Just Like Old Times

By Mercer BaggsAugust 19, 2006, 4:00 pm
2006 PGA ChampionshipMEDINAH, Ill. -- The 1999 PGA Championship will forever be remembered for Tiger Woods winning and Sergio Garcia chasing ' both Tiger and his ball up to the green on 16.
 
That was the first major championship which I ever attended. And when I recall the event, I always think back to something else that happened that Sunday.
 
Mike Weir
Mike Weir is looking to win his second career major championship.
While Woods was basking in the glow of his first major triumph in 2 years, and Garcia was finding warmth in the prospect of a very bright future, there was Mike Weir, face ashen, looking like the victim of a hit-and-run.
 
Weir was competing in his first PGA Championship that week, just his third career major, and managed to make his way into the final twosome alongside Woods in the final round.
 
Then came Sunday. Sunday, bloody Sunday. If their physical appearances had matched their scorecards, Weir would have looked like Gerry Cooney to Tigers Larry Holmes.
 
Weir shot 80 that day, eight worse than Woods.
 
It would have been easy for Weir to just walk away after that. Not from the game, but from the scorers tent, into his courtesy car, and to any place not named Medinah.
 
But he didnt. He stopped and allowed a group of reporters and television types, myself included, to hound him about his most miserable performance.
 
He answered every question. Never made a snarky comment. Never made excuses. All he did was praise Woods and say, Its not like I was trying to shoot 80. Thats just the best I could shoot today. I tried my best.
 
He was the definition of professional. It was quite impressive.
 
Looking back, Weir, who was just in his second full season on the PGA TOUR at the time, admits that the situation was just too overwhelming. Everything in the periphery distorted his focus.
 
It was painful. It wasnt a fun day, Weir recalled. I remember feeling after about nine holes, just kind of spacey, just kind of spun out. I couldnt believe what was going on.
 
I think it was just inexperience.
 
Of course, Weir has since redeemed himself on a major level, winning the Masters Tournament in 2003 while playing in the final group. Now, a veteran winner of seven TOUR events, he has a chance to take a measure of revenge on Medinah.
 
To do so, hell once again have to beat Woods, this time from arrears, and he may have to fend off Garcia as well.
 
While this years principals hearken back to 1999; the event itself is reminiscent of 2000.
 
Woods won his second straight PGA Championship at Valhalla Golf Club, doing so in a Sunday shoot-out with Bob May. The winning score that year was 18 under, seven lower than it was the year before, and it appears were headed in that direction.
 
Woods, who hasnt won the PGA since 2000, held the 54-hole lead that year at 13 under ' one higher than this year. The big difference this time, however, is that many of his pursuers have major credibility.
 
May, Scott Dunlap, J.P. Hayes and Greg Chalmers have been replaced with Luke Donald, Weir, U.S. Open champion Geoff Ogilvy, Garcia and 2003 winner Shaun Micheel.
 
On a day in which red numbers reigned, Woods tied the course record, shooting 7-under 65 to grab a share of the third-round lead with Donald, who had a 66.
 
Weir is alone in second place after his own 65, two back at 12 under. Ogilvy overcame a first-hole double bogey to shoot 68 and get to 11 under. Garcia (67) and Micheel (67) are four back.
 
In most major championships, you make par and sprinkle in a couple of birdies here and there, youre looking pretty good. Today, you would have just been run over, Woods said. Tomorrow, I think anyone who wants to win this championship has to make birdies.
 
'Somebody from the pack is going to charge out and make some early birdies and go low,' Donald said. 'So pars are not going to be very good tomorrow.'
 
'It's going to take something pretty special,' said Ogilvy. 'It would not be out of the realm of possibility a 20-under (score) could win this tournament. That (means) me shooting 9 under.'
 
Ive got to go out there and Ive got to do it, said Garcia. Its as simple as that.
 
Fate and Destiny appear to be on hand this week. But for whom are they rooting?
 
Are they for Woods, who won here the last time the tournament was contested? Are they for Donald, who lives in the area and attended nearby Northwestern University? Are they for Garcia, whose best major performance came here in 99? Are they for Micheel, who told his caddie prior to the start of the tournament that Medinah reminded him a lot of Oak Hill, where he won his one and only TOUR title?
 
Or are they conspiring for Weir, whom they double-kicked in the choppers in the final round here seven years ago?
 
Weir hasnt won on TOUR since the 2004 Nissan Open. The one time he had a chance to do so this year, when he held a share of the 54-hole lead at Pebble Beach, he closed in 78.
 
Things didnt look promising out of the gates this week either, opening with a modest 72. But he has since turned things around, even to his surprise, going 67-65.
 
History tells us that Fate and Destiny are always in the corner of Woods in this situation. Hes 11-0 when holding at least a share of the lead entering the final round of a major championship.
 
But, as Weir says: Im about due.
 
I know everybodys expectations are that (Tigers) going to go out and go win the championship, because hes done it so many times from the front, Weir said. But theres always a time to stop the streak. Hopefully I can do it.
 
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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.


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    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.


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    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.”


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    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.”