Molinari Dominates at Quicken Loans PDF Print E-mail



Francesco Molinari celebrates with Tiger Woods after winning the Quicken Loans National

Bethesda, Maryland - Francesco Molinari's best finish in his twelve previous

starts on the PGA Tour this season was a tie for 16th at the Wells Fargo

Championship. After the biggest European win of his career in May at the

BMW Championship (and a runner-up finish the following week in his

homeland at the Italian Open), Molinari was looking to climb back into the

Fedex Cup race (he came into the Quicken Loans National at TPC Potomac

at Avenel Farms 123rd in the point standings).


The 35 year-old Italian entered Sunday tied for the lead after rounds of

67-65-65. When he made the turn three shots clear of the field, he

seemed to be in command, then Molinari proceeded to slam the door shut

- going six under par over a 5 hole stretch (Eagle-birdie-birdie-birdie-birdie)

to start the inward nine. GAME OVER. The eight-shot winning margin was

the product of his final round 62, and total score of 21 under par.


For Molinari, it was his first win on U.S soil and getting the trophy from

tournament host Tiger Woods made it all the more special. "It's amazing

to win a tournament hosted by Tiger. He is probably the greatest ever to

play the game and I grew up as a teenager watching him on TV dominating

golf tournaments," Molinari said. "It's even more special to win in this style

and to get his congratulations on the last green was a very proud moment

for me."


Tournament host Tiger Woods finished tied for 4th ten shots back after

rounds of 70-68-65-66.













Bubba Watson Shoots Final Round 63, Wins Travelers PDF Print E-mail



Bubba Watson Celebrates after winning at TPC River Highlands on Sunday.

Cromwell, Connecticut - "Horses for courses" is often used when referring to

players like Nicklaus, Hogan, Snead and Woods. It's now clear that Bubba

Watson is another example of a player who just feels at home and plays well

on certain course designs (with 66% of his wins coming at Riviera, Augusta

National, and TPC River Highlands). Bubba Watson once again proved it by

coming from six shots behind - shooting his second 63 of the week to blitz

the faltering 54 hole leader Paul Casey and the rest of the field (to finish at

17 under par) winning the Travelers Championship by three shots for the

third time in his career.


After opening with an even par 70, Watson shot 63 to get into the weekend,

but it was his third round 67 that put him in position, but only as a long shot

with leader Paul Casey on cruise control after a Saturday 62. By the 16th on

Sunday Watson had pulled even with the struggling Englishman. Facing a tricky

77 yard approach at the last, Watson stuffed it to 3 feet. As Bubba poured in the

birdie, Casey continued to botch the closing stretch. By the time Casey blocked

his tee shot into the hazard on the par 4 - 17th, it was over. Watson had pulled

off the unlikely comeback, and with it his 12th career PGA Tour victory.


After apologizing to caddie Ted Scott for his lackluster attitude during the

first three rounds, Watson reflected Sunday evening after the triumph, "I'm

going to three-putt, I'm going to duff chips. I'm going to do a lot of things

on the golf course bad and off the golf course bad and I'm going to have to

apologize. Like I said earlier, I'm the fastest to apologize."


Paul Casey who entered the day with a four shot lead over Russell Henley,

finished in a tie for second with Stewart Cink, Beau Hossler and J.B Holmes

after a final round two-over par 72. "I didn't get it done today," Casey

confessed. credit to his play. I would have loved to have won outright or at

least have another go at him in a playoff would have been nice, but not to be."


Watson is the first player this season to notch three wins on the PGA Tour

and moved up to third in the Fedex Cup Standings.










Koepka Defends U.S Open at Shinnecock Hills PDF Print E-mail


Brooks Koepka celebrates after winning back to back at the U.S Open

South Hampton, Long Island - It had been 29 years since anyone defended

their title at the U.S Open (Curtis Strange 88-89), but as Brooks Koepka

stated early in the week- "Nobody here is more confident than me." and

this, "Someone is going to have to come and take the trophy from me."

The 28 year old from West Palm Beach (who now resides in Jupiter along

with half of the PGA Tour) backed up that statement, especially after carding

an opening round 5 over par - 75. In fact, at one point early in round 2

on Friday, Koepka was +7 and in danger of missing the cut. He flipped

Friday's second round, shooting 66 to get back in the championship.

Weekend rounds of 72-68 followed for a 1 over par total and a one-stroke

victory over Englishman Tommy Fleetwood who narrowly missed a putt

at the last that would have been a record-setting 62. As it turned out,

that 8 footer was the slim margin between solo second place (+2) and

a two-hole playoff. Fleetwood's 63 tied the low round at any U.S Open,

and eclipsed the record of any U.S Open round held at Shinnecock Hills

(breaking the previous mark of 65 that was matched by Rickie Fowler

on Sunday, 19 strokes better than the 84 Fowler shot on Saturday).


Koepka isn't your typical golf obsessed professional, when he missed 3

months earlier in the season with a wrist injury he found that he longed

for the game and the competition, but when he returned his golf swing

never missed a beat. It all came right back immediately, no rust at all

"I don't need to practice every single day. It's the same game I've been

playing for 24 years now. I know what I'm doing. I know how to swing

a golf club. It's just a game that I've been playing my entire life."


Once again the USGA flagship event was riddled with two big controversies

in South Hampton. Both occurred during Saturday's third round. For one,

the course set up once again got a bit too severe (2004 revisited) when the

winds picked up during the afternoon, causing several putts and well struck

shots to roll off into disastrous spots. The USGA has to find a method that

allows some margin of error in its set up in case mother nature becomes

a factor. Especially at seaside venues where it's almost a certainty.


Second would be the blatant rules infraction by Phil Mickelson. First of all,

it looked horrible and Phil's explanation of how and why was even worse.

Clearly it didn't quite go down as he stated, and several witnesses within

the group verified that he made statements to officials and others right

after it happened (on the 13th green) that completely contradicted his

well-rehearsed post round media session. Obviously, chasing after/swatting

back a moving ball was an act of frustration with the set up, a meltdown.

Clearly embarrassed, he contrived a story about always wanting to hit a

moving ball to save further damage to his scorecard, and decided that he

would do it right then and there. Sometimes trying to be the most clever

guy in the room backfires, and this was the perfect example. It's been a

brilliant 26 year career, filled with generosity and giving back to the game,

but somehow that moment and the cover-up that followed might be the

one lasting memory for many from the 118th U.S Open.


With the victory Brooks Koepka has moved up 33 spots to 13th in the

Fedex Cup standings, and 4th in the Official World Golf Rankings.

















DJ Wins Fedex St.Jude - Reclaims World No.1 PDF Print E-mail


Dustin Johnson celebrates after holing out on the 18th hole on Sunday

Memphis, Tennesee - Dustin Johnson's stint as World No.2 lasted about as

long as a New York minute. Heading to the Big Apple for the U.S Open at

Shinnecock Hills, DJ emphatically put his stamp on winning the Fedex St.Jude

Classic by holing out for eagle on the 72nd hole and a six-stroke victory over

Andrew Putnam.


Johnson's final round 66 capped off his second PGA Tour win of the season

and 18th of his career. After 64 straight weeks atop the Official World Golf

Rankings, Johnson dropped to No.2 behind Justin Thomas the week of the

PLAYERS at TPC Sawgrass. Johnson's 19 under par - 261 total, included

rounds of 67-63-65 before Sunday's final round. Tied with Johnson at the

start of the day, Putnam made double bogey at the first (Johnson made

par) for an early two-stroke swing and never was able to make up the

defecit. Putnam shot 72, not the final round he was hoping for, but his

runner-up finish was still the best of his career.


DJ's response to his walk-off eagle (9 iron from 170 yards), "By the

reaction from the crowd, I thought it might have gone in, but I couldn't

see it so it was kind of tough, what a cool way to end."


Phil Mickelson, seeking to accomplish the career Grand Slam at the U.S

Open, heads to Shinnecock Hills with some momentum after a final round

65 (finishing tied for 12th).














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