FRIDAY, MAY 19, 2017
by Steve Elling

The stupefying symmetry wasn’t lost on anyone, especially the principal player in one of golf’s greatest, long-running accomplishments.

Moments after Tiger Woods saw his incomprehensible 142-event cut streak end 12 years ago this week at the Byron Nelson Championship, he put into context one of the most notable achievements in sports.

The old record for in-the-money longevity on the PGA Tour had been held by Nelson.

 


by Mike Purkey

To the surprise of many, Jordan Spieth just joined the human race. The 23-year-old, with a putting stroke so sublime that he was a threat to make it from any distance at any time, has sidled up to the rest of us who think that a change in equipment, no matter how small, will be just the solution to all of our problems.

Spieth, perhaps the world’s best putter when it counts, started the AT&T Byron Nelson with a new putter. Spieth putted for most of his brief career with a slightly rusted-looking Scotty Cameron 009 prototype, which looks a great deal like Cameron’s Newport line of putters. In other words, it looks kind of like a Ping Anser.

 



Attitude defines pace of play

It's disingenuous to blame slow play on lesser players (“Bad golf amplifies slow play, and you’re likely at fault,” May 17, http://bit.ly/2qt52tt). As noted in the original opinion piece, most players, male and female, play to a bogey or double-bogey level on average. However, our club routinely plays its rounds in less than four hours. 

Very simply, it comes down to attitude. When players move to their ball, have clubs available to play their shot, watch where they hit their shot, get to the tee box without worrying about honors and line up their putts while others are lining up theirs, or while they are putting, the game moves along pretty quickly.

 


Keeping score

3

Number of strokes for Scott McCarron on the par-5 18th hole Thursday at Greystone Golf and Country Club’s Founders Course in Birmingham, Ala., as he shot 7-under 65 to share the first-round lead in the Champions Tour’s Regions Tradition. McCarron is tied with Lee Janzen, Jeff Sluman and Miguel Angel Jimenez. Earlier this year, McCarron eagled the 54th hole to claim a one-stroke victory in the Allianz Championship. He leads the 50-and-older tour in par-5 scoring average (4.34) and par-5 birdie frequency (63.86 percent).

5

Number of consecutive birdies that Lexi Thompson reeled off en route to a 6-under 65 and the first-round lead in the LPGA’s Kingsmill Championship in Williamsburg, Va. Upon making the turn at even par after starting on the back nine at Kingsmill Resort’s River Course, Thompson got into red numbers for good with a birdie at the par-4 first hole. She then reeled off birdies on Nos. 3 through 7. Thompson, 22, a seven-time winner on the LPGA, is looking for her first victory since Feb. 28, 2016, in Thailand. She has lost two playoffs this year, most memorably at the ANA Inspiration (“4-stroke penalty stuns Thompson at ANA,” April 3, bit.ly/2nxsvFa).

13

Number of career starts on the Web.com Tour for Mark Anguiano, who shot a bogey-free 9-under 62 at Furman University Golf Club to lead the BMW Charity Pro-Am in Greenville, S.C. Anguiano’s score ties the lowest 18-hole round on the developmental tour this season (Nate Lashley, first round, Chitimacha Louisiana Open).

17

Number of greens in regulation that James Hahn hit Thursday as he shot the only bogey-free round at TPC Four Seasons Resort, a 6-under 64, to share the first-round lead with Ricky Barnes.

61

First-round scores for Northern Ireland’s Michael Hoey and Sweden’s Sebastian Soderberg, co-leaders at the European Tour’s Rocco Forte Open on the Italian island of Sicily. They stand 10 under as 114 of the 156 players broke par at Verdura Golf Club in Agrigento.

93

Percentage of respondents to a Morning Read social-media question who defined “a slow round” as four hours or more.

1,709

Number of entries accepted by the U.S. Golf Association for the 72nd U.S. Women’s Open, to be played July 13-16 at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J. The record for Women’s Open entries was 1,873, for the 2015 event at Lancaster (Pa.) Country Club.



CALENDAR
May 18-21
LPGA: Kingsmill Championship
Kingsmill Resort (River Course), Williamsburg, Va.
Web.com Tour: BMW Charity Pro-Am
Thornblade Club, Greer, S.C.
Champions Tour: Regions Tradition
Greystone G&CC, Birmingham, Ala.
PGA Tour: AT&T Byron Nelson
TPC Four Seasons Resort, Irving, Texas
European Tour: The Rocco Forte Open
Verdura GC, Agrigento, Italy
May 19-24
College women: NCAA Division I championship
Rich Harvest Farms, Sugar Grove, Ill.
May 21-25
Industry: ING Spring Conference
World Golf Village and Hall of Fame Museum, St. Augustine, Fla.
May 25-28
Champions Tour: KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship
Trump National GC, Potomac Falls, Va.
LPGA: LPGA Volvik Championship
Travis Point CC, Ann Arbor, Mich.
PGA Tour: Dean & DeLuca Invitational
Colonial CC, Fort Worth, Texas
European Tour: BMW PGA Championship
Wentworth Club, Virginia Water, England
May 25-31
College men: NCAA Division I championship
Rich Harvest Farms, Sugar Grove, Ill.
May 26-29
Junior: AJGA Thunderbird International Junior
Grayhawk GC (Raptor), Scottsdale, Ariz.
May 27-31
Men’s amateur: U.S. Amateur Four-Ball
Pinehurst (N.C.) Resort Nos. 2 and 8 courses
Women’s amateur: U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball
The Dunes Golf and Beach Club, Myrtle Beach, S.C.

      
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