spectacular lengths Friday to keep his playoff hopes alive. He was outside the cut line until holing his 153-yard approach at the last.

    Bill Haas, who is among those 13 players to have qualified for the playoffs every year, started the week 150th in points. He can keep his perfect playoff record going with a big weekend. He shot 68 Friday to make the cut. He’s tied for 52nd in the tournament.

    Getty Images

    Points two back after missing 16 of 17 cuts

    By Randall MellAugust 17, 2018, 11:54 pm

    What’s the better story come Sunday?

    Brandt Snedeker turning his 59 in the opening round into a victory at the Wyndham Championship?

    Or D.A. Points winning after missing 16 cuts in his last 17 starts?

    They’re both scripts in the works at Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro, N.C.

    Points, who has been struggling this season with a herniated disc that causes numbness in his fingers, has broken through his season-long funk to shoot back-to-back 64s. He starts the weekend in second place, two shots behind Snedeker.


    Full-field scores from Wyndham Championship

    Wyndham Championship: Articles, photos and videos


    “It's been difficult,” Points said of his slump. “It's been hard on my family. I was in this position a couple years ago, and I clawed my way back and won in Puerto Rico.

    “I had that big downturn, and I clawed my way out of it just to find myself way back down in another deep hole again.”

    Points, 41, is a three-time PGA Tour winner. He won his first title playing alongside Bill Murray at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am in 2011 and two years later won the Shell Houston Open. He slipped into a three-year funk after that, before rebuilding his game and winning the Puerto Rico Open last year.

    “Hopefully, this is my way of starting to claw back out,” Points said.

    Getty Images

    New 'Mr. 59' Snedeker needs Day 2 rally to keep Wyndham lead

    By Randall MellAugust 17, 2018, 11:24 pm

    Brandt Snedeker struggled coming off the emotional high that comes with shooting 59, but it didn’t stop him from rallying Friday to try to turn his historic round into a victory at the Wyndham Championship.

    After a sluggish start to the second round, Snedeker caught fire on the back nine at Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro, N.C., to take the lead going into the weekend.

    With a 3-under 67, Snedeker moved to 14 under overall, two shots ahead of D.A. Points (64).

    “I knew it was going to be tough” Snedeker said. “It wasn't going to be the same way it was yesterday. Kind of battling the emotion of everybody pulling hard for you, wanting to see you do it again. So the front nine was disappointing.”

    A day after becoming the ninth player in PGA Tour history to post a sub-60 tournament round, Snedeker opened with three bogeys and two birdies on the front nine. He said it was a struggle to begin anew.


    Full-field scores from Wyndham Championship

    Wyndham Championship: Articles, photos and videos


    “You hear people telling you every two seconds, `Mr. 59,’ or saying how cool it was to watch it,” Snedeker said. “Phone's still blowing up this morning, guys in the locker room are still talking to me about it. So, yes, totally on your mind. You can't ignore it. You can't try to forget about it. Hardest thing is trying to get back into a rhythm.”

    Snedeker did with an eagle and two birdies on the back nine. Rolling in a 30-foot eagle putt at the 15th gave him back the lead he lost earlier in the round.

    “To see that go in was huge,” Snedeker said.

    Not every player to break 60 on the PGA Tour has gone on to win. In fact, Snedeker is looking to become just the fifth player to do so.

    Getty Images

    Garwood (64) leads Dick's Sporting Goods Open

    By Associated PressAugust 17, 2018, 9:53 pm

    ENDICOTT, N.Y. - Doug Garwood birdied the final three holes for an 8-under 64 and the first-round lead Friday in the Dick's Sporting Goods Open.

    The 55-year-old Garwood had nine birdies and a bogey, playing his final nine holes - the front nine at En-Joie Golf Club - in 6-under 31.

    ''Drove it well, hit the irons well, pitched well, putted well, thought well,'' Garwood said. ''I got to a point I was just making birdies and I kind of lost track of how it was going,'' Garwood said. ''That's always a good thing.''

    He won the 2016 SAS Championship for his lone PGA Tour Champions title.


    Full-field scores from the Dick’s Sporting Goods Open


    "I haven't been playing great this year, but I've been working hard on my game and things I've been working on are paying off,'' Garwood said. ''My golf, I take it a shot at a time, don't think about too far in advance because you really can't control, you know, the 13th hole tomorrow. It's just about the tee shot on No. 1.''

    Michael Bradley and Marco Dawson shot 65, Woody Austin and Clark Dennis followed at 66, and Bob Estes and Tom Gillis were at 67.

    ''It was a good day,'' Bradley said. ''I've traditionally not driven the ball well here and you've got to drive the ball good here to shoot a good score. I drove the ball well and made a few putts, so that was that.''

    Kenny Perry, the 3M Championship winner two weeks ago in Minnesota, had a 68. Bernard Langer and Miguel Angel Jimenez each shot 70. Langer won the 2014 tournament. Jimenez is coming off a victory at St. Andrews in the British Senior Open.

    Defending champion Scott McCarron had a 72. Kevin Sutherland also had a 72. He shot the only 59 in PGA Tour Champions history in the 2014 event. John Daly, the winner of the PGA Tour's 1992 B.C. Open at En-Joie, opened with a 73.