Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. Smiley Wins It.

Shriners Hospitals for Child

Rookie Smiley Kaufman wins at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open at TPC Summerlin in Las Vegas.

Shriners Hospitals for Children Open

Smiley Kaufman / Getty Images

Smiley carded a final round -10 under par 61 to win the  Shriners Hospitals for Children Open in Las Vegas.

A back nine run sealed the deal for Smiley;

“It’s funny, on 9, my caddie; I asked him, I was like, who do you think is going to win this week?”

“He’s like, well, I think there’s more to be said. I think you can post a number and you can see what happens. He knew better than I did, and I did it.”

“It was an extremely long wait, I couldn’t do anything about what they were doing. I just did my best to prepare for a playoff.”

“It’s unbelievable, if you would’ve told me that I had a round at the Masters; if somebody was going to take me out and not completely with the Masters, just to play Augusta National, I would have freaked out”

“. But now I’m playing the Masters. It’s a joke. It’s unbelievable.”

Sharing second at -15 under par were  Patton Kizzire, Kevin Na, Cameron Tringale,Jason Bohn ,Alex Cejka, Kevin Na and Brett Stagmeir.

Kevin came up wit the quote of the day:

“Ignorance is bliss. I guess it’s one of those things, they play with nothing to lose.”



Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. Rookie Brett Hangs on to Lead as Darkness Halts Play.

Rookie Brett Stegmaier hangs on to the lead, after 54 holes at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, in Las Vegas, as darkness once again halts play.

 Shriners Hospitals for Children Open

Brett Stegmaier / USATS

Brett had a completed third round -3 under par 68 to stay top of the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open at -13 under par. He said he will need some help to sleep tonight;

“I’ll probably take some NyQuil to fall asleep, I’ll need some help falling asleep.” 

”It played a little tougher, so played a little more conservatively.”

”Certainly happy to make four birdies and one bogey and be in the lead.”

‘Just do the same things, not really look at leaderboards until maybe the last three holes.”

”I’ve played really well the last two months. Been doing the same things, just try and read the greens well.”

“I feel like if I read the greens well, I’ll play well. That’s the main goal tomorrow.”

Morgan Hoffman is in second place, he too has finished his -2 under par 69 third round for a -12 under par total. He hooked his drive on the 18th into the desert rocks and ended up saving bogey with a 10-foot putt;

“I was just saying if I could see the ball in there and it wasn’t in the bush, I’d give it a shot.”

“Yeah, lucky to get out of there with bogey.”

Jimmy Walker,  Chad Campbell and 2011 winner Kevin Na are  tied for third at -11 under par. Jimmy  had a -2 under 69, Kevin-3 under shot 68, and Chad with a -1 under 70.

Jimmy thought the TPC Summerlin course was set up to be tough today;

”I think that the pins are a lot more difficult than they normally are, a lot of tough pins.”

”It’s like they don’t want us to make birdies. A lot of holes, par is pretty good here.”

Chad was of the same opinion;

 “There wasn’t a whole lot of low scores,  it was pretty hard to get to those pins.”

“But I feel like I played OK, and looking forward to tomorrow.”

Kevin is in contention, once again, the home town boy won here in 2011;

“There’s a lot of added pressure, being in my hometown and having won here.”

“You know, first round I got off to a slow start and stayed patient, shot 3 under. Same thing again. Just seemed like I’ve been patient and it’s paid off so far.”

“I think this is the toughest conditions I’ve ever seen out here.”

“The greens are drying out. They’re getting firm. You see a little bit of purple in it.”

“I’m thinking it’s going to be firm again tomorrow.”

 “Who knows. There is six or seven birdies out there, so somebody that’s kind of in the top five shoots six or seven under could win the tournament.”


Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. Second Round Delay Due To Darkness


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Brett Stegmaier leads the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open second round as play was halted due to darkness at TPC Summerlin in Las Vegas.


 Shriners Hospitals for Children Open

Brett Stagmaier peers through the gloom / Getty Images

Brett sits on top of the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open leaderboard at -11 under par. He still has three holes to play, and will restart on Saturday morning at 08:00 a.m. local time.  He holds his first lead on the PGA TOUR after making four birdies and an eagle in the 15 holes played so far in this second round. He said good putting was the key;

“I haven’t really putted that well in the last month of so, so I’m just trying to trust my reads and I’ve done a good job of that the last two days.”

“But I still have 38.5 holes left so there’s a long way to go.”

Three players are tied in second place at -10 under par. Tyler Aldridge, Chad Campbell and Morgan Hoffman, who have all completed their seconds. Tyler -3 under 68 today, Chad -4 under 67 and Morgan signing for a -5 under par 66.

Six players share the -9 under par total, including Nick Watney, his -5 under par 66 today pulling him up the leaderboard, he too relies on his putting performance ;

“My putter can make or break me, so that’s why I’d like to get more consistent.”

 “Today was a pretty good day, so I’ve got two more to kind of;  like I said, to try and get better.”

“And I really want to make a putt, that’s when sometimes it’s the hardest to make them. But hopefully they’ll go in.”

Shot of the day came from Tony Finau, who carded an Albatross on the 536 yard par  five 13th, using a 5-iron from 236 yards from the rough with his second shot;

“I didn’t have a great lie in the rough, so I couldn’t really dictate how it was going to come out.”

“I caught a little bit of a flyer and knew it was going to be a little long, if anything, but the hole got in the way.”

“It took one hop and disappeared, from what I heard. It was pretty cool.”

Tony needs to birdie the 18th tomorrow to get on the cut line, which is projected to come at -2 under par. Good Luck Tony.

You have to wonder about the organizers of this tournament, how can you run out of daylight? Start earlier.

The second round will resume at 0800 tomorrow, will be interesting to see if they can complete the third round on time.


Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. Three Tied at the Top

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There are three players tied at the top of the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open at TPC Summerlin in Las Vegas. Canadian David Hearn is joined by  Michael Thompson and Mark Hubbard.

 Shriners Hospitals for Children Open

Mark Hubbard / Getty Images

Last year was Mark’s rookie year on the PGA Tour, and it did not go so well, he finished 164th in the FedEx Cup standings, then had to go to the Tour Finals to keep his card. He did that with tie fifth finish at the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Championship, which put him in the 36th spot on the tour’s priority ranking list for the 2015-16 PGA Tour season. He actually got to -8 under here, but made bogey on the par three 17th, but said his driving and putting were good;

“You know, it was my rookie season.”

“It was a lot of growing pains, a lot of stuff to learn, but I felt like I did a good job of kind of persevering.”

“There were times where I got too frustrated. I almost cared too much, so I’ve kind of just taken a little bit of a chill pill recently and I’m playing a lot better golf.”

“I drove it awesome, I’ve been hitting it really straight off the tee, but today I was also hitting it farther than normal, so that was helpful, and I probably had my best putting round of 2015.”

The top three all carded opening rounds of -7 under par 64 at TPC Summerlin in The Shriners, none of them bogey free.

They are followed by a bunch of ten players all on -6 under par, and then another group of eleven on -5 under, so to say it is tight at the top of the leaderboard would be an understatement. The people on -4 under, just two shots off the lead are all T 25.

Patrick Rogers, -6 under, was happy to be in Las Vegas, where the Bentgrass greens surfaces at TPC Summerlin are good for putting;

“Last week was tough, you had poa annua greens which are always tricky around the hole, and I definitely missed my fair share of short putts.”

“It was just nice to get on some really, really nice bentgrass greens. They’re perfect.”

“I feel really comfortable on the greens, some of the greens are pretty big with a lot of breaking putts.”

“I feel like I putt well on those style of greens.”

Lets hope that the field spreads out a little bit in the second round tomorrow.

Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. Brilliant Ben Martin Wins

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A brilliant putting performance from Ben Martin wins him his first PGA Tour event, the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, in Las Vegas.

Shriners Hospitals For Children Open

Ben Martin / Getty Images

Ben carded a final round of -3 under par 68, which included two birdies and an eagle in his last four holes at TPC Summerlin, to win the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. His tournament total -20 under par gave him a two shot winning margin of victory;

“It was just an awesome way to finish, I didn’t really feel like I had much going all day, but to finish 4 under in the last four to cap my first win was just awesome.” 

In second place was Kevin Streelman at -18 under par, a -6 under par 65 was not good enough for him to win, but he pushed all the way.

Russell Knox was alone in third place at -16 under par, he was paired with Ben, and was witness to a couple of amazing birdie putts.

Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. Ben Martin Leads

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Ben Martin leads the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open in Las Vegas at TPC Summerlin.

Shriners Hospitals for Children Open

Ben Martin / Getty Images

Ben carded a beautiful third round of -9 under par 62, to top the Shriners leaderboard with a three round total of -17 under par. He will now take a two shot lead into the final round tomorrow.

Ben said in interview he could no wrong today;

“It’s just one of those days when you get in the zone.”

“Feels like every single number I had was the perfect number. Every time I grabbed a club it was the perfect number.”

In second place at -15 under par is one of the overnight leaders Russell Knox, he shot -5 under par 66 today, which compared to Ben’s 62, seemed pretty average. He keeps the leader in sight, and with light winds forecast tomorrow, the scoring could be low once again.

There were three rounds of -9 under par 62 today, the last of them came from Jim Herman, who is at -11 under par, and tied ninth.

Jimmy Walker and Andrew Svoboda are tied in third place at -13 under par for the tournament. Jimmy equaled the low round of the day, -9 under par 62. Andrew carded a second successive -4 under par 67.

The top 16 golfers are within six strokes of the lead, including defending champion Webb Simpson, who sits at -12 under par after a round of -4 under par 67 today.

Webb knows he will have to go low tomorrow to have any chance of defending his title;

“I stayed patient and was able to get on a run, it’s going to take a really special round out of me tomorrow because I think we’re going to have light winds.”

Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. Andrew Putnam & Russell Knox Tied.

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Andrew Putnam and Russell Knox are tied at the top in the second round of the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open at TPC Summerlin in Las Vegas.

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Andrew Putnam / Getty Images

Andrew Putnam scored a second round -6 under par 65, to share the Shriners lead at the half-way stage with a -10 under par total.

Andrew was  just two shots off the lead, entering the final round of the 2013 Tour Championship, where a  top-five finish would have guaranteed him a TOUR card. He was only one round away from fulfilling his dream, but unfortunately shot +5 over par  75 last round;

I wasn’t comfortable in that situation, I felt like my swing was a little loose, so it was good to have one more year on the Tour.”

“I was able to tighten up my swing a little bit, work with my swing coach and improve a lot from last year to this year.”

Russell feels comfortable on this Las Vegas course, carding -4 under par 67 today, to share the lead at -10 under par;

“I’ve been in this position before on this course the last couple years.”

“I’ve played nicely and just haven’t really played well four days, so I’m off to a good start and hopefully two more good ones to go.”

Andrew Svoboda and Tony Finau are tied in third place, both just one shot off the lead at -9 under par; Andrew with a -4 under par 67 and Tony a -6 under par 65.

Tony is in unfamiliar territory;

“It’s a spot I’m not real familiar with on the PGA TOUR level, but on the Tour I was able to be pretty successful, so we’ll see how it goes this weekend.”

Funny thing is, if you check out the stats, Andrew Putnam only appears in the putting category, just proves how important putting is.


Category Player Statistic
Strokes gained: tee-to-green Tony Finau 5.31
Driving distance Tony Finau 336.8 yards
Driving accuracy Steven Alker, Hudson Swafford 23 of 28 (82.1 percent)
Greens in regulation Martin Laird, Webb Simpson 32 of 36 (88.9 percent)
Strokes gained-putting Carlos Ortiz 2.79
Putts per round Kevin Kisner, Andrew Putnam, Andrew Svoboda 26.5
Total birdies Russell Knox, Spencer Levin 14