LPGA Tour Report Cards

By Martha BrendleNovember 29, 2001, 5:00 pm
Editor's Note: This is the third in a series of articles rating the performance of players on the LPGA, European, Senior and PGA Tours in 2001. We have filed report cards for the PGA Tour and European Tour, now it's time for the LPGA.
The LPGA Tour season has come to a close and its time to report on standout performances. This year we chose to grade players in golf lingo ' birdie, par, bogey - instead of letter grades.
Who better to start with than Annika Sorenstam. Sorenstam dominated the LPGA Tour in a way that hasnt been seen in decades. As far as the 'birdie-par-bogey' scale is concerned, Annika far surpassed her fellow competitors. She is in a category all by herself, having practically rewritten the record books this season. It was an eagle year for Sorenstam.
She was named Player of the Year and its no wonder when you consider that the 31-year-old took home eight tournament titles, four in a row - one of which was a major - and became the first woman to record a score of 59 in competition. She also became the first woman to break the $2 million mark in a season - finishing No. 1 on the money list with earnings of $2,105,868. Vare Trophy, yes, that went to her too, along with her name next to the record breaking 69.42 scoring average.
Birdies go to Se Ri Pak ($1,623,009) and Karrie Webb ($1,535,404), who had above average seasons. They were the only other players, aside from Sorenstam, to earn more than a million dollars this season. Between these two ladies and Sorenstam, they captured 16 wins on Tour this year and came to be know as the big three.'
Pak had a very strong birdie year. Take into consideration that she was winless in 2000 - finishing 12th on the money list - then rallied to win, not only the first tournament of the year, but four others as well. The South Korean sensation had her best money year on Tour, breaking $1 million for the first time in her four-year career, in addition to finishing second on the money list for the second time.
While Pak was winning her first two events of the season (YourLife Vitamins LPGA Classic and Longs Drugs Challenge), Webb was making strong overtures at winning (she recorded back-to-back second-place finishes at the Subaru Memorial of Naples and The Office Depot). But she was slower out of the gates than Pak. It wasnt until June that Webb made a major mark by successfully defending her title at the U.S. Womens Open.
The dauntless Aussie went on to capture the McDonalds LPGA Championship - her second major win of the year. In doing so she became the fifth woman (Juli Inkster, Pat Bradley, Mickey Wright, Louise Suggs) - as well as the youngest - to win the career grand slam.
Karrie didnt win again until the season-ending Tyco/ADT Championship, making it a year some would question as successful after her 2000 season. Webb was duly satisfied and so are we since she finished third on the money list, in addition to stomping the field at Trump International Golf Club in the finale under grueling conditions.
More birdies go to Dorothy Delasin and Laura Diaz. A rookie in 2000, Delasin successfully defended her Giant Eagle LPGA Classic title and won the Samsung World Championship this year - upping her total wins on Tour to three. The California resident moved up 11 places from last year to finish 14th on the money list.
Laura Diaz has no wins on Tour, although shes flirted with the winners circle four times this year ' each time shes finished second. Diaz moved from 64th her rookie year to 33rd in 2000, to finish ninth on the money list this year and earned three-quarters of a million dollars in the process. Mhairi McKay and Cristie Kerr both finished in the top 30. McKay finished tied for second twice this year and earn a career-best single-season earnings of $430,174, while Kerr tied for third twice and earned $373,947.
Standout Marisa Baena could not be overlooked in the birdie category. The Colombian woman, with the inviting smile, finished 33rd this year with $318,819 in earnings.
A rookie in 1999, Baena finished 87th and 101st the past two years. But a career-best finish of third at the Kathy Ireland Championship as well as a tie for third at the Mizuno Classic and a fourth-place finish as the Subaru Memorial of Naples left her just outside of the top 30. Yet, she was close enough to make it into the season-ending Tour Championship field and on the lists of many as an up-and-comer on the LPGA Tour.
Greatest come-from-behind birdie goes to Laura Davies, who played poorly the first half of the season until winning the Wegmans Rochester International. It was excruciatingly painful to watch Davies at the beginning of the year. Her performance was incongruous with years past.
Some would have quit. Word has it that she contemplated doing so. But she didnt, and thank goodness because she has become one of the most entertaining women to watch, both on and off the golf course. Amazingly, after missing five of 10 cuts, Davies gambled on herself, racked up a win and managed to play her way into 18th place on the money list with almost $500,000 in prize money.
Par is a very respectable score, nothing wrong with it. Players who received par had really good years with the ability to do better.
Rosie Jones and Dottie Pepper made par this year. Jones took home 'media honors' of becoming the first winner from the U.S. with her victory over Mi Hyun Kim at the Kathy Ireland Championship, and crossed the $5 million in career earnings. The 20-year veteran took home her fifth career victory at the Sybase Big Apple Classic, and made the cut in all 22 events in which she entered.
Although Pepper had won the Arch Wireless Championship in 2000, she wasn't able to follow her success with a win this season. Ten top-10 finishes - including two second-place and four third-place finishes -were as good as it got for the feisty Florida resident who was diagnosed with Epstein-Barr this summer. She has been treating the virus with B-12 shots and multi-vitamins and is looking forward to better results next year.
Kim joins Jones and Pepper in the par division. Kim earned $762,363 this season without a win. She recorded 13 top-10 finishes, three of which were second-place finishes, yet was unable to bring home the trophy and dropped from seventh to eighth on the money list.
The hardest thing to do is to take a look at the field and determine who had a year as disappointing as making bogey. Jan Stephenson, Silvia Cavalleri and Jen Hanna were awarded bogey.
Stephenson can tell you its not easy to have a good season every year, especially when youve been playing professional golf going on 30 years. The attractive Australian finished in the top 30 just two years ago, then had a disappointing year in 2000 and continued her slide into obscurity - winning $5,078 to finish in the proverbial lumberyard at the close of 2001.
Cavalleri also receives a bogey after barely managing to finish in the top 20 three times this season and missing the cut in seven of her 23 starts. Hanna missed the cut 50 percent of the time this season. Even with her inability to make the cut at 11 events, the second-year veteran - who recorded a career-low round of 64 at the Firstar LGPA Classic in 2000 - was able to move up the money list 12 places. But when were talking 121 to 109, there arent a lot of listeners.
The final bogey went to rookie Amy Langhals. Langhals tied for 37th at Q-School to earn non-exempt status for the 2001 season - in which she finished with $875 in prize money. The Ohio State University graduate with a degree in sport and exercise science missed 14 out of 15 cuts. Remarkably, she kept her card for 2002 and is reported to be on a strict training program in preparation for next year.
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How to watch The Open on TV and online

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 19, 2018, 5:40 am

You want to watch the 147th Open? Here’s how you can do it.

Golf Channel and NBC Sports will be televising 182 hours of overall programming from the men's third major of the year at Carnoustie

In addition to the traditional coverage, the two networks will showcase three live alternate feeds: marquee groups, featured holes (our new 3-hole channel) and spotlight action. You can also watch replays of full-day coverage, Thursday-Sunday, in the Golf Channel app, NBC Sports apps, and on GolfChannel.com.  

Here’s the weekly TV schedule, with live stream links in parentheses. You can view all the action on the Golf Channel mobile, as well. Alternate coverage is noted in italics:

(All times Eastern; GC=Golf Channel; NBC=NBC Sports; GC.com=GolfChannel.com or check the GLE app)

Monday, July 16

GC: 7-9AM: Morning Drive (stream.golfchannel.com)

GC: 9-11AM: Live From The Open (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

GC: 7-9PM: Live From The Open (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

Tuesday, July 17

GC: 6AM-2PM: Live From The Open (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

Wednesday, July 18

GC: 6AM-2PM: Live From The Open (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

Thursday, July 19

GC: Midnight-1:30AM: Midnight Drive (stream.golfchannel.com)

GC: Day 1: The Open, live coverage: 1:30AM-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

GC.com: Day 1: The Open, Spotlight: 1:30AM-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/spotlight)

GC.com: Day 1: The Open, Marquee Groups: 4AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/marqueegroup)

GC.com: Day 1: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 4AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/3holechannel)

GC: Live From The Open: 4-5PM (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

Friday, July 20

GC: Day 2: The Open, live coverage: 1:30AM-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

GC.com: Day 2: The Open, Spotlight: 1:30AM-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/spotlight)

GC.com: Day 2: The Open, Marquee Groups: 4AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/marqueegroup)

GC.com: Day 2: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 4AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/3holechannel)

GC: Live From The Open: 4-5PM (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

Saturday, July 21

GC: Day 3: The Open, live coverage: 4:30-7AM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

NBC: Rd. 3: The Open, live coverage: 7AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

GC.com: Day 3: The Open, Spotlight: 4:30AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/spotlight)

GC.com: Day 3: The Open, Marquee Groups: 5AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/marqueegroup)

GC.com: Day 3: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 5AM-3PM (www.golfchannel.com/3holechannel)

GC: Live From The Open: 3-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

Sunday, July 22

GC: Day 4: The Open, live coverage: 4:30-7AM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

NBC: Rd. 4: The Open, live coverage: 7AM-2:30PM (www.golfchannel.com/theopen)

GC.com: Day 4: The Open, Spotlight: 4:30AM-2:30PM (www.golfchannel.com/spotlight)

GC.com: Day 4: The Open, Marquee Groups: 5AM-2PM (www.golfchannel.com/marqueegroup)

GC.com: Day 4: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 5AM-2PM (www.golfchannel.com/3holechannel)

GC: Live From The Open: 2:30-4PM (www.golfchannel.com/livefromstream)

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The Open 101: A guide to the year's third major

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 19, 2018, 5:30 am

Take a look at some answers to frequently asked questions about The Open:

What's all this "The Open" stuff? I thought it was the British Open.

What you call it has historically depended on where you were. If you were in the U.S., you called it the British Open, just as Europeans refer to the PGA Championship as the U.S. PGA. Outside the U.S. it generally has been referred to as The Open Championship. The preferred name of the organizers is The Open.

How old is it?

It's the oldest golf championship, dating back to 1860.

Where is it played?

There is a rotation – or "rota" – of courses used. Currently there are 10: Royal Birkdale, Royal St. George's, Royal Liverpool and Royal Lytham and St. Annes, all in England; Royal Portrush in Northern Ireland and St. Andrews, Carnoustie, Royal Troon, Turnberry and Muirfield, all in Scotland. Muirfield was removed from the rota in 2016 when members voted against allowing female members, but when the vote was reversed in 2017 it was allowed back in.

Where will it be played this year?

At Carnoustie, which is located on the south-eastern shore of Scotland.

Who has won The Open on that course?

Going back to the first time Carnoustie hosted, in 1931, winners there have been Tommy Armour, Henry Cotton (1937), Ben Hogan (1953), Gary Player (1968), Tom Watson (1975), Paul Lawrie (1999), Padraig Harrington (2007).

Wasn't that the year Hogan nearly won the Slam?

Yep. He had won the Masters and U.S. Open that season, then traveled to Carnoustie and won that as well. It was the only time he ever played The Open. He was unable to play the PGA Championship that season because the dates conflicted with those of The Open.

Jean Van de Velde's name should be on that list, right?

This is true. He had a three-shot lead on the final hole in 1999 and made triple bogey. He lost in a playoff to Lawrie, which also included Justin Leonard.

Who has won this event the most?

Harry Vardon, who was from the Channel Island of Jersey, won a record six times between 1896 and 1914. Australian Peter Thomson, American Watson, Scot James Braid and Englishman J.H. Taylor each won five times.

What about the Morrises?

Tom Sr. won four times between 1861 and 1867. His son, Tom Jr., also won four times, between 1868 and 1872.

Have players from any particular country dominated?

In the early days, Scots won the first 29 Opens – not a shocker since they were all played at one of three Scottish courses, Prestwick, St. Andrews and Musselburgh. In the current era, going back to 1999 (we'll explain why that year in a minute), the scoreboard is United States, nine wins; South Africa, three wins; Ireland, two wins; Northern Ireland, two wins; and Sweden, one win. The only Scot to win in that period was Lawrie, who took advantage of one of the biggest collapses in golf history.

Who is this year's defending champion?

That would be American Jordan Spieth, who survived an adventerous final round to defeat Matt Kuchar by three strokes and earn the third leg of the career Grand Slam.

What is the trophy called?

The claret jug. It's official name is the Golf Champion Trophy, but you rarely hear that used. The claret jug replaced the original Challenge Belt in 1872. The winner of the claret jug gets to keep it for a year, then must return it (each winner gets a replica to keep).

Which Opens have been the most memorable?

Well, there was Palmer in 1961and '62; Van de Velde's collapse in 1999; Hogan's win in 1953; Tiger Woods' eight-shot domination of the 2000 Open at St. Andrews; Watson almost winning at age 59 in 2009; Doug Sanders missing what would have been a winning 3-foot putt at St. Andrews in 1970; Tony Jacklin becoming the first Briton to win the championship in 18 years; and, of course, the Duel in the Sun at Turnberry in 1977, in which Watson and Jack Nicklaus dueled head-to-head over the final 36 holes, Watson winning by shooting 65-65 to Nicklaus' 65-66.

When I watch this tournament on TV, I hear lots of unfamiliar terms, like "gorse" and "whin" and "burn." What do these terms mean?

Gorse is a prickly shrub, which sometimes is referred to as whin. Heather is also a shrub. What the scots call a burn, would also be considered a creek or stream.

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Four players vying for DJ's No. 1 ranking at Open

By Ryan LavnerJuly 18, 2018, 8:41 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Four players have an opportunity to overtake Dustin Johnson for world No. 1 this week.

According to Golf Channel world-rankings guru Alan Robinson, Justin Thomas, Justin Rose, Brooks Koepka and Jon Rahm each can grab the top spot in the world ranking.

Thomas’ path is the easiest. He would return to No. 1 with either a win and Johnson finishing worse than solo third, or even a solo runner-up finish as long as Johnson finishes worse than 49th.

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

Twenty years after his auspicious performance in The Open, Rose can get to No. 1 for the first time with a victory and Johnson finishing worse than a two-way tie for third.

Kopeka can rise to No. 1 if he wins consecutive majors, assuming that his good friend posts worse than a three-way tie for third.

And Rahm can claim the top spot with a win this week, a Johnson missed cut and a Thomas finish of worse than solo second.   

Johnson’s 15-month reign as world No. 1 ended after The Players. He wasn’t behind Thomas for long, however: After a tie for eighth at the Memorial, Johnson blew away the field in Memphis and then finished third at the U.S. Open to solidify his position at the top.