Three Spaniards Among the Leaders

By Sports NetworkApril 14, 2005, 4:00 pm
CADIZ, Spain -- Spaniards Diego Borrego, Santiago Luna and Jose Rivero each carded rounds of 2-under-par 70 Thursday and are among seven players tied for the lead after the first round of the Jazztel Open de Espana en Andalucia.
Those three are joined atop the leaderboard by Sweden's Peter Gustafsson and Peter Hanson, Scotsman Steven O'Hara and Emanuele Canonica from Italy.
Philip Walton, a three-time winner on the European Tour, leads a group of six players one stroke back at 1-under-par 71. He is joined there by Hennie Otto, Peter Lawrie, Miguel Angel Martin, Oskar Bergman and Marco Bernardini.
Borrego, a two-time winner on the European Tour, opened with a birdie on the par-5 10th on the Old Course at San Roque Club. He stumbled back to even par with a bogey at the 16th, but made the turn at minus-one thanks to a birdie at the 18th.
The 33-year-old tripped to another bogey at the par-4 first. Borrego got back into red figures with a birdie at the fifth and closed his round with a birdie at the par-5 ninth to join the leaders at 2 under.
Luna also began on the back nine and moved to minus-2 with birdies at the 11th and 15th. Around the turn, the 42-year-old bogeyed the first, but bounced back with a birdie at the par-3 third. Luna faltered to another bogey at the eighth, but closed with a birdie on No. 9.
'It was a good round,' said Luna. 'I tried to be in the right place all the time and I am putting well. The chances I had I made it. That's the key to shooting a good score. The condition of the golf course is excellent and it is a good test for us.'
Rivero started out by bogeying the par-4 first. The 49-year-old bounced back with birdies at three and four. After five straight pars, he joined the leaders at minus-2 with a birdie at the 10th. He closed with eight consecutive pars.
'This week I am just playing to enjoy myself and have fun with the other golfers,' Rivero said. 'I have no further aspirations and have no intention of coming back on tour. I want to play the Seniors Tour. That is my goal.'
Gustafsson picked up two birdies and one bogey on the front nine. On the back side, he carded three birdies over a four-hole stretch from the 13th to jump out in front at 4 under. However, he slid backwards with bogeys at each of the last two holes.
Hanson birdied his first two holes before parring the next seven on the back side. He stumbled to a bogey on the first, but came right back with a birdie on the second. The 27-year-old bogeyed the eighth before a birdie at the ninth gave him a share of the lead.
O'Hara tripped to a bogey on the par-4 sixth. He got that stroke back with a birdie at the par-5 ninth and picked up consecutive birdies from the 13th to get to 2 under before parring his final four holes.
Canonica played the first nine holes with one birdie and one bogey. He dropped another stroke on the 12th, but got to even par with a birdie at 13. He then holed out for eagle on the par-4 15th to finish at minus-2.
Christian Cevaer, the defending champion, opened with a 5-over-par 77.
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    Down seven pounds, Thomas can gain No. 1

    By Rex HoggardMarch 24, 2018, 11:29 pm

    AUSTIN, Texas – On March 7, Justin Thomas had his wisdom teeth removed, and just when he was recovering from that, he was slowed by a bout with the flu.

    In total, he estimates he lost about seven pounds, and he admitted on Saturday at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play that he wasn’t sure he’d be able to play the event.

    “I had a pretty serious conversation with my dad on Monday if I was going to play,” Thomas said. “I never want to play in a tournament, first off, if it's going to hurt my health. If I was sick or really sick, me trying to play this week wasn't going to do me any good.”

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    Thomas went on to explain he was “50/50” whether he’d play the World Golf Championship, but decided to make the start and it’s turned out well for the world’s second-ranked player.

    After going undefeated in pool play, Thomas cruised past Si Woo Kim, 6 and 5, in the round of 16 and secured himself a spot in the semifinals with a 2-and-1 victory over Kyle Stanley in the quarterfinals. If Thomas wins his semifinal match against Bubba Watson on Sunday, he’s assured enough points to overtake Dustin Johnson atop the Official World Golf Ranking.

    “I don't care when it happens; I just hope it happens and it happens for a while,” Thomas said when asked about the possibility of becoming world No. 1. “I don't know what to say because I've never experienced it. I don't know what's going to come with it. But I just hope it happens tomorrow.”

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    Garnett's six-shot lead dwindles to two in Punta Cana

    By Associated PressMarch 24, 2018, 10:57 pm

    PUNTA CANA, Dominican Republic - Brice Garnett took a six-stroke lead into the wind Saturday in the Corales Puntacana Resort and Club Championship. He came out with a two-stroke advantage.

    Garnett bogeyed three of the final six holes in the wind and rain for a 3-under 69 and a 16-under 200 total.

    ''Once we made the turn coming back, all those holes coming in toward the north, it was all we wanted and then some,'' Garnett said. ''I kind of took advantage of some holes going out, some holes downwind, some par 5s, and then we were just trying to leave it in the right spot those last four or five holes. Pars are pretty good scores on those holes.''

    Canadian Corey Conners was second after a 67, and Tyler McCumber also had a 67 to get to 12 under. Former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo dropped out Friday, finishing last in the 132-man field in his PGA Tour debut. He shot 77-82 playing as an amateur on a sponsor exemption.

    A stroke ahead after each of the first two rounds, Garnett opened with a bogey, birdied Nos. 2, 4 and 6, eagled the par-5 seventh, and made two more birdies on the par-3 ninth and par-5 12th. He bogeyed the par-4 13th, par-5 15th and par-3 17th.

    Full-field scores from the Corales Puntacana Resort & Club Championship

    ''I looked once and the lead was a little bigger than what it is now,'' Garnett said. ''The eagle was huge, kind of gave me that confidence that I can push it on out and stretch it a little bit more. That wind was tough and I'll take a two-shot lead into tomorrow.''

    The 34-year-old Garnett is winless on the PGA Tour. He won twice last year on the Tour.

    ''You've got another 18 holes. So much can happen,'' Garnett said. ''Just going to try to keep the golf ball in front of me. I have that self-belief this week and that's what I had last year when I won, so I'll just keep my head down and just keep going.''

    Conners had five birdies and a bogey on the front nine and added a birdie on No. 12.

    ''Really happy with the round,'' Conners said. ''I got off to a nice start, made a bunch of birdies on the front nine and kind of held it together on the back nine. It was playing really difficult. The wind was really blowing out there, made things challenging.''

    McCumber, the son of 10-time PGA Tour winner Mark McCumber, has played his last 39 holes with a bogey.

    ''Second shots have been pretty solid,'' McCumber said. ''Putting pretty well, short game is pretty good. Just really being in the right areas and staying below the hole.''

    Tom Lovelady was fourth at 11 under after a 68. Seamus Power (71), Denny McCarthy (71) and Seungsu Han (72) were 10 under.

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    Poulter incorrectly told he's in Masters before loss to Kisner

    By Rex HoggardMarch 24, 2018, 10:33 pm

    AUSTIN, Texas – Ian Poulter was not happy, and it was only partially because of his blowout loss to Kevin Kisner in Saturday’s quarterfinals at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play.

    Following his morning victory in the round of 16 over Louis Oosthuizen, the Englishman was incorrectly informed that by making it to the Elite 8 at Austin Country Club he was assured enough Official World Golf Raking points to move into the top 50 and qualify for the Masters in two weeks.

    “I should never listen to other people,” Poulter said following his 8-and-6 loss to Kevin Kisner in the quarterfinals. “When you finish a round of golf and the press and everybody is telling you you're in the Masters, and then you get a text message 10 minutes before you tee off to correct everybody, to say, ‘Oh, we've made a mistake, actually, no, that was wrong, you're not in. You need to go and win.’

    “Not that that's an excuse in any form or factor, it's a little disappointing.”

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    Poulter actually needed to advance to the semifinal round to move into the top 50. Instead, his last chance to qualify for the Masters is to win next week’s Houston Open, although he was unsure if he’d play the event.

    “I don't know yet, I haven't decided,” said Poulter when asked if he’d play next week. “I'm tired. It's been a long week. It's been a draining week. I'll wait until Monday night and if I have the energy then I will.”

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    Not DJ, not Poulter: Kisner most proud to take down Kuchar

    By Rex HoggardMarch 24, 2018, 9:34 pm

    AUSTIN, Texas – On his way to this week’s Final Four at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, Kevin Kisner has beaten world No. 1 Dustin Johnson and the European match play ninja Ian Poulter. But neither match could compare to his duel with Matt Kuchar early Saturday.

    “I was more jacked to beat [Kuchar], really. Kuch is such a good player and our games are so similar,” said Kisner, who defeated Kuchar in the round of 16, 1 up. “We both made eight birdies this morning and I barely snuck out of there. I thought it was a lot of fun.”

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    By comparison, his quarterfinal bout against Poulter wasn’t nearly as electric. Kisner won two of the first four holes when the Englishman made bogey (No. 3) and when he was conceded the fourth hole, hecruised to an 8-and-6 victory for the week’s most lopsided win.

    “I don't know Ian that well, so I don't really have a history with him, other than watching him kill us in the Ryder Cup,” Kisner laughed.

    Things won’t get any easier for Kisner on Sunday when he’ll play Alex Noren in the semifinals. The Swede has been dominant this week and is considered one of Europe’s top players heading into this year’s Ryder Cup.