Notebook

Scoring takes a hike in Honda Classic as wind gusts wreak havoc in final round

 
 
Ryan Palmer reacts on the 18th hole during the final round of The Honda Classic at PGA National Resort and Spa on March 2, 2014 in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.
Ryan Palmer reacts on the 18th hole during the final round of The Honda Classic at PGA National Resort and Spa on March 2, 2014 in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.
Sam Greenwood / Getty Images

Next stop Doral

What: World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship.

When: Thursday through Sunday.

Where: Trump National Doral, 4400 NW 87th Ave., Doral.

Course: The Blue Monster (36-36 — 72, 7,481 yards). Redesigned by Gil Hanse since last year’s tournament.

Format: 72-hole stroke play with no cut.

The field: At 67 currently but could increase.

Purse: $9 million with $1,530,000 going to the winner.

TV: Thursday-Friday — 1-6 p.m. Golf Channel; Saturday — noon-2 p.m. Golf Channel; 2-6 p.m. NBC; Sunday: 1-3 p.m. Golf Channel; 3-7 p.m. NBC.

Defending champion: Tiger Woods (66-65-67-71, 19-under 269). Contending a year ago: Steve Stricker, 271; Adam Scott, 274; Sergio Garcia, 274; Phil Mickelson, 274.

Tickets: Go to www.cadillacchampionship.com for information.


jwalfish@MiamiHerald.com

Revenge was sweet for the Champion Course at PGA National Resort & Spa.

After playing around par for the first three days of the Honda Classic, the average score on the course was 71.8, nearly two full shots more than par 70 the track played at this week. The main culprit — the wind gusts blowing in out of the east at almost 15 mph that had the flags on the pin standing at attention.

“It’s hard [in general],” fifth-place finisher Billy Hurley III said of the course. “It’s real hard in the wind. There’s a disaster on almost every hole waiting for you.”

The course was firmer Sunday than it had been the first three days, and the greens were far less receptive, which made trying to get close to the flag a trying task. To make life even more demanding, the greens were faster Sunday as witnessed when Rory McIlroy’s bunker shot on the first playoff hole rolled right off the green.

The most difficult stretch on the course, the final four holes, played extraordinarily tough in these conditions. Three out of the four pins were placed just off the right edge of the green and with the wind coming from right to left on those locations, most players were unable to get it close to the flag from long distances.

“The pins are tucked and the only way to get to them is to maybe ride the wind in there,” said Derek Fathauer, who shot 5-over-par Sunday after playing the first three days at 2-under. “Those last few holes, you can’t really go pin hunting, you got to hit it in the middle of the green and take your 30-footer.”

As the wind blew, the leaderboard shifted dramatically. There were 16 players inside the top 10 and ties at the end of Saturday and only eight finished there Sunday. Two players who finished in the top 10, David Hearn and Sergio Garcia, finished their rounds shortly after the final group teed off and sat at least nine shots back when play started. There were only 17 rounds under par all day, 15 of which came from players from the bottom half of the leaderboard, and 13 of those players finished in the top 25.

From bad to worse

Five holes cost Nicholas Thompson his second-career top-5 finish.

Thompson, who grew up in Coral Springs, arrived at the ninth tee at 7-under for the tournament and 1-under on the day. By the time he was staring down the 14th fairway from the tee box, he had lost five strokes. He was unable to get anything back down the stretch and finished the tournament in a tie for 33rd at 2-under.

“Every nice shot I hit turned average, every marginal shot turned crappy and the one maybe poor shot I hit turned beyond bad,” Thompson said. “It can get going very wrong out here very fast.”

After three bogeys in four holes, Thompson arrived at the par-4 13th and made a mess of it. After missing the fairway off the tee, he flew his ball over the green with his approach. He overshot the green again from the rough behind the flag and followed that with two putts to card a double bogey.

“That hole bites me in the rear end every year,” Thompson said. “One day out of four it gets me. I just usually hope it’s just a bogey; [Sunday] it wasn’t.”

Read more Golf stories from the Miami Herald

  • Cloninger reaches US Senior Amateur quarterfinals

    Rick Cloninger advanced to the U.S. Senior Amateur quarterfinals Tuesday, beating qualifying medalist Alan Fadel and David Szewczul at Big Canyon.

  • CHAMPIONS - Pacific Links Hawaii Championship Preview

    Friday, September 19th through Sunday, September 21st Course Info Site: Kapolei Golf Course, Kapolei, Hawaii Course Architect: Ted Robinson (1995) Par: 72 Yardage: 7,002 Hole by Hole Front Nine: 36 3,517 Yds 1 - Par 5 563 Yds 2 - Par 4 430 Yds 3 - Par 4 435 Yds 4 - Par 4 404 Yds 5 - Par 3 188 Yds 6 - Par 4 356 Yds 7 - Par 5 586 Yds 8 - Par 3 202 Yds 9 - Par 4 353 Yds Back Nine: 36 3,485 Yds 10 - Par 4 407 Yds 11 - Par 4 377 Yds 12 - Par 3 183 Yds 13 - Par 4 437 Yds 14 - Par 5 526 Yds 15 - Par 4 409 Yds 16 - Par 3 205 Yds 17 - Par 5 526 Yds 18 - Par 4 415 Yds Tournament Info Year: 3rd Television: Golf Channel - Friday/Saturday -- 7:30-10:30 p.m. (et), - Sunday -- 8-11 p.m. (et) Champion: Mark Wiebe (Not defending) Runner Up: Corey Pavin Tournament Record: 202 (Willie Wood, 2012) 54-Hole Record: 36-Hole Record: 131 (Bill Glasson, 2012) Course Record: 64 (Mark Wiebe, 2013) Total Purse: $2,200,000 Shares: 1st Place - $330,000; 2nd Place - $206,400; 3rd Place - $158,600 2013 Final Leaderboard Mark Wiebe * 205 Corey Pavin 205 Bernhard Langer 206 John Cook 207 Esteban Toledo 207 Six players at 208 Past Winners 2013: *Mark Wiebe (205). Runner up: Corey Pavin 2012: Willie Wood (202). Runner up: Bill Glasson * - Won in Playoff Top Contenders Corey Pavin 2012: T-8 2013: 2nd John Cook 2012: T-16 2013: T-4 Esteban Toledo 2012: 2013: T-4 David Frost 2012: T-4 2013: T-6 Gene Sauers 2012: T-8 2013: T-6 Kirk Triplett 2012: 14th 2013: T-6 Vijay Singh 2012: 2013: T-6 Rocco Mediate 2012: 2013: T-13 Duffy Waldorf 2012: T-8 2013: T-16 Willie Wood 2012: Won 2013: T-20 Bill Glasson 2012: 2nd 2013: T-20 Jeff Sluman 2012: T-38 2013: T-32 Tom Pernice, Jr. 2012: T-22 2013: T-55 Russ Cochran 2012: 2013: dq Tom Lehman 2012: T-4 2013: Fred Funk 2012: T-22 2013: Michael Allen 2012: T-38 2013: Scott Dunlap 2012: 2013: Jay Haas 2012: 2013: Davis Love III 2012: 2013: Jeff Maggert 2012: 2013: Wes Short, Jr. 2012: 2013: NOTES: The Champions Tour travels to Hawaii this week for the Pacific Links Hawaii Championship in Kapolei on the island of Oahu. Twenty-three of the top 27 players on the money list are in the fleid. The purse increased $400,000 from last year to $2.2 million, with the winner receiving $330,000.

  •  
Rory McIlroy, of Northern Ireland,  hits from the tee on the second hole during the third round of play in the Tour Championship golf tournament  Saturday, Sept. 13, 2014, in Atlanta.

    McIlroy wins PGA player of the year award

    Rory McIlroy is the Vardon Trophy winner and the PGA of America's player of the year for the second time.

Miami Herald

Join the
Discussion

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category