Monday Morning Golf Report
June 8, 2009
Both Webb Simpson and Bill Haas came into this past week having missed the cut at their previous events but both players posted two solid rounds on Thursday and Friday at The Memorial at Muirfield Village Golf Club to make the cut and stick around for the weekend.
Simpson, who had missed his last four cuts, was even-par through 36-holes and wound-up carding a 1-over 73 on Saturday and followed that with a 76 on Sunday to finish in a tie for 48th.
Haas was 2-over at the midway point but shot 77-76 over the weekend and finished tied for 69th at 11-over.
On the Champions Tour, Scott Hoch, Jay Haas and Leonard Thompson all had good weeks and finished in the top-16 of the Triton Financial Classic in Austin, Texas.
Hoch opened with a pair of 69s and made four birdies in his round of 1-under 71 on Sunday to finish at 7-under par and tied for fourth. It was his second top-10 finish of the season.
Haas, who had come into the week with six wins in the state of Texas, made a total of 11 birdies in the first two rounds and found himself tied for fifth at 6-under par heading into Sunday.
In the final round, Haas got off to a great start with an eagle at the par-5 third, but a double-bogey at No. 12 and bogeys at Nos. 15 and 16 hurt his chances of seventh victory in the Lone Star state. Haas finished tied for seventh after a final round 73.
Thompson opened with a round of 1-over 73 but carded a 2-under 70 on Saturday to get to red-numbers. He followed that with five birdies in a seven-hole stretch on Sunday to card a second-straight 70 and finish tied for 16th. This was the best finish of Thompson's season in just his seventh start.
Like Thompson, Gary Hallberg opened with rounds of 73-70 and was tied for 21st heading into Sunday. He made eight-straight pars to start the final round and a birdie at No. 9 got him to 2-under par at the turn. But a second nine 39 would drop Hallberg back to a tie for 28th at 1-over par.
Lanny Wadkins was the fifth former Deacon in the field at the Triton Financial Classic this weekend. He was playing in just his fifth tournament of the season after coming off of back surgery last year and carded rounds of 74-78-72 to finish in a tie for 59th.
Much of the east-coast was covered in rain Thursday and Friday and the Nationwide Tour's Melwood Prince George's County Open in Mitchellville, Maryland was certainly affected. The first round was cut short on Thursday and nobody hit a shot on Friday, thus pushing back the end of the first round to Saturday morning.
Kyle Reifers and Len Mattiace both had to finish their opening rounds on Saturday and then try to get their second rounds in Saturday afternoon. Mattiace carded 2-under 70 in both rounds and made the cut at 4-under but Reifers posted rounds of 74-69 and would miss the cut by one shot.
The long week may have taken a toll on Mattiace as he carded rounds of 76-74 on a tough Sunday to finish at 2-over par and tied for 65th.
Laura Diaz has had a tough start to her 2009 season on the LPGA Tour but had a good week at the State Farm Classic, finishing tied for 46th after rounds of 73-69-72-69=283 (-5). Her final round 69 included three birdies and just one bogey.
Men's head coach Jerry Haas was also back in tournament action last week at the 45th Pepsi North Carolina Open at the Kilmarlic Golf Club in Powells Point, N.C.
He opened with a solid round of 3-under 69 and would follow that six birdies and just one bogey in his round of 5-under 67 on Wednesday. Through 36-holes, he was tied for third at 8-under par and found himself in the final pairing Thursday morning.
In the final round, Haas started out with a shaky front nine of 3-over 39 and knew he had to make a run on the back nine. After missing make-able birdies at Nos. 10 and 11, he cashed in a birdie on the par-5 12th and followed it with three more birdies on Nos. 14, 15, and 16 to get back to 1-under for the day.
He made par at the 201-yard par-3 17th and closed with an incredible par at the par-5 18th. After a wayward drive at the final hole, Haas chopped his second-shot out of the high rough and it stopped just inches from rolling into the creek. He then took his shoes off, got into the water, choked-up to the steel on a wedge and chipped the ball out into the fairway. Still facing 120 yards, he knocked his fourth-shot to 20-feet and trickled in the par putt for a final round 71.
Haas finished the three-day event at 9-under par and tied for fourth. He also played well at the Carolinas Open last month in Myrtle Beach, finishing seventh after a nice bogey-free 66 in the opening round.
Also today is sectional qualifying for the US Open which will be played next week at Bethpage State Park. This is the final step before the USGA's big stage.
Current Deacon Brendan Gielow shot 72 at the Red Run Golf Club in Royal Oak, Mich., back on May 18 to advance from local qualifying. He will join Simpson, Haas and a host of other PGA Tour stars at the Columbus, Ohio, sectional qualifier. There are 121 players vying for 16 spots into next week's Open.
Cortland Lowe, a 2003 graduate, will be playing in the Dayton, Ohio section at NCR Country Club. There are 68 guys playing in Dayton for one of four qualifying spots.
Evan Beck, who will be a freshman for the Demon Deacons next fall, will be playing in the 78-man qualifier at Woodmont Country Club in Rockville, Md., while 1987 graduate Billy Andrade will via for one of three spots at Hawks Ridge Golf Club in Ball Ground, Ga. Check www.usga.org for complete sectional qualifying results.
The last Deacon to play in the US Open was Jay Haas in 2006 at Winged Foot. Unlike Tiger Woods, Haas made the cut and finished tied for 37th.
On the women's side, current Deacon Dolores White made it through local qualifying for the US Women's Open last month at the River Wilderness Golf Club in Parrish, Fla. She will be playing for a spot in the Women's Open this Thursday at Carolina Trace's Lake Course in Sanford, N.C. White will have a friendly face on her bag Thursday as former teammate Jean Chua will try her hand at caddying.
Recent graduate Nannette Hill also made it through local qualifying for the Women's Open and will be playing in the sectional qualifier at Neshanic Valley Golf Course in Neshanic Valley, N.J., next Monday.
The PGA Tour swings to Memphis, Tenn., for the St. Jude Classic while the Nationwide Tour will also be in Tennessee for the Knoxville Open. The seniors have two weeks off before heading to Endicott, N.Y., for the Dick's Sporting Goods Open on June 26-28.
The LPGA Tour is holding the McDonald's LPGA Championship this week and then the Wegmans LPGA in two weeks. WFU rising-sophomore Cheyenne Woods has received a sponsors exemption into the Wegmans while rising-junior Natalie Sheary will be playing in the Monday Qualifier.
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