OHL Classic at Mayakoba. Pat Perez Wins.

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Pat Perez wins the  OHL Classic at Mayakoba in Mexico.

Perez wins OHL Classic, first since '09

Pat Perez / getty

Pat, with his shoulder surgery now a thing of the past, shot -4 under 67 to win the OHL Classic at Mayakoba, with a -21 under par tournament total, a two shot victory.

Pat spoke about his great putting;

“I had an attitude that I can’t really repeat, but I had a lot of thoughts going on.”

“The main one was I wanted to stay aggressive. I knew if I just stayed aggressive I was seeing the line great on the putting green.”

“This type of grass and these greens, if you can get it on line you can make them.”

“I just saw the line, I thought I could make them all and I just had a confidence.”

“You’ve got to make a lot of putts, you need some help from other players.”

“It’s everything. It’s so hard to win. But I just had this different look about it this week and I’ll hopefully carry that through for a while.”

“I had an entirely different attitude than I would have had a few years ago. It was definitely a different win than last time.”

“Last time, I was a little more scared coming down the stretch. I didn’t really believe and this and that. This time, I really had like this calmness, kind of like a madness to get it done.”

Gary Woodland finished in second place at -19 under par, a last round -1 under 70 not what he was looking for.

Russell Knox was third at -18 under par after a -5 under par finishing round of 66;

“I wasn’t all that comfortable out there.”

“This course kind of makes you put the steer on sometimes, but I made seven birdies.”

“A couple mistakes, but overall starting the day I would have taken 66.”

OHL Classic at Mayakoba. Gary Leads Into Final Round

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Gary Woodland leads into the final round of the OHL Classic at Mayakoba, in Mexico.

OHL At Mayakoba - Round Three : News Photo

Gary Woodland

Newly Married Gary shot a -5 under par third round 66 to stay on top of the OHL Classic at Mayakoba with a -18 under par total. Had one bogey today, on 15, but will take a one shot lead into the final round tomorrow;

“I’ve been there. I’ve been in the position a lot the last couple years.”

“I’m excited about my game, I’m going to rely on my game and trust it and go out and have fun.”

“I’m very comfortable with where my golf swing is and I’m going to rely on it and run it out.”

“I’m happy. I mean, I played great today. Drove the ball exceptionally well, controlled my distances to the green, and I rolled it well.”

“It’s hard to argue with that, hard to be upset with that. I hit a good shot on 15. I just hit it long.”

Pat Perez is in second place at -17 under par, -9 under par 62 elevating up the leaderboard, and he is now feeling comfortable after 9 months out after shoulder surgery;

“I was real comfortable, I woke up and I just felt good.”

“I was comfortable on the range. I’ve just been on this different attitude in the last couple weeks where I just try to stay aggressive and try to think of the right shot and the good shot and not worry about what happens.”

“It’s really worked. I’ve been working on that the last nine months since I got hurt.”

Scott Piercy holds third spot on his own at -16 under par, with a -5 under 66 today.

Sadly for the home crowd Abraham Ancer shot +3 over 74 to drop out of the race for the title, now at -6 under for the tournament, and T 48.

 

Valero Texas Open. Bowditch Bowls Along, While Phil Withdraws.

dragon logo darkValero Texas Open LogoSteve Bowditch bowls happily along in the Valero Texas Open, opening up a three shot lead at TPC San Antonio. Poor Phil pulled a muscle and has had to with-draw.

Steven Bowditch made a late birdie to extend his margin in Texas. (Darren Carroll/Getty Images)

Steve Bowditch / Getty Images

Steve, seeking his first PGA TOUR title, shot a – 4 under par 68 third round to reach -12 under par tournament total at the Valero Texas Open. His score was helped by his good short game, he chipped in on his first two holes, for birdie and then Eagle, which got him off to a great start. He has never slept on a lead before;

‘I’ve won four or five times in between Australia and Web.com. I’ve got a little experience, but not a great deal, especially at this level. I’ve never slept on a lead, so we’ll see how we go.”

” The chip on the first hole calmed my nerves a little bit, it was as easy a chip as you’re going to have out here.”

Matt Kuchar and Andrew Loupe are tied in second place at -9 under par, while Pat Perez is next in line at -8 under par. These guys must be wondering if Steve is going to continue with his excellent play.

Matt was surprised with his score today, the best round of the week so far at -7 under par 65;

Still surprised to be at 7 under today. It’s not a score I would have thought was out there with these sort of windy conditions.”

Someone said that watching Andrew prepare to hit the ball is like getting teeth pulled.

Phil Mickleson tweaked a muscle in his back and was forced to withdraw from the tournament, he explained what happened;

” My back’s feeling great, my body’s feeling great. I felt as good as I have all year. My speed is back, I was hitting the ball hard, driving it great.I pulled a muscle on my downswing trying to hit it hard, It just killed me and it wouldn’t subside for ten or twelve seconds. I’m going back to San Diego for a couple of days and have a doctor look at it, but there’s really not much you can do for a pulled muscle. I hope I’ll be OK to play the Shell in Houston, but I just don’t know.”

Phil’s caddie Jim Bones Mackay thinks it will not stop Phil from playing in the Shell Houston Open next week;

”It’s definitely not his back, it’s his right side. The thing he had been talking about is how good his back had been feeling here. He’ll definitely play Houston, if he can.”

” As you might imagine, he’s trying to get ready for Augusta, he’s hitting a lot of drivers, hitting them harder. He hit one off the first tee, his 10th hole today and just felt a little pain in his side. It continued on for a few minutes and he just decided that he didn’t want to take anything to chance relative to what’s going on the next couple weeks.”

“In a perfect world, he’d love to play Houston. He loves the tournament, loves the city and it’s great preparation for Augusta. Obviously, he’s going to make the right decision relative to what his body’s telling him.”

Valero Texas Open. 1st Round play Suspended. Fog in Texas ?

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TPC San Antonio was shrouded in fog during the opening round of the Valero Texas Open, causing a suspension in Play.

Valero Texas Open - Round One    Valero Texas Open - Round One

                                          Pat Perez   and Danny Lee/ Getty Images

At the time the horn blew Pat Perez and Danny Lee had completed their first rounds and sat at the top of the leaderboard of the Valero Texas Open. They both carded opening rounds of -4 under par 68. The fog kept temperatures in the 50s before it burned off and gave way to sun and readings in the 80s.

Pat spoke of the conflicting temperatures;

“This morning it was freezing, and I hit balls on the practice range in four layers of clothes. Now, I’m sweating.”

What is worrying, and noteworthy, is the form of Phil Mickleson, who shot a +5 over par 77 opening round, to fall nine strokes back of the lead.  That horrible 77 was Phil’s highest score since he shot a 78 in August in the PGA Championship.

It seems Phil was as surprised as the rest of us;

“I had been playing real well at home, so to come out and play like this is disappointing, just didn’t feel quite sharp. I didn’t putt well, I had a couple of three-putts that hurt. Iron play wasn’t great. I didn’t drive it bad, until that last hole.”

In his previous two starts, Phil missed the cut in the Honda Classic, and then tied for 16th at Doral in the World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship. This is not good preparation for The Masters, just two weeks away. Phil will play in the Houston Open before heading to Augusta National.

Looks like Phil will have plenty of time to practice, making the cut here is a long way off, currently T 135 out of a field of 144.

Valspar Championship. Garrigus Gets Ahead.

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Valspar Championship Logo

 

Robert Garrigus gets ahead in the Valspar Championship at Innisbrook on day 2 taking a three shot lead into the week-end.

Garrigus leads at Valspar

Robert Garrigus / Getty Images

Robert can not remember a better performance going into the week-end than the one he put together on day 2 at the Valspar Championship on the Copperhead course. He shot a second round -5 under par 66, to finish the day three shots ahead on -7 under par for the tournament;

“It’s the fishing, I think that puts me in a good frame of mind because I’m clear and not thinking about anything, just going out and having some fun. I probably hit one of the top-five shots of my life there on sixteen, out of the trees. Hit a low, cut 5-iron, then rose it up over the pine tree and cut it 40 yards and hit to ten feet. That’s just one of those shots that when you’re playing good and everything is rolling, you kind of expect it. It was a lot of fun to try it, and to pull it off was even better. I’ve spent half my life in the trees. I’ve had a lot of practice.”

Kevin Na is in second place, a second round -3 under par 68 gave him a total of -4 under par for the tournament. That was good enough for second spot alone.

Highest-ranked player in the field, Justin Rose shot a second round -3 under par, and joins Matt Every, Pat Perez and Matteo Manassero, all tied in third place at -3 under par.

Justin finally got some momentum going;

“I got some momentum going today, I worked my way into the tournament early. To finish strong with my round yesterday I think helped give me some momentum into day. It’s exactly how I needed to flow into the tournament.”

During the round today Pat Perez  was the first player to reach -5 under par for the tournament, until he missed two drives well to the left. The first was in the trees at No. 6, and then another wayward drive went out of bounds on No. 7. Both of them led to double bogeys, though Pat shrugged off the disappointment;

“Just move on and keep going.”

Danny Lee went from first to worst. He was tied for the lead Thursday, and then shot +8 over par for 79, and miss the cut. The cut was at +3  over par,  and because 84 players advanced, there will be a 54-hole cut to top 70 and ties on Saturday.

The list of players missing the cut was pretty impressive, they include;

Ernie Els, Mike Weir,  Camilo Villegas, Webb Simpson, Geoff Ogilvey, D.A. Points, VJ Singh, Angel Cabrera, Kyle Stanley and the wild man himself, John Daly, who propped up the whole field.

 

 

Valspar Championship, A Windy Day 1and a Four-Way Tie.

dragon logo darkHabitat for Humanity/Valspar Logo with Neighborhoods Matter tagline

Matt Every, Danny Lee, Pat Perez and Greg Chalmers  share the first round lead at a very windy Innisbrook in the Valspar Championship.

Matt Every is one of four players tied for the lead after Round 1. (Greenwood/Getty Images)

Matt Every, one of the four. / Getty images

With early morning temperatures hovering in the mid 50’s Matt Every carded an opening round of -3 under par in the challenging conditions. He ended the day sharing that score with Danny, Pat and Greg who played in the warmer afternoon, to share top spot on the leaderboard, the highest first round total in the 14 year history of this event.

Matt admitted the conditions were so bad he would have settled for +2 over par round at the start of play;

” I would have been satisfied with 2 over today, it was tough. This morning you couldn’t feel your hands. The wind was brutal. I’ve played enough to know the first round doesn’t matter that much. This place is just going to be about not making doubles and taking yourself out of the tournament.”  

 There were only three players who broke 70 in the morning round, with the average score nearly three shots over par. Eight players broke 70 in the afternoon, and the average for the day turned out to be 72.6, only 25 players managed to break par.

Danny has gained some confidence, especially with his good finish last week, but was shocked at  the cold temps here in Florida;

“I gained a lot of confidence after last week playing with the finish in Puerto Rico. It really helped me a lot with that confidence stuff, and I’m hitting it really well right now. My ball striking is the best it’s ever been, especially with the putting. I got the new claw grip,  still working great, which is fantastic.”

“I was shocked how hard it was, without the wind and the cold weather , even we’re playing in nice weather it’s a very tough golf course.”

This going to be a very tough tournament, with more cold weather predicted for Friday morning, before the temperatures begin to rise for the week-end.

AT&T. Pebble Beach National Pro-Am. Walker is Walking It.

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Jimmy Walker is easily walking all over the opposition at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am.

Amazing place

A determined Jimmy Walker / Getty Images

Jimmy has notched up a six shot lead at the AT&T completing a -4 under par 67 on the Monterey Peninsular course to secure the lead at -13 under par. That was before play was suspended due to darkness, with others still to complete their rounds.

Play was suspended by darkness at 8:43 p.m. ET  after a delay of two hours and 20 minutes when wind gusts of up to 36 mph began to actually blow balls around on several greens. The third round will now resume at 10:30 a.m. ET tomorrow. I don’t expect anyone to catch Jimmy from the remaining players.

Jimmy said he had no idea what the weather was going to be like tomorrow;

“Who knows what the weather’s going to do. I know Pebble Beach is a tough golf course, especially with the winds. I’m excited to be here, to be in this position. This is why you play golf and work hard to be in this position.” 

Tim Wilkinson and Hunter Mahan also played Monterey Peninsular and are tied for second place at -7 under par after rounds of 69 and 72, respectively. Richard Lee is alone in fourth at -6 under par while Phil Mickelson, Blake Adams, Kevin Na, Ryan Palmer and Pat Perez are tied, another stroke behind.

D.A. Points  had been disqualified from the pro tournament for in inadvertently using a practice aid on the 18th tee in violation of Rule 14-3. A clever spectator videoed D.A. as he waited on the 18th tee, keeping warm by putting a soft green sponge ball under his arm while he swung a club. Disqualified, go figure.  D.A. did have the option of playing Spyglass on Saturday with former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, his partner in the pro-am.

D.A. said he was happy to continue with his playing partner in the Pro-Am competition;

“It’s not every day that you get to play 18 holes at Spyglass, let alone 18 holes at Spyglass with Secretary Rice. She’s such a sweet, just warm hearted woman and she loves golf and she’s wanting to get better. I signed up to play at the  Pebble Beach Pro-Am. It’s not just about me and the golf tournament, it’s about playing with our amateurs and making sure they have a good time. And who knows, if we could have come out today and lit the scoreboard up, lit the place on fire, maybe she would have got to see tomorrow. And my intent was to come out and help her have a good time and give her an opportunity to keep playing.”

Condoleezza and her caddy, with D.A. Points / Getty Images

Congratulations D.A. you are a golfing gentleman.