Creamer Has Sights Set on No 1

By Mercer BaggsNovember 15, 2005, 5:00 pm
2004 ADT ChampionshipWEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Paula Creamer will wrap up her maiden season on the LPGA Tour at this weeks ADT Championship. Shes won twice, was a member of the victorious U.S. Solheim Cup team, wrapped up Rookie of the Year honors before September, and is currently second on the money list.
So how does she rate her success on a scale of 1-10?
Paula Creamer
Paula Creamer has earned two LPGA Tour wins and nearly $1.5 million in her rookie season.
Probably a 7, she said Tuesday after seconds of deliberation. It can always get better.
The way the 19-year-old sees it, theres still plenty of improvement to be made. A self-admitted goal-setter, she crossed off most of the things on her To Do list this year: winning; making the Solheim Cup team; finishing inside the top 15 in earnings.
But she didnt win a major. And shes only the No. 2 female player in the world.
I have always set high goals for myself. It just kind of motivates me, she said.
When it comes to golf, I (have always) wanted to be the No. 1 player in the world.
Creamer isnt the only American Annika Sorenstam may have to fend off over the coming years.
Yanks accounted for nine tournament victories this season, the most on tour since 2001. And there wasnt a Juli Inkster or Meg Mallon or Rosie Jones in the winners circle. There was a Stacy Prammanasudh and a Heather Bowie and a Christina Kim.
Six of the winners were in their 20s ' or, in Creamers case, teens. And four of them were first-time champions.
Creamer and fellow American Cristie Kerr, 28, are multiple winners this year, joining Sorenstam as the only three members of that select group. In addition to her two tour titles, Creamer also won twice in Japan.
Then there are the likes of Michelle Wie, Morgan Pressel and others just waiting to get their shot in 06.
I knew it was just a matter of time before we got some good young American players, said Inkster, the 45-year-old Hall of Fame member. But it happened even sooner than I thought. I was expecting it to take two, three years, and here we are.
Its nice to know that these players are stepping up, added the 46-year-old Jones, a 13-time tour winner. The future of American golf is looking very good.
The Youth agrees.
I think this a very exciting time, said Natalie Gulbis, 22, who has yet to win on tour, but has amassed nearly $1 million this season.
Everyone had been kind of buzzing about new American players coming in, young American players making noise, and this was definitely a break-through season, said the 21-year-old Kim, who won last weeks Mitchell Company LPGA Tournament of Champions.
Said Inkster: Everything comes in cycles. Like when the Swedes were dominating ' well, one still is.
That one, of course, is Sorenstam. And domination is almost an understatement in describing her hold over the rest of the tour over recent years.
This season alone, shes won nine times and has accumulated nearly $1 million more than Creamer in five fewer events.
By comparison, only five players on the entire tour have earned $1 million.
Sorenstam is the defending champion, having defeated Kerr in a playoff a year ago at Trump International Golf Club to capture her third Tour Championship title. A repeat this week and it will mark the second time in the last four seasons that she has won double-digit events on tour.
At this years LPGA Corning Classic, Jones referred to Sorenstam as The Big Girl ' in a most flattering way. She has sat comfortably atop the mountain for the past five years, and with very little challenge.
Eventually, however, she will have to relinquish her throne. And it may well be an American who seizes control.
I think theres a good chance of that, Kim said. Theres definitely still some players from other countries who are also vying for that. There seems to be so many American players clustered at the top now, that it seems like any one of them could overtake her ' eventually.
If Creamer has it her way, she will be the one to usurp Sorenstam. And it will happen very, very soon.
Im going to have to work really hard this off-season, she said. I have to get a lot longer; I need to get stronger. I need to be able to hit different shots. My putting needs to get better, short game, just creativity type of golf shots. Im glad I have my rookie year under my belt now.
When asked if she believed she could be No. 1 in the world next year, she answered confidently, concisely and without hesitation: Yes.
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    Storms halt Barbasol before Lincicome tees off

    By Associated PressJuly 20, 2018, 11:29 pm

    NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - Brittany Lincicome will have to wait until the weekend to resume her bid to make the cut in a PGA Tour event.

    Overnight storms delayed the start of the second round Friday in the Barbasol Championship, and an afternoon thunderstorm suspended competition for good. The round will resume Saturday morning with much of the field still to play.

    The second stoppage at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came 20 minutes before Lincicome's scheduled tee time.

    Lincicome was near the bottom of the field after opening with a 6-over 78 on Thursday. The first LPGA player since Michelle Wie in 2008 to start a PGA Tour event, she needs a huge rebound to join Babe Zaharias (1945) as the only female players to make the cut.

    Troy Merritt had the clubhouse lead at 15 under, following an opening 62 with a 67.

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    Third-round tee times for the 147th Open

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 20, 2018, 9:05 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Eighteen major champions made the cut at The Open and will be playing the weekend at Carnoustie, including 60-year-old ageless wonder Bernhard Langer, and both major champs so far this year, Patrick Reed and Brooks Koepka.

    Twenty-four-year-old Gavin Green will be first off solo Saturday at 4:15 a.m. ET. Reed and Rhys Enoch will follow along 10 minutes later.

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    Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods, both at even par for the tournament, six shots behind leaders Zach Johnson and Kevin Kisner, are in consecutive groups. Mickelson is playing with Austin Cook at 8:05 a.m. and Woods is with South Africa’s Shaun Norris at 8:15 a.m.

    Jordan Spieth and Rickie Fowler, both three shots off the lead, are also in consecutive groups. Fowler is at 10 a.m. with Thorbjorn Olesen and Spieth is 10 minutes later with Kevin Chappell. Rory McIlroy, looking to win his first major since the 2014 PGA Championship, is at 10:40 a.m. with Xander Schauffele. McIlroy is two shots behind.

    Johnson and Kisner are last off at 11 a.m.

    4:15AM ET: Gavin Green

    4:25AM ET: Rhys Enoch, Patrick Reed

    4:35AM ET: Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Justin Rose

    4:45AM ET: Yusaku Miyazato, Tyrrell Hatton

    4:55AM ET: Ross Fisher, Keegan Bradley

    5:05AM ET: Ryan Fox, Jason Dufner

    5:15AM ET: Bryson DeChambeau, Henrik Stenson

    5:25AM ET: Tom Lewis, Sam Locke (a)

    5:35AM ET: Paul Casey, Chris Wood

    5:45AM ET: Bernhard Langer, Rafa Cabrera Bello

    6:00AM ET: Paul Dunne, Brett Rumford

    6:10AM ET: Masahiro Kawamura, Shubhankar Sharma

    6:20AM ET: Cameron Smith, Brendan Steele

    6:30AM ET: Marc Leishman, Lee Westwood

    6:40AM ET: Byeong Hun An, Kevin Na

    6:50AM ET: Julian Suri, Adam Hadwin

    7:00AM ET: Gary Woodland, Si-Woo Kim

    7:10AM ET: Yuta Ikeda, Satoshi Kodaira

    7:20AM ET: Marcus Kinhult, Thomas Pieters

    7:30AM ET: Beau Hossler, Haotong Li

    7:45AM ET: Cameron Davis, Sean Crocker

    7:55AM ET: Louis Oosthuizen, Stewart Cink

    8:05AM ET: Phil Mickeslon, Austin Cook

    8:15AM ET: Tiger Woods, Shaun Norris

    8:25AM ET: Lucas Herbert, Michael Kim

    8:35AM ET: Jason Day, Francesco Molinari

    8:45AM ET: Sung Kang, Webb Simpson

    8:55AM ET: Patrick Cantlay, Eddie Pepperell

    9:05AM ET: Matthew Southgate, Brooks Koepka

    9:15AM ET: Kyle Stanley, Adam Scott

    9:30AM ET: Charley Hoffman, Alex Noren

    9:40AM ET: Ryan Moore, Brandon Stone

    9:50AM ET: Luke List, Danny Willett

    10:00AM ET: Thorbjorn Olesen, Rickie Fowler

    10:10AM ET: Jordan Spieth, Kevin Chappell

    10:20AM ET: Zander Lombard, Tony Finau

    10:30AM ET: Matt Kuchar, Erik Van Rooyen

    10:40AM ET: Rory McIlroy, Xander Schauffele

    10:50AM ET: Pat Perez, Tommy Fleetwood

    11:00AM ET: Kevin Kisner, Zach Johnson

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    Facial hair Fowler's new good-luck charm

    By Rex HoggardJuly 20, 2018, 8:12 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Before, during and after the Fourth of July, Rickie Fowler missed a few appointments with his razor.

    He arrived in the United Kingdom for last week’s Scottish Open still unshaved and he tied for sixth place. Fowler, like most golfers, can give in to superstition, so he's decided to keep the caveman look going for this week’s Open Championship.

    “There could be some variations,” he smiled following his round on Friday at Carnoustie.

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    At this rate, he may never shave again. Fowler followed an opening 70 with a 69 on Friday to move into a tie for 11th place, just three strokes off the lead.

    Fowler also has some friendly competition in the beard department, with his roommate this week Justin Thomas also going for the rugged look.

    “I think he kind of followed my lead in a way. I think he ended up at home, and he had a little bit of scruff going. It's just fun,” Fowler said. “We mess around with it. Obviously, not taking it too seriously. But like I said, ended up playing halfway decent last week, so I couldn't really shave it off going into this week.”

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    Spieth (67) rebounds from tough Round 1 finish

    By Ryan LavnerJuly 20, 2018, 7:55 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Guess whose putter is starting to heat up again at a major?

    Even with a few wayward shots Friday at Carnoustie, Jordan Spieth made a significant climb up the leaderboard in the second round, firing a 4-under 67 to move just three shots off the lead.

    Spieth showed his trademark grit in bouncing back from a rough finish Thursday, when he mis-clubbed on the 15th hole, leading to a double bogey, and ended up playing the last four holes in 4 over.

    “I don’t know if I actually regrouped,” he said. “It more kind of fires me up a little.”

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    Spieth missed more than half of his fairways in the second round, but he was able to play his approach shots from the proper side of the hole. Sure, he “stole a few,” particularly with unlikely birdies on Nos. 10 and 11 after errant drives, but he took advantage and put himself in position to defend his claret jug.

    Spieth needed only 25 putts in the second round, and he credited a post-round adjustment Thursday for the improvement. The tweak allows his arms to do more of the work in his stroke, and he said he felt more confident on the greens.

    “It’s come a long way in the last few months, no doubt,” he said.

    More than anything, Spieth was relieved not to have to play “cut-line golf” on Friday, like he’s done each start since his spirited run at the Masters.

    “I know that my swing isn’t exactly where I want it to be; it’s nowhere near where it was at Birkdale,” he said. “But the short game is on point, and the swing is working in the right direction to get the confidence back.”