Thursday, October 29, 2009

Don't Leave It Short

On the other hand, it was a 60-footer. Clip of a Waco local news anchor trying to win $10,000 by making a 60-foot putt.

Hat tip to Jay Busbee via Twitter.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

PGA Tour First Stage Qualifiers in Texas

One first-stage qualifier for PGA Tour Q-School is over, another one comes next week. On Saturday, play wrapped up at Stonebridge Ranch Country Club in McKinney. The full scores can be found here, but we'll list the 23 golfers who advanced into the second round:

Nick Mason, Cave Creek, AZ, 278
Jacob Rogers, Tucson, AZ, 280
Allen McFerran, Fayetteville, AR, 281
William Doughtie, Amarillo, TX, 283
Jess Daley, Palm Beach Gardens, FL, 284
Tom Kalinowski, Scottsdale, AZ, 284
Randy Lowry, Spring, TX, 285
Nick Killpack, St. George, UT, 286
Pierre Relecom, Belgium, 286
Madalitso Muthiya, Albuquerque, NM, 287
Colin Biles, Columbus, OH, 287
Josh Broadaway, Dothan, AL, 287
Blake Sattler, New Philadelphia, PA, 287
David Suggs, Orlando, FL, 288
Bobby Hutcherson, Memphis, TX, 288
Jong Yoon, San Ramon, CA, 289
Jorge Campillo, Spain, 289
Darren Angel, Northridge, CA, 289
Matt Rosen, Tucson, AZ, 289
David Morland, Winter Garden, FL, 290
Rob Rashell, Scottsdale, AZ, 290
Travis Hampshire, Zephyrhills, FL, 290
Nemanja Savic, Raleigh, NC, 290

Coming up Oct. 27-30 is another first-stage qualifier in Texas, this one at Lantana Golf Club. And in that field is hotshot 20-year-old Rickie Fowler who - as I write this - is tied for the lead in the PGA Tour Open. If he wins there, he won't have to bother with Q-School.

The field also includes Tony Finau, currently a cast member of "Big Break Disney Golf" on the Golf Channel; as well as some of the top golf professionals (club pros and mini-tour players alike) in Texas including Stuart Deane, Jaxon Brigman, Martin Flores, Kelly Grunewald, Vince Jewell and Adam Rubinson.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Tiger and the Cowboys

Tiger Woods spent some time in Dallas this week, presumably getting in some work with Hank Haney. But El Tigre was also getting in some R&R, attending a U2 concert at the new Cowboys stadium and sitting in a private suite with Tony Romo and Jason Witten.

The next morning, Tiger pumped iron in the Cowboys' weight room, surprising those Cowboys players who showed up.

The Dallas Morning News had this quote:

"He's the greatest athlete of all time in my opinion," reserve QB Stephen McGee said. "There's a lot to learn from Tiger. He's got a lot of major characteristics. He was in the weight room showing that work ethic you always hear about. He was really cool."

Yes, let's hope that these Cowboys learn something from Tiger ... and that Tiger learns nothing from these Cowboys!

Tiger and Tony are apparently big buds. And Romo was named this month by Golf Digest as the best golfer among professional athletes with a +3.3 handicap. How many years until Romo is on the Champions Tour?

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Boot Ranch Foreclosed On; Sutton Out of the Picture

Hal Sutton's Boot Ranch project just outside Fredericksburg has been beset by problems throughout its short life. Despite that, the golf course drew raves.

Now, alas, it has drawn a foreclosure notice. Lehman Brothers - itself undergoing bankruptcy proceedings - is liquidating a $73 million loan to Boot Ranch to raise money for its creditors, the San Antonio Express-News reported.

The facility is expected to remain open and operating throughout the foreclosure, until new ownership can be found. But that means that Hal Sutton's involvement - and Boot Ranch was his baby all the way - is over.

Read the full story from the Express-News

Monday, October 12, 2009

Adams Tour Championship This Week; Lowry Wins in MS

The Adams Golf Pro Tour Series is headed to it season-ending tour championship this week. And Randy Lowry of Houston heads into that tour championship off a victory.

Lowry won the First Tee of Meridian Classic, played at Northwood Country Club in Meridian, Miss., over the weekend. Lowry surged to the title on the strength of a final-round 66, pipping Jaxon Brigman by one stroke at the end. Lowry finished at 17-under 267 and Brigman at 16-under.

Lowry is a 22-year-old rookie who had finished high multiple times previously in the season, but the Meridian is his first victory. And with that victory, Lowry took the lead on the tour money list.

Top Finishers
Randy Lowry, Houston, 67-68-66-66--267
Jaxon Brigman, Abilene, 67-65-65-71--268
Brett Lederer, Long Beach, Calif., 65-66-68-70--269
Mark Walker, Hurst, 66-66-67-71--270
Colby Beckstrom, Muskegon, Mich., 71-66-69-66--272
Full Scores

This week, Wednesday through Saturday, is the Island View Casino Resort Tour Championship at Windance Country Club in Gulfport, Miss. Brigman is the defending champion.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

New Putter Company in Utopia Offers Unique Design

utopia golf putters

How in the world did little, tiny Utopia, Texas - population 3000; gateway to Garner and Lost Maples state parks; home of some great pie, although I can never remember the name of the cafe serving it; home of Kinky Friedman's dog ranch - become a golfing hotbed?

The latest golf news to emerge from Utopia is the putter company, Utopia Golf Products, which has a couple unique designs that it is currently working to get into pro shops and other retail outlets across the country.

The press release is posted below, after a couple more images. But you can immediately spot what's different about the Utopia putters - that ridge running across the face. Well, in reality, that thin ridge is the face - it's what strikes the ball. Some insight into the design is included in the press release, and you can also check out the Utopia Golf Products website.

utopia golf putters

utopia golf putters

Here is the press release:

Utopia Golf Products Launched with Award-winning Putters

UTOPIA, Texas (September 28, 2009) – Utopia Golf Products, maker of finely-milled performance-based putters, made its official d├ębut at the PGA Fall Expo Sept. 1-2 in Las Vegas with welcome fanfare and highly successful results. Winner of a "Best New Product" award at the Expo, Utopia Golf Products is attracting the attention of golf instructors, equipment buyers, shop owners and players who appreciate the appealing putter designs with built-in performance features, in addition to the accomplished workmanship and high quality of the clubs.

"We are delighted with the great response we have had to our putters from the very start," says Scott Saunders, president of Utopia Golf Products. "It is a pleasure to know we will have the opportunity to enhance the enjoyment and performance of golfers who discover how our putters can help improve their games."

Each Utopia club is designed, milled, hand-assembled, painted and polished to exact standards at the company's manufacturing facility in Utopia, Texas, under the watchful eyes of putter designers Scott Saunders and Michael Hillis.

The Utopia TXR I cavity-back blade putter and TXR II heel-shafted cavity-back mallet putter feature a ridge that acts as the face, creating a thin leading line the company refers to as "The Edge." The purpose of "The Edge" is to give "true roll" to the ball, allowing it to move smoothly along the intended line to the hole and reducing the probability of a mis-hit. Utopia putters are designed to strike the ball just above its equator to provide instant forward roll without skidding, hopping, skipping, side- or backspin.

Utopia Golf Products was founded this year by Bill Deichler, Mike Hillis and Scott Saunders, all residents of Utopia, Texas, a town of under 300 residents located about 80 miles west of San Antonio in Texas Hill Country. Inspired by their own putting woes and their love of the game, they set out to create putters that would offer the pleasure of improved performance to golfers of all skill levels. With the twin goals of striving to perfect their own play and providing opportunities to others to improve their games, the founders decided to name their company "Utopia Golf Products," both in honor of their beloved little hometown and to reflect the unlimited potential of their creations.

Utopia putters will be available at pro shops, green-grass retailers, sporting goods retailers and other golf retail outlets across the U.S, as well as on the company Web site. The putters can be imprinted with club, corporate or organization logos. They make perfect tee and tournament prizes or great gifts any time of year.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Thelen Claims Natonal Title

Congratulation to Tim Thelen of The Falls Golf & Country Club in New Ulm. Thelen is one of the most accomplished club professionals in Texas, a two-time winner of the PGA Professional National Championship.

And now he is a winner of the Callaway Golf PGA Assistant Championship.

Thelen set a tournament record of at 23-under 265, winning the title by seven shots on Sunday in Port St. Lucie, Fla. Thelen posted rounds of 66, 65, 66 and 68.

Golfer Dies Trying to Retreive Ball

A golf course tragedy in Richardson over the weekend. A Garland golfer, identified as William Michael Grant, suffered fatal injuries trying to retrieve his golf ball after an errant shot at Sherrill Park Golf Course.

According to witnesses, Grant was trying to retrieve his golf ball, which had flown well over the green, when he slipped and fell down a 10-foot embankment. Preliminary findings indicated that Grant suffered a broken neck in the fall.

He died about an hour after being taken to the hospital.

Folks, make good decisions when you're on the golf course. Let's be careful out there.

TGA Senior Four Ball Champs Crowns

From the TGA - Montgomery , TX – A third straight day of perfect weather greeted the players at Woodforest Golf Club in Montgomery. Twenty-three teams began the week in hopes to be com e the 2009 State Senior Four-Ball Champion, but in the end it was the duo of Robert McKinney and Chip Stewart overcoming a four shot deficit to start the day to take the title by one stroke over Tom Doughtie and Bill Caveness and Kenneth Leasley and Dee Johnston.

After two rounds this week, Stewart and McKinney found themselves staring at a four shot deficit playing two groups behind the leaders, Tom Doughtie and Bill Caveness. But a strong start by Stewart who birdied three of the first four holes got the pair to within one stroke of the lead at the turn as Doughtie and Caveness weren’t able to get anything going on the front carding 8 pars and a bogey. Stewart and McKinney were able to add three more birdies on back nine to give them the low round for the day for a 6-under par, 65. Doughtie and Caveness bounced back with two birdies on the back, but in the end, it was only good enough for a tie for second place at 13-under for the championship with Kenneth Leasley and Dee Johnston giving Stewart and McKinney the victory with a three day total of 14-under par, 199.

This is Stewart’s third Senior Four Ball title in seven years, but his first playing with McKinney. Individually, they put together a pretty prolific resume of tournament golf in Texas. Stewart has won the Texas Amateur in 1992 and 1998, the Mid-Am Match Play Championship in 2001 and the Senior Four Ball Championship in 2003 and 2005 while McKinney has won the State Four Ball in 1988, the Texas Amateur in 1999 and the Mid-Amateur in 1996. It only made sense that they would be the team to beat this week.

The Super Senior Division finished with no surprises either as the team from Georgetown , Don Grider and Don Neff finished with a nine shot victory over the next closest team of Carey Schulten and Tom Mattox. Grider, who had an eighth place finish this year in the Super Senior Division at the State Senior Championship paired up with Neff to post a 71, 72, and 73 for a three day total of 3-over par, 216, which is pretty respectable as they played the same from the same yardage (6,543 yards).

The Texas Golf Association would like to extend a whole-hearted thank you to the staff of Woodforest Golf Club. Their support of the Texas Golf Association this year has been second to none as Tom Martty and his staff have provided some of the best tournament experiences both on the course and in the clubhouse. Woodforest is definitely a diamond in the rough in the Houston Area that anyone who has the chance should com e out and experience.