Past Tops Present at LPGA Championship

By Sports NetworkJune 7, 2002, 4:00 pm
WILMINGTON, Del. -- Beth Daniel, a 32-time winner on the LPGA Tour, posted a 1-under 70 Friday to lead the LPGA Championship. Daniel's 36-hole total of 5-under-par 137 is good for a two-shot lead over defending champion Karrie Webb heading into the weekend.
Se Ri Pak carded a 1-under 70 to move into a share of third. She was joined by Carin Koch at 1-under-par 141.
A total of 72 golfers returned to DuPont Country Club Friday morning to complete the opening round after storms forced the suspension of play Thursday.
Daniel was already in the clubhouse Thursday after a round of 4-under 67. She trailed Karrie Webb, who was at 5-under through 15 holes before play was called.
Webb, who became the youngest player to complete the career Grand Slam with her victory here last year, resumed her round and double-bogeyed the par-3 17th en route an opening-round 3-under 68.
'Obviously, I had a lot of momentum going yesterday afternoon, and I probably would have finished my round off a little better than I did this morning,' said Webb.
The 27-year-old began her second round almost immediately and faltered out of the gates with a bogey at the par-4 10th. She recovered with a birdie at the 13th and made it two in a row after she landed her second shot within 12 feet of the cup at No. 14.
However, Webb had a shaky inward nine with bogeys at the second and seventh holes. The Australian salvaged what she could with a 20-foot birdie at the eighth for a round of even-par 71.
'It took a long time before I could trust that the greens were a little bit softer and that the fairways were softer, so the course played extremely long,' said Webb, who stands at 3-under-par 139.
Daniel, who took to the course with a one-shot lead over Webb, also played the back nine first and faired much better initially. At the par-3 13th, Daniel knocked a four-iron three feet from the hole. She converted the short birdie putt to take a two-shot lead.
'No one in that swing that went off this morning really did anything, so I knew the course was probably playing pretty tough or just as tough, and as it turned out, it was,' said Daniel.
The 45-year-old soon found some trouble of her own. At the very next hole, Daniel landed short of the green and three-putted for bogey. She two-putted for bogey at the 15th to fall back into a tie with Webb.
Daniel persisted and regained the lead with a 10-foot birdie putt at the par-3 fifth to return to 4-under.
She added to her advantage at the very last hole after she dropped a sand wedge six feet from the jar. Daniel ran home the putt to finish with a two-shot cushion at the same event in which she earned her first and only major title.
'I was real pleased to end up shooting 1-under because I really didn't hit my irons very well,' said Daniel, who won this event in 1990. 'So as a result, I missed a lot of greens short, but that's not such a bad thing on this golf course. I was able to get it up and down most of the time.'
Pak, who won this event in 1998, collected three birdies and two bogeys to finish four shots off the pace. The 24-year-old also won the U.S. Women's Open in 1998 and captured the Women's British Open in 2001.
Akiko Fukushima and Kim Saiki each shot rounds of 71 to finish tied for fifth at even-par 142.
Michele Redman (69), Rachel Teske (71), Michelle McGann (72), Barb Mucha (73) and Catriona Matthew (73) were knotted at 1-over-par 143.
Annika Sorenstam, who is trying to become the first woman since Pat Bradley in 1986 to win the first two majors of a season, finds herself nine shots off the pace after she failed to make a single birdie.
The 31-year-old, who successfully defended her title at the Nabisco Championship in March, struggled to a 5-over 76 to come in at 4-over-par 146.
The 36-hole cut fell at 8-over-par 150 with 71 players qualifying for the weekend. Among those who didn't make the grade was two-time LPGA Championship winner Laura Davies.
Full-field scores from the McDonald's LPGA Championship
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More sun, dry conditions expected early at Open

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 18, 2018, 9:14 am

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – An atypically dry Scottish summer is expected to continue this week at The Open.

There’s a possibility of a few showers Thursday and Friday, but otherwise conditions are expected to remain dry with temperatures around 70 degrees and winds in the 15-20 mph range.

The forecast for the opening round at Carnoustie is sunshine with clouds developing later in the day. The high is expected to be around 70 degrees, with winds increasing throughout the day, maxing out at 18 mph.

There’s a chance of rain overnight Thursday and into Friday morning, but it’s not expected to slow down the fiery conditions.

It’s been one of the driest summers in recent memory, leading to fairways that are baked out and fescue rough that is lighter and thinner than in previous years.

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Lincicome grouped with two rookies in Barbasol

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 17, 2018, 9:54 pm

Brittany Lincicome will tee it up with a pair of rookies when she makes her first start in a PGA Tour event Thursday at the Barbasol Championship at Keene Trace Golf Club in Nicholasville, Ky.

Lincicome, an eight-time LPGA winner, is scheduled to go off the 10th tee at 9:59 a.m. ET in the first round with Sam Ryder, 28, and Conrad Shindler, 29. They’re off the first tee Friday at 2:59 p.m. ET

Lincicome will become just the sixth woman to play in a PGA Tour event, joining Babe Zaharias, Shirley Spork, Annika Sorenstam, Suzy Whaley and Michelle Wie.

“The first three or four holes, I’ll be a nervous wreck, for sure,” Linicome said.



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Lincicome thrilled by reception from male pros

By Randall MellJuly 17, 2018, 8:31 pm

Brittany Lincicome wondered how PGA Tour pros would greet her when she arrived to play the Barbasol Championship this week.

She wondered if there would be resentment.

She also wondered how fans at Keene Trace Golf Club in Nicholasville, Ky., would receive her, and if a social media mob would take up pitchforks.

“I can’t stop smiling,” Lincicome said Tuesday after her first practice round upon arriving. “Everyone has been coming up to me and wishing me luck. That means a lot.”

PGA Tour pro Martin Piller, husband of LPGA pro Gerina Piller, welcomed her immediately.

Other pros sought her out on the practice putting green.

She said she was also welcomed joining pros at a table in player dining.

Fans have been stopping her for autographs.

“It has been an awesome reception,” said Dewald Gouws, her husband, a former long-drive competitor. “I think it’s put her much more at ease, seeing the reception she is getting. There’s a lot of mutual respect.”

Lincicome, 32, wasn’t sure if she would be playing a practice round alone Tuesday morning, but when she made her way to the first tee, Domenico Geminiani was there, just about to go off.

He waved Lincicome over.

“He said, `Hey, Brittany, do you want to join me?’” Gouws said. “Come to find out, Dom’s a pretty cool guy.”

Geminiani made it into the field as a Monday qualifier.

“The two of us were both trying to figure things out together,” Lincicome said.

Keene Trace will play to 7,328 yards on the scorecard. That’s more than 800 yards longer than Highland Meadows, where Lincicome finished second at the LPGA’s Marathon Classic last weekend. Keene Trace was playing even longer than its listed yardage Tuesday, with recent rains softening it.

Nicknamed “Bam Bam,” Lincicome is one of the longest hitters in the women’s game. Her 269.5 yard average drive is 10th in the LPGA ranks. It would likely be dead last on the PGA Tour, where Brian Stuard (278.2) is the last player on the stats list at No. 201.

“I think if I keep it in the fairway, I’ll be all right,” Lincicome said.

Lincicome is an eight-time LPGA winner, with two major championships among those titles. She is just the sixth woman to compete in a PGA Tour event, the first in a decade, since Michelle Wie played the Reno-Tahoe Open, the last of her eight starts against the men.

Lincicome will join Babe Zaharias, Shirley Spork, Annika Sorenstam, Suzy Whaley and Wie in the elite ranks.

Zaharias, by the way, is the only woman to make a 36-hole cut in PGA Tour history, making it at the 1945 L.A. Open before missing a 54-hole cut on the weekend.

What are Lincicome’s expectations?

She would love to make the cut, but . . .

“Just going to roll with it and see what happens,” she said. “This is once in a lifetime, probably a one-and-done opportunity. I’m just going to enjoy it.”

Lincicome grew up playing for the boys’ golf team at Seminole High on the west coast of Florida. She won a couple city championships.

“I always thought it would be cool to compete against the guys on the PGA Tour,” Lincicome said. “I tend to play more with the guys than women at home. I never would have gone out and told my agent, `Let’s go try to play in a PGA Tour event,’ but when Tom Murray called with this opportunity, I was really blown away and excited by it. I never in a million years thought I would have this opportunity.”

Tom Murray, the president of Perio, the parent company of Barbasol and Pure Silk, invited Lincicome to accept one of the tournament’s sponsor exemptions. Lincicome represents Pure Silk.

Lincicome said her desire to play a PGA Tour event is all about satisfying her curiosity, wanting to know how she would stack up at this level. She also wants to see if the experience can help take her to the next level in the women’s game.

As a girl growing up, she played Little League with the boys, instead of softball with the girls. She said playing the boys in golf at Seminole High helped her get where she is today.

“The guys were better, and it pushed me to want to be better,” Lincicome said. “I think playing with the guys [on the PGA Tour], I will learn something to take to LPGA events, and it will help my game, for sure.”

Lincicome has been pleased that her fellow LPGA pros are so supportive. LPGA winner Kris Tamulis is flying into Kentucky as moral support. Other LPGA pros may also be coming in to support her.

The warm fan reception Lincicome is already getting at Keene Trace matters, too.

“She’s already picked up some new fans this week, and hopefully she will pick up some more,” Gouws said. “I don’t think she’s putting too much expectation on herself. I think she really does just want to have fun.”

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Stunner: Inbee Park steps aside for Int. Crown

By Randall MellJuly 17, 2018, 4:00 pm

There was a big surprise this week when the LPGA announced the finalized lineups for the UL International Crown.

Rolex world No. 1 Inbee Park won’t be teeing it up for the host South Koreans Oct. 4-7 in Incheon.

She has withdrawn, saying she wanted another Korean to be able to experience the thrill of representing her country.

It’s a stunner given the importance the LPGA has placed on taking the UL International Crown to South Korea and its golf-crazy allegiance to the women’s game in the Crown’s first staging outside the United States.

Two-time major champion In Gee Chun will replace Park.

"It was my pleasure and honor to participate in the first UL International Crown in 2014 and at the 2016 Olympics, and I cannot describe in one word how amazing the atmosphere was to compete as a representative of my country,” Park said. “There are so many gifted and talented players in Korea, and I thought it would be great if one of the other players was given the chance to experience the 2018 UL International Crown.”

Chun, another immensely popular player in South Korea, was the third alternate, so to speak, with the world rankings used to field teams. Hye Jin Choi and Jin Young Ko were higher ranked than Chun but passed because of commitments made to competing in a Korean LPGA major that week. The other South Koreans who previously qualified are So Yeon Ryu, Sung Hyun Park and I.K. Kim.