Steinhauer Leads Annika Trails by Four

By Sports NetworkAugust 30, 2007, 4:00 pm
State Farm Classic Logo 2007SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- U.S. Solheim Cup player Sherri Steinhauer shot a 5-under 67 in windy conditions Thursday to take a one-stroke lead in the LPGA State Farm Classic, while Annika Sorenstam was four shots back in defense of her last tour title.
 
Steinhauer, the last of the 10 automatic qualifiers for the U.S. team for the Sept. 14-16 matches against Europe in Sweden, had five birdies in her bogey-free round on the Panther Creek Country Club course. Winless since the 2006 Women's British Open, Steinhauer played alongside Solheim Cup teammate Angela Stanford (72).
 
'I think we do consider ourselves teammates out there and we're pulling for each other ... And we were talking about some things with Solheim out there today, and we're just really looking forward to the competition,' said the 44-year-old Steinhauer, making her 20th appearance in the tournament.
 
Sorenstam, the winner last year at the Rail Golf Club, had two birdies and a bogey in a round of 71. On Saturday, Sorenstam announced that she's marrying Mike McGee, her boyfriend of two years. It will be the second marriage for the 36-year-old Swede, who filed for divorce from David Esch in February 2005.
 
'I think I played really well today,' Sorenstam said. 'I hit 16 greens and didn't miss any fairways, so I think I played very, very solid. I had a lot of chances and had a lot of looks out there. If that is any indication of how I'm going to play the next few months I'm happy about it. I'm just going to go out there tomorrow and continue what I'm doing and hopefully it works out.'
 
Last season at Rail, Sorenstam won the last of her 69 LPGA Tour titles, closing with a 10-under 62 to match the lowest final-round score by a tournament winner in tour history. The tournament moved to Panther Creek this year after 31 seasons at Rail.
 
'I thought today was tougher than the practice round and the pro-am,' Sorenstam said. 'The wind picked up and the ball traveled to different places. The greens are getting firmer and the fairway is getting firmer.'
 
Japanese star Ai Miyazato and Marcy Hart opened with 68s.
 
'It was very windy today,' Miyazato said. 'I just tried to make one shot at a time. I had good concentration today, so I feel very satisfied.'
 
Kraft Nabisco champion Morgan Pressel shot a 69. The 19-year-old Pressel closed with a double-bogey 6 on No. 9 after hitting into the water.
 
'It is only Thursday, but those two shots could cost me just as much as two shots on Sunday,' Pressel said. 'I wish it hadn't happened, but it has so I have to go make a few more birdies.'
 
Christina Kim, Kate Golden, Angela Park, Rachel Hetherington, Janice Moodie and Leta Lindley also shot 69s, while Sophie Gustafson and Women's World Match Play winner Seon Hwa Lee topped a large group at 70.
 
Golden, the 2001 winner, said she'll have to rethink her prediction of an 18 under winning score if the wind stay up.
 
'The wind really affects the balls, and as firm as the fairways and around the greens are getting, it will be tough unless you're really firing at the pin. And that is kind of tough to do in the wind,' Golden said.
 
Steinhauer made four long birdie putts -- a 30-footer, 25-footer and two 20-footers -- and hit a 6-iron shot to 3 feet to set up another birdie on the par-5 16th.
 
'It was one of those days where I just kind of got them started on line, and they held their line,' said Steinhauer, whose seven career wins include two majors. 'And that's generally due to, you know, striking it solidly, the putts. And I was doing that today, and not something I've been doing much this year, so it felt really good.'
 
Nancy Lopez, the 50-year-old star making her sixth tour start of the year, shot an 81. She won the tournament in 1980 and 1992.
 
Top-ranked Lorena Ochoa is skipping the tournament after winning three straight events to push her tour-leading total to six.
 
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    Garcia (73), Fleetwood (74) off to slow starts at BMW

    By Associated PressJune 21, 2018, 8:30 pm

    PULHEIM, Germany – Sebastien Gros carded a 4-under 68 in windy conditions to lead by one shot after the opening round of the BMW International Open on Thursday.

    The Frenchman had four birdies to take the lead before the turn, and a six-footer on the 15th hole moved him two ahead. But a bogey on the next hole left the 28-year-old Gros just one ahead of Jorge Campillo, Scott Jamieson, Aaron Rai and Henric Sturehed.

    Sturehed eagled the par-5 No. 13 to take the lead in the morning at the Gut Laerchenhof club.

    Christofer Blomstrand, Nico Geyger, Mark Tullo, Victor Perez, David Howell and Nicolai von Dellingshausen are a further stroke back on 2-under 70.

    Defending champion Andres Romero was among a large group at 1 under, including 2013 winner Ernie Els and three-time European Tour winner Andy Sullivan.

    Romero is bidding to be the first player to retain the title.

    Local favorite and 2008 champion Martin Kaymer shot 72, ahead of Sergio Garcia (73) and Tommy Fleetwood (74).

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    Ryu thriving again after simple advice from Inbee Park

    By Randall MellJune 21, 2018, 7:07 pm

    So Yeon Ryu shared Rolex Player of the Year honors last year.

    She reigned as world No. 1 for almost five months.

    So when she couldn’t keep her momentum going at year’s start, she got frustrated. She wasn’t happy with two top 10s in her first 11 starts.

    “I lost a lot of confidence at the beginning of the year,” Ryu said Thursday as she prepared to lead a strong field as the defending champion in Friday’s start of the Walmart NW Arkansas Championship. “My expectation level was way too high.”

    So she sought the counsel of her pal, world No. 1 Inbee Park, who gave her some plain-spoken advice.


    Full-field scores from the Walmart Arkansas Championship


    “Get over it,” Park told her. “You know what to do. You’ve done it, so it’s not really a big deal. Don’t worry about it. You were No. 1. You’ve achieved a lot of things as a professional golfer. Just don’t be too hard on yourself.”

    Ryu got over it winning the Meijer LPGA Classic last week, the sixth LPGA title of her career, her third in 15 months. She’s feeling good again leading a stellar field this week at Pinnacle Country Club in Rogers, Ark., a strong tune up before next week’s KPMG Women’s PGA Championship, the year’s third major championship.

    World No. 1 Park, No. 2 Ariya Jutanugarn and No. 3 Lexi Thompson are among the top nine players in the world scheduled to compete this week. Twenty-four of the top 30 are in the field.

    “When you come to defend your title, you obviously have a lot of pressure, but after I won last week, now I sort of think, maybe I have a chance to defend my title,” Ryu said. “So I've got total confidence, by last week.”

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    Watch: Spieth, JT hole bunker shots in back-to-back groups

    By Golf Channel DigitalJune 21, 2018, 6:57 pm

    Jordan Spieth has a thing for holing bunker shots at the Travelers Championship, where he made one in a playoff to win last year.

    He did it again in Round 1 at TPC River Highlands, knocking in this shot for eagle at the par-5 sixth to reach 4 under par for the tournament



    In the next group, Justin Thomas did the same thing to reach 1 under. Keep an eye out for the best part of this highlight, when Thomas' caddie Jimmy Johnson tries to hand him his putter.

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    River Highlands a 'breather' for Zach Johnson (63)

    By Will GrayJune 21, 2018, 6:43 pm

    CROMWELL, Conn. – After enduring the pressure-cooker of the U.S. Open, Zach Johnson was more than happy to drift north to the friendly confines of TPC River Highlands.

    Birdies were rare last week at Shinnecock Hills, but they’ll be plentiful all week long at the Travelers Championship. Browned-out and crispy conditions transitioned to lush and verdant, and players can attack flags without fear of turning a possible par into a struggle to avoid triple.

    Johnson did just that in the opening round, carding eight birdies against a single bogey to take the early lead with a 7-under 63.

    “It’s a different kind of breathing. It’s a different kind of exhaling, if you will, but they’re both good,” Johnson said. “You can put some red on the board here. We know that. We’ve seen it. You can go the other way in a hurry if you press it; it can keep going in the other way. So you kind of have to let it happen. This is one of those courses where you have to let it happen.”


    Full-field scores from the Travelers Championship

    Travelers Championship: Articles, photos and videos


    Like many in this week’s field, Johnson took it easy after a grueling major championship, staying away from the course Monday and easing into his prep over the next two days. Those decisions paid off quickly as he rattled off six straight birdies on Nos. 11-16 to take sole possession of the lead.

    While Johnson tied for 12th last week at Shinnecock Hills, that was just his second top-15 finish since the Sony Open in January. But the veteran is no stranger to fast starts at TPC River Highlands, having now opened with 65 or better four times in his last eight appearances dating back to 2011.

    It’s a course where he continues to have success, even if his past consistency hasn’t lived up to expectations.

    “I feel like every time I get here it feels like I should shoot nothing, and it bites me,” Johnson said. “The last couple years I’m like, ‘All right, you can’t have any expectations in that regard. You’ve just got to go out and execute, you know, put the ball in the fairway and you will have opportunities.’”