Tjaart Topper Faxon 61 Wins Playoff

By Sports NetworkAugust 28, 2005, 4:00 pm
2005 Buick ChampionshipCROMWELL, Conn. -- Brad Faxon knocked his second shot from a fairway bunker to 3 feet to set up a birdie that gave him the Buick Championship crown on Sunday.
Faxon fired a course-record-tying, 9-under 61 to end at 14-under-par 266. After a three-putt bogey on 16, Tjaart van der Walt birdied 17 and 18 to join Faxon at minus-14 and close a round of 6-under 64.
Brad Faxon
Brad Faxon earned his first PGA Tour win since the 2001 Sony Open.
The duo returned to the 18th tee at the TPC at River Highlands for the playoff. Faxon, hitting first, pulled his drive left of the fairway in a bunker. Van der Walt then split the fairway with his tee ball.
Faxon knocked his 7-iron approach to 3 feet. Van der Walt, not to be outdone, hit the flagstick with his pitching-wedge second shot. His ball came to rest 10 feet from the cup, but his birdie putt slid by the right edge.
The 44-year-old Faxon stepped up and rolled in his birdie putt for his eighth PGA Tour title.
'I got lucky and hit a great shot in pretty close, but Tjaart hit the flag after he birdied 17 and 18,' said Faxon, who collected $774,000 for the win. 'Then he hit a good putt, it just hung out there to the right and I wasn't going to take a whole lot of time on that putt of mine. I wanted to get it over with.'
For van der Walt, it was his first playoff on the PGA Tour. It was also his best finish of the season by far. Prior to this week, his best finish this year was a tie for 50th at the Buick Open in Michigan.
'I got beat. I gave it a good shot,' van der Walt said. 'I'm disappointed, but I'm not going to be hard on myself. I'll just keep trying.'
Third-round leader Justin Rose posted a 1-under 69 to end one shot back at 13-under-par 267.
Michael Putnam, who turned professional this week after receiving a sponsor's exemption into the tournament, fired a closing 7-under 63. He shared fourth place at minus-12 with former British Open champion Ben Curtis and Jerry Kelly.
Faxon got into red figures with a birdie on the par-4 second. He came back two holes later with his second birdie. After a pair of pars, the Rhode Island resident got to 8 under with a birdie on No. 7.
He made the turn at minus-9 thanks a birdie on the ninth. Faxon made it two straight as he birdied No. 10. He was not done either.
Faxon birdied the par-3 11th and made it four straight as his birdie try on the 12th found the bottom of the cup. After parring his next two holes, Faxon broke a four-way tie for the lead with a 4-foot birdie putt on the 15th.
He came right back with a birdie on the par-3 16th to briefly move two ahead. Faxon parred his final two holes, and watched as van der Walt played some stellar golf coming down the stretch.
Faxon, who made the cut on the number at even-par 140, became the first player to make the cut on the number and go on to win the tournament since Jose Maria Olazabal turned the trick at the Buick Invitational in California in 2002.
'It was a great round,' Faxon said. 'I hit the ball nicely from tee to green. I never made a putt the first two days. I was hitting all the corners and my caddy said you better aim at the edges because you're hitting them all. Everything went in the last two days.'
Van der Walt played the front nine in 3 under with birdies on one, four and nine. Around the turn, he picked up another birdie on the 10th to tie for the lead at minus-12.
After Faxon pulled one clear of the field, van der Walt ran home a 12-foot birdie putt on 14 to join Faxon at minus-13. The South African stumbled to a three-putt bogey on 16.
Van der Walt got that stroke back with a birdie on the 17th. The 28-year-old drained a 7-foot birdie putt on 18 to force the extra session.
'I'm very excited. I hit a good shot on 16, but I was misled by the pace of the putt on the first putt,' said van der Walt. 'Then I just stuck to what I've done all week.'
Kenny Perry closed with a 7-under 63 to end alone in seventh at 11-under-par 260. Corey Pavin was one stroke further back after a final-round 68. Woody Austin, the 2004 champion, shared ninth place with Darron Stiles and Nick Watney at 9-under-par 271.
Related Links:
  • Photo Gallery
  • Leaderboard - Buick Championship
  • Full Coverage - Buick Championship
  • Getty Images

    Third-round tee times for the 147th Open

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 20, 2018, 9:05 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Eighteen major champions made the cut at The Open and will be playing the weekend at Carnoustie, including 60-year-old ageless wonder Bernhard Langer, and both major champs so far this year, Patrick Reed and Brooks Koepka.

    Twenty-four-year-old Gavin Green will be first off solo Saturday at 4:15 a.m. ET. Reed and Rhys Enoch will follow along 10 minutes later.

    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

    Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods, both at even par for the tournament, six shots behind leaders Zach Johnson and Kevin Kisner, are in consecutive groups. Mickelson is playing with Austin Cook at 8:05 a.m. and Woods is with South Africa’s Shaun Norris at 8:15 a.m.

    Jordan Spieth and Rickie Fowler, both three shots off the lead, are also in consecutive groups. Fowler is at 10 a.m. with Thorbjorn Olesen and Spieth is 10 minutes later with Kevin Chappell. Rory McIlroy, looking to win his first major since the 2014 PGA Championship, is at 10:40 a.m. with Xander Schauffele. McIlroy is two shots behind.

    Johnson and Kisner are last off at 11 a.m.

    4:15AM ET: Gavin Green

    4:25AM ET: Rhys Enoch, Patrick Reed

    4:35AM ET: Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Justin Rose

    4:45AM ET: Yusaku Miyazato, Tyrrell Hatton

    4:55AM ET: Ross Fisher, Keegan Bradley

    5:05AM ET: Ryan Fox, Jason Dufner

    5:15AM ET: Bryson DeChambeau, Henrik Stenson

    5:25AM ET: Tom Lewis, Sam Locke (a)

    5:35AM ET: Paul Casey, Chris Wood

    5:45AM ET: Bernhard Langer, Rafa Cabrera Bello

    6:00AM ET: Paul Dunne, Brett Rumford

    6:10AM ET: Masahiro Kawamura, Shubhankar Sharma

    6:20AM ET: Cameron Smith, Brendan Steele

    6:30AM ET: Marc Leishman, Lee Westwood

    6:40AM ET: Byeong Hun An, Kevin Na

    6:50AM ET: Julian Suri, Adam Hadwin

    7:00AM ET: Gary Woodland, Si-Woo Kim

    7:10AM ET: Yuta Ikeda, Satoshi Kodaira

    7:20AM ET: Marcus Kinhult, Thomas Pieters

    7:30AM ET: Beau Hossler, Haotong Li

    7:45AM ET: Cameron Davis, Sean Crocker

    7:55AM ET: Louis Oosthuizen, Stewart Cink

    8:05AM ET: Phil Mickeslon, Austin Cook

    8:15AM ET: Tiger Woods, Shaun Norris

    8:25AM ET: Lucas Herbert, Michael Kim

    8:35AM ET: Jason Day, Francesco Molinari

    8:45AM ET: Sung Kang, Webb Simpson

    8:55AM ET: Patrick Cantlay, Eddie Pepperell

    9:05AM ET: Matthew Southgate, Brooks Koepka

    9:15AM ET: Kyle Stanley, Adam Scott

    9:30AM ET: Charley Hoffman, Alex Noren

    9:40AM ET: Ryan Moore, Brandon Stone

    9:50AM ET: Luke List, Danny Willett

    10:00AM ET: Thorbjorn Olesen, Rickie Fowler

    10:10AM ET: Jordan Spieth, Kevin Chappell

    10:20AM ET: Zander Lombard, Tony Finau

    10:30AM ET: Matt Kuchar, Erik Van Rooyen

    10:40AM ET: Rory McIlroy, Xander Schauffele

    10:50AM ET: Pat Perez, Tommy Fleetwood

    11:00AM ET: Kevin Kisner, Zach Johnson

    Getty Images

    Facial hair Fowler's new good-luck charm

    By Rex HoggardJuly 20, 2018, 8:12 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Before, during and after the Fourth of July, Rickie Fowler missed a few appointments with his razor.

    He arrived in the United Kingdom for last week’s Scottish Open still unshaved and he tied for sixth place. Fowler, like most golfers, can give in to superstition, so he's decided to keep the caveman look going for this week’s Open Championship.

    “There could be some variations,” he smiled following his round on Friday at Carnoustie.

    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

    At this rate, he may never shave again. Fowler followed an opening 70 with a 69 on Friday to move into a tie for 11th place, just three strokes off the lead.

    Fowler also has some friendly competition in the beard department, with his roommate this week Justin Thomas also going for the rugged look.

    “I think he kind of followed my lead in a way. I think he ended up at home, and he had a little bit of scruff going. It's just fun,” Fowler said. “We mess around with it. Obviously, not taking it too seriously. But like I said, ended up playing halfway decent last week, so I couldn't really shave it off going into this week.”

    Getty Images

    Spieth (67) rebounds from tough Round 1 finish

    By Ryan LavnerJuly 20, 2018, 7:55 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Guess whose putter is starting to heat up again at a major?

    Even with a few wayward shots Friday at Carnoustie, Jordan Spieth made a significant climb up the leaderboard in the second round, firing a 4-under 67 to move just three shots off the lead.

    Spieth showed his trademark grit in bouncing back from a rough finish Thursday, when he mis-clubbed on the 15th hole, leading to a double bogey, and ended up playing the last four holes in 4 over.

    “I don’t know if I actually regrouped,” he said. “It more kind of fires me up a little.”

    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

    Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

    Spieth missed more than half of his fairways in the second round, but he was able to play his approach shots from the proper side of the hole. Sure, he “stole a few,” particularly with unlikely birdies on Nos. 10 and 11 after errant drives, but he took advantage and put himself in position to defend his claret jug.

    Spieth needed only 25 putts in the second round, and he credited a post-round adjustment Thursday for the improvement. The tweak allows his arms to do more of the work in his stroke, and he said he felt more confident on the greens.

    “It’s come a long way in the last few months, no doubt,” he said.

    More than anything, Spieth was relieved not to have to play “cut-line golf” on Friday, like he’s done each start since his spirited run at the Masters.

    “I know that my swing isn’t exactly where I want it to be; it’s nowhere near where it was at Birkdale,” he said. “But the short game is on point, and the swing is working in the right direction to get the confidence back.”

    Getty Images

    After 36, new Open favorite is ... Fleetwood

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 20, 2018, 7:49 pm

    With a handful of the pre-championship favorites exiting early, there is a new odds-on leader entering the third round of The Open at Carnoustie.

    While Zach Johnson and Kevin Kisner share the 36-hole lead, it's England's Tommy Fleetwood who leads the betting pack at 11/2. Fleetwood begins the third round one shot off the lead.

    Click here for the leaderboard and take a look below at the odds, courtesy Jeff Sherman at

    Tommy Fleetwood: 11/2

    Zach Johnson: 13/2

    Rory McIlroy: 7/1

    Jordan Spieth: 8/1

    Rickie Fowler: 9/1

    Kevin Kisner: 12/1

    Xander Schauffele: 16/1

    Tony Finau: 16/1

    Matt Kuchar: 18/1

    Pat Perez: 25/1

    Brooks Koepka: 25/1

    Erik van Rooyen: 50/1

    Alex Noren: 50/1

    Tiger Woods: 50/1

    Thorbjorn Olesen: 60/1

    Danny Willett: 60/1

    Francesco Molinari: 60/1