Scotlands Laird Birdies 72nd for Win

By Sports NetworkApril 22, 2007, 4:00 pm
2006 Athens Regional ClassicBOGART, Ga. -- Martin Laird birdied the 72nd hole on Sunday to collect his first Nationwide Tour victory at the Athens Regional Foundation Classic.
 
He posted a 2-under 70 and won with a score of 16-under-par 272.
 
Justin Bolli and Jeremy Anderson both fired rounds of 6-under 66 on Sunday and watched as Laird birdied 18 to cost them a chance at a playoff. They completed four rounds at 15-under-par 273.
 
Michael Letzig carded a 6-under 66 to take fourth at minus-14, while Robert Damron moved up 21 spots in the final round thanks to an 8-under 64. He came in fifth place at 13-under-par 275.
 
Laird did not get off to a great start Sunday as he bogeyed third hole. He atoned for the error with birdies at four and six and another birdie at 10 gave him a two-shot lead.
 
On the second nine, Laird collected back-to-back birdies at 13 and 14 to pad his advantage. Trouble loomed and it was not just his own undoing, but the great back-nine play from his closest competitors.
 
Bolli was 2 under on the front, but recorded four birdies in his first seven holes of the back nine.
 
Anderson was even through 10 holes with one birdie and one bogey, but he amassed six birdies in his final eight holes to suddenly become a clubhouse leader at minus-15.
 
Laird was still playing and things came undone quickly after the two birdies in a row. He bogeyed 15 and 16 to tie him for the lead with Bolli and Anderson.
 
But Laird still had the par-5 closing hole at Jennings Mill Country Club. He made birdie to secure his first victory on the Nationwide Tour.
 
Hunter Haas and David Hearn both posted rounds of 5-under 67 on Sunday and shared sixth with Nicholas Thompson, who trailed by one at the start of the round, but only managed an even-par 72 in round four. The trio finished at minus-12.
 
John Riegger shot a 66 and claimed ninth at 11-under-par 277.
 
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    Watch: Dechambeau simulates dew on East Lake range

    By Grill Room TeamSeptember 18, 2018, 11:02 pm

    Bryson DeChambeau has certainly lived up to his nickname of "Mad Scientist" since joining the PGA Tour, using his eccentric style to win four events, including the first two tournaments of this year's FedExCup Playoffs.

    And he's staying on brand at the season-ending Tour Championship, where he enters as the favorite to capture the FedExCup title.

    The 24-year-old was spotted on the East Lake range Tuesday, preparing for potential morning dew on the golf ball this week - by having a member of his team spray each golf ball between practice shots:

    While this type of preparation might come off as a little excessive to the average golfer, it's rather mild for DeChambeau, considering that in the last two weeks alone he has discussed undergoing muscle activation tests and measuring his brain waves.

    DeChambeau goes off with Justin Rose on Thursday at 2 p.m. He could finish as low as T-29 and still have a mathematical chance of winning the season-long FedExCup.

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    Fewer goals but more consistency for Thomas in 2018

    By Rex HoggardSeptember 18, 2018, 9:35 pm

    ATLANTA – After winning last year’s FedExCup, Justin Thomas was asked about his goals for the season and he quickly went to his phone.

    A list of 13 “goals” had been typed in, a rundown that ranged from qualifying for the Tour Championship to finishing in the top 10 in half of the circuit’s statistical categories. Nearly every goal had a “Y” next to it to denote he’d accomplished what he wanted.

    Thomas was asked on Tuesday at East Lake how his goals are shaping up this season.

    “I haven't looked in a while. I really haven't. I'm sure if I had to guess, I'm probably around 50 to 60, 70 percent [have been completed],” he said. “I definitely haven't achieved near as many as I did the previous year. But we still have one week left to knock a big goal off.”


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    Thomas pointed out that although he didn’t add to his major total this season or win as many times as he did last year, he still feels like he’s been more consistent this year.

    He has more top-25 finishes (19) than he did last year (14), missed fewer cuts (two compared to six last season) and has improved in nearly every major statistical category.

    “It's been a really consistent year, and I take a lot of pride in that,” Thomas said. “That's a big goal of mine is to improve every year and get better every year, so if I can continue in this direction, I feel like I can do some pretty great things the rest of my career.”

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    Woods' probation for reckless driving ends one month early

    By Golf Channel DigitalSeptember 18, 2018, 9:00 pm

    Tiger Woods' year-long probation stemming from last year's DUI arrest has been terminated a month early.

    According to Sam Smink of WPTV, Woods, 42, was let off probation early for successfully completing all regular and special conditions of his probation after pleading guilty to reckless driving and entering a diversion program last October.

    Under the conditions of the program, Woods was required to pay a $250 fine and court costs, attend a DUI school and undergo a substance abuse evaluation and treatment program. He was also subject to random drug and alcohol testing under the program.

    The 14-time major champ was arrested on charges of DUI in May of 2017 after he was found unconscious behind the wheel of his parked Mercedes-Benz in Jupiter, Fla.

    Although tests showed Woods was not under the influence of alcohol at the time, he admitted to taking several pain and sleep medications to cope with his fourth back surgery which was performed in April.

    Since his arrest, Woods has returned to competition, rising to 21st in the Official World Golf Ranking after a pain-free campaign in 2018.

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    Players wrapping their heads around FedEx changes

    By Rex HoggardSeptember 18, 2018, 8:01 pm

    ATLANTA – Even players who have known the details of the PGA Tour’s plan to dramatically change the way it crowns a FedExCup champion were still digesting the details on Tuesday at the Tour Championship.

    “I think it’s maybe easier to follow for people at home. Kind of definitely strange and very different to be on 10 under par starting on the first tee,” said Justin Rose, who begins this week’s finale second on the points list.

    Next year when a new strokes-based system will decide the season-long race, Rose would begin his week at East Lake 8 under, two strokes behind front-runner Bryson DeChambeau and eight shots ahead of Nos. 26-30 on the points list.

    Most players said the new format will be an improvement over the current model, which is based on a complicated points structure. That’s not to say the new plan has been given universal support.


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    Under the current format, the 30th-ranked player has a .4 percent chance of winning the cup, while the first player on the points list has a 27 percent chance. Those odds remain virtually identical under next year’s strokes-based format.

    “I’m not saying the 30th guy should have the same shot as the fifth guy, but just make the odds a little bit better. Give them a 5 percent chance,” Billy Horschel said. “The strokes could be distributed differently. Maybe put the leader at 6 under [instead of 10 under] and then you go down to even par. Five or six shots back, over four days, you still have a chance.”

    There will no doubt be a period of adjustment, but after more than three years of planning, most players were pleased with the general elements of the new plan if not all of the details.

    “It's never going to be perfect,” said Justin Thomas, last year’s FedExCup champion and a member of the player advisory council. “No system in any sport is ever going to be perfect, and the Tour has done such a great job of talking to us and trying to get it as good as possible. But it's just hard to understand the fact that you could be starting behind somebody else and still somehow win a golf tournament or an official win.”