E-Notes – October 5, 2011
A brief explanation of Kevin Na purposely missing the ball during the third round of last week’s Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open from the USGA Decisions on the Rules of Golf:
Rule 14/1.5 -- Intent to strike ball ceases during downswing; club not stopped but path of clubhead altered to avoid striking ball.
Q. A player begins his downswing with the intention of striking the ball but decides during the downswing not to strike the ball. The player is unable to stop the club before it reaches the ball, but he is able to swing intentionally over the top of the ball. Is the player deemed to have made a stroke?
A. No. The player is considered to have checked his downswing voluntarily by altering the path of his downswing and missing the ball even though the swing carried the clubhead beyond the ball. If the player had not successfully checked his downswing (i.e., he had struck the ball), he is considered to have made a stroke. Any doubt regarding the player's intent must be resolved against the player.
Nineteen-year-old Patrick Cantlay, who won the 2010 Gifford Collegiate at CordeValle GC as a freshman at UCLA, will play the Frys.com Open this week on a sponsor’s exemption. Highlights from Cantlay’s summer:
- Posted the low round of the year (60) on the PGA TOUR in the second round of the Travelers Championship where he held the 36-hole lead.
- Low amateur (T21) at the U.S. Open and finished runner-up at the U.S. Amateur.
- In last PGA TOUR start, finished T9 at the RBC Canadian Open.
- Lowest finish in any of his four PGA TOUR starts in 2011 was T24 at the Travelers Championship.
Thanks to an eagle last week at the Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, Bill Lunde at 19-under leads the Kodak Challenge by three strokes over Cameron Tringale with three events left in the Fall Series. The competition continues with the drivable par-4 17th hole at CordeValle Golf Club as the featured hole at the Frys.com Open. Players must play at least 18 of the 30 Kodak Challenge holes throughout the season to compete for $1 million and the Kodak Challenge title. A player’s lowest score relative to par on his best 18 Kodak Challenge holes will be counted. Kevin Streelman won the inaugural Kodak Challenge in 2009, while Troy Merritt won last year in a playoff over Rickie Fowler and Aaron Baddeley.
Tiger Woods makes his first appearance at the Frys.com Open this week. Woods has captured 25 different PGA TOUR events in his career, with 13 of his 71 TOUR wins coming in the state of California.
Six different players have two victories in 2011: Keegan Bradley, Webb Simpson, Steve Stricker, Nick Watney, Bubba Watson and Mark Wilson. Since World War II, there have been only two other seasons where no player won three or more events (1983 and 1991).
After averaging 31.7 holes-in-one for the last 10 years (2001-2010), only 23 aces have been recorded on the PGA TOUR through 42 (of 45) events in 2011.
Kenny Perry’s SAS Championship win made him the 18th different winner on the Champions Tour this year and the third consecutive first-time winner, marking the first time since 2004 that the Champions Tour had three straight first-timers win events.
On the 2011 Champions Tour, the winner has now come from the final grouping in the last seven tournaments, beginning at the Senior British Open.
Hale Irwin is currently 26th in money earnings this season. If he finishes the regular season among the top 30, 66-year-old Irwin would be the oldest player to ever compete in the season-ending Charles Schwab Cup Championship by more than three years. Gil Morgan is the oldest at 63 years, 1 month, 4 days (2009 season).
Jay Haas might be a player to watch this week. In his six appearances at the Insperity Championship, Haas has finished T5, first, T4, T6, T2 and T24. In 16 of 17 career rounds, he’s posted under-par scores and is a cumulative 59-under-par in this tournament.
Tom Kite has never finished outside the top 30 on the single-season money list since he’s been a member of the Champions Tour. He’s currently 42nd with two events remaining.
Tom Kite, who made his 1,000th combined career start last week, has never won a PGA TOUR or Champions Tour event in his native state of Texas.
The Insperity Championship is the only full-field event on the Champions Tour that has been played at least five years without yielding a hole-in-one.
The Presidents Cup 2011 will feature the most Nationwide Tour alumni ever, 11, including players who finished ranked No. 1 on both teams’ points standings (Matt Kuchar/U.S., Jason Day/Int'l). In 2007 and 2009, there were nine alums combined on both teams.
This week's Children's Hospital Classic in Chattanooga, TN, is the 23rd of 26 events on the 2011 Nationwide Tour schedule. From Tennessee, the Tour moves to Miami, Ponte Vedra Beach, FL, and Charleston, SC, in October.
Sunday's WNB Golf Classic winner Danny Lee traveled to South Korea on Monday to compete in this week's Korean Open. Lee jumped from 14th to 4th on the Nationwide Tour money list with his victory.
Bud Cauley has accepted a sponsor exemption to compete in the Winn-Dixie Jacksonville Open near his hometown of Jacksonville, FL, in two weeks.
Brian Vranesh has gone 335 holes without a three-putt, stretching over his last 18 rounds and the last 11 holes of the Utah Championship in late July.
Stadion Classic at UGA winner Russell Henley earned a spot in the Children's Hospital Classic via Monday's qualifying event. He joins former University of Georgia teammate and last week's Nationwide Tour playoff runner-up in Midland, Texas, Harris English in the field.
The Preferred Health Systems Wichita (KS) Open recently announced a record charity donation of $212,000. The event has been on the Nationwide Tour schedule since 1990.
John Peterson, the 2011 All-American and NCAA individual champion, will make his professional debut this week on the Nationwide Tour. The LSU product also qualified on Monday in Chattanooga. Peterson has one previous and very successful start on the Nationwide Tour. In July, he was runner-up to Harris English at the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Invitational in Columbus, OH.