Par Has No Hope in the Desert

By Sports NetworkJanuary 30, 2003, 5:00 pm
LA QUINTA, Calif. -- Jay Haas shot an 11-under 61 on the Palmer Course at PGA West Thursday to take the outright lead at the Bob Hope Classic. Haas' 36-hole total of 16-under-par 128 puts him one shot clear of Harrison Frazar.
 
Pat Perez torched Bermuda Dunes with 10 birdies over his first 11 holes en route to a 61 of his own. Perez was joined by Stephen Ames and Joe Durant at 14-under-par 130.
 
Haas, a veteran of the PGA Tour who captured this event in 1988, shot his career best at the age of 49.
 
'It was a magical day for me,' said Haas. 'I played extremely well. I felt good coming in. I played well last week and felt good yesterday finishing up, and felt like it was going to carry over today.'
 
He started with birdies on each of the first four holes and added another at the par-4 eighth to make the turn at 10-under.
 
Haas two-putted for birdie at the par-5 11th and drained a 35-footer at the par-3 12th to make it two in a row. Haas then hit a sand-wedge inside six feet for a birdie at the 14th.
 
At the par-4 16th, Haas hit a wedge to eight feet for the first of three consecutive birdies to close out his round.
 
'I guess when a golfer plays well, we think we can do that every day,' said Haas. 'We hit a bad shot or something and we can't believe it. I'm not shocked, but I'm certainly very ecstatic and just extremely pleased that I was able to do it.'
 
After 26 years on tour and nine career victories, Haas showed no signs of moving on to other things.
 
'I feel like this is the Major Leagues right here and this is what I want to do for as long as I can do it,' he said. 'I mean, this is one of the thrills of my career today, just to shoot a great round like this in a field like this.'
 
Frazar, who held the lead after three rounds of the Phoenix Open last week, played Indian Wells and picked up his first birdie at the par-4 second. He faltered with a bogey at the fourth but recovered with three straight birdies from the fifth and knocked a 5-wood to 12 feet for eagle at the par-5 eighth.
 
The 31-year-old hit his approach to six feet for birdie at the 10th for the first of three consecutive birdies on the back nine. He birdied the 14th but found trouble with a bogey at the very next hole.
 
At the par-5 18th, Frazar reached the green in two and drained the putt for his second eagle of the day and a round of 62.
 
'The golf courses are relatively easy, but playing out here is like playing in a dome because they are so good, the greens are perfect,' said Frazar. 'Unless the Santa Anas start blowing, guys are going to keep on going low.'
 
Davis Love III had nine birdies and one bogey for a round of 64. Love finished alongside Mike Weir and Rod Pampling at 13-under-par 131.
 
J.L. Lewis, John Huston, Chris DiMarco, Cliff Kresge, Mark Calcavecchia and Scott McCarron were one shot further back at 12-under-par 132.
 
Bob Tway, who shared the opening-round lead with Ames, carded a 2-under 70 to finish five shots off the lead. Tway was joined by Glen Hnatiuk, Justin Leonard, Jeff Brehaut, Doug Barron, Tim Herron and Shaun Micheel.
 
Defending champion Phil Mickelson posted a 4-under 68 to finish in a group at 6-under-par 138.
 
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    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.

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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. 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.

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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.