Thirty-four Players Earn Tour Cards

By Sports NetworkDecember 8, 2003, 5:00 pm
PGA Tour (75x100)WINTER GARDEN, Fla. -- Mathias Gronberg posted a 4-under 68 on Monday to earn medalist honors at the PGA Tour National Qualifying Tournament. Gronberg finished the six-day event at 20-under-par 412 to lead a group of 34 players who earned their PGA Tour cards for 2004.
 
Danny Ellis carded a 1-under 71 to finish alone in second place at 18-under-par 414 while Michael Allen was one shot further back at 17-under-par 415. John Riegger and David Branshaw shared fourth place at 15-under-par 417.
 
The players battled through 108 holes over six days at Orange County National and in the end it was Gronberg who finished as the top dog and will now enjoy his rookie season on the PGA Tour in 2004.
 
Gronberg was one shot behind Ellis to start the day at the Panther Lake course and picked up his first birdie at the par-5 second. He struggled with a bogey at the very next hole but managed to recover with back-to-back birdies starting at the par-5 seventh.
 
The Swede faltered with a bogey at the ninth but put together a strong finish to earn medalist honors.
 
In addition to exempt status on the PGA Tour next year, Gronberg walked away with a $50,000 first place check.
 
Gronberg tallied a birdie at the par-4 13th before picking up another birdie at the par-3 15th. The 33-year-old then made it two in a row with a birdie at the par-4 16th.
 
'There's no guarantee that I will do well next year,' said Gronberg. 'But I feel very good. This is a nice reward. I would have taken any position top-30 and ties before the week came.'
 
Fellow Swede Daniel Chopra finished alone in sixth place at 13-under-par 419. Omar Uresti, Kris Cox, Arjun Atwal, John Maginnes and Wes Short followed at 12-under-par 420.
 
'It's got to be one of the best rounds I've ever played,' said Uresti, who closed with a 64 to vault from a tie for 34th to a share of seventh. 'This one means a whole lot more. It's the first time in a long time I've been able to throw up a really low number in a final round when it meant something.'
 
Tjaart van der Walt, Brian Bateman, Ken Duke and Dan Olsen tied for 12th place at 11-under-par 421 to earn playing privileges on the PGA Tour next year. Kevin Muncrief, Russ Cochran, Todd Hamilton, Brian Kortan and Hunter Mahan were one shot further back and also advanced at 10-under-par 422.
 
Steve Pate will make his return to the PGA Tour. Pate shot a 68 on Monday to join Rich Barcelo, Scott Hend, Kevin Na and Roger Tambellini at 9-under-par 423. Trevor Dodds and Boyd Summerhays followed at 8-under-par 424.
 
Brian Gay, Deane Pappas, Roland Thatcher, Grant Waite, Hirofumi Miyase, Danny Briggs and Jay Delsing finished at 7-under-par 425 to round out the list of those advancing to the PGA Tour in 2004.
 
The next group of 50 or so players earn exempt status on the Nationwide Tour in 2004. That group includes D.J. Trahan, Gavin Coles and Greg Chalmers.
 
Related Links:
  • Leaderboard - PGA Tour Qualifying Tournament
  • Full Coverage - PGA Tour Qualifying Tournament
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    Johnson begins Open week as 12/1 betting favorite

    By Will GrayJuly 16, 2018, 5:15 pm

    Dustin Johnson heads into The Open as the top-ranked player in the world, and he's also an understandable betting favorite as he looks to win a second career major.

    Johnson has not played since the U.S. Open, where he led by four shots at the halfway point and eventually finished third. He has three top-10 finishes in nine Open appearances, notably a T-2 finish at Royal St. George's in 2011.

    Johnson opened as a 12/1 favorite when the Westgate Las Vegas Superbook first published odds for Carnoustie after the U.S. Open, and he remains at that number with the first round just three days away.

    Here's a look at the latest odds on some of the other top contenders, according to the Westgate:

    12/1: Dustin Johnson

    16/1: Rory McIlroy, Rickie Fowler, Justin Rose

    20/1: Jordan Spieth, Justin Thomas, Tommy Fleetwood, Brooks Koepka, Jon Rahm

    25/1: Jason Day, Henrik Stenson, Tiger Woods

    30/1: Sergio Garcia, Francesco Molinari, Paul Casey, Alex Noren, Patrick Reed

    40/1: Hideki Matsuyama, Marc Leishman, Branden Grace, Tyrrell Hatton

    50/1: Phil Mickelson, Ian Poulter, Matthew Fitzpatrick

    60/1: Russell Knox, Louis Oosthuizen, Matt Kuchar, Bryson DeChambeau, Zach Johnson, Tony Finau, Bubba Watson

    80/1: Lee Westwood, Adam Scott, Patrick Cantlay, Rafael Cabrera-Bello, Thomas Pieters, Xander Schauffele

    100/1: Shane Lowry, Webb Simpson, Brandt Snedeker, Ryan Fox, Thorbjorn Olesen

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    Woods needs top-10 at Open to qualify for WGC

    By Will GrayJuly 16, 2018, 4:34 pm

    If Tiger Woods is going to qualify for the final WGC-Bridgestone Invitational at Firestone Country Club, he'll need to do something he hasn't done in five years this week at The Open.

    Woods has won eight times at Firestone, including his most recent PGA Tour victory in 2013, and has openly stated that he would like to qualify for the no-cut event in Akron before it shifts to Memphis next year. But in order to do so, Woods will need to move into the top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking after this week's event at Carnoustie.

    Woods is currently ranked No. 71 in the world, down two spots from last week, and based on projections it means that he'll need to finish no worse than a tie for eighth to have a chance of cracking the top 50. Woods' last top-10 finish at a major came at the 2013 Open at Muirfield, where he tied for sixth.


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    There are actually two OWGR cutoffs for the Bridgestone, July 23 and July 30. That means that Woods could theoretically still add a start at next week's RBC Canadian Open to chase a spot in the top 50, but he has said on multiple occasions that this week will be his last start of the month. The WGC-Bridgestone Invitational will be played Aug. 2-5.

    There wasn't much movement in the world rankings last week, with the top 10 staying the same heading into the season's third major. Dustin Johnson remains world No. 1, followed by Justin Thomas, Justin Rose, Brooks Koepka and Jon Rahm. Defending Open champ Jordan Spieth is ranked sixth, with Rickie Fowler, Rory McIlroy, Jason Day and Tommy Fleetwood rounding out the top 10.

    Despite taking the week off, Sweden's Alex Noren moved up three spots from No. 14 to No. 11, passing Patrick Reed, Bubba Watson and Paul Casey.

    John Deere Classic champ Michael Kim went from No. 473 to No. 215 in the latest rankings, while South African Brandon Stone jumped from 371st to 110th with his win at the Scottish Open.

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    Spieth takes familiar break ahead of Open defense

    By Rex HoggardJuly 16, 2018, 3:50 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – As his title chances seemed to be slipping away during the final round of last year’s Open Championship, Jordan Spieth’s caddie took a moment to remind him who he was.

    Following a bogey at No. 13, Michael Greller referenced a recent vacation he’d taken to Mexico where he’d spent time with Michael Phelps and Michael Jordan and why he deserved to be among that group of singular athletes.

    Spieth, who won last year’s Open, decided to continue the tradition, spending time in Cabo again before this week’s championship.


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    “I kind of went through the same schedule,” Spieth said on Monday at Carnoustie. “It was nice to have a little vacation.”

    Spieth hasn’t played since the Travelers Championship; instead he attended the Special Olympics USA Games earlier this month in Seattle with his sister. It was Spieth’s first time back to the Pacific Northwest since he won the 2015 U.S. Open.

    “I went out to Chambers Bay with [Greller],” Spieth said. “We kind of walked down the 18th hole. It was cool reliving those memories.”

    But most of all Spieth said he needed a break after a particularly tough season.

    “I had the itch to get back to it after a couple weeks of not really working,” he said. “It was nice to kind of have that itch to get back.”