Jennifer Kupcho Captures Inaugural Augusta National Womens Amateur PDF Print E-mail


By Jason Bruno

Jennifer Kupcho hoists the trophy after winning the inaugural ANWA

Augusta, Georgia - She hit the first tee shot of the inaugural Augusta

National Womens Amateur Championship, and she rolled in the final

putt to win in front of thousands on property and millions around the

world. Say what you will about the members of the most exclusive

golf club in the free world, but these days they are making progressive

strides of inclusion and growing the game - this was just another step

in the right direction.


As for the competition (that began at nearby Champions Retreat on

Wed), it was just about as thrilling as a Masters Sunday. Two of the

finest collegiate players - Jennifer Kupcho and Maria Fassi had separated

themselves from the field by the time they reached the back nine at

Augusta National. Battling a migraine headache midway through the

round, Kupcho the reigning NCAA Champion needed to steady the ship

after a bogey at the tenth left her two shots behind Fassi, who started

hot - playing the first eight holes in 4 under par.


After both players parred both the eleventh and twelfth, Kupcho took on

the challenge at the par 5 thirteenth. From 211 yards out, she ripped a

towering 3 hybrid to within 6 feet. Fassi chose to lay up, and wedged to

10 feet away. Fassi barely missed her attempt at birdie, opening the door

for a two-stroke swing. When Kupcho poured the eagle into the center of

the cup, the patrons erupted and the event immediately took on a vibe all

its own. From there, with the score knotted at 7 under par, Kupcho went

on a blitz - making birdies at the fifteenth, sixteenth and appropriately

drained a bomb at the last to reach 10 under par and win by four over

Fassi. The NCAA Player of the Year from Arkansas, Fassi battled valiantly

but could do nothing but admire her friend's magnificent play in becoming

the events first champion. 'We joked at the beginning, we're like, "Let's

make a sure we put up a show for people,' and we did," Fassi said. I'm

extremely proud of what I did, and Jennifer for getting that win."


As for the winner, Jennifer Kupcho knew that what she did on that back

nine was special, but more importantly what the day at the National

meant for women and the sport of golf. "Coming out of it with Maria in

the final group with me, I think both of us kind of just wanted to send a

message that golf is about having friends, the Wake Forest standout said.

"To be out there with her, we were cheering each other on, and that's

kind of how golf is supposed to be. And to make it look fun, it is fun. So

to make it look that way for everyone watching, I hope it encourages

people to pick up a club and go play.















Kisner Wins WGC Dell Match Play PDF Print E-mail

Kevin Kisner celebrates after winning the WGC Dell Match Play

Austin, Texas - After reaching the finals of the WGC Dell Match Play

last year, Kevin Kisner made it back to the finals and was able to flip

the outcome in his favor in what he called "sweet revenge" (he was

routed by Bubba Watson 7&6 in '18). The final tally was a bit closer

this time, a 3&2 win over Matt Kuchar, for his third PGA Tour title.


The week at Austin Country Club started with a loss for the 35 year

old ex-Georgia Bulldog standout, but after six straight match wins,

Kisner was the lone survivor in the field of 64. Kisner, the 50th

ranked player in the world defeated a red-hot Francesco Molinari in

the semis, while Kuchar defeated Denmark's young upstart Lucas

Bjerregaard (who defeated Tiger Woods in the round of 8).


The death blow for the 24th ranked Kuchar came at the par 5-16th.

On in two but facing a lengthy eagle attempt, Kuchar left his putt

well short. With a chance to slam the door, Kisner drained his 20

footer for birdie to put an exclamation on a week that began with

64 of top 66 players (only Rickie Fowler and Adam Scott were no

shows) on the previous Wednesday.


Kisner who never trailed in the final was fatigued and elated after

the victory. "It was a long week," Kisner said. "I prevailed, and I'm

a World Golf Champion."


Kisner collected $1,745,000 and moved up to 13th in the Fedex Cup

Standings. Dell Match Play runner-up Matt Kuchar took over the points

lead just ahead of Rory McIlroy, who lost to Tiger Woods in the round

of 16.


In the consolation match for third place, Molinari ousted Bjerregaard



Match Play Results:












Casey Goes Back to Back at Valspar PDF Print E-mail


Paul Casey celebrates at the Copperhead Course after winning back to back.

Palm Harbor, Florida - Entering Sunday with a one-stroke lead over World

No.1 Dustin Johnson, Paul Casey figured the pressure was not on him to

repeat because he was playing against the best in the game. Relishing the

underdog role despite sitting atop the leaderboard, Casey played a steady

plodding final round while the field struggled on perhaps the most arduous

track the Florida swing could provide. The Copperhead at Innisbrook Resort

has never been a pushover, proving year after year that if you can get to

double digits under par, you'll likely win. The 2019 edition at Innisbrook

resort proved no different, with Casey doing just enough on Sunday to

get the job done. His Sunday 72 (+1), and 8 under par total was enough

for a one stroke victory to become the first repeat winner in the history

of the Valspar Championship.


Dustin Johnson never put together a charge of any kind, in fact, he went

birdie-less in his 3 over par final round of 74.

Jason Kokrak looked like Casey's main competition on Sunday, but stumbled

coming home, bogeying the last to finish a shot back at 7 under par - finishing

in a tie for second with Louie Oosthuizen. Oosthuizen bogeyed the par 4 - 16th

all four rounds and lamented afterwards, " I would love to comeback next year

and see if I can make a par on that hole."


For Paul Casey who missed the cut just the week before at the Players,

this was validation and a sweeter taste then last year's title. "Today was a

very different attitude to maybe I had the last three, four years, and an

attitude that I had, and a comfort and relaxed approach - confidence in my

game. I still felt Dustin was the favorite, but it didn't mean I didn't think I

could beat him."


The victory was Casey's third PGA Tour career win and moves him to fourth

in the current Fedex Cup standings.



Valspar Championship Scores:












Rory McIlroy Wins The Players - Takes Over Fedex Cup Standings PDF Print E-mail


Rory McIlroy shows off the new Players trophy after winning at TPC Sawgrass



Ponte Vedra, Florida - Rory McIlroy waited 12 months to reach the winner's

circle again, and he did so in a big way on a big stage at TPC Sawgrass,

capturing the Players Championship after rounds of 67-65-70-70 (-16).


A new March date on the schedule, and a freshly overseeded Dye Stadium

course was the topic of discussion early in the week, but at its thrilling

conclusion the storyline shifted to McIlroy and the resurgent 48 year-old

Jim Furyk. The 2018 USA Ryder Cup captain (and Ponte Vedra resident)

birdied 2 of the last 3 - including the brutish par 4 finisher to post a final

round 67 for a 15 under par - 273 total in the clubhouse. But it was the

Ulsterman on St.Patrick's Day that overcame an early round disaster -

making double-bogey 6 at the short par 4 fourth. Rory closed strong, firing

a back nine 33 that included birdies on the 11th, 12th, 15th and 16th - to

defeat the finest field in professional golf.


McIlroy began the final round tied with Tommy Fleetwood at 14 under par,

a shot behind 54 hole leader Jon Rahm (after his third round 64). While Furyk,

Eddie Pepperell and Jhonattan Vegas were lighting up the inward nine, Rahm

was crash and burning his way through the last 8 holes on the stadium course,

he finished tied for 12th after a final round 76. Fleetwood also struggled on

Sunday with a final round 73 and a tie for 5th (-13).


"I played some really good golf down the stretch, so I think all of those

experiences over the past few weeks definitely helped me out there today,"

McIlroy said. "Up 18, I picked my target and said to myself " 'look, it's just

one good swing, you've made plenty of good swings today, you just need

one more' - As soon as I made contact I knew it was right up the middle."


"It's the toughest tournament to win, it has the deepest field on one of the

most iconic courses in the world," Rory said. "There's some unbelievable

names on this trophy, I'm very honored to put my name on it."


The win was McIlroy's 15th career victory on the PGA Tour. He joins Jack

Nicklaus and Tiger Woods as the only players to win four majors and The

Players before age 30.


In his last six PGA Tour events, Rory McIlroy's finishes of 4th, 5th, 4th,

2nd, 6th and now 1st vaults him to the top of the Fedex Cup standings.















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