Ogilvie Leads Mickelson at Bob Hope

By Sports NetworkJanuary 27, 2005, 5:00 pm
2005 Bob Hope Chrysler ClassicLA QUINTA, Calif. -- Joe Ogilvie posted a 9-under 63 at Bermuda Dunes Country Club Thursday to take the second-round lead of the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic. He stands at 17-under-par 127 and is three clear of defending champion Phil Mickelson and Fredrik Jacobson.
Mickelson, who also won this event in 2002, shot an 8-under 64 at La Quinta Country Club on Thursday, while Jacobson fired a 10-under 62 at Bermuda Dunes. The duo is knotted at 14-under-par 130.
The format for this five-day tournament is a pro-am as one professional plays with three amateurs. They split the action over four courses (the Palmer Private Course at PGA West, Bermuda Dunes Country Club, Tamarisk Country Club and La Quinta Country Club) throughout the first four rounds, then play the Palmer Course on Sunday.
Robert Damron, one of five co-leaders after Wednesday's first round, carded a 5-under 67 at La Quinta and is tied for fourth place at 13-under-par 131. Fred Couples shot a 66 at La Quinta, Billy Mayfair and Peter Lonard each posted 64s at Bermuda Dunes and Jason Allred carded a 65 at Tamarisk to join Damron four shots out of the lead.
Ogilvie, who posted two top-3 finishes in the 2004, hit a pair of poor shots on the first hole, a par-5, but sank a 15-footer for birdie. He lipped out three birdie putts in his next four holes, but drained a 12-footer for birdie at six.
His birdie putt at was a 'vicious lip out,' but the four-time winner on the Nationwide Tour bounced back. Ogilvie knocked it inside 2 feet to set up birdie at eight, then even closer at nine to make the turn at 4-under-par 32.
Ogilvie continued the fine streak around the turn. His third birdie in a row was also a tap-in at the 10th, then Ogilvie ran home an 18-foot birdie putt at 11 for his fourth in a row.
At the par-5 13th, Ogilvie converted a 4-foot birdie putt to reach 15 under par for the tournament. He got to minus-16 with a 3-foot birdie putt at 16, but found his first trouble of the round at the par-3 17th.
Ogilvie missed the green and hit a bad chip. He left with bogey, but closed his round in style. Ogilvie had 220 yards to the pin at 18 and elected to hit a 5-wood. His ball stopped 5 feet from the hole and he rolled in the eagle putt to miss the 36-hole tournament record by a shot.
'I played well, hit it close, and made the right putts, which you have to do when you shoot 63,' said Ogilvie, who tied for second at the 2004 event in New Orleans. 'It's a place that you can go low, and hopefully it can continue.'
Ogilvie held a piece of the 36-hole lead at the 2001 Greater Hartford Open, but he knows this week is a completely different deal. Players must go low in this five-round tournament, and Ogilvie is ready for the challenge.
'When you have the lead here, it's kind of a false lead,' admitted Ogilvie. 'You literally saw Duval's 59. Unless you're up by 18, which is almost impossible, no lead is safe here.'
Mickelson, who defeated Skip Kendall in a playoff last year, tallied three birdies on his opening nine. He made back-to-back birdies at 10 and 11, then collected his sixth birdie of the round at the par-five 13th.
The reigning Masters champion used two birdies in a row from the 15th to get into a share of second place.
'I had a great time,' said Mickelson, who made his 2005 season debut last week at the Buick Invitational. 'I won't know how I stand in the tournament until after Saturday. I know the scores will be low. I'm going to need to play extremely well to keep myself in contention.'
Jacobson flew out of the gate on Thursday with four consecutive birdies from his second hole, the 11th at Bermuda Dunes. He added birdies at 16 and 18 to make the turn at 6-under 30.
Jacobson birdied one and two, then closed with birdies at eight and nine to post his lowest round on the PGA Tour, besting the 64 he shot three times last year.
'I just played really solid,' said Jacobson. 'I had a good stretch of birdies and then I went dry for a couple of holes, but I finished strong. I gave myself a lot of chances.'
Joe Durant, who established a new PGA Tour record in relation to par at 36-under when he won here in 2001, carded a 6-under 66 at La Quinta. He is tied for eighth with Tim Herron, who shot a 64 at the Palmer Course, and first-round co-leader Ted Purdy, who posted a 68 at La Quinta. The trio is knotted at minus-12.
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    Kerr blows big lead, heads into Kia Sunday one back

    By Associated PressMarch 25, 2018, 1:55 am

    CARLSBAD, Calif. - Cristie Kerr blew a five-stroke lead Saturday in the Kia Classic to set up a final-round showdown at Aviara Golf Club.

    A day after shooting an 8-under 64 to open the big lead, Kerr had a 75 to drop a stroke behind playing partner Lizette Salas, Eun-Hee Ji and In-Kyung Kim. Kerr was tied with Caroline Hedwall, Wei-Ling Hsu and Cindy LaCrosse, and four players were another shot back.

    The 40-year-old Kerr had a double bogey on the par-4 15th after snap-hooking a drive into the trees. The 2015 winner at Aviara, she also had two bogeys and two birdies.

    Ji had a 67 to match Salas (69) and Kim (69) at 11-under 205. Salas had a chance to pull away, but missed birdie putts of 1 1/2 feet on the short par-4 16th and 2 1/2 feet on the par-5 17th.

    Anna Nordqvist had a 66 to top the group at 9 under.

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    Match Play Final Four set to bring the excitement

    By Rex HoggardMarch 24, 2018, 11:55 pm

    AUSTIN, Texas – Sunday’s Final Four at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play will include a pair of Georgia Bulldogs, a two-and-done phenom from Alabama and a Swede from Stockholm via Stillwater, that would be Oklahoma.

    Just like that other tournament, right?

    Actually, for all the volatility in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament, it’s not even in the same league as this year’s Match Play, where just a single player who began the week seeded inside the top 10 is still playing.

    But what the event may lack in star power it’s certainly made up for with stellar performances, starting with Justin Thomas who is the PGA Tour’s most avid Alabama fan and the tournament’s second-seeded player.

    After not losing a match in three days of pool play, Thomas again cruised through his morning Round-of-16 bout with Si Woo Kim, 6 and 5; but found himself in an unfamiliar position early in his quarterfinal match against Kyle Stanley.

    Having not trailed during any point in his matches this week, Thomas bogeyed the second hole to fall behind.

    “I was hoping to never trail this whole week. I thought that was unbelievable that [2017 champion Dustin Johnson] did it last year,” Thomas said. “I'm going out there this afternoon, and I was like, ‘Man, I have got a chance of doing this, too.’ Then I missed a 3-footer on 2 and shot that out the window.”

    The world’s second-ranked player was nearly perfect the rest of the way, regaining the lead with three birdies in four holes starting at No. 5 and closing Stanley out with a bogey-free finish.

    WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play: Full bracket | Scoring | Group standings

    WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play: Articles, photos and videos

    It’s all part of an impressive turnaround for Thomas, who had been slowed in recent weeks by dental surgery followed by a bout with the flu, which nearly prompted him to miss the Match Play.

    “I had a pretty serious conversation with my dad on Monday if I was going to play,” said Thomas, who can unseat Johnson atop the Official World Golf Ranking if he advances to the championship match. “I never want to play in a tournament, first off if it's going to hurt my health. If I was sick or really sick, me trying to play this week wasn't going to do me any good.”

    His improved health has dovetailed with his increasingly better play at Austin Country Club and he’s now two matches away from winning his first World Golf Championship.

    Like the NCAA tournament, however, being one of the last four standing only means more work, and Thomas will have plenty to keep him busy when he sets out early Sunday in a semifinal match against Bubba Watson.

    Although Watson hasn’t been as dominant as Thomas, his ability to overpower any course, any time, has been evident this week following victories over Brian Harman, 2 and 1, and Kiradech Aphibarnrat, 5 and 3, on his way to the Final Four.

    “When you're hitting an 8-iron and another guy is hitting a 7- or another guy is hitting a 6-iron, obviously that's going to change everything,” said Watson, who played his college golf at Georgia. “It's like LeBron James, when he jumps, he jumps higher than I do, so it's an advantage. When you're hitting the driver good and those guys you're naming, they're known for hitting the driver pretty well, just like Thomas is doing right now, he's been hammering it. Anytime that you're hitting the driver somewhat straight, it's an advantage.”

    But if Bubba is a familiar foe for Thomas, he may want to do a quick Google search to fill in the blanks on one of his potential final opponents.

    While Alex Noren is still a relatively unknown player to many American fans (and that’s certain to change in September at the Ryder Cup), it’s only because they haven’t been paying attention. The Swede, who attended Oklahoma State, has been dominant this week, sweeping the group stage followed by a 5-and-3 victory over Patrick Reed in the Sweet 16 and a 4-and-2 triumph over Cameron Smith in the quarterfinals.

    “I've always liked match play because the outcome is quite direct,” said Noren, who will face Kevin Kisner in the semifinals. “In match play, you've just got to be really focused all the time and anything can happen. And then you have to play good each round. You can't just give up a round and then think you've got three more.”

    But if a JT vs. Noren final would be the perfect Ryder Cup primer, the dream match up for Thomas in the championship tilt might be Kisner.

    Kisner lost a friendly wager to Thomas earlier this year at the Sony Open when Alabama defeated Georgia in the NCAA National Championship football game and he had to wear an Alabama jersey while he played the 17th hole on Thursday.

    Kisner would certainly appreciate the chance at a mulligan. And the way the duo have been rolling in birdie putts this week, it has the potential to be just as entertaining as that other tournament.

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    Up one, Stricker hunting second Champions title

    By Associated PressMarch 24, 2018, 11:48 pm

    BILOXI, Miss. - Steve Stricker moved into position for his second straight PGA Tour Champions victory, shooting a 3-under 69 on Saturday to take a one-stroke lead in the Rapiscan Systems Classic.

    Stricker won the Cologuard Classic three weeks ago in Tucson, Arizona, for his first victory on the 50-and-over tour. He tied for 12th the following week in the PGA Tour's Valspar Championship.

    Full-field scores from the Rapiscan Systems Classic

    Stricker had a 7-under 137 total at Fallen Oak, the Tom Fazio-designed layout with big, speedy greens.

    The 51-year-old Wisconsin player bogeyed Nos. 2-3, rebounded with birdies on Nos. 6-7, birdied the par-4 12th and eagled the par-5 13th. He has six top-three finishes in eight career senior starts.

    First-round leader Joe Durant followed his opening 66 with a 72 to drop into a tie for second with Jeff Sluman (67).

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    Thomas can take world No. 1 with win over Watson

    By Rex HoggardMarch 24, 2018, 11:29 pm

    AUSTIN, Texas – On March 7, Justin Thomas had his wisdom teeth removed, and just when he was recovering from that, he was slowed by a bout with the flu.

    In total, he estimates he lost about seven pounds, and he admitted on Saturday at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play that he wasn’t sure he’d be able to play the event.

    “I had a pretty serious conversation with my dad on Monday if I was going to play,” Thomas said. “I never want to play in a tournament, first off, if it's going to hurt my health. If I was sick or really sick, me trying to play this week wasn't going to do me any good.”

    WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play: Full bracket | Scoring | Group standings

    WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play: Articles, photos and videos

    Thomas went on to explain he was “50/50” whether he’d play the World Golf Championship, but decided to make the start and it’s turned out well for the world’s second-ranked player.

    After going undefeated in pool play, Thomas cruised past Si Woo Kim, 6 and 5, in the round of 16 and secured himself a spot in the semifinals with a 2-and-1 victory over Kyle Stanley in the quarterfinals. If Thomas wins his semifinal match against Bubba Watson on Sunday, he’s assured enough points to overtake Dustin Johnson atop the Official World Golf Ranking.

    “I don't care when it happens; I just hope it happens and it happens for a while,” Thomas said when asked about the possibility of becoming world No. 1. “I don't know what to say because I've never experienced it. I don't know what's going to come with it. But I just hope it happens tomorrow.”