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


White Dragon GolfShriners Hospitals for Child

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

White Dragon GolfShriners Hospitals for Child

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. Webb Weaves Magic.

Webb Simpson weaves his magic at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open to lead by four strokes at TPC Summerlin, in Las Vegas, Nevada

Webb Simpson, Shriners Hospitals for Children Open 2013

Webb Simpson / Getty Images

Webb fired a second round -8 under par 63 to accumulate his -15 under par tournament total, taking advantage of the perfect scoring conditions. he was amazed at how far the ball was travelling;

“The ball is really going far, I was wondering why the scores were so low yesterday morning because I thought the ball might go a little shorter. But the ball was getting out there and the golf course played a little shorter than I thought it would, and I just putted well and kept going. There’s no wind, no clouds in the sky and it’s really quiet, so it’s easy to kind of daydream. You’ve really got to focus on what you’re doing and talk to your caddie, at least for me. I talk to him about what we’re trying to do here, where we’re trying to hit the ball.”

J.J. Henry followed his course-record 60 with a second round of 71, leaving him tied in second place at -11 under par. With him are  John Senden, Jeff Overton, Chesson Hadley and Jason Bohn.

John Senden said he was looking for birdies;

“I need to keep on making birdies out there, it’s not as much building a score, it’s just about doing a great job on making birdies, and if that’s good enough to do it, well, hopefully it’ll be me.”

Chesson said it had been a great day, and is looking forward to the week-end;

“It was a great day, it’s been a fantastic start to the week, and to be at 11 under and to have a chance going into the weekend is awesome. I’ve been in this position before as far as Tour, and certainly a little bit different stage out here on the PGA TOUR. Just looking to manage the nerves tomorrow and just realize it’s just golf, and let’s just go have some fun.”

J.J. was very disappointed with his performance;

“I was 11 shots higher and I honestly don’t feel like it. I didn’t hit it quite as good as yesterday, but the putts just didn’t fall like they did yesterday. All in all, I was a little bit disappointed, but still two rounds to go. I’m right in the thick of things.”


Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. J.J. Henry Shoots 60.

J.J. Henry shoots 60 to take the first round lead of the Shriners Hospitals for Children event at TPC Summerlin in Las Vegas.

J.J. Henry / Getty Images

Ronald “J.J.” shot an amazing bogey free -11 under par 60 to top the leaderboard in the first round of the Shriners Hospitals for Children competition, making an Eagle 3 putt of 50 feet on the par 5 ninth hole, his last of the day. He said it was just one of those days;

“It was one of those days, there wasn’t much wind and the greens were pretty soft. It was nice to make that putt on the last hole to make lunch taste that much better. I played solid on the front nine. It’s still pretty cold in the morning, I was just trying to get my feet wet and shoot a couple under par. Any time you start with the round I had, it gives you a lot of confidence for the rest of the week. I thought it was important to get myself off to a good start.I finally made some putts, I’ve always felt like I’ve been a pretty good ball-striker, and when I make some putts I seem to climb the board.”

Just one shot back on -10 under par, following his opening  round 61 is Andres Romero. He said he had stayed focused on his golf game;

” I was focused on my game and I was trying to do my job, and that’s all. I feel very good and focused on the game and on every shot. So I wasn’t paying attention to the leaderboard and the other guys.”

Tied in third place are James Driscoll,  Jonathan Byrd and Jeff Overton, at -8 under par after their first rounds of 63.

James had an edgy start to his round, electing to play a provisional ball of the first tee. The hooked drive was found, and James went on to make par, he said he then got it figured out, he also spoke about the Eagle;

“After that, I kind of figured things out, after the first couple of holes, everything kind of felt pretty good. I got the putter going and hit a lot of 3-woods out there off of the tees. I kept it in play and gave myself a lot of chances. I actually hit a decent drive and it caught the left bunker. I had to lay up to like 90 yards and had a pretty good number and been working on my wedge game pretty good, so I felt pretty confident over it, and it kind of took a nice little kick for me and went right in the hole.”

Jeff holed out for Eagle on the first hole;

” I don’t ever remember holing out on the first hole any golf tournament, so it was pretty of cool. I kind of felt uncomfortable for some reason on the first tee, kind of pulled it and kind of had a tough little shot underneath the tree and hit a little low snap hook pitching wedge and it rolled about 30 feet and just died right in the center and I’m like, `Sweet.'”


Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, Ryan Moore Wins

Moore success

Ryan Moore/Halleran/Getty Images

Ryan Moore , who lives in Las Vegas, won the Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open on Sunday at TPC Summerlin, Las Vegas, Nevada with a last round of -5 under par 66, and a tournament total -24 under par. This is Ryan’s second PGA Tour title, he finally shook of the challenge from Brendon de Jonge by grabbing a birdie on the par 5 16th hole, to take the outright lead and then finished with two pars for a -5 under par 66 and a one-stroke victory over Brendon. Ryan said the challenge from Brendon was tough;

” The last couple of days were tough, I was shot for shot with Brendon, and he was playing some great golf. I was able to make a birdie down the stretch when it mattered to hold him off at the end. He was playing great and he was hitting the ball really well, and he was making putts, I tried not to get too wrapped up into what he was doing really for the last two days. I just tried to keep my head and just keep hitting my golf shots, and playing the golf course how I wanted to play it and just give myself opportunities.”

Brendon de Jonge, from Zimbabwe had to settle for second place alone, he unfortunately managed to miss the fairway on the 560-yard par 5 16th hole. He eventually finished with a last round of -4 under par a 67 and a total of -23 under par. Brendon rued the missed fairway on 16, he said;

” Today, playing a little bit down breeze, all you’ve got to do is get one in the fairway, it’s almost a mid-iron in there, so that was definitely a turning point, you know, the bad tee shot there. I played nicely all week, hats off to Ryan. He played great, especially down the stretch. He made a couple tough shots in there on 17 and 18, and he pulled them off when he needed to.”

Jonas Blixt finished in third place alone, he had a disappointing last round of -1 under par 70, with a total score of -20 under par for the tournament.

An Acrimonious Aside

Justin Timberlake has been dropped as the Host of this tournament, it is suggested he was not visible enough for the Shriners people. Did not get involved enough with the day-to-day running and promotion of the Children’s Hospitals or the kids themselves  Although Shriners grudgingly announced that Justin did;

“Fulfill his obligations to the tournament and helped raise several million dollars. He wasn’t able to generate greater interest in the tournament, and his star power wasn’t enough to lure bigger-name players to the event on a consistent basis”.

The tournament chairman, Raoul Frevel,  was very specific about why they were not interested in continuing;

“Justin’s a wonderful person. But we tried everything we could to get him more involved with our kids and the hospitals. But it seemed that when the TV cameras weren’t on, he disappeared.

Last week Justin was unresponsive with the local media at the Ryder Cup, and this week a Charity is suggesting that his volunteer participation was found wanting.

Not sure what the real deal is here, but Justin has been the host of the Shriners Hospitals for Kids for four years, it will be interesting to see who Shriners pick next as the Host, who will bring the “bigger name players” to the tournament.