Bugg Slips into Relapse
Almost a year to the day after he was diagnosed with AML, doctors at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center informed Jace and Misty Bugg last Tuesday that there was no other treatment they could offer him. Jace Bugg will turn 27 years old on November 6th.
Since undergoing a bone marrow transplant on May 12th in Houston, Jace had made significant strides in his recovery and, when his blood type had successfully changed over to B positive, the same type as his donors, all appeared to be progressing according to plan. That is, until recently.
After Jace fell into a relapse and after conversing with doctors at M.D. Anderson, the couple flew home to Kentucky to be with family members.
We need our miracle very soon, said Misty Bugg in an email last week.
Jace won his first professional title at the Canadian Tours 2001 South Carolina Challenge and followed that up a year later with a Nationwide Tour triumph in Arkansas.
At the Nationwide Tour Championship this past weekend, players and caddies wore orange and maroon ribbons in a tribute to Jace. David Branshaw, a close friend who met Jace during a Canadian Tour event four years ago, tried to keep his emotions in check after the opening round.
Doctors told him Tuesday (Oct. 28) he has days, maybe weeks . . . but not months (to live), said an emotional Branshaw. . He needs a real miracle. Not a miracle like you need a ball to kick left but a real miracle. The world needs more Jace Buggs. God doesnt need to take someone like him.
I dont even want to be here. This (golf) doesnt mean s't.
Several fellow Canadian Tour alumni who have also moved on to the Nationwide Tour echoed Branshaws sentiments.
Im just out here going through the motions, said Jess Daley. Hes pulling for every one of us and this is what he would expect from us.
Jason Bohn, a two-time Canadian Tour champion who also won the Chattanooga Classic earlier this summer, should have been celebrating his crowning achievement Sunday afternoon as the Nationwide Tour Championship wrapped up in Alabama. By finishing ninth on the Nationwide money list, Bohn has punched his ticket to the PGA Tour for 2004. But with his close friend being sent home from the premier cancer facility in the United States, the PGA Tour is far from his thoughts.
It makes you want to go home and hug your family . . . hug your wife, Bohn said. Golf is not life, without question.
Tiger Tracker: 147th Open Championship
Tiger Woods is competing in his first Open Championship since 2015. We're tracking him this week at Carnoustie.
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Kisner (67) enjoying 'frat' life, soccer matches with Jordan and Co.
CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – The frat house tradition continued this year at The Open, with a group of seven high-profile Americans rooming together for the week, including early first-round leader Kevin Kisner.
Kisner explained after his opening 5-under 66 that the group – which includes Jordan Spieth, Jason Dufner, Zach Johnson, Jimmy Walker, Justin Thomas and Rickie Fowler – has spent the week talking about how demanding Carnoustie is playing and enjoying the summer weather.
“We're out there playing soccer at night and hanging out,” he said.
To be clear, this isn’t a proper soccer match, but instead a penalty-kick situation with all but one player taking turns trying to score.
“I just try to smash [Dufner] in the face,” Kisner laughed. “He's the all-time goalie.”
Although Kisner said he’s always impressed with the athletic prowess of other players, Spieth has proven himself particularly adept on the impromptu pitch.
“Jordan scored when Duf tripped, it was hilarious,” Kisner smiled. “[Spieth] is good until he sends it over the goal four houses over, and we've got to go knock on a neighbor’s door for the soccer ball.”
The group is actually staying in two local houses that are next to each other, one with a large enough back yard and a soccer net, but perhaps not enough soccer balls.
“We’re going to have to Amazon Prime a couple new balls to replace the ones we lost,” Kisner said.
Van Rooyen continues links run with impressive 67
CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – For Erik van Rooyen familiarity has not bred contempt.
The South African, like many European Tour players, has been on a links golf odyssey the last three weeks, playing the Irish Open, Scottish Open and this week’s Open Championship in consecutive weeks, and the crash course paid off on Day 1 at Carnoustie when he opened with a 4-under 67 to assure himself a spot among the early leaders.
Although van Rooyen missed the cut last week just down the coast at Gullane Golf Club, he entered the final round in Ireland with a four-stroke lead.
“I didn't pull it off the final day,” said van Rooyen, who closed with a 74 to tie for fourth place. “I still think I played pretty well. I was nervous. That's completely normal, and I'll learn how to deal with that. I'll take that experience into tournaments like this.”
Van Rooyen, who was alone in second place when he completed his round, began his round with back-to-back birdies and was bogey-free until the last hole. It was just what one would expect from a player who has immersed himself in links golf for the better part of a month.
“We've been playing nice golf now the last three weeks, so definitely used to the way this course is playing, definitely used to handling the wind,” he said. “So I'll be ready.”
Vegas helicopters in to Carnoustie, without clubs
Jhonattan Vegas did some range work, putted a little and strolled to the first tee for his 5:31 a.m. ET start in the 147th Open Championship.
Everything before that, however, was far from routine.
That face when you realized you visa to the UK is expired the same day you were supposed to travel. La cara cuando te das cuenta que tu visa al Reino Unido está vencida el mismo días que viajas.pic.twitter.com/lztAcLUNN0— Jhonattan Vegas (@JhonattanVegas) July 12, 2018
Vegas' visa to travel to Scotland expired and the process to renew it got delayed - and it looked like his overseas' flight might suffer the same fate. Vegas, upon getting his visa updated, traveled from Houston, Texas to Toronto, Canada to Glasgow, Scotland, and then took a helicopter to Carnoustie.
He arrived in time on Thursday morning, but his clubs did not. Mizuno put together some irons for him and TaylorMade got him his preferred metal woods. He hit the clubs for the first time on the range, less than 90 minutes before his start.
"I'm going to go out there and play with freedom," Vegas told Golf Channel's Todd Lewis.