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The John Deere Classic, Zach Johnson wins in Play-Off

Zach Johnson won the John Deere Classic at TPC Deere Run on Sunday with a birdie on the second play-off hole, after he and Troy Matteson had finished tied at -20 under par. The first play-off hole was a bizarre event where both players scored a  double bogey 6, after hitting their second shots into the water and being unable to recover to score a five.

Crowd pleaser

Zach Johnson /Cohen/Getty Images

This week was a good week for those who believe in God. Earlier, in Scotland, Jeev Milkha Singh had won with a birdie in a play-off in the Scottish Open, Jeev had remarked;

” I think God has been kind.”

Zach, a devoted Christian, also thanked God after he had sunk his winning birdie putt on the second play-off hole. About his joy at winning this tournament he said;

‘ It just feels awesome. This tournament has meant so much to me and my family, from when they gave me exemptions to being a part of its board.”

He also spoke about the great 6 iron shot he played from the bunker on the second play-off hole, which led to his winning birdie putt from about twelve inches;

“I liked that crescendo from the crowd, I saw it bounce on the green and hoped it would kick left. I couldn’t see the golf ball.”

Troy Matteson also applauded Zach’s great approach;

“My hat’s off to Zach. He drove it in the bunker twice and figured out a way to win. It’s a great story, you know, home-town kid.”

Scott Piercy finished in third place with a last round -6 under par 65, for a good finish to his tournament.

I guess God was looking favorably on golf today as it has been said that giving golf to us was His way of getting a few laughs.

Steve Stricker said he had fun out there, besides coming up short in his record attempt of a fourth win;

” It was a lot of fun. A little disappointing on the back nine, but I put myself in the position on the front and was striking the ball nicely. Really struck it nicely all day except for those three drives at 14, 15, and 17. But other than that, my iron play was good and really couple little miss-putts there. Missed a little putt at 10 for birdie. But all in all it was a good week. A lot of fun. It was fun trying to do it. I gave it a rip and came up a few short, but it was fun trying. “

PGA U.S. Senior Open Championship

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Lance Ten Broeck leads the PGA U.S. Senior Championship by one shot at Indianwood Golf & Country Club, scoring a -2 under par, 68 for his second round, and a tournament total of -6 under par. One shot off the lead is yesterdays magical man Tom Kite, who came down to earth today just easing his way round the course in par, a 70, settling for a -5 under par total.

Lance is the full-time caddie for Tim Herron, and a part-time player, he has a reasonable chance to make about $500,000 on Sunday after earning less than half that total in his best year as a caddie. Lance said about his bag carrying job;

” Caddying is a lot easier than playing, that’s why you get paid more money to play. I figured I should be able to make the cut, but I never figured that I’d be in the last group on Saturday.”

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Lance Ten Broeck / Shamus/Getty Images

Tom Kite was philosophic about his comedown during the second round;

” It’s a sadistic game, it drives us all crazy. As Harvey Pernick said; It’s such an easy game to play, it’s just such a hard game to play well. In a championship like this, we’re trying to play very well, and they’ve given us a stern test on a golf course that is very tricky. The greens are very severe in a number of places.”

Tom knows all about Lance, and his ability;

“I played a bunch of golf with Lance when he was in Austin. He’s had so much talent for so many years and to a lot of people’s minds didn’t take advantage of all the talent that he has.”

There are six players tied in third place at -4 under par, American’s John Huston, Tom Lehman, Dick Mast and Corey Pavin, they are joined by two European’s, Germany’s Bernhard Langer and Roger Chapman of England.

Roger is happy with the layout of the Indianwood course;

“I’m quite happy with it. My first impression, apart from the trees, was a type of linksy place. So having grown up on sort of Royal St. Georges, Royal St. Paul, Little Stan, those courses down there on the South Coast, yes, it’s nice. It also reminded me of a golf course that Nick Faldo designed in Berlin. Very similar, sort of humps and hillocks and wispy grass, has that look. Nobody can get away from anybody. People are not making mistakes. They’re not making many birdies. They’re sort of hanging around, 2 under, 1 under, level par, 1 over. And anybody that’s still to shoot maybe 66-66 at the weekend from the back of the field has got a chance. I guess I’d probably take a couple of 67s myself and see what happens. With the severity of the course and the driving, I don’t think anybody’s really going to get away from us. I think Sunday afternoon could be quite exciting.”

The cut was made at +4 over par, and those notables missing the cut were;

Hale Irwin, Larry Nelson, Eduardo Romero, Gil Morgan, Kenny Perry, Hal Sutton, Chip Beck and the Walrus Craig Stadler.

PGA Champions Tour, U.S. Senior Open Championship, Tom Kite Flying High

A great 28

A Flying Tom Kite/Shamus/Getty Images

A Flying high Tom Kite rewrote the record books with a front-nine 28 on Thursday at Indianwood Golf & Country Club’s Old Course.   He then held on to post a leading score of  -5 under par and 65 at the U.S. Senior Open. He leads by one shot from Lance Ten Broeck and German Bernhard Langer who both posted scores of -4 under par.

Tom was delighted with his effort;

“I thought there would be some good scores but I certainly didn’t see any 28s or anything like that. It was a lot of fun.”

Tom’s front nine 28 was the lowest nine-hole score in USGA championship history. It included an eagle 2 on the par-4 fourth hole where his approach from 155 yards went into the hole. The front-nine card featured five 3s to go along with two deuces.

His eagle on the fourth hole was the first of three straight red numbers, which started a stretch of five in six holes.

“That’s one of those crazy holes, the second is a blind shot. Hit a drive up the right-hand side, just snuck into the semi-rough. I had 155 yards, just playing an 8-iron and letting it release onto the green. The people up there just started getting louder and louder and louder and louder. All of a sudden, arms went up as the ball went in. I never saw it obviously. Just relied on their reaction. I feel like I’m playing well right now, and obviously, I was surprised, very pleased, ecstatic with the front nine because not only was it a good nine holes of golf, but some good breaks and good putts and just everything got going the right way. Sixty-five is a good score in a Major championship. So I’m feeling good about it.”

Peter Jacobson was Tom”s playing partner, he could only manage a par round as he witnessed at close hand the marvelous antics of Tom Kite;

” I felt like the Washington Generals playing against the Harlem Globetrotters. I was his towel boy. Tom putted as well with the long putter today as I’ve seen him in five or six years he’s used that putter, he was confident. He stepped up to every putt, boom, and he was very assertive. He had great speed. The two putt he had on 18 was amazing. He had to go over one of those muffins and knocked it down there about four feet and confidently knocked it in. Everything was working for Kite today. It was great to see. He had a good chance to win last week at Pebble Beach. We play a lot of golf together. I was on the range with him last week and watching him hit some balls. He looked awfully good then. He looked awfully good today.”

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