Devil Ball Golf

  • Bubba Watson leading American charge to fringes of medal contention

    Bubba Watson posing in the third round of the 2016 men's Olympic golf tournament. (Getty Images)
    Bubba Watson posing in the third round of the 2016 men’s Olympic golf tournament. (Getty Images)

    Medal count | Olympic schedule |Olympic news

    Here come the Americans.

    The four Yankees — Bubba Watson, Matt Kuchar, Rickie Fowler and Patrick Reed — got off to a sluggish start during the first 36 holes of the 2016 men’s Olympic golf tournament in Rio. However, all but Reed climbed into the fringes of metal contention on Saturday at the Olympic Golf Course.

    Watson leads the way on the leaderboard, carding a second consecutive 4-under 67 to get to 6-under 207, six shots behind leader Justin Rose but just three shots away from the bronze medal and third place Marcus Fraser of Australia. In a tie for fourth place, Watson said ahead of the tournament that his strategy would be to play for a medal, whatever it took.

    “It would be better to have bronze than nothing,” Watson said Tuesday. “It’s situational, you know what I’m saying.”

    A shot behind Watson is Matt Kuchar, who is a part of a five-way

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  • Rose takes one-stroke lead into men's Olympic final round

    Justin Rose carries a lead into the final round in Rio. (Getty Images)
    Justin Rose carries a lead into the final round in Rio. (Getty Images)

    Medal count | Olympic schedule |Olympic news

    Justin Rose made his move on Saturday in the third round of the 2016 men’s Olympic golf tournament, shooting a 6-under 65 that carried him to a one-stroke lead entering the final round.

    Rose is at 12-under 201, just ahead of reigning British Open winner Henrik Stenson, who shot a second consecutive 3-under 68 in windy conditions at the Olympic Golf Course in Rio de Janeiro. The 2013 U.S. Open champion made up a lot of ground in two holes, with an eagle 2 on the driveable par-4 third hole and another eagle on the reachable par-5 fifth.

    Aussie Marcus Fraser, the 36-hole leader, hung in well amid the chargers coming for him on Saturday. His 1-over 72 in Round 3 leaves him just three off the pace. Fraser has a three-shot edge in the race for the bronze medal, with three players tied for fourth place at 6 under par, including Bubba Watson, David Lingmerth and Emiliano Grillo.

    Read More »from Rose takes one-stroke lead into men's Olympic final round
  • Jaco Van Zyl makes second hole-in-one of men's Olympic golf event

    Medal count | Olympic schedule |Olympic news

    Jaco Van Zyl skipped out on entries into the British Open and PGA Championship with the hopes of preparing diligently for golf’s return to the Olympics in Brazil. That decision hadn’t borne fruit until Saturday.

    Jaco Van Zyl celebrates an ace at the Olympic golf tournament.
    Jaco Van Zyl celebrates an ace at the Olympic golf tournament.

    The South African made the second hole-in-one of the men’s Olympic golf tournament in the third round, holing out for a 1 on the card on the 173-yard par-3 eighth hole.

    Van Zyl’s ball landed just short of the hole location, rolling in as smoothly as a putt. He dropped his club on the tee box in celebration.

    Justin Rose made the first hole-in-one of this Olympic golf tournament, making a 1 on the fourth hole on Thursday.

    The eagle will help Van Zyl’s bid to get on the right side of par for the week after opening 71-74 to get through the first 36 holes in 3 over par.


    Ryan Ballengee is a Yahoo Sports contributor. Find him on Facebook and Twitter.


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    Read More »from Jaco Van Zyl makes second hole-in-one of men's Olympic golf event
  • Rickie Fowler is in 50th place through two rounds in Rio. (Getty Images)
    Rickie Fowler is in 50th place through two rounds in Rio. (Getty Images)

    Medal count | Olympic schedule | Olympic news

    The United States is the only country participating in the men’s Olympic golf tournament with the maximum allotment of four players in the field. They were all in the top 15 in the Official World Golf Ranking at the qualifying cutoff before the British Open.

    Through 36 holes in Rio, just one of the four Americans in the field is in the top 15 of the 60-player event.

    Matt Kuchar, who got in the field when Dustin Johnson and Jordan Spieth declined to compete in this event, is tied for 14th place at 3-under 139 through two rounds. He’s seven shots behind leader Australian Marcus Fraser, who also got into the event thanks to his countrymen taking a pass on golf’s return to the Olympics.

    Then there’s Bubba Watson, one shot behind Kuchar at 2 under par.

    Another shot further behind is Patrick Reed. After Day 1, Reed, as well his fellow Americans, suggested the old 72-hole

    Read More »from Americans collectively struggling at the men's Olympic golf tournament
  • Marcus Fraser maintains the lead in the Olympic golf tournament. (Getty Images)
    Marcus Fraser maintains the lead in the Olympic golf tournament. (Getty Images)

    Marcus Fraser was the sixth-highest ranked Australian male golfer, and he’s in the Olympic field because a handful of his countrymen decided they would skip the sport’s return to the Games.

    Through 36 holes, he’s taken advantage of his opportunity.

    Fraser leads the men’s individual Olympic golf tournament in Rio de Janeiro by a shot on 10-under 132 after shooting 2-under 69 in Friday’s second round.

    The Aussie is a shot clear of Belgian Thomas Pieters and two ahead of Swede and British Open champion Henrik Stenson.

    Unexpected early rain and wind softened the Gil Hanse-designed Olympic Golf Course, making it play longer than anticipated heading into the event. The closest score on Friday to Fraser’s opening 63 was turned in by New Zealand’s Danny Lee, whose 6-under 65 brought him up 28 spots to a tie for sixth place.

    Among the American contingent — the only country with the maximum four players in the men’s

    Read More »from Fraser maintains one-shot lead through 2 rounds of Olympic golf tourney
  • Marcus Fraser took the Day 1 lead at the men's Olympic golf tournament (Getty Images)
    Marcus Fraser took the Day 1 lead at the men’s Olympic golf tournament (Getty Images)

    On a historic Day 1 at the Olympic Golf Course in Rio de Janeiro, Marcus Fraser earned a three-stroke lead in the first round of golf played in the Games since 1904.

    Fraser shot 8-under 63 on the Gil Hanse-designed course to take a three-shot lead over British Open winner Henrik Stenson and Canadian Graham DeLaet heading into Friday’s second round of the 72-hole, individual event.

    “We said before walking here, at the moment, you’ve got the Olympic record,” Fraser said. “That’s pretty cool. So hopefully that lasts all week.”

    DeLaet was the second player to tee off in the 60-player event, a wink to George Lyon, who won the gold medal in the 1904 Olympic golf competition in St. Louis.

    “You know, we do this for a living week‑in and week‑out, but there was something different about that first tee shot today,” DeLaet said after the round. “It was a different announcement for us, and it was just a really

    Read More »from Marcus Fraser takes 3-shot lead after Day 1 of men's Olympic golf tourney
  • Justin Rose made Olympic history on Thursday, making the first hole-in-one in Olympic golf competition in Rio de Janeiro.

    Justin Rose celebrates an ace at the 2016 Olympics.
    Justin Rose celebrates an ace at the 2016 Olympics.

    The Brit made the ace on the 191-yard fourth hole on the Gil Hanse-designed Olympic golf course. The ball landed about 10 feet short of the cup, rolling in for a 1 on the scorecard.

    As it turns out, Rose had to credit his caddie, Mark Fulcher, with getting him the right stick for the shot.

    “I was going to hit 8-iron, and he told me 7-iron and I went with him for a change, worked out,” Rose said after the round of 4-under 67.

    Rose wasn’t sure if the ball had gone in the hole, but he figured he had it from the crowd reaction.

    “It was one of those, almost like an infinity edge where the pin wasn’t where the cup sets and where the back edge falls off the green,” he said. “So it was either in or it was off the back edge.”

    This week marks golf’s return to the Olympics after a

    Read More »from Justin Rose makes first hole-in-one in Olympic history
  • Danny Willett represents Great Britain in Olympic golf. (Getty Images)
    Danny Willett represents Great Britain in Olympic golf. (Getty Images)

    For Danny Willett, it’s strange and exciting to be a player in golf’s return to the Olympic games. It’s exciting because he’s been able to have meals and conversations with some of the greatest British athletes. It’s been strange because golf is, well, small potatoes on the Olympic program of 28 sports.

    “When you’re at a major, that is the one thing going on. You’ve got 200,000 people flocking just to watch 18 holes of golf,” Willett said Monday in Rio de Janeiro.

    “Whereas out here, I don’t know how many sports there are in the Olympics, 28, we’re a very small percentage.”

    Spectators have been banned from the Olympic golf course until the tournament begins, meaning that the preparation for this event — the first time golf has been in the Games in 112 years — has probably felt more like U.S. Open sectional qualifying than an Olympic event.

    “It’s kind of funny in that way, usually we’re signing autographs and every

    Read More »from For Olympic golfers, it's an odd feeling being just a part of the show
  • Zach Johnson doesn't expect run of 58s (or even better) to continue

    Zach Johnson has been dominant at the John Deere Classic. (Getty Images)
    Zach Johnson has been dominant at the John Deere Classic. (Getty Images)

    In the last two weeks, two players — Stephan Jaeger on the Web.com Tour and Jim Furyk on the PGA Tour — have shot 58 in a PGA Tour-sanctioned tournament. That had never happened previously.

    Zach Johnson isn’t sure anything like that is going to happen again in his lifetime.

    “What’s crazy is the fact that we’ve had two 58s in two weeks,” Johnson said Tuesday ahead of the John Deere Classic, played opposite the men’s Olympic golf tournament in Rio. “Obviously it’s never happened. Probably not going to happen again. At least not in my time.”

    The two-time major winner made the obvious joke that you’ll hear from a lot of your golf buddies in the next few weeks, but Johnson talks from the experience of seeing Furyk firsthand for the first two rounds last week at the Travelers Championship.

    “You just know you go to some of these tournaments, and these fields, because they’re so deep, you got to shoot low numbers,” he

    Read More »from Zach Johnson doesn't expect run of 58s (or even better) to continue
  • Power rankings: John Deere Classic

    Zach Johnson plays some of his best golf at TPC Deere Run. (Getty Images)
    Zach Johnson plays some of his best golf at TPC Deere Run. (Getty Images)

    The PGA Tour is split this week, sort of, with the Olympic golf tournament in Rio de Janeiro and the John Deere Classic entertaining any non-Olympic player in Silvis, Ill. Jordan Spieth would be defending champion here, but since he chose not to compete in the Olympics for health reasons, he also didn’t want to distract either tournament by choosing to play at the Deere.

    Here are our top five players for this week:

    1. Zach Johnson — Zach has been in the top three here in each the last five years. Enough said.

    2. Jon Rahm — Rahm has locked up his PGA Tour card and is playing pretty freely. Went sideways after a good start at Hartford, finishing T-25. Learned a lesson in a shootout event he can apply this week.

    3. Daniel Summerhays — Summerhays has enjoyed a good run of late and is a fixture in the top 15 in this championship, with three top-15s in the last five years.

    4. Steve Stricker — Stricker had three

    Read More »from Power rankings: John Deere Classic
  • Emiliano Grillo's golf clubs didn't make it with him on the flight to Rio. (Getty Images)
    Emiliano Grillo’s golf clubs didn’t make it with him on the flight to Rio. (Getty Images)

    Emiliano Grillo is representing Argentina in golf’s return to the Olympics, with the men’s tournament kicking off on Thursday from the Olympic Golf Course in Rio. However, the Argentinian is going to have trouble playing without his clubs.

    Grillo flew down to Brazil ahead of the tournament, and his golf clubs and bag were lost by one of two airliners he flew, American and Latam.

    The Frys.com (now Safeway) Open winner was hyped beforehand…

    …and unhappy after hitting the ground.

    Read More »from Olympic Emiliano Grillo reunited with his clubs days before tournament
  • Wesley Bryan earns three-win promotion from Web.com Tour

    Wesley Bryan has earned the Web.com Tour's Three-Win Promotion (Getty Images)
    Wesley Bryan has earned the Web.com Tour’s Three-Win Promotion (Getty Images)

    Wesley Bryan has very quickly transformed himself from a YouTube trick-shot sensation into a PGA Tour member. That metamorphosis completed on Sunday, when Bryan won the Web.com Tour’s Digital Ally Open in Kansas.

    Bryan beat Grayson Murray and J.T. Potson on the second hole of a sudden-death playoff to pick up his third win of this Web.com Tour season and earning an instant promotion to the PGA Tour.

    Since 1997, the Web.com Tour, the PGA Tour’s developmental circuit, has offered immediate PGA Tour membership to any player upon their third win of the year, no matter when it happens on the schedule. That means Bryan is eligible to compete in the final two regular season events on the PGA Tour schedule: next week’s John Deere Classic and the Wyndham Championship.

    In a pair of PGA Tour starts this season, Bryan has made the cut and earned about 50 FedEx Cup points which now count toward the standings with his

    Read More »from Wesley Bryan earns three-win promotion from Web.com Tour
  • On a day that was kicked off by Jim Furyk shooting the first 58 in PGA Tour history, it was a grind for the final groups to get to the finish — and a winner — at the Travelers Championship.

    However, in the end, Russell Knox’s final round of 2-under 68 was good enough to capture the win at TPC River Highlands in Cromwell, Conn. Knox’s 14-under 266 total beat 49-year-old Jerry Kelly by a shot after Kelly went out earlier in the afternoon and shot 6-under 64.

    Russell Knox wins his second PGA Tour title this season (Getty Images)
    Russell Knox wins his second PGA Tour title this season (Getty Images)

    It wasn’t easy for Knox, who bogeyed the 16th hole with a three-putt on the difficult par 3. He didn’t make it easy to clear the water guarding the par-4 17th, but Knox managed a par. On No. 18, Knox’s drive went way right, with his approach finding a greenside bunker deepened this year. After blasting out to 12 feet, Knox calmly knocked in the putt for the victory.

    Daniel Berger, who entered the final round with a three-shot

    Read More »from Russell Knox wins Travelers Championship for 2nd title of PGA Tour season
  • Jim Furyk shoots first 58 in PGA Tour history at the Travelers

    Jim Furyk made history early on Sunday at the Travelers Championship.

    For the second time in his career, Furyk shot a sub-60 round on the PGA Tour, shooting the first ever 58 in PGA Tour history in the final round of the Travelers Championship.

    Furyk got off to a hot start on the par-70 TPC River Highlands in Cromwell, Conn., going out in 8-under 27, including a hole-out eagle from the fairway on the par-4 third hole from 135 yards. He finished out the front side with four consecutive birdies, extending that streak to seven in a row on the first three holes of the back nine.

    The 2003 U.S. Open winner then made three pars in a row, missing out on chances at the par-5 13th, the 14th hole and the drivable par-4 15th. Then, Furyk made a 23-foot birdie at the par-3 16th hole, putting him 12 under on the round.

    With a couple of ho-hum pars, Furyk put the finishing touches on his 58.

    Jim Furyk celebrates after shooting 58 (Getty Images)
    Jim Furyk celebrates after shooting 58 (Getty Images)

    This 58

    Read More »from Jim Furyk shoots first 58 in PGA Tour history at the Travelers
  • Tom Watson is one of several keynote speakers at an important Friday night dinner put on by Travelers and the Travelers Championship. The dinner will benefit the Bruce Edwards Foundation and is expected to raise more than $1 million that will support research toward a cure for ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease), which claimed Edwards’ life.

    Tom Watson and Bruce Edwards at the 2003 U.S. Open (Getty Images)
    Tom Watson and Bruce Edwards at the 2003 U.S. Open (Getty Images)

    Before the dinner, Mr. Watson joined us for a special edition of the podcast to talk about his work within the ALS community since Edwards’ passing, sharing stories of their 30-plus years together. Watson also shared how people who want to become involved with the race to find a cure can contribute.

    Be sure to subscribe to our podcast on iTunes, Google Play MusicTuneIn, PlayerFM or Stitcher.

    Read More »from PODCAST: Tom Watson sharing stories about and honoring former caddie Bruce Edwards
  • Tommy Morrissey is an inspirational story. The 5-year-old golfer was born without much of his right arm, but that hasn’t stopped him from becoming an impressive junior who has been featured all over the place.

    While he has a great swing all his own, Morrissey also has the ability to impersonate the swings of some of his favorite golfers.

    tommy-morrissey

    The gang down at Pinehurst Resort in North Carolina hosted Morrissey as part of him qualifying for the U.S. Kids Golf World Championships and let him take pop by their golf academy to take some cuts in the swings of the likes of Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Jason Day and Rickie Fowler. He even did a left-handed Phil Mickelson with a right-handed club. But I’m partial to his mostly-follow-through impersonation of Arnold Palmer’s wild club lassoing at the end of his swing.

    Morrissey is a wonderful kid, and I can’t wait to see what he does next.


    Ryan Ballengee is a Yahoo Sports contributor. Find him on Facebook and Twitter.


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  • Jon Rahm has already practically locked up his PGA Tour card. (Getty Images)
    Jon Rahm has already practically locked up his PGA Tour card. (Getty Images)

    CROMWELL, CONN. — When Bryson DeChambeau turned pro after the Masters and finished tied for fourth place at Harbour Town in his first start, so many people figured the eccentric former U.S. Amateur champion would be the can’t-miss collegiate-turned-pro of the year.

    That wasn’t the case.

    While DeChambeau has enjoyed some decent follow-on results from that first week at the RBC Heritage, he is severe danger of not earning his PGA Tour win fresh out of school. He’ll need a T-3 this week at the Travelers Championship to avoid a certain trip to the Web.com Tour Finals. From there, he’ll need to play four events and try to earn enough money that could land him on the PGA Tour next season.

    Jon Rahm doesn’t have such a problem.

    In just four starts as a professional, Rahm has made all four cuts, finishing T-3 in his first start the Quicken Loans National and ending up tied for second at the RBC Canadian Open. He’s

    Read More »from Jon Rahm turning into more than prospect, but consistent threat to win
  • PODCAST: Jimmy Walker wins the PGA; talking golf with Shane Battier

    Jimmy Walker won the Wanamaker Trophy at Baltusrol. (Getty Images)
    Jimmy Walker won the Wanamaker Trophy at Baltusrol. (Getty Images)

    Jimmy Walker won his first major championship at the PGA Championship, with an exciting final 30 minutes against Jason Day. How does his win rank against the other three majors of the year? We’re joined in the second half of the show by two-time NBA champion and Duke legend Shane Battier. We talk about his foundation, the parallels between golf and basketball, as well his quest to get to a single-digit handicap.

    Be sure to subscribe to our podcast on iTunes, Google Play MusicTuneIn, PlayerFM or Stitcher.


    Ryan Ballengee is a Yahoo Sports contributor. Find him on Facebook and Twitter.


    Read More »from PODCAST: Jimmy Walker wins the PGA; talking golf with Shane Battier
  • Matt Kuchar thought Olympic golf was a team competition; it's not

    Matt Kuchar is one of four U.S. men in the Olympic golf tournament (Getty Images)
    Matt Kuchar is one of four U.S. men in the Olympic golf tournament (Getty Images)

    Matt Kuchar is part of the seven-player — four men, three women — American contingent taking part in golf’s return to the Olympics next week in Rio de Janeiro.

    Apparently, until Wednesday, he figured he would be representing the U.S.A. along with Bubba Watson, Patrick Reed and Rickie Fowler in a team competition. He’s not.

    Yikes.

    To be absolutely clear, the Olympic golf format, for both the men’s and women’s tournaments, is a 60-player, no-cut, 72-hole individual tournament. The medals are awarded to individuals who represent their countries. It’s not like the Ryder Cup or the World Cup of Golf or the NCAA golf championships.

    Golf returns to the Olympic program this year after a 112-year absence. It was last in the

    Read More »from Matt Kuchar thought Olympic golf was a team competition; it's not
  • Bubba Watson looking at expanding post-Olympic schedule for Ryder Cup

    Bubba Watson is looking for a third Travelers Championship this week. (Getty Images)
    Bubba Watson is looking for a third Travelers Championship this week. (Getty Images)

    Bubba Watson is the defending champion at this week’s Travelers Championship, a tournament he’s won twice in his career. While nothing is ever truly a lock in golf, it’s a safe bet that Watson will score some important Ryder Cup points.

    And Watson needs them. With the top eight players in the standings after The Barclays at the end of the month earning an automatic place on the U.S. Ryder Cup team, Watson is currently ninth on the list.

    This week takes on added importance considering he won’t be able to earn points next week at the John Deere Classic, as he’ll be in Brazil representing the United States in the men’s Olympic golf tournament. The goal is to play well near Hartford, but there’s the possibility Watson will add an event to his schedule to make sure he seals a Ryder Cup spot.

    “We talked about playing Wyndham,” he said Tuesday. “Normally I don’t play Wyndham to get ready for the playoffs.

    Read More »from Bubba Watson looking at expanding post-Olympic schedule for Ryder Cup