Dyno-mite Walker Rallies for Win

By Sports NetworkAugust 26, 2007, 4:00 pm
2006 National Mining Association Pete Dye ClassicBRIDGEPORT, West Virginia -- As overnight-leader Parker McLachlin struggled Sunday, Jimmy Walker fired a 5-under 67 to erase a seven-shot deficit and win the National Mining Association Pete Dye Classic.
 
Walker, who won for the third time on the Nationwide Tour, completed the event at 15-under-par 273.
 
'You just have to go out and play as solid as you can and hope for the best,' said Walker. 'You hate to see a guy come back like that, but I wanted to play solid and make some birdies. I did a pretty good job of not giving anything back.'
 
Justin Hicks (66) and Matthew Jones (68) shared second place at minus-14.
 
McLachlin led by seven entering the round, but a 5-over-par front nine dropped him as many as four shots behind Walker during the final round. McLachlin closed with a 5-over 77 to join Tom Carter in a tie for fourth place at minus-12.
 
'It was just a mindset and a game plan. I played a little bit defensively today,' admitted McLachlin. 'My game plan all week was pedal to the metal and to attack the golf course. I made a few defensive swings that hurt. Once I got to a point on the eighth hole it was about even and my competitive juices started kicking in and I played really good after that.'
 
The 28-year-old McLachlin tripped to a bogey on the third, while Walker birdied the same hole to get within five. That lead disappeared completely over the next five holes at Pete Dye Golf Club.
 
McLachlin bogeyed the fifth, then Walker birdied No. 6. The seventh saw another two-stroke swing with Walker converting 20-foot birdie putt and McLachlin faltering to a bogey after failing to hit the green in two.
 
At the par-4 eighth, Walker took over the lead with a 12-foot birdie putt that moved him to 14 under.
 
McLachlin missed the green short and left at the same hole, then duffed a chip that rolled right back to his feet. He knocked his fourth to 3 feet, but his bogey putt horse-shoed the hole and he walked off with double-bogey and now trailed by one.
 
Around the turn, Walker converted a 12-foot birdie try while McLachlin three-putted for bogey. That completed a 10-stroke turnaround between the two.
 
Walker knocked his approach over the green at the 15th. He was unable to get up and down for par and the bogey dropped him to minus-14 and into a tie for the lead with Hicks and Jones.
 
McLachlin recouped two strokes with an eagle at the 17th, but Walker also made some noise on the par-5. Walker chipped to 5 feet and drained the birdie try to regain the lead at minus-15.
 
Walker made things interesting at the last. He again knocked his second over the green, but chipped to 5 feet. Walker calmly sank the putt for his third tour title.
 
'You know '04 happened so fast, then having the injury did make me lose some confidence,' stated Walker, who was the 2004 Player of the Year with two wins that season. 'I worked really hard to get back to where I felt like I was playing really good golf. I felt I was nine holes short all year, I just didn't have a bad nine holes this week.'
 
Hicks collected five birdies between the third and 11th to jump to 13 under. He dropped a stroke on 13, but birdied the final two holes to finish one back.
 
Jones ran off three straight birdies from the sixth, but a bogey at the 10th left him at 12 under. He picked up birdies on 12 and 17 to share second.
 
'I played well today. I had one three-putt, other than that I hit the ball very well,' said Jones. 'I shot a couple less than I probably wanted, but I'm happy.'
 
Scott Gutschewski posted a four-under 68 to end in sixth at 11-under-par 277. Tommy Tolles, Lee Williams, Ian Leggatt, Scott Parel and Kyle Thompson were one stroke back at minus-10.
 
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    Lincicome grouped with two rookies in Barbasol

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 17, 2018, 9:54 pm

    Brittany Lincicome will tee it up with a pair of rookies when she makes her first start in a PGA Tour event Thursday at the Barbasol Championship at Keene Trace Golf Club in Nicholasville, Ky.

    Lincicome, an eight-time LPGA winner, is scheduled to go off the 10th tee at 9:59 a.m. ET in the first round with Sam Ryder, 28, and Conrad Shindler, 29. They’re off the first tee Friday at 2:59 p.m. ET

    Lincicome will become just the sixth woman to play in a PGA Tour event, joining Babe Zaharias, Shirley Spork, Annika Sorenstam, Suzy Whaley and Michelle Wie.

    “The first three or four holes, I’ll be a nervous wreck, for sure,” Linicome said.

     

     

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    Lincicome thrilled by reception from male pros

    By Randall MellJuly 17, 2018, 8:31 pm

    Brittany Lincicome wondered how PGA Tour pros would greet her when she arrived to play the Barbasol Championship this week.

    She wondered if there would be resentment.

    She also wondered how fans at Keene Trace Golf Club in Nicholasville, Ky., would receive her, and if a social media mob would take up pitchforks.

    “I can’t stop smiling,” Lincicome said Tuesday after her first practice round upon arriving. “Everyone has been coming up to me and wishing me luck. That means a lot.”

    PGA Tour pro Martin Piller, husband of LPGA pro Gerina Piller, welcomed her immediately.

    Other pros sought her out on the practice putting green.

    She said she was also welcomed joining pros at a table in player dining.

    Fans have been stopping her for autographs.

    “It has been an awesome reception,” said Dewald Gouws, her husband, a former long-drive competitor. “I think it’s put her much more at ease, seeing the reception she is getting. There’s a lot of mutual respect.”

    Lincicome, 32, wasn’t sure if she would be playing a practice round alone Tuesday morning, but when she made her way to the first tee, Domenico Geminiani was there, just about to go off.

    He waved Lincicome over.

    “He said, `Hey, Brittany, do you want to join me?’” Gouws said. “Come to find out, Dom’s a pretty cool guy.”

    Geminiani made it into the field as a Monday qualifier.

    “The two of us were both trying to figure things out together,” Lincicome said.

    Keene Trace will play to 7,328 yards on the scorecard. That’s more than 800 yards longer than Highland Meadows, where Lincicome finished second at the LPGA’s Marathon Classic last weekend. Keene Trace was playing even longer than its listed yardage Tuesday, with recent rains softening it.

    Nicknamed “Bam Bam,” Lincicome is one of the longest hitters in the women’s game. Her 269.5 yard average drive is 10th in the LPGA ranks. It would likely be dead last on the PGA Tour, where Brian Stuard (278.2) is the last player on the stats list at No. 201.

    “I think if I keep it in the fairway, I’ll be all right,” Lincicome said.

    Lincicome is an eight-time LPGA winner, with two major championships among those titles. She is just the sixth woman to compete in a PGA Tour event, the first in a decade, since Michelle Wie played the Reno-Tahoe Open, the last of her eight starts against the men.

    Lincicome will join Babe Zaharias, Shirley Spork, Annika Sorenstam, Suzy Whaley and Wie in the elite ranks.

    Zaharias, by the way, is the only woman to make a 36-hole cut in PGA Tour history, making it at the 1945 L.A. Open before missing a 54-hole cut on the weekend.

    What are Lincicome’s expectations?

    She would love to make the cut, but . . .

    “Just going to roll with it and see what happens,” she said. “This is once in a lifetime, probably a one-and-done opportunity. I’m just going to enjoy it.”

    Lincicome grew up playing for the boys’ golf team at Seminole High on the west coast of Florida. She won a couple city championships.

    “I always thought it would be cool to compete against the guys on the PGA Tour,” Lincicome said. “I tend to play more with the guys than women at home. I never would have gone out and told my agent, `Let’s go try to play in a PGA Tour event,’ but when Tom Murray called with this opportunity, I was really blown away and excited by it. I never in a million years thought I would have this opportunity.”

    Tom Murray, the president of Perio, the parent company of Barbasol and Pure Silk, invited Lincicome to accept one of the tournament’s sponsor exemptions. Lincicome represents Pure Silk.

    Lincicome said her desire to play a PGA Tour event is all about satisfying her curiosity, wanting to know how she would stack up at this level. She also wants to see if the experience can help take her to the next level in the women’s game.

    As a girl growing up, she played Little League with the boys, instead of softball with the girls. She said playing the boys in golf at Seminole High helped her get where she is today.

    “The guys were better, and it pushed me to want to be better,” Lincicome said. “I think playing with the guys [on the PGA Tour], I will learn something to take to LPGA events, and it will help my game, for sure.”

    Lincicome has been pleased that her fellow LPGA pros are so supportive. LPGA winner Kris Tamulis is flying into Kentucky as moral support. Other LPGA pros may also be coming in to support her.

    The warm fan reception Lincicome is already getting at Keene Trace matters, too.

    “She’s already picked up some new fans this week, and hopefully she will pick up some more,” Gouws said. “I don’t think she’s putting too much expectation on herself. I think she really does just want to have fun.”

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    Stunner: Inbee Park steps aside for Int. Crown

    By Randall MellJuly 17, 2018, 4:00 pm

    There was a big surprise this week when the LPGA announced the finalized lineups for the UL International Crown.

    Rolex world No. 1 Inbee Park won’t be teeing it up for the host South Koreans Oct. 4-7 in Incheon.

    She has withdrawn, saying she wanted another Korean to be able to experience the thrill of representing her country.

    It’s a stunner given the importance the LPGA has placed on taking the UL International Crown to South Korea and its golf-crazy allegiance to the women’s game in the Crown’s first staging outside the United States.

    Two-time major champion In Gee Chun will replace Park.

    "It was my pleasure and honor to participate in the first UL International Crown in 2014 and at the 2016 Olympics, and I cannot describe in one word how amazing the atmosphere was to compete as a representative of my country,” Park said. “There are so many gifted and talented players in Korea, and I thought it would be great if one of the other players was given the chance to experience the 2018 UL International Crown.”

    Chun, another immensely popular player in South Korea, was the third alternate, so to speak, with the world rankings used to field teams. Hye Jin Choi and Jin Young Ko were higher ranked than Chun but passed because of commitments made to competing in a Korean LPGA major that week. The other South Koreans who previously qualified are So Yeon Ryu, Sung Hyun Park and I.K. Kim.

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    Na: I can admit, 'I went through the yips'

    By Rex HoggardJuly 17, 2018, 3:35 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Following his victory two weeks ago at A Military Tribute at the Greenbrier, Kevin Na said his second triumph on the PGA Tour was the most rewarding of his career.

    Although he declined to go into details as to why the victory was so gratifying at The Greenbrier, as he completed his practice round on Tuesday at the Open Championship, Na shed some light on how difficult the last few years have been.

    “I went through the yips. The whole world saw that. I told people, 'I can’t take the club back,'” Na said on Tuesday at Carnoustie. “People talked about it, 'He’s a slow player. Look at his routine.' I was admitting to the yips. I didn’t use the word ‘yip’ at the time. Nobody wants to use that word, but I’m over it now so I can use it. The whole world saw it.”


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    Na, who made headlines for his struggles to begin his backswing when he found himself in the lead at the 2012 Players Championship, said he asked other players who had gone through similar bouts with the game’s most dreaded ailment how they were able to get through it.

    “It took time,” he said. “I forced myself a lot. I tried breathing. I tried a trigger. Some guys will have a forward press or the kick of the right knee. That was hard and the crap I got for it was not easy.”

    The payoff, however, has steadily arrived this season. Na said he’d been confident with his game this season following a runner-up showing at the Genesis Open and a fourth-place finish at the Fort Worth Invitational, and he felt he was close to a breakthrough. But being able to finish a tournament like he did at The Greenbrier, where he won by five strokes, was particularly rewarding.

    “All good now,” he smiled. “I knew I was good enough to win again, but until you do it sometimes you question yourself. It’s just the honest truth.”