Trio Tied at Rex Hospital Open

By Sports NetworkJune 7, 2007, 4:00 pm
Nationwide TourRALEIGH, N.C. -- Tom Carter, Kyle Thompson and Michael Letzig all fired rounds of 7-under-par 64 on Thursday and are tied for the first- round lead of the Rex Hospital Open.
 
Rick Price, Tee McCabe and Ron Whittaker are knotted in fourth place at minus- six at the TPC at Wakefield Plantation.
 
Carter collected his first birdie of the round at the par-4 second when his 15-footer found the bottom of the cup. He added another birdie at the fourth from 8 feet, then caught a little fire later in his opening nine.
 
At the par-5 sixth, Carter missed the green with his second shot, but chipped to 8 feet. He rolled in the birdie putt and made it two in a row when his 9-iron tee ball stopped 10 feet from the stick at seven.
 
Things went downhill quickly for Carter. He failed to get up and down from a bunker for par at the eighth, then drove into a hazard at the ninth. That led to another bogey and he made the turn at 2-under 33.
 
Carter parred his first three holes on the back side, then rattled off three birdies in a row from the 13th, all from the 6-foot range. He tapped in a short birdie putt at the 17th and reached 7under par with a 5-foot birdie putt on the par-5 last.
 
'I made everything today,' admitted Carter, who won three times in 2003, but has struggled since. 'Today was one of those days where everything clicked for me. This type of round is definitely a confidence builder.'
 
Thompson started on the back nine Thursday and promptly birdied the 10th. He added birdies at the 12th, 14th and 18th to make the turn at 5 under par.
 
He flew out of the gate on the second nine with a birdie at the first and a 40-foot birdie putt at the second. Thompson birdied the seventh, bogeyed eight and birdied nine to join Carter in the lead.
 
'It was one of those days,' said Thompson. 'It was a really easy 7 under. I never really struggled for any pars. I hit it good and putted good. I hit a lot of greens and fairways and made a lot of putts in the 10-15-foot range.'
 
Letzig was the only one of the co-leaders to tee off in the afternoon and tallied his first birdie at the par-4 fourth. He collected back-to-back birdies at nine and 10, then finished strong.
 
He birdied 13 and 14 to get to 5 under par for the championship. Letzig, currently 20th on the Nationwide Tour money list, birdied 16 and 18 to join the group in first.
 
Scott Gump, Elliot Gealy and Jon Turcott are tied in seventh place at 5-under-par 66. Phil Tataurangi, Mario Tiziani, Marc Turnesa, Kris Blanks, Brett Bingham and Tony Parrish share 10th place at minus-4.
 
Brenden Pappas has a chance to become the first player in Nationwide Tour history to successfully defend a title. He started off in decent shape with a 1-under-par 70 and is tied for 43rd place.
 
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    Weather extends Barbasol to Monday finish

    By Associated PressJuly 23, 2018, 12:25 am

    NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - A thunderstorm has suspended the fourth round of the PGA Tour's Barbasol Championship until Monday morning.

    Sunday's third stoppage of play at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came with the four leaders - Hunter Mahan, Robert Streb, Tom Lovelady and Troy Merritt at 18 under par - and four other contenders waiting to begin the round.

    The tournament will resume at 7:30 a.m. on Monday. Lightning caused one delay, and play was stopped earlier in the afternoon to clear water that accumulated on the course following a morning of steady and sometimes-heavy rain.

    Inclement weather has plagued the tournament throughout the weekend. The second round was completed Saturday morning after being suspended by thunderstorms late Friday afternoon.

    The resumption will mark the PGA Tour's second Monday finish this season. Jason Day won the Farmers Insurance Open in January after darkness delayed the sixth playoff hole, and he needed just 13 minutes to claim the victory.

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    Watch: Spectator films as Woods' shot hits him

    By Will GrayJuly 23, 2018, 12:07 am

    It was a collision watched by millions of fans on television, and one that came at a pivotal juncture as Tiger Woods sought to win The Open. It also gave Colin Hauck the story of a lifetime.

    Hauck was among dozens of fans situated along the left side of the 11th hole during the final round at Carnoustie as the pairing of Woods and Francesco Molinari hit their approach shots. After 10 holes of nearly flawless golf, Woods missed the fairway off the tee and then pulled his iron well left of the target.

    The ball made square contact with Hauck, who hours later tweeted a video showing the entire sequence - even as he continued to record after Woods' shot sent him tumbling to the ground:

    The bounce initially appeared fortuitous for Woods, as his ball bounded away from thicker rough and back toward the green. But an ambitious flop shot came up short, and he eventually made a double bogey to go from leading by a shot to trailing by one. He ultimately shot an even-par 71, tying for sixth two shots behind Molinari.

    For his efforts as a human shield, Hauck received a signed glove and a handshake from Woods - not to mention a firsthand video account that will be sure to spark plenty of conversations in the coming years.

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    Molinari retirement plan: coffee, books and Twitter

    By Will GrayJuly 22, 2018, 9:35 pm

    After breaking through for his first career major, Francesco Molinari now has a five-year exemption on the PGA Tour, a 10-year exemption in Europe and has solidified his standing as one of the best players in the world.

    But not too long ago, the 35-year-old Italian was apparently thinking about life after golf.

    Shortly after Molinari rolled in a final birdie putt to close out a two-shot victory at The Open, fellow Tour player Wesley Bryan tweeted a picture of a note that he wrote after the two played together during the third round of the WGC-HSBC Champions in China in October. In it, Bryan shared Molinari's plans to retire as early as 2020 to hang out at cafes and "become a Twitter troll":

    Molinari is active on the social media platform, with more than 5,600 tweets sent out to nearly 150,000 followers since joining in 2010. But after lifting the claret jug at Carnoustie, it appears one of the few downsides of Molinari's victory is that the golf world won't get to see the veteran turn into a caffeinated, well-read troll anytime soon.

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    Molinari had previously avoided Carnoustie on purpose

    By Rex HoggardJuly 22, 2018, 9:17 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Sometimes a course just fits a player’s eye. They can’t really describe why, but more often than not it leads to solid finishes.

    Francesco Molinari’s relationship with Carnoustie isn’t like that.

    The Italian played his first major at Carnoustie, widely considered the toughest of all The Open venues, in 2007, and his first impression hasn’t really changed.

    “There was nothing comforting about it,” he said on Sunday following a final-round 69 that lifted him to a two-stroke victory.


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    In fact, following that first exposure to the Angus coast brute, Molinari has tried to avoid Carnoustie, largely skipping the Dunhill Links Championship, one of the European Tour’s marquee events, throughout his career.

    “To be completely honest, it's one of the reasons why I didn't play the Dunhill Links in the last few years, because I got beaten up around here a few times in the past,” he said. “I didn't particularly enjoy that feeling. It's a really tough course. You can try and play smart golf, but some shots, you just have to hit it straight. There's no way around it. You can't really hide.”

    Molinari’s relative dislike for the layout makes his performance this week even more impressive considering he played his last 37 holes bogey-free.

    “To play the weekend bogey-free, it's unthinkable, to be honest. So very proud of today,” he said.