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SHO and Tell: The Latest on The Shell Houston Open
SHO and Tell: The Latest on The Shell Houston Open
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Lee Elder
Lee Elder (1976)
The Woodlands CC
FRYS.COM Open - October 08, 2007


TPC Summerlin (Host)
Las Vegas, NV
Par: 36-36—72Yards: 7,243
TPC The Canyons
Par: 36-35—71Yards: 7,063
Purse: $4,000,000 Winner: $720,000
2006 Champion: Troy Matteson (265, -22)



You might expect to see a first-time winner this week at the Open benefiting Shriners Hospital for Children. The last three winners
Troy Matteson, Wes Short and Andre Stolzwere all first-timers.
Lefthanders have won five times this yearthree by Phil Mickelson and two by Steve Flesch. That equals the one-season mark set in 2000 for lefties when Mickelson won four times and Mike Weir won once.

More on lefties: Once a rarity in TOUR golf, no less than six lefties currently rank among the Top 100 players in the world. Phil Mickelson leads the way at #2 followed by Richard Green (#33), Nick O’Hern (#36), Mike Weir (#47), Steve Flesch (#88) and Bubba Watson (#95).

Dan Forsman’s T6 last week at the Valero Texas Open was his first Top-10 since the 2003 Chrysler Championship, a span of 70 events. Forsman turns 50 next July 15.

Since the start of the Fall Series, Michael Allen has made the biggest jump on the money list from 154th place to 93rd, a gain of 61 spots. Justin Leonard has improved 58 positions while Jesper Parnevik and Steve Flesch have each gained 45 places. Johnson Wagner has moved up 44 spots and Chad Campbell 42.

This is a tough league. Cameron Beckman shot rounds of 67-68-69-69 last week at the Valero Texas Open and Mathew Goggin posted scores of 69-69-69-66. They finished in a T26.

The Valero Texas Open looked a bit like the Swedish Open last week as the Swedish contingent on the PGA TOUR had a memorable week. At one time on Friday, Swedes occupied five of the top seven spots at the Valero Texas Open. Jesper Parnevik ended the week in second while Daniel Chopra and Mathias Gronberg each finished in a T3.

It’s not what you shoot, it’s more a question of when you do it. Jeff Overton is currently T25 in Scoring Average on the PGA TOUR, but is 111th on the money list. On the other hand, Chad Campbell is 132nd in Scoring Average, but 43rd on the money list.


With his victory last week, Loren Roberts overtook Jay Haas in the race for the Charles Schwab Cup. Roberts has a slim 71 point lead with three events left on the schedule. Haas edged Roberts for the Cup last year.

More on Roberts: His victory last week at the Constellation Energy Senior Players Championship gave him three different major championship titles in the last three years. He won the Senior British Open in 2006 and the JELD-WEN Tradition in 2005.

Mark Wiebe has started his Champions Tour career in top form. He won his initial outing two weeks ago at the SAS Championship and finished T7 last week. He led or shared the lead in his first five rounds on the Champions Tour. The back-to-back Top-10 finishes were his first since 1990 when he finished T5 at the Canadian Open and second at the B.C. Open.


The Class of 2006 continues to hold its own on the PGA TOUR with nine members still among the Top 125 with four weeks to go in the season. Another six player’s stand between 126th and 150th.

Mathew Jones has finished second four times this season, including three of his last five starts. He’s just one runner-up finish shy of tying Chris Smith’s 2000 record of five second-place finishes in a single season. Jones is perhaps the hottest player on the Tour with four Top-5 finishes in his last five outings.

The Nationwide Tour will welcome the Mexico Open to its schedule beginning in 2008. The 50th annual Mexico Open will be the second event on the 2008 schedule. Open Notes

With the $54,300 paycheck he earned for tying for 16th in 2006, Jim Furyk continues to lead the all-time Open money list, with $2,129,619. The three-time Open champion posted his 12th top-25 in 13 starts at the event. Four other players—Stuart Appleby, Billy Andrade, Bob Estes and Davis Love III—have passed the $1-million mark at this event.

Charley Hoffman led the seven former UNLV players who competed at the Open in 2006. He tied for fifth. The other former Rebels who competed last year were Chad Campbell (tied for 16th), Andres Gonzales (tied for 63rd), Skip Kendall (tied for 83rd), Ryan Moore (tied for 85th) and Chris Riley and Bobby Elliott (missed cut). Hoffman, who continues to reside in Las Vegas, captured his first PGA TOUR title earlier this year at the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic in a playoff over John Rollins. Campbell, who won two weeks ago at the Viking Classic, uses a UNLV headcover for his driver.

Nine players posted four rounds in the 60s in 2006: Troy Matteson, Daniel Chopra, Frank Lickliter II, Joey Sindelar, Greg Owen, Robert Damron, Bernhard Langer, Kevin Na and Jeff Gove.

Mark Brooks played in his 23rd consecutive Open in 2006. He missed the inaugural tournament in 1983 but has played every year since to hold the record for most tournament appearances. He missed the cut in 2006 and has 13 made cuts in his 23 starts, including three top-25s.

The Open has been played on 12 different courses during its 24 previous years in Las Vegas. Those courses include Las Vegas Country Club, Showboat Country Club, Sunrise Golf Club, Spanish Trail Country Club, Las Vegas Hilton Country Club, Tropicana Country Club, Desert Inn Country Club, Dunes Country Club, Bear’s Best, Southern Highlands, TPC Canyons and TPC Summerlin.

The delay in play during the second round in 2006 was the first weather-related suspension of play at the Open since 1987 when Paul Azinger won the scheduled 90-hole event that was shortened to 72 holes.

The 2006 cut came at 5-under-par, with 90 players moving on to the third round. The 90 players making the cut was the largest number of the 2007 season and the largest since the 1996 U.S. Open (103), a tournament that employs the 10-shot-within-the-leader rule.

Players who made the Open their first win:

Troy Matteson (2006), Wes Short (2005), Andre Stoltz (2004), Phil Tataurangi (2002), Tiger Woods (1996), Jim Furyk (1995).

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