Mickelson Wins at Riviera - COPIED

By Sports NetworkFebruary 18, 2008, 5:00 pm
Northern Trust OpenPACIFIC PALISADES, Calif. --Phil Mickelson finally won at Riviera Country Club on Sunday, but it certainly was not easy.
Trailing by a stroke with the back nine to go, Mickelson took advantage of several mistakes by Jeff Quinney to post a two-shot victory at the Northern Trust Open.
Mickelson shot a 1-under 70 and finished at 12-under 272.
It was Mickelson's 33rd PGA TOUR victory, but his first at Riviera. He played in the event 10 times, although once at Valencia Country Club, and once at the 1995 PGA Championship. When you're as good as Mickelson, there aren't many venues where success eludes you.
'I've wanted to win this tournament for a long time,' acknowledged the three-time major winner. 'It is pretty cool. Riviera is such a great golf course.'
Quinney had the longest active streak on TOUR without a three-putt, but snapped it en route to a bogey at 13.
Then he three-putted the 14th for a bogey.
Quinney bogeyed 15 and 17 as well to give Mickelson a commanding edge on the 18th tee. Quinney finished strong with a birdie at 18. He posted an even-par 71 to come in at minus-10.
Mickelson began the final round with a one-shot lead, but extended quickly thanks to a 12-foot birdie putt at No. 1. Quinney gave him one at the third with a bogey and Mickelson amassed a three-shot lead.
He would need all of it.
At the par-3 sixth, Quinney converted a 4-foot birdie putt to cut the margin to two. The eighth hole became crucial when Quinney sank a 16-footer for birdie and Mickelson missed his birdie effort from half that distance.
Mickelson now owned a one-shot lead and the par-4 ninth changed that. He drove into the rough and could not save par. Quinney made an 11-foot birdie putt at nine to move one shot clear of his fellow Arizona State Sun Devil alum.
Mickelson answered shortly after he fell behind. He rolled in a 7-foot birdie putt at 10 and both players birdied the par-5 11th. Mickelson had a tap-in, while Quinney made a 21-footer to stay tied.
Quinney hit his approach to 45 feet at the par-4 13th and might blame CBS for part of his problems. He had the longest active streak of no three-putts on the PGA Tour.
Until CBS put up the graphic.
Quinney recorded his first three-putt in 215 holes and the bogey dropped him one behind Mickelson. Quinney could not start a streak right away. He three-putted the 14th from 36 feet and Mickelson saved par from 8 feet to stay two clear.
Both players bogeyed 15 and neither converted makeable birdie chances at 16. Quinney missed a short par putt at the par-5 17th, essentially handing the title to Mickelson.
'It was a tough fight today because Jeff played so well,' said Mickelson. 'He gave a couple back coming in the end, but he played very well throughout the day.'
For Quinney, he will have to try again for PGA TOUR win No. 1, but summed up the differences between himself and Mickelson.
'The advantage Phil has is the extra length,' said Quinney. 'That's the advantage he has over me. It puts that much more pressure on my wedge game and short to keep up with his power.'
Padraig Harrington and Luke Donald both shot rounds of 3-under 68 on Sunday to share third place at minus-7.
Ryuji Imada (68) and Scott Verplank (70) tied for fifth place at 6-under 278.
K.J. Choi (70), J.B. Holmes (70), Robert Allenby (68) and Stuart Appleby (71) shared seventh at 5-under-par 279.
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    Hammer in position (again) to co-medal at U.S. Am

    By Ryan LavnerAugust 14, 2018, 10:37 pm

    PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. – Cole Hammer is in position to go for a rare sweep in this summer’s biggest events.

    Two weeks ago, Hammer, an incoming freshman at Texas, was the co-medalist at the Western Amateur and went on to take the match-play portion, as well.

    Here at the U.S. Amateur, Hammer shot rounds of 69-68 and was once again in position to earn co-medalist honors. At 6-under 137, he was tied with 19-year-old Daniel Hillier of New Zealand.

    “It would mean a lot, especially after being medalist at the Western Am,” Hammer said afterward. “It’s pretty special.”

    No stroke-play medalist has prevailed in the 64-man match-play bracket since Ryan Moore in 2004. Before that, Tiger Woods (1996) was the most recent medalist champion.  

    Match scoring from U.S. Amateur

    U.S. Amateur: Articles, photos and videos

    On the strength of his Western Am title, Hammer, 18, has soared to No. 18 in the World Amateur Golf Ranking. He credited his work with swing coach Cameron McCormick and mental coach Bob Rotella.

    “Just really started controlling my iron shots really well,” said Hammer, who has worked with McCormick since 2015, when he qualified for the U.S. Open at Chambers Bay as a 15-year-old.

    “Distance control with my wedges and all my iron shots, playing different shots, has become really a strength in my game. I’ve really turned the putter on this year, and I’m seeing the lines and matching the line with the speed really well. I think that’s been the key to my summer.”

    A two-time New Zealand Amateur champion, Hillier is ranked 27th in the world. He said that, entering the tournament, he would have been pleased just to make it to match play.

    “But to come out on top, it’s amazing,” Hillier said. “Cole is a really good golfer and has been playing well lately. So, yeah, I’m in good company.”

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    Tee times, TV schedule, stats for Wyndham Championship

    By Golf Channel DigitalAugust 14, 2018, 9:55 pm

    It's the last tournament of the PGA Tour's regular season as the top 125 in the FedExCup points list advance to next week's playoff event. Here's the key info for the Wyndham Championship. (Click here for tee times)

    How to watch:

    Thursday, Rd. 1: Golf Channel, 3-6PM ET; live stream: https://www.golfchannel.com/pgastream

    Friday, Rd. 2: Golf Channel, 3-6PM ET; live stream: https://www.golfchannel.com/pgastream

    Saturday, Rd. 3: Golf Channel, 1-2:45PM ET; live stream: https://www.golfchannel.com/pgastream; CBS, 3-6 p.m.

    Sunday, Rd. 4: Golf Channel, 1-2:45PM ET; live stream: https://www.golfchannel.com/pgastream; CBS, 3-6 p.m.

    Purse: $6 million

    Course: Sedgefield Country Club (par 70, 7,127 yards)

    Defending champion: Henrik Stenson. Last year he defeated Ollie Schniederjans by one stroke to earn his sixth career PGA Tour win.

    Notables in the field

    Henrik Stenson at the 2018 Arnold Palmer Invitational.

    Henrik Stenson

    • Missed the cut last week at the PGA Championship

    • Six top-10 finishes this year, including T-5 at the Masters and T-6 at the U.S. Open

    Sergio Garcia

    • Eight missed cuts in last 10 PGA Tour starts

    • Currently 131 in FedExCup standings (33 points back of 125th)

    Webb Simpson

    • Five top-10 finishes in this event since 2010 (won in 2011)

    • 56 under par in last five years in this event (best of any player in that span)

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    Faldo: Woods told fellow Masters champ 'I'm done' in '17

    By Will GrayAugust 14, 2018, 7:42 pm

    Fresh off his runner-up finish at the PGA Championship, it's easy to get caught up in the recent success and ebullient optimism surrounding Tiger Woods. But it was not that long ago that Woods even hitting another competitive shot was very much in doubt.

    Six-time major champ Sir Nick Faldo shed light on those darker times during a recent appearance on the Dan Patrick Show when he relayed a story from the 2017 Masters champions' dinner. The annual meal is one of golf's most exclusive fraternities, as only the chairman of Augusta National Golf Club is allowed to dine with the men who have each donned a green jacket.

    Last spring Woods had not yet undergone spinal fusion surgery, and Faldo explained that Woods at one point turned to an unnamed Masters champ and grimly assessed his future playing chances.

    Wyndham Championship: Articles, photos and videos

    "I know he whispered to another Masters champion, two Masters dinners ago, 'I'm done. I won't play golf again,'" Faldo said. "He said, 'I'm done. I'm done, my back is done.' He was in agony. He was in pain. His leg, the pain down his legs, there was nothing enjoyable. He couldn't move. If you watched footage of him, he couldn't even get in and out of the golf cart at the (2016) Ryder Cup when he was a vice captain."

    But Woods opted for fusion surgery a few weeks later, and after a lengthy rehab process he returned to competition in December. His 2018 campaign has been nothing short of remarkable, with a pair of runner-up finishes to go along with a T-6 result at The Open when he held the outright lead on the back nine on Sunday.

    After apparently even counting himself out, Woods is back up to 26th in the latest world rankings and appears in line to be added as a captain's pick for the Ryder Cup next month.

    "What he's been able to do is unbelievable," Faldo said. "To turn this aruond, to get this spine fusion, it's completely taken away the pain. To have this mobility is absolutely amazing. Great on him, and great for golf."

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    McDowell needs Wyndham result to maintain status

    By Will GrayAugust 14, 2018, 5:56 pm

    For the first time in nearly three years, Graeme McDowell heads into an event with his PGA Tour status hanging in the balance.

    The Ulsterman joined the Tour in 2006, and he has had nearly uninterrupted status since winning the 2010 U.S. Open. But McDowell's two-season exemption for winning the 2015 OHL Classic at Mayakoba only extends through this week, where he will start the Wyndham Championship at No. 143 in the season-long points race.

    McDowell tied for fifth at Sedgefield Country Club in 2016, and he will likely need a similar result to crack the top 125 in the standings and retain his fully exempt status for the 2019 season. While he finished T-10 in Las Vegas in November, that remains his lone top-10 finish of the Tour season. The veteran's best results this year have come in Europe, where he tied for fifth at the Italian Open and finished T-12 at the BMW PGA Championship.

    Wyndham Championship: Articles, photos and videos

    "I'm trying not to put too much pressure on myself. I feel like it's not a do-or-die scenario for me," McDowell told reporters earlier this month at the Barracuda Championship. "I feel if I was 25 years old without a European Tour card to fall back on, it would be a do-or-die scenario. Certainly trying to put the pressure off, if I don't get myself into the top 125 it's not the end of the world for me. I still feel like I can play a great schedule next season."

    By finishing Nos. 126-150 in points after this week, McDowell would retain conditional status that would likely ensure him at least 12-15 starts next season. He would also still have privileges as a past tournament champion.

    But he's not the only winner from the 2015-16 season whose two-year exemption is on the verge of running out. Fabian Gomez (160th), Peter Malnati (164th) and Billy Hurley III (202nd) all need big results in Greensboro to keep their cards, while Shane Lowry, David Lingmerth and Matt Every all earned three-year exemptions for victories in 2015 but currently sit Nos. 139, 140 and 184 in points, respectively.

    Last year four players moved into the top 125 thanks to strong play at Wyndham, with the biggest jump coming from Rory Sabbatini, who went from No. 148 to No. 122 after tying for fourth place.