Baby 59 and Paying Tiger

By Rex HoggardMarch 20, 2009, 4:00 pm
The good news, if any exist, about missing the cut at the Tampa, Fla., area event is that most players' next stop, the Arnold Palmer Invitational, is just a short drive back up Interstate 4 and the chance to catch a Detroit Tigers spring training game at Joker Marchant Stadium in Lakeland, the most user-friendly and relaxing of all the Grapefruit League haunts, is on your way to Arnies place.
 
The good news about falling short in Cut Line is that it doesnt count against ones FedEx Cup points and the sting only hurts for a minute.
 

MADE CUT
 
  • Annika Sorenstam/Mike McGee: The newlyweds didnt waste any time. The happy couple announced last week that Sorenstam is expecting the couples first child less than three months after the two were married.
     
    The former world No. 1 is a shoo-in for 2009s worlds greatest mom, award, and may we be the first to offer the expectant parents a gender-neutral suggestion to name the little one: Baby 59. With those golf genes ' McGees father, Jerry, is a four-time Tour winner ' they may as well set the bar high from the start. And, besides, Baby 59 is way more memorable than Charlie.
     
  • Dan Forsman: Direct from the good things happening to good people department, the original Tour nice guy waited just 12 events into his Champions Tour career to cash, winning last weeks AT&T Champions Classic in a playoff.
     
    All one needs to know about Forsman is that in his post-game debrief with the press he called his first over-50 title a humbling victory. Have to give Karma a plug for this one. After posting just five victories in an Ironman Tour career that spanned three decades and 651 events, the golf gods must have figured Forsman had waited long enough.
     

    MADE CUT' DID NOT FINISH (MDF)
     
  • John Daly: We want it to be true, we hope for the best, thank the cosmic tumblers for a second, or 15th, chance, and then race to the hill adjacent Turn 2 and await the pile-up. Its human nature. Its Dalys nature.
     
    GolfChannel.com reported last week that Daly has been holed up in the Tampa area working on his game and physique ' according to JDs manager the big man has lost 40 pounds ' to prepare for his comeback, which is scheduled to begin next month in Europe.
     
    The game could use a healthy, happy and focused Daly and theres little question Daly could use a do-over, but history suggests this album plays just a single tune.
     
  • Victorian (Australia) authorities: It cant be easy to pen a $3 million check, not in these troubled times and particularly when the payback can be a bit murky.
     
    Tiger Woods return to Down Under for the Australian Masters will be a boon for golf and the tournament, but for the sake of those Victorian politicians who signed that check lets hope its worth $3 million.
     
  • Michelle Wie/IMG: There are two sides to the teens management two-step. After just four years, Wie split with the William Morris Agency in March, a sign that suggests something wasnt right either with the newly minted LPGA player or the firm.
     
    With tour card in tow, Wie could become the engine that drives the LPGA, but only under the proper circumstances. Lets hope Wies new team at IMG takes a page out of Woods playbook, the frims other top client. When legacies are being molded, less is more and the bottom line should be among the bottom half of all priorities.
     

    MISSED CUT
     
  • Official World Golf Ranking: Late Sunday, Golf Channel number crunchers went to work. What the calculators and spreadsheets and Ouija Boards spat out may have been factual, at least according to the rules that govern the convoluted world of ranking professionals, but what we saw was Orson Wells stuff. Pure fantasy, a numbers induced hallucination.
     
    Without the aid of a PowerPoint presentation, the crux of what the accountants tabulated is this: if Woods plays poorly next week at the Arnold Palmer Invitational and Phil Mickelson plays well in two weeks at the Shell Houston Open, Lefty could overtake Woods atop the ranking.
     
    Just a thought, but if the World Ranking eggheads think Mickelson should be ranked ahead of Woods at anything other than Ping Pong then weve got some sub-prime mortgages wed like for them to consider.
     

  • One-in-three rule: Although there is nothing wrong with the concept, an often-floated idea that would require Tour players show up at every stop at least once every three years, it has missed the cut before advocates ever put a metaphorical peg in the ground. The independent contractors have spoken, and one-in-three has been voted off the island quicker than an accountant who refers to himself in the third person.
     
    It would be perfect. You sign a six-year contract with a sponsor and they are guaranteed to get everybody at least twice, said one tournament director last week at Doral. By everybody, of course, he meant Woods, but even off the record tournament directors have to toe that narrow line.
     
    Without a one-in-three mandate we end up with the curious case of the missing headliners. Exhibit A: the Transitions Championship. Despite having what is widely regarded as the best ball park in the Florida Swing, perfect conditions and sunshine, the Transitions has just one (Kenny Perry) of the top 10 players in the world.
     
    We know they cant play every week, but when a good golf course and $5.4 million purse cant lure a deeper field it might be time for the contractors to give up some independence.
     

     
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    Maguire's storied Duke career comes to an end

    By Ryan LavnerMay 22, 2018, 8:39 pm

    STILLWATER, Okla. – After losing in the quarterfinals here at the NCAA Women’s Championship, Duke coach Dan Brooks gathered his team and walked back toward the 18th hole. He wanted to get away and deliver a parting speech to senior Leona Maguire, one of the most important players in program history.

    “I feel like I didn’t say enough, and I feel like I didn’t say it right,” he said afterward. “I guess that’s inevitable when dealing with a player who has meant so much.”

    Maguire’s heralded Duke career came to an end Tuesday when she and her teammates dropped their quarterfinal match to Southern Cal, 3 1/2 to 1 1/2. Maguire did her part, winning, 1 up, against USC’s Jennifer Chang, but it still wasn’t enough.

    Maguire will go down as one of the best players not just in Duke’s storied history, but all time in college golf. She’s a two-time Player of the Year. She finished with the best scoring average (70.93) in Division I women’s golf history. She had a record 32 competitive rounds in the 60s. She spent 135 weeks at the top of the World Amateur Golf Rankings, another record.

    The 23-year-old from Ireland is the rare collegian who turned down guaranteed LPGA status to return to school to earn her degree and try to win a NCAA title with twin sister Lisa, the team’s No. 5 player. Ultimately, they never reached the championship match.

    “I wouldn’t change a thing,” she said softly outside the clubhouse. “The experiences, the memories, I wouldn’t change it for the world.”

    Maguire said that she’s turning pro soon and has a full schedule upcoming. She’ll play the ShopRite LPGA Classic and then try to capitalize on her full status on the developmental Symetra circuit.

    Asked about her potential at the next level, Brooks said that Maguire can be a future Hall of Famer.

    “She’s the hardest worker and the smartest player I’ve ever coached,” he said. “I’m really going to miss her.”

    Geoff Ogilvy and family at the 2009 WGC-Accenture Match Play. Getty Images

    Notes: Ogilvy moving family to Australia

    By Doug FergusonMay 22, 2018, 6:55 pm

    Geoff Ogilvy's immediate future involves fewer golf tournament and longer flights.

    Ogilvy has been contemplating in the last few years moving back home to Australia, and after discussing it with his Texas-born wife, Juli, they plan to return to Melbourne shortly after Christmas.

    Their daughter, Phoebe, turns 12 in October and will be starting the seventh grade in Australia. They have two sons, Jasper (10) and Harvey (8). The Ogilvys figured that waiting much longer to decide where to live would make it tougher on the children.

    ''We just talked about it, for lots of reasons, and we kept making pros and cons. Juli was strong on it,'' Ogilvy said. ''We're excited. I'm at the point where I'm not going to play 27 times a year. It's going to be brutal to play from there. But you've got to choose life.''

    Ogilvy won the 2006 U.S. Open at Winged Foot, and he counts three World Golf Championships among his eight PGA Tour victories. He also has won the Australian Open and the Australian PGA Championship and has reached No. 3 in the world.

    His last victory was in 2014, and Ogilvy has slipped to No. 416 in the world.

    He has been dividing some of his time with a golf course design business with projects that include Shady Oaks in Fort Worth, Texas, (including a ''Little Nine'' course that opened last year), a renovation in China and a 36-hole course called Peninsula Kingwood in Melbourne.

    Ogilvy, who grew up at Victoria Golf Club, still has a home on the 14th hole of the West Course at Royal Melbourne. If he didn't move back home, Ogilvy figured he would be spending six months in Melbourne and six months in Scottsdale, Arizona.

    ''It's a feeling more than anything,'' he said. ''Scottsdale is dreamy. We live a great existence. I know what I'm getting there. If we didn't move back, we'd be a six-and-six family. The kids get out of school, and they're bounced back and forth. It's not good for continuity.''

    As for golf?

    Ogilvy narrowly kept his full PGA Tour card last year and this season has been a struggle. He hasn't sorted out what kind of schedule he would keep, understanding it would involve long trips from Sydney to Dallas.

    The immediate goal would be to play a heavy fall schedule and miss most of the West Coast swing to get acclimated to the move.

    ''And then we'll start working it out,'' he said.


    US OPEN QUALIFYING: The U.S. Open likes to consider its championship the most democratic of the majors, and it has it just about right again this year. With the addition of 23 players who became exempt by being in the top 60 in the world ranking, 77 players in the 156-man field are exempt from qualifying. That number could go up slightly with another cutoff for the top 60 the Sunday before U.S. Open week.

    The U.S. Open is the only American major that does not offer automatic exemptions to PGA Tour winners. Five such winners from this season still face qualifying, including Patton Kizzire, who has won twice (OHL Classic at Mayakoba and Sony Open). The others are Austin Cook, Ted Potter Jr., Andrew Landry and Aaron Wise.

    Kizzire is at No. 63 in the world, followed by Wise (66) and Landry (69). All have three weeks to crack the top 60.

    Until 2011, the U.S. Open offered exemptions to multiple PGA Tour winners since the previous Open. It leans heavily on the world ranking, as do the other majors. It also awards recent major champions and top finishers from the previous U.S. Open, along with the Tour Championship field from the previous year, to reward a consistently strong season.

    ''All of the tours around the world have bought into the official world golf ranking rankings,'' said Jeff Hall, the USGA's managing director of rules and open championships. ''And this provides just the right place for us to be with exemptions. We don't have to get into the weighting of one tour over another, this championship versus that event, a week-to-week event. We focus on the official world golf rankings and it seems to get us the right players for our championship.''



    FICKLE GAME: Careers can change quickly in golf. No one can attest to that as well as Michael Arnaud.

    The 36-year-old Arnaud had never finished better than a tie for fifth in his 49 starts on the Web.com Tour, and that was three years ago. His career earnings were just over $130,000. He had only made it into one previous event this year, and he wasn't in the field at the BMW Charity Pro-Am in South Carolina last week until Kent Bulle withdrew on the eve of the event.

    Arnaud tied the course record with a 60 in the second round. He closed with a 63 and won by five shots.

    He won $126,000 and moved to No. 13 on the money list, giving him a reasonable chance to reach the PGA Tour if he finishes the season in the top 25.

    ''A lot of people kept pushing me when I wanted to step away from it,'' Arnaud said. ''My wife was one of those that told me to take the chance and go. Low and behold it really paid off.''


    SHINNECOCK SAVANT: Rory McIlroy is excited to get back to Shinnecock Hills for the U.S. Open, a course he already has played a few times.

    Equally excited is his manager, Sean O'Flaherty, who knows the course on New York's Long Island better than McIlroy.

    O'Flaherty spent two summers as a caddie at Shinnecock Hills.

    He went to college at Trinity in Dublin, had friends in the Hamptons and came over during the summer months in 2002 and 2003 to work as a caddie.

    ''I got to know a lot of members,'' O'Flaherty said. ''I can't wait. To me, it's the best course in the world.''


    DIVOTS: Justin Thomas won the Honda Classic on Feb. 25 at No. 4 in the world. No one from the top 10 in the world has won a PGA Tour event since then, a stretch of 12 tournaments. ... Guy Kinnings is leaving IMG after nearly 30 years to become the deputy CEO and Ryder Cup director of the European Tour. He will report directly to European Tour chief Keith Pelley. ... The LPGA tour will play in China during its fall Asia swing at the Buick LPGA Shanghai at Qizhong Garden Golf Club. The tournament will be Oct. 18-21, one week before the men play the HSBC Champions at Sheshan International in Shanghai. ... Alice Chen of Furman has been selected for the Dinah Shore Trophy, awarded to top college women who excel in golf, academics and work off the golf course. ... The Irish Open is going to Lahinch Golf Club in 2019, with former Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley serving as the tournament host.


    STAT OF THE WEEK: Matt Kuchar, Peter Uihlein and Jhonattan Vegas are the only players to compete in all five Texas events on the PGA Tour this year.


    FINAL WORD: ''The sum of his shots seems to add up to slightly less than the sum of the shots from another guy.'' - Geoff Ogilvy on Jordan Spieth.

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    Arizona's run continues, knocks off top seed to reach semis

    By Jay CoffinMay 22, 2018, 6:35 pm

    STILLWATER, Okla. – The No. 1 seed in match play has still never won the women’s NCAA Championship.

    That dubious distinction continued Tuesday at Karsten Creek when Arizona knocked out top-seeded UCLA on the final hole of the final match.

    With the matches tied at 2 apiece, the anchor match between Arizona junior Bianca Pagdanganan and UCLA freshman Patty Tavatanakit was tied on the 18th hole, a par 5 that’s reachable in two shots by many.

    Tavatanakit was just short of the green in two and Pagdanganan, the Wildcats’ hero from Monday when she made eagle on the last hole to give her team a shot at match play, blasted her second shot onto the green. Tavatanakit failed to get up and down – missing a 4-footer for birdie – and Pagdanganan two-putted for birdie to give Arizona the victory.


    NCAA Women’s DI Championship: Scoring and TV times

    NCAA Women’s DI Championship: Full coverage


    “We’re lucky to be in match play,” Arizona coach Laura Ianello said. “Let’s ride the highs. Why not?”

    Arizona will now face Stanford in the semifinals. The Cardinal, the 2015 champion and 2016 runner up, has qualified for match play in each of the past four seasons. They beat Northwestern, 3-2, in the quarterfinals to advance.

    USC will face Alabama in the other semifinal, meaning three Pac-12 teams have advanced to the Final Four. The Crimson Tide had an easy go of it in their quarterfinal match against Kent State, winning 4-1. The decisive victory gave Alabama extra rest for its afternoon match.

    USC beat Duke, 3-1-1, in the other quarterfinal, pitting teams that have combined to win nine NCAA titles in the past 20 years. But neither team has had much success in the past four years since the championship turned to match play. Not only has neither team won, neither has even reached the championship match.

    Duke’s Leona Maguire won the first match and the second match was halved, but USC swept the last three matches with Gabriela Ruffels, Alyaa Abdulghany and Amelia Garvey all winning to propel the Trojans into the semifinals.

    Alabama (2) vs. USC (3)

    2:30PM ET: Lauren Stephenson (A) vs. Jennifer Chang (USC)

    2:40PM ET: Kristen Gillman (A) vs. Amelia Garvey (USC)

    2:50PM ET: Cheyenne Knight (A) vs. Allisen Corpuz (USC)

    3:00PM ET: Lakareber Abe (A) vs. Alyaa Abdulghany (USC)

    3:10PM ET: Angelica Moresco (A) Gabriela Ruffels (USC)


    Stanford (5) vs. Arizona (8)

    3:20PM ET: Emily Wang (S) vs. Gigi Stoll (A)

    3:30PM ET: Shannon Aubert (S) vs. Yu-Sang Hou (A)

    3:40PM ET: Mika Liu (S) vs. Haley Moore (A)

    3:50PM ET: Albane Valenzuela (S) vs. Sandra Nordaas (A)

    4:00PM ET: Andrea Lee (S) vs. Bianca Pagdanganan (A)

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

    By Golf Channel DigitalMay 22, 2018, 5:50 pm

    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 advanced to the match-play portion of the championship. Quarterfinals were contested Tuesday morning with semifinals in the afternoon. The finals are 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
    4-8PM: Match-play semifinals (Click here to watch live)

    Wednesday
    4-8PM: Match-play finals