Pair Share Lead Tiger Plays On

By Sports NetworkMarch 26, 2004, 5:00 pm
PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. -- Jerry Kelly shot a 6-under 66 on Friday to join Kevin Sutherland in the lead after two rounds of The Players Championship. The duo finished 36 holes at 9-under-par 135, two shots clear of Ernie Els and overnight leader Adam Scott.
 
Tiger Woods pulled it together after an opening-round 75 to survive the cut for the 120th straight tournament. Woods, who had not shot an under-par round since last Thursday at Bay Hill, buckled down on Friday with a 69 at the TPC at Sawgrass.
 
'I play the same way whether I'm shooting 82 or a 62. I play the same way,' said Woods, who finished at even-par 144. 'It's not like I'm trying any harder. I'm trying just the same.'
 
He started on the back side of the Stadium Course and redeemed himself early with a remarkable second shot at the par-5 11th that stopped within 10 feet of the cup.
 
Woods drained the eagle putt and dropped his approach inside nine feet for a birdie at the very next hole.
 
The 28-year-old squandered a shot with a bogey at the 18th but almost chipped in for an eagle at the par-5 second.
 
Woods tapped in for birdie and parred his way in to make the weekend once again.
 
'I really felt that I scored today,' said Woods. 'I didn't hit the ball as well as I probably needed to, but I scored and that's the name of the game.'
 
Sutherland, who missed the cut in three of five previous appearances at this event, picked up his first birdie of the day at the second and hit his second shot to seven feet for a birdie at the fifth to reach 8 under.
 
The 39-year-old added a birdie at the 10th before finding trouble with a bogey at the 14th. Sutherland was scrambling again at the par-4 15th but chipped in from a bunker for a birdie en route to a round of 69.
 
'I wasn't coming here expecting to have the lead after two rounds, but I did come here expecting to play well,' said Sutherland. 'The first two rounds I pretty much made just about everything I've looked at. I've just got to keep that going.'
 
Kelly, who held the lead heading into the final round of the 2001 Players Championship, played the back nine first and collected four birdies before the turn to make his move up the leaderboard.
 
He added a birdie at the second and ran home a long birdie putt at the fifth to match Sutherland at minus-9.
 
'It was just a par-saving day,' said Kelly, who has yet to record a bogey this week. 'And that's the kind of mentality you have coming to the Players.'
 
Scott also started on the 10th and collected six consecutive pars before stumbling to a bogey at the 16th.
 
The young Australian countered with a birdie at the imposing par-3 17th and reached 8 under with a birdie at the par-3 third after his tee shot stopped within three feet of the cup.
 
Scott gave that shot back immediately with a bogey at the fourth to finish two shots off the pace.
 
'If I'm within two of the lead again tomorrow, I'll be pretty happy with that, giving myself a chance for Sunday,' said Scott, who carded a 72. 'But hopefully I go out and play really well and get in the lead and put myself in perfect shape come Sunday.'
 
Padraig Harrington, who held the 36-hole lead at this event last year, carded a 70 to join Vijay Singh in a tie for fifth at 6-under-par 138.
 
Phil Mickelson posted a 69 to finish one shot further back at 5-under-par 139 along with Jeff Sluman, Duffy Waldorf and Bob Burns.
 
Defending champion Davis Love III made a push to qualify for the weekend with a 68 on Friday to finish in a tie for 54th at 1-over-par 145.
 
The 36-hole cut fell at 2-over-par 146 with 83 players making the grade. Among those who fell short were Stuart Appleby, David Toms and Mike Weir.
 
Related links:
  • Leaderboard - The Players Championship

  • Photo Gallery - The Players Championship

  • Full Coverage - The Players Championship
  • Getty Images

    Weather extends Barbasol to Monday finish

    By Associated PressJuly 23, 2018, 12:25 am

    NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - A thunderstorm has suspended the fourth round of the PGA Tour's Barbasol Championship until Monday morning.

    Sunday's third stoppage of play at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came with the four leaders - Hunter Mahan, Robert Streb, Tom Lovelady and Troy Merritt at 18 under par - and four other contenders waiting to begin the round.

    The tournament will resume at 7:30 a.m. on Monday. Lightning caused one delay, and play was stopped earlier in the afternoon to clear water that accumulated on the course following a morning of steady and sometimes-heavy rain.

    Inclement weather has plagued the tournament throughout the weekend. The second round was completed Saturday morning after being suspended by thunderstorms late Friday afternoon.

    The resumption will mark the PGA Tour's second Monday finish this season. Jason Day won the Farmers Insurance Open in January after darkness delayed the sixth playoff hole, and he needed just 13 minutes to claim the victory.

    Getty Images

    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. It also gave Colin Hauck the story of a lifetime.

    Hauck was among 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 as he continued 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.

    Getty Images

    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.

    Getty Images

    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.


    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


    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.