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East Lake Cup Collegiate Championship Announces $498,750 Donation to the East Lake Foundation

By Golf Channel Public RelationsOctober 31, 2017, 8:48 pm

ATLANTA, (Oct. 31, 2017) – The East Lake Cup collegiate match play championship announced a charitable donation of $498,750 to the East Lake Foundation from behalf of Golf Channel, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (presenting sponsor) and associate sponsor CSX. To date, the East Lake Cup has donated nearly $1 million to the East Lake Foundation.

“We are very appreciative of the generous financial support we have received from the Golf Channel and the sponsors of the East Lake Cup at East Lake Golf Club,” said Daniel Shoy, Jr., President of the East Lake Foundation. “This important funding helps sustain the progress made in the East Lake community over the past 22 years and ensures the Foundation can continue to effectively provide residents with the tools necessary to build a better life for themselves and future generations.”

The third annual East Lake Cup collegiate match play championship is taking place this week at historic East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta, Ga. The three-day event (Monday-Wednesday) features the eight semifinalists from the 2017 NCAA Division I men’s and women’s golf championships competing in an elite college match play championship, airing live on Golf Channel each day from 3-6 p.m. ET. Monday featured the individual stroke play championship, where USC’s Robynn Ree and Vanderbilt’s Will Gordon claimed stroke play honors.

Today’s East Lake Cup semifinal matches will mirror that of both the men’s and women’s NCAA Championships earlier this year: Women’s – Stanford (1) vs. Arizona State (4) and USC (2) vs. Northwestern (3); Men’s – Vanderbilt (1) vs. Oregon (4) and Oklahoma (2) vs. Illinois (3). Winners of today’s semifinal matches will advance to compete in the East Lake Cup championship matches on Wednesday (tomorrow), while teams failing to advance today will compete in tomorrow’s consolation matches.

The East Lake Cup also features the presentation of the Tom Cousins Award, an annual recognition of an outstanding male and female golfer who exemplify the values of the East Lake Cup Foundation: excelling in academics, engaging in his or her community and overcoming adversity. USC’s Divya Manthena and Vanderbilt’s Will Gordon were announced last night as the 2017 recipients of the Tom Cousins Award.

Founded in 1995 by developer and philanthropist Tom Cousins, the East Lake Foundation collaborates with public and private organizations to provide tools that enable Atlanta’s East Lake residents to build a better future through its holistic model for community revitalization. The East Lake model includes cradle-to-college education at Charles R. Drew Charter School and its early learning partners, mixed-income housing at The Villages of East Lake and community wellness through programs including The First Tee® of East Lake, the Resident and Community Support Program, , Start ME: East Lake micro-entrepreneur program and East Lake Healthy Connections. This approach to building a strong community not only helps break the intergenerational cycle of poverty, but creates a place where people of all ages and incomes choose to live. East Lake has become a national model for holistic community redevelopment across the country through Purpose Built Communities. 

-NBC Sports Group-

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New putter propels Hoffman to Fort Worth lead

By Will GrayMay 24, 2018, 7:30 pm

After sitting at home last week, Charley Hoffman decided it was time for a change.

The veteran estimated that he has been using the same version of a Scotty Cameron putter for the last five years, but heading into this week's Fort Worth Invitational he wanted to shake things up.

"I had an idea on Sunday literally coming out here that I wanted to have a little more weight in my putter," Hoffman told reporters. "I went with one that was sort of in my bag of putters at home that I could add some weight here."

The swap provided immediate results, as Hoffman opened with a 7-under 63 while picking up more than two strokes over the field on the greens to take a one-shot lead over Emiliano Grillo, Jhonattan Vegas and Andrew Putnam. It was an all-around effort Thursday for Hoffman, as he missed only two greens in regulation and never faced a par putt longer than 5 feet.

"I was able to knock in some mid-range putts and played very solid," Hoffman said. "It was a nice, very stress-free round. It was fun to play."

Hoffman had one of the best seasons of his career in 2017, capping it with a Presidents Cup appearance and a runner-up finish at the Hero World Challenge in December. While he has made nine cuts in 12 starts this year, his T-12 finish at the Masters remains his best result as he has struggled to turn top-20s into opportunities to contend.

Hoffman is making his seventh straight appearance at Colonial, where he tied for 10th in 2015. But he had never shot better than 65 before Thursday, when his decision to switch to a heavier Scotty Cameron model seemingly put a magnet on the bottom of the cup.

"Putting is a fickle part of the game," he said. "So hopefully the good mojo continues."

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McIlroy shoots 67, two off BMW PGA lead

By Associated PressMay 24, 2018, 6:56 pm

VIRGINIA WATER, England – Rory McIlroy walked off the 18th green in disgruntled fashion, shaking his head and looking down at the ground.

Shooting a 5-under 67 at Wentworth can rarely have felt so unsatisfactory.

The four-time major winner pushed his approach shot from the middle of the fairway into the overhanging trees at the par-5 last, saw his chip clip the flag pole, then missed a 3-foot putt for birdie for a disappointing end to his first round at the BMW PGA Championship on Thursday.

McIlroy also missed out on a birdie on the par-5 17th, too. Hence his unhappiness immediately after his round, although he was only two shots off the lead held by Lucas Bjerregaard (65).

Full-field scores from the BMW PGA Championship

''Walking off the 16th green and going to No. 17 at 5 under par, it was good after being 1 over after three (holes),'' McIlroy said, before diverting away from revisiting the end of his round.

''I played really well, gave myself plenty of chances, drove it well, for the most part hit my irons a lot better than I have done, so it was nice to get off to a good start.''

McIlroy is playing the European Tour's flagship event for the first time since 2015. He won it in 2014, the year he won The Open and the PGA Championship – his most recent major victories.

After bogeying No. 3, the former top-ranked McIlroy reeled off seven birdies in 13 holes and later said the greens were in the best condition he'd seen them.

Bjerregaard, whose only win came in Portugal last year, made seven birdies in a bogey-free round – his last at No. 18 giving him the outright lead over South Africans Dean Burmester and Darren Fichardt.

Burmester earlier played his last eight holes in 6 under par – including making eagle at the 15th – to draw level with compatriot Fichardt, who was also bogey-free.

Kiradech Aphibarnrat finished 7-6 on the two par 5s to drop from the outright lead at the time to 4 under.

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Stricker opens with 65 at Colonial despite back pain

By Will GrayMay 24, 2018, 6:45 pm

After four holes of the Fort Worth Invitational, things were looking bleak for Steve Stricker.

The ageless veteran was already 1 over when he tweaked his back playing his approach to No. 13, his fourth hole of the day at Colonial Country Club. He ended up making another bogey, but at that point his score took a backseat to the health of his ailing back.

"I tried to hit a pretty solid 6-iron and got right into the impact area, and actually felt my lower back crack right where I had surgery back in 2014, pretty much right on the spot," Stricker told reporters. "Tried to walk to the green and that wasn't going so well. Kind of tightened up on me. I thought I was going to have to stop and just stand there for a minute, which I did a couple of times. It didn't look or feel very good for a while."

Slowly but surely, Stricker's back began to loosen up, and with it came a turnaround on the scorecard. Stricker had a four-hole stretch in the middle of his round that he played in 5 under, highlighted by a hole-out from the greenside bunker for eagle on the par-5 first hole. Despite the rocky start, he ended up shooting a 5-under 65 to sit two shots off the early pace set by Charley Hoffman.

Full-field scores from the Fort Worth Invitational

Fort Worth Invitational: Articles, photos and videos

"I just kept plodding along," Stricker said. "I knew there were some birdie holes out here if you can get it in the fairway. There are some short irons."

Stricker had a spot in one of the marquee early-round groups, but his score bettered both Jordan Spieth's 1-under 69 and defending champ Kevin Kisner's 2-over 72. Stricker told reporters that he planned to get his back checked after the round.

Stricker continues to straddle both the PGA Tour and PGA Tour Champions while crafting a unique schedule, and his appearance this week in Fort Worth came at the expense of skipping the Senior PGA Championnship, a major on the over-50 circuit. But Stricker won at Colonial in 2009 and has now played four straight years on what he described as one of his favorite courses.

"I like to play here. I know I'm going to play John Deere, another favorite tournament of mine, and FedEx St. Jude looks like I am going to try to play in a couple weeks, try to get in the U.S. Open," Stricker said. "So it's just kind of picking them as I go, and seeing where I want to go and seeing what feels good to me at the time."

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Lexi, Wie, J. Korda grouped at U.S Women's Open

By Randall MellMay 24, 2018, 6:37 pm

The big-hitting American trio of Lexi Thompson, Michelle Wie and Jessica Korda will be looking to provide some early summer fireworks at next week’s U.S. Women’s Open at Shoal Creek outside Birmingham, Ala.

Thompson, Wie and Korda will tee it up together in the first two rounds.

Here’s a look at some of the notable groupings with full tee times listed below:

Thompson, Wie, Korda: 7:46 a.m., Thursday; 1:26 p.m. Friday

Thompson nearly dominated the 2017 season, winning twice while finishing second six times. She won the Vare Trophy for low scoring average and was the Golf Writers Association of America Female Player of the Year, but she’s still looking for her first title this year. It couldn’t come at a better time next week as she bids to win her second major. Wie and Korda have both won this year. Wie, the 2014 U.S. Women’s Open winner, won the HSBC Women’s World Championship in Singapore in March. Korda won the Honda LPGA Thailand in February and takes strong form into her bid to win her first major.

Inbee Park, In Gee Chun, Moriya Jutanugarn: 1:37 p.m., Thursday; 7:57 a.m., Friday

World No. 1 Park is coming off her first victory in a Korean LPGA event last week. She won the LPGA’s Bank of Hope Founders Cup in March. The two-time U.S. Women’s Open winner has finished T-3 or better in five of her eight worldwide starts this season. Chun, the 2015 U.S. Women’s Open winner, is coming off a strong effort in a playoff loss at the Kingsmill Championship. She is looking to become the first player in LPGA history to make her first three LPGA titles major championships. Jutanugarn is just a month removed from winning her first LPGA title at the Hugel-JTBC LA Open.

Sung Hyun Park, In-Kyung Kim, Sophia Schubert: 1:15 p.m., Thursday; 7:35 a.m. Friday

Park brings momentum in her bid to become the first player to win back-to-back U.S. Women’s Open titles since Karrie Webb did it in 2000 and ’01. Park won the Volunteers of America Texas Classic in her last start three weeks ago. Kim broke through to win her first major last summer at the Ricoh Women’s British Open. Schubert is the reigning U.S. Women’s Amateur champ who just finished up her senior season at the University of Texas.

Pernilla Lindberg, Cristie Kerr, Sei Young Kim: 1:26 p.m., Thursday; 7:46 a.m. Friday

Lindberg will be looking to make it back-to-back major championship titles after winning the ANA Inspiration in dramatic fashion in April, defeating Inbee Park in a playoff for a wire-to-wire victory. Kerr, the 2007 U.S. Women’s Open champ, is looking to claim her third major championship and move closer to the LPGA Hall of Fame. A victory would move her with three points of the 27 required. Kim is a six-time LPGA winner seeking her first title this year after winning in each of her first three seasons on tour.

Ariya Jutanugarn, Jin Young Ko, Stacy Lewis: 7:35 a.m., Thursday; 1:15 p.m., Friday

Jutanugarn is coming off a victory Sunday at the Kingsmill Championship, her first this year and the eighth of her career. She’s looking to add a second major to the Ricoh Women’s British Open title she won two years ago. Ko won the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open in February. She’s becoming a fixture on leaderboards, with six top 10s in nine starts in this her rookie season. Lewis is in a year of transition after announcing last month that she is pregnant with her first child. She expects to make only a few more starts this summer before putting away the clubs after the Marathon Classic in July to prepare for the baby’s birth.

Full tee times

Thursday (May 31), Hole #1 / Friday (June 1), Hole #10

6:40 a.m. / 12:20 p.m. – Casey Danielson, Osceola, Wis.; Sophie Walker, England; (a) Patty Tavatanakit, Thailand

6:51 a.m. / 12:31 p.m. – Becky Morgan, Wales; (a) Celia Barquin Arozamena, Spain; Wichanee Meechai, Thailand

7:02 a.m. / 12:42 p.m. – Mel Reid, England; Gaby Lopez, Mexico; Kris Tamulis, Naples, Fla.

7:13 a.m. / 12:53 p.m. – (a) Maria Fassi, Mexico; Mo Martin, Altadena, Calif.; Angela Stanford, Saginaw, Texas

7:24 a.m. / 1:04 p.m. – Katherine Kirk, Australia; Charley Hull, England; Angel Yin, Arcadia, Calif.

7:35 a.m. / 1:15 p.m. – Nasa Hataoka, Japan; Jennifer Song, Ann Arbor, Mich.; Min Young Lee, Republic of Korea

7:46 a.m. / 1:26 p.m. – Karrie Webb, Australia; Alena Sharp, Canada; Lindy Duncan, Plantation, Fla.

7:57 a.m. / 1:37 p.m. – Paula Creamer, Pleasanton, Calif.; Brittany Lang, McKinney, Texas; Ryann O'Toole, San Clemente, Calif.

8:08 a.m. / 1:48 p.m. – Mi Jung Hur, Republic of Korea; Azahara Munoz, Spain; Teresa Lu, Chinese Taipei

8:19 a.m. / 1:59 p.m. – Julieta Granada, Paraguay; Sarah Kemp, Australia; (a) Kelsey Chugg, Salt Lake City, Utah

8:30 a.m. / 2:10 p.m. – Karine Icher, France; Jillian Hollis, Rocky River, Ohio; Nicole Broch Larsen, Denmark

8:41 a.m. / 2:21 p.m. – Lee Lopez, Whittier, Calif.; Sun Young Yoo, Republic of Korea; TBD

8:52 a.m. / 2:32 p.m. – Sarah Schober, Austria; (a) Lei Ye, People's Republic of China; Daniela Darquea, Ecuador

Thursday (May 31), Hole #10 / Friday (June 1), Hole #1

6:40 a.m. / 12:20 p.m. – Solar Lee, Republic of Korea; Jenny Suh, Fairfax, Va.; (a) Elizabeth Wang, San Marino, Calif.

6:51 a.m. / 12:31 p.m. – Klara Spilkova, Czech Republic; Daniela Holmqvist, Sweden; (a) Sophie Hausmann, Germany

7:02 a.m. / 12:42 p.m. – Pornanong Phatlum, Thailand; TBD; Ayako Uehara, Japan

7:13 a.m. / 12:53 p.m. – Haru (Harukyo) Nomura, Japan; (a) Erica Shepherd, Greenwood, Ind.; TBD

7:24 a.m. / 1:04 p.m. – Danielle Kang, Las Vegas, Nev.; So Yeon Ryu, Republic of Korea; Anna Nordqvist, Sweden

7:35 a.m. / 1:15 p.m. – Ariya Jutanugarn, Thailand; Jin Young Ko, Republic of Korea; Stacy Lewis, The Woodlands, Texas

7:46 a.m. / 1:26 p.m. – Michelle Wie, Honolulu, Hawaii; Lexi Thompson, Coral Springs, Fla.; Jessica Korda, Bradenton, Fla.

7:57 a.m. / 1:37 p.m. – Shanshan Feng, People's Republic of China; Minjee Lee, Australia; Eun-Hee Ji, Republic of Korea

8:08 a.m. / 1:48 p.m. – Emma Talley, Princeton, Ky.; Cydney Clanton, Concord, N.C.; (a) Kristen Gillman, Austin, Texas

8:19 a.m. / 1:59 pm. – (a) Albane Valenzuela, Switzerland; Candie Kung, Chinese Taipei; Jacqui Concolino, Orlando, Fla.

8:30 a.m. / 2:10 p.m. – Cheyenne Woods, Phoenix, Ariz.; Kotono Kozuma, Japan; Celine Herbin, France

8:41 a.m. / 2:21 p.m. – (a) Yujeong Son, Republic of Korea; Paula Reto, South Africa; Tiffany Chan, Hong Kong China

8:52 a.m. / 2:32 p.m. – Grace Na, Oakland, Calif.; Yiyi Liu, People's Republic of China; (a) Kaylee Benton, Litchfield Park, Ariz.

Thursday (May 31), Hole #1 / Friday (June 1), Hole #10

12:20 p.m. / 6:40 a.m. – Ashleigh Buhai, South Africa; Rumi Yoshiba, Japan; Wei-Ling Hsu, Chinese Taipei

12:31 p.m. / 6:51 a.m. – Kim Kaufman, Sioux Falls, S.D.; Anne Van Dam, Netherlands; Supamas Sangchan, Thailand

12:42 p.m. / 7:02 a.m. – Sandra Gal, Germany; Jeong Eun Lee, Republic of Korea; Sarah Smith, Australia

12:53 p.m. / 7:13 a.m. – Chella Choi, Republic of Korea; Jane Park, Woodstock, Ga.; TBD

1:04 p.m. / 7:24 a.m. – Amy Yang, Republic of Korea; Lydia Ko, New Zealand; Nelly Korda, Bradenton, Fla.

1:15 p.m. / 7:35 a.m. – Sung Hyun Park, Republic of Korea; In-Kyung Kim, Republic of Korea; (a) Sophia Schubert, Oak Ridge, Tenn.

1:26 p.m. / 7:46 a.m. – Cristie Kerr, Scottsdale, Ariz.; Pernilla Lindberg, Sweden; Sei Young Kim, Republic of Korea

1:37 p.m. / 7:57 a.m. – Inbee Park, Republic of Korea; Moriya Jutanugarn, Thailand; In Gee Chun, Republic of Korea

1:48 p.m. / 8:08 a.m. – Brooke Henderson, Canada; Brittany Lincicome, Seminole, Fla.; Hye-Jin Choi, Republic of Korea

1:59 p.m. / 8:19 a.m. – (a) Lucy Li, Redwood Shores, Calif.; Megan Khang, Rockland, Mass.; Jihyun Kim, Republic of Korea

2:10 p.m. / 8:30 a.m. – Catriona Matthew, Scotland; TBD; Pei-Yun Chien, Chinese Taipei

2:21 p.m. / 8:41 a.m. – Katelyn Dambaugh, Goose Creek, S.C.; (a) Dylan Kim, Sachse, Texas; Giulia Molinaro, Italy

2:32 p.m. / 8:52 a.m. – Christine Song, Fullerton, Calif.; (a) Gaeun Song, Republic of Korea; (a) Olivia Cason, Owensboro, Ky.

Thursday (May 31), Hole #10 / Friday (June 1), Hole #1

12:20 p.m. / 6:40 a.m. – Ssu-Chia Cheng, Chinese Taipei; (a) Allisen Corpuz, Kapolei, Hawaii; Kaori Takayama, Japan

12:31 p.m. / 6:51 a.m. – (a) Emilia Migliaccio, Cary, N.C.; Xiyu Lin, People's Republic of China; Emily Kristine Pedersen, Denmark

12:42 p.m. / 7:02 a.m. – Olafia Kristinsdottir, Iceland; Minami Hiruta, Japan; (a) Linn Grant, Sweden

12:53 p.m. / 7:13 a.m. – Hyojoo Kim, Republic of Korea; (a) Robyn Choi, Australia; Madelene Sagstrom, Sweden

1:04 p.m. / 7:24 a.m. – Marina Alex, Wayne, N.J.; Mirim Lee, Republic of Korea; Ai Suzuki, Japan

1:15 p.m. / 7:35 a.m. – Jenny Shin, Torrance, Calif.; Lizette Salas, Azusa, Calif.; Fumika Kawagishi, Japan

1:26 p.m. / 7:46 a.m. – Austin Ernst, Seneca, S.C.; Ally McDonald, Fulton, Miss.; Georgia Hall, England

1:37 p.m. / 7:57 a.m. – Jeongeun6 Lee, Republic of Korea; Jodi Ewart Shadoff, England; Carlota Ciganda, Spain

1:48 p.m. / 8:08 a.m. – Mi Hyang Lee, Republic of Korea; Brittany Altomare, Tampa, Fla.; Caroline Masson, Germany

1:59 p.m. / 8:19 a.m. – Su-Hyun Oh, Australia; (a) Gina Kim, Chapel Hill, N.C.; Saranporn Langkulgasettrin, Thailand

2:10 p.m. / 8:30 a.m. – Jing Yan, People's Republic of China; (a) Celeste Dao, Canada; Nannette Hill, Pelham Manor, N.Y.

2:21 p.m. / 8:41 a.m. – Hyun Kyung Park, Republic of Korea; Maria Hernandez, Spain; (a) Dana Williams, Boca Raton, Fla.

2:32 p.m. / 8:52 a.m. – (a) Evelyn Arguelles, Mexico; Britney Yada, Hilo, Hawaii; Martina Edberg, Sweden