Gulbis on Solheim Hot Seat

By Randall MellJuly 31, 2009, 4:00 pm
2009 Solheim CupNatalie Gulbis is vulnerable.
 
Brittany Lincicome is secure.
 
Michelle Wie can still make the U.S. Solheim Cup team on points, while Hall of Famer Juli Inkster can only make the team as a captains pick.
 
That was part of the Solheim Cup shakeup Friday at the Ricoh Womens British Open, and yet the final makeup of the United States team wont affect how massively favored the Americans will be based on how poorly key Europeans fared this week.
 
The top three players on the Ladies European Tour Solheim Cup points list all missed the cut with dreadfully high scores.
 
Frances Gwladys Nocera, who is guaranteed a roster spot based on her leading the Europeans in points, shot 91 in the first round and wont be around on the weekend.
 
Spains Tania Elosegui and Italys Diana Luna, also in position to make the European team based on their point standing, both failed to break 80 on Friday. They also both missed the cut.
 
The European trio finished a cumulative 55 over par at the year's final major.
 
On the American side, nine of the 12 roster spots are set.
 
By missing the cut Friday at the Womens British Open, Gulbis gave hope to a half dozen players who mathematically still have a chance to earn automatic spots for the Aug. 21-23 matches at Rich Harvest Farms in Sugar Grove, Ill.
 
The top 10 in points when the event ends Sunday will make the team with American captain Beth Daniel filling out the 12-woman roster with two at-large picks.
 
Gulbis is holding the 10th and final spot.
 
By missing the cut, Gulbis assured No. 9 Lincicome will make the team.
 
No. 11 Laura Diaz, No. 12 Stacy Prammanasudh, No. 15. Jane Park, No. 16 Michelle Wie, No. 19 Irene Cho and No. 21 Michelle Redman all have varying degrees of chances to make the team on points.
 
No. 13 Pat Hurst, No. 14 Juli Inkster, No. 17 Wendy Ward and No. 18 Meaghan Francella missed the cut and can only make the team as captains picks.
 
Hurst, Inkster and Wie appear to have the best chances of being tabbed captains picks.
 
Heres the lowdown for players on the American points list:
 
No. 11 Diaz ' Having not earned a Solheim Cup point all year, Diaz needs to make the team on points. Finishing 14th or better would give her enough points to equal Gulbis for the last spot, given nobody else passes her. Diaz is 11 shots off the lead at Royal Lytham & St. Annes and is tied for 47th.
 
No. 12 Prammanasudh ' Having not earned a Solheim Cup point in four months, Prammanasudh also cant count on being a captains pick. She can overtake Gulbis on points by finishing 11th or better.
 
No. 13 Hurst ' Missed the cut and cant make the team on points, but the Solheim Cup veteran is the only player in contention as a captains pick who has a victory this season.
 
No. 14 Inkster ' Missed the cut and cant make the team on points, but the Hall of Famer is more than a sentimental favorite in her bid to make a last Solheim Cup team.
 
No. 15 Park ' By winning, Park makes the team. With a second-place finish, she equals Gulbis in points at No. 10. Park is in good position, just five shots off the lead and tied for 10th.
 
No. 16 Wie ' Must win to make the team on points, but shes eight shots off the lead and tied for 25th. Wie, however, is playing the most consistent golf through the summer among captains pick possibilities.
 
No. 17 Ward ' Missed the cut, no chance to make the team on points.
 
No. 18 Francella ' Missed the cut, no chance to make the team on points.
 
No. 19 Cho ' Must win to make the team on points. Nine shots off the lead, shes tied for 32nd.
 
No. 20 Allison Fouch ' Not in the field, no chance to make the team on points.
 
No. 21 Redman ' Must win to make the team on points. Like Cho, shes nine shots off the lead, tied for 32nd.
 
Related Links:
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    Bjorn adds four Ryder Cup veterans as vice captains

    By Will GrayMay 22, 2018, 1:05 pm

    European Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn has added a quartet of vice captains for the biennial matches this fall in Paris.

    Bjorn had already named Robert Karlsson as his first assistant, and he announced Tuesday at the BMW PGA Championship that his group of advisors will also include major champions Padraig Harrington and Graeme McDowell, and former world No. 1s Lee Westwood and Luke Donald.

    Westwood is among Europe's most decorated Ryder Cup players, and his addition in this role signals he likely won't participate as a player in the matches for the first time since 1995. The Englishman has spoken openly about his desire to captain the European squad at Whistling Straits in 2020, but he's been quiet on the course in recent months, with a missed secondary cut at the Houston Open his only start since mid-February.

    Harrington is seen as another possible captain for the 2020 matches, and he'll don an earpiece for the third straight Ryder Cup, having represented Europe as a player on six straight teams from 1999-2010.

    Donald played on four Ryder Cup teams from 2004-12, with the Europeans winning each time he was on the roster. This will mark his first stint as a vice captain, as Donald announced last month that he would be sidelined indefinitely while recovering from a back injury.

    At age 38, McDowell will be the youngest vice captain in the room, having holed the winning putt eight years ago at Celtic Manor. He won the French Open in both 2013 and 2014 at Le Golf National, site of this year's matches, and will also be making his debut as a vice captain.

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    Bidder pays $50,000 to caddie for Woods

    By Grill Room TeamMay 22, 2018, 12:28 pm

    Someone has paid $50,000 to caddie for Tiger Woods at this year’s Hero World Challenge.

    An unnamed bidder paid for the opportunity at an auction Saturday night at Tiger Jam, where monies are raised to support the Tiger Woods Foundation.



    The Hero World Challenge will be contested Nov. 29-Dec. in Albany, Bahamas. The pro-am is scheduled for Wednesday, Nov. 28.

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    NCAA DI Women's Champ.: Scoring, TV times

    By Golf Channel DigitalMay 22, 2018, 11:28 am

    The NCAA Division I Women's Golf Championship is underway at Kartsen Creek Golf Club in Stillwater, Okla.

    After three days of stroke play, eight teams have advanced to the match-play portion of the championship. Quarterfinals and semifinals will be contested on Tuesday, with the finals being held on Wednesday. Golf Channel is airing the action live.

    Wake Forest junior Jennifer Kupcho won the individual title. Click here for live action, beginning at 4 p.m. ET.

    Scoring:

    TV Times (all times ET):

    Tuesday
    11AM-conclusion: Match-play quarterfinals (Click here to watch live)
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    Wednesday
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    Arizona grabs last spot with eagle putt, playoff win

    By Ryan LavnerMay 22, 2018, 3:18 am

    STILLWATER, Okla. – With her team freefalling in the standings, Arizona coach Laura Ianello was down to her last stroke.

    The Wildcats began the final round of the NCAA Championship in third place, but they were 19 over par for the day, and outside the top-8 cut line, with only one player left on the course.

    Bianca Pagdaganan had transferred from Gonzaga to compete for NCAA titles, and on the 17th hole Ianello told her that she needed to play “the best two holes of your life” to keep the dream alive.

    She made par on 17, then hit a 185-yard 6-iron out of a divot to 30 feet. Not knowing where she stood on the final green, Pagdaganan felt an eerie calm over the ball. Sure enough, she buried the eagle putt, setting off a raucous celebration and sending the Wildcats into a play-five, count-four team playoff with Baylor at 33 over par.

    Their match-play spot wasn’t yet secure, but Ianello still broke down in tears.


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    “Bianca is such an inspiration for all of us,” she said. “She’s the kind of kid that you want to root for, to have good things happen to.”

    Arizona prevailed on the second playoff hole. As the 8 seed, the Wildcats will play top-seeded UCLA in the quarterfinals Tuesday at Karsten Creek.

    Though the finish had plenty of drama, no teams played their way into the coveted top 8 on the final day of stroke-play qualifying.

    Baylor came closest. The Bears barely advanced past regionals after a mysterious stomach virus affected several players and coaches. They competed in the final round with just four healthy players.

    On Monday, Gurleen Kaur put Baylor in position to advance, shooting 68, but the Bears lost by three strokes on the second extra hole.

    Arkansas finished one shot shy of the team playoff. The second-ranked Razorbacks, who entered NCAAs as one of the pre-tournament favorites, having won seven times, including their first SEC title, couldn’t overcome a 308-300 start and finished 10th. Player of the Year favorite Maria Fassi finished her week at 19 over par and counted only two rounds toward the team total.