Couch Leads Outright Tiger Battles Back

By Sports NetworkJuly 1, 2005, 4:00 pm
LEMONT, Ill. -- Chris Couch posted a 4-under 67 on Friday to move into the lead at the halfway point of the Cialis Western Open. Couch's 36-hole total of 9-under-par 133 left him one shot clear of his closest competitors.
 
Jim Furyk, who shared the first-round lead with Ben Curtis and Todd Fischer, managed a 1-under 70 to join Tim Herron and Duffy Waldorf at 8-under-par 134. Curtis was one shot further back at 7-under-par 135 while Fischer followed at 6-under-par 136 along with Steve Flesch.
 
Tiger Woods
Tiger Woods fired a 5-under 66 to climb back onto the leaderboard at the Western Open.
Three-time Western Open champion Tiger Woods had a difficult opening round, but the top player in the game battled back with a round of 66 Friday on the Dubsdread Course at Cog Hill Golf and Country Club.
 
'I played a little bit better today, but more importantly I putted better,' Woods said.
 
Woods played the back side first and collected a birdie at the par-5 11th before a bogey at the very next hole dropped him back to two-over. Woods answered with an eagle at the par-5 15th and a birdie at the par-4 18th to make the turn at 1 under.
 
The reigning Masters champion found trouble with a bogey at the par-3 second, but he got that shot back with a birdie at the par-4 fifth. At the par-4 seventh, Woods played his second shot inside 2 feet and tapped in for a birdie. He then drained a 10-foot putt for a birdie at the par-4 eighth to finish at 3-under-par 139.
 
'You just stay in the present,' said Woods. 'You work on what you have to do to get the ball to the next spot, and that's it. It doesn't get any more complicated than that. You just try and place the golf ball where you need to try and place it at all times and try and stay as focused as you possibly can at that moment, and forget the rest.'
 
Couch, a two-time winner on the Nationwide Tour this season, parred each of his first nine holes before running off back-to-back birdies starting at the par-4 10th.
 
The 32-year-old, who owns five career titles on the Nationwide Tour, two- putted for a birdie at the par-5 15th to reach minus-8. then dropped his second shot inside 4 feet and converted the short birdie try to secure the 36-hole lead.
 
'My goal coming into the week was to make the cut and take advantage of what they did for me, and that's happened,' said Couch, who is playing under a sponsor's exemption. 'So far a little better than that, so hopefully I can have a good weekend and a good outcome.'
 
Furyk struggled early with a pair of bogeys over his first five holes. The former U.S. Open champion countered with back-to-back birdies from the eighth and rolled in a 5-foot putt for a birdie at the 11th to get to 8 under.
 
Furyk was unable to make a move down the stretch, however, and parred his way in to finish one shot back.
 
Herron started on the back nine and birdied his first two holes out of the gate. Herron stumbled to back-to-back bogeys from the 12th, but responded with three consecutive birdies starting at the 14th.
 
He added two birdies on the front side for a round of 66.
 
'I got the ball up and down pretty well, hit some good trouble shots,' said Herron, who hasn't won since the 1999 Bay Hill Invitational. 'I felt like I kept it going, which will be more positive and beneficial going into the weekend.'
 
Waldorf also started at the 10th and birdied each of his last three holes for a round of 65 and a share of second place.
 
Chad Campbell and Scott McCarron share eighth place at 5-under-par 137. Shaun Micheel, Stuart Appleby, Brian Gay, Craig Perks, Jonathan Byrd, Brett Quigley and Ted Purdy are knotted at 4-under-par 138.
 
Defending champion Stephen Ames shot a 71 to finish at 1-under-par 141. Vijay Singh followed on the cut line at even-par 142 after a round of 70. Among those who failed to make the cut were John Daly, Mike Weir, Ryan Moore, Charles Howell III and Peter Lonard.
 
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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.”

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    After 36, new Open favorite is ... Fleetwood

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 20, 2018, 7:49 pm

    With a handful of the pre-championship favorites exiting early, there is a new odds-on leader entering the third round of The Open at Carnoustie.

    While Zach Johnson and Kevin Kisner share the 36-hole lead, it's England's Tommy Fleetwood who leads the betting pack at 11/2. Fleetwood begins the third round one shot off the lead.

    Click here for the leaderboard and take a look below at the odds, courtesy Jeff Sherman at golfodds.com.

    Tommy Fleetwood: 11/2

    Zach Johnson: 13/2

    Rory McIlroy: 7/1

    Jordan Spieth: 8/1

    Rickie Fowler: 9/1

    Kevin Kisner: 12/1

    Xander Schauffele: 16/1

    Tony Finau: 16/1

    Matt Kuchar: 18/1

    Pat Perez: 25/1

    Brooks Koepka: 25/1

    Erik van Rooyen: 50/1

    Alex Noren: 50/1

    Tiger Woods: 50/1

    Thorbjorn Olesen: 60/1

    Danny Willett: 60/1

    Francesco Molinari: 60/1