Kerr Shares Takefuji Lead

By Sports NetworkApril 15, 2004, 4:00 pm
04 Takefuji ClassicLAS VEGAS, Nev. -- Cristie Kerr carded a 3-under-par 69 on Thursday to grab a share of the lead after the first round of the LPGA Takefuji Classic. Kerr is joined atop the leaderboard by Stacy Prammanasudh, Nadina Taylor and Jackie Gallagher-Smith.
 
Catriona Matthew posted a 2-under-par 70. She stands in fifth place alongside Seol An Jeon.
 
Kerr opened with three straight pars at Las Vegas Country Club. She got on the scoreboard with a bogey at the par-4 fourth, where she missed the green. She got that stroke back when she rolled home a 30-foot birdie putt at the seventh.
 
She came right back by sinking a 15-footer for birdie at the next. Kerr found water at the ninth, which led to a bogey dropping her back to even par. She came back with a two-putt birdie at the next.
 
Kerr's second to the par-4 11th came up short and she was unable to save par. She moved back into red numbers for good when she dropped a wedge within 9 feet for birdie at the 13th.
 
The 2002 Longs Drugs Challenge winner drained a 15-footer for birdie at the 15th and capped her scoring with a 12-foot birdie on No. 17.
 
'I was kind of 1 over through six holes or something and I said to my caddy, let's just see if we can get something started,' Kerr said. 'I made a really long putt on seven off the fringe. That was really, really good and I rode a little momentum into eight.
 
'I birdied a hole, I bogeyed a hole. And then, you know, I got a couple in a row, and I could have even made another one on 18, so I was able to get some positive momentum into the last six holes.'
 
Prammanasudh was steady throughout her round. She dropped a 7-iron within 8 feet for birdie at the fourth. She came back with another 8-foot birdie at the sixth.
 
The 2003 Futures Tour money leader sank a 4-foot birdie at the 11th to get to 3 under. She parred in for her share of the lead.
 
'I started off a little shaky actually, I missed the first two fairways, the first three greens. But I was able to get up and down,' said Prammanasudh. 'It's hard, you know, I was very satisfied with the way I played because the wind out there is crazy because it will be against you one second, and then a crosswind the next second, and it's really just how lucky you get when you impact your ball.'
 
Taylor picked up birdies at the fifth and eighth to head to the back side at minus-2. She drained birdies on the 10th and 12th for climb to 4 under. However, she fell back into a share of the lead with a bogey on No. 16.
 
Gallagher-Smith picked up her first birdie at the fourth. She later converted back-to-back birdies from the ninth. She drained a 16-footer for birdie at the 14th to move to minus-4. A three-putt bogey on No. 17 dropped Gallagher-Smith back into a tie for the lead.
 
'I pretty much knew it was going to be breezy,' said Gallagher-Smith. 'It wasn't too bad early on and then I just think coming in that back nine the last few holes the wind really swirls a lot, so it's kind of hard picking clubs out there. But I managed to take care of all of that.'
 
Gloria Park, amateur In Bee Park and tour rookie Reilley Rankin head a group of 12 players at 1-under-par 71. Beth Bauer and Grace Park lead a large group one shot further back at even par.
 
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    Watch: Spectator films as Woods' shot hits him

    By Will GrayJuly 23, 2018, 12:07 am

    It was a collision watched by millions of fans on television, and one that came at a pivotal juncture as Tiger Woods sought to win The Open at Carnoustie. It also gave Colin Hauck the story of a lifetime.

    Hauck was one of dozens of fans situated along the left side of the 11th hole during the final round at Carnoustie as the pairing of Woods and Francesco Molinari hit their approach shots. After 10 holes of nearly flawless golf, Woods missed the fairway off the tee and then pulled his iron well left of the target.

    The ball made square contact with Hauck, who hours later tweeted a video showing the entire sequence - even continuing to record after Woods' shot sent him tumbling to the ground:

    The bounce initially appeared fortuitous for Woods, as his ball bounded away from thicker rough and back toward the green. But an ambitious flop shot came up short, and he eventually made a double bogey to go from leading by a shot to trailing by one. He ultimately shot an even-par 71, tying for sixth two shots behind Molinari.

    For his efforts as a human shield, Hauck received a signed glove and a handshake from Woods - not to mention a firsthand video account that will be sure to spark plenty of conversations in the coming years.

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    Molinari retirement plan: coffee, books and Twitter

    By Will GrayJuly 22, 2018, 9:35 pm

    After breaking through for his first career major, Francesco Molinari now has a five-year exemption on the PGA Tour, a 10-year exemption in Europe and has solidified his standing as one of the best players in the world.

    But not too long ago, the 35-year-old Italian was apparently thinking about life after golf.

    Shortly after Molinari rolled in a final birdie putt to close out a two-shot victory at The Open, fellow Tour player Wesley Bryan tweeted a picture of a note that he wrote after the two played together during the third round of the WGC-HSBC Champions in China in October. In it, Bryan shared Molinari's plans to retire as early as 2020 to hang out at cafes and "become a Twitter troll":

    Molinari is active on the social media platform, with more than 5,600 tweets sent out to nearly 150,000 followers since joining in 2010. But after lifting the claret jug at Carnoustie, it appears one of the few downsides of Molinari's victory is that the golf world won't get to see the veteran turn into a caffeinated, well-read troll anytime soon.

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    Molinari had previously avoided Carnoustie on purpose

    By Rex HoggardJuly 22, 2018, 9:17 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Sometimes a course just fits a player’s eye. They can’t really describe why, but more often than not it leads to solid finishes.

    Francesco Molinari’s relationship with Carnoustie isn’t like that.

    The Italian played his first major at Carnoustie, widely considered the toughest of all The Open venues, in 2007, and his first impression hasn’t really changed.

    “There was nothing comforting about it,” he said on Sunday following a final-round 69 that lifted him to a two-stroke victory.


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    In fact, following that first exposure to the Angus coast brute, Molinari has tried to avoid Carnoustie, largely skipping the Dunhill Links Championship, one of the European Tour’s marquee events, throughout his career.

    “To be completely honest, it's one of the reasons why I didn't play the Dunhill Links in the last few years, because I got beaten up around here a few times in the past,” he said. “I didn't particularly enjoy that feeling. It's a really tough course. You can try and play smart golf, but some shots, you just have to hit it straight. There's no way around it. You can't really hide.”

    Molinari’s relative dislike for the layout makes his performance this week even more impressive considering he played his last 37 holes bogey-free.

    “To play the weekend bogey-free, it's unthinkable, to be honest. So very proud of today,” he said.

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    Rose: T-2 finish renewed my love of The Open

    By Jay CoffinJuly 22, 2018, 9:00 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Justin Rose made the cut on the number at The Open and was out for an early Saturday morning stroll at Carnoustie when, all of a sudden, he started putting together one great shot after another.

    There was no pressure. No one had expected anything from someone so far off the lead. Yet Rose shot 30 on the final nine holes to turn in 7-under 64, the lowest round of the championship. By day’s end he was five shots behind a trio of leaders that included Jordan Spieth.

    Rose followed the 64 with a Sunday 69 to tie for second place, two shots behind winner Francesco Molinari. His 133 total over the weekend was the lowest by a shot, and for a moment he thought he had a chance to hoist the claret jug, until Molinari put on a ball-striking clinic down the stretch with birdies on 14 and 18.


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    “I just think having made the cut number, it’s a great effort to be relevant on the leaderboard on Sunday,” said Rose, who collected his third-career runner-up in a major. He’s also finished 12th or better in all three majors this year.

    In the final round, Rose was well off the pace until his second shot on the par-5 14th hole hit the pin. He had a tap-in eagle to move to 5 under. Birdie at the last moved him to 6 under and made him the clubhouse leader for a few moments.

    “It just proves to me that I can play well in this tournament, that I can win The Open,” Rose said. “When I’m in the hunt, I enjoy it. I play my best golf. I don’t back away.

    “That was a real positive for me, and it renewed the love of The Open for me.”