Category Archives: U.S. Open

What they’re writing, saying about the U.S. Open, Chambers Bay

 

 

Here’s what some people are writing about the U.S. Open and Chambers Bay:

Jordan Spieth won a U.S. Junior Amateur championship at Gold Mountain Golf Club in 2011, and he won the U.S. Open on Sunday at Chambers Bay. Jeff Graham of the Kitsap Sun writes about it.

One of the feel-good stories of the week was Kitsap’s own Troy Kelly, who finished with a 1-under 69. I followed Kelly around and talked to him and his brother, caddie Ryan Kelly, after the round.

In the end, the controversial tournament was decided by nerves and the best player won, writes Cameron Morfit of golf.com.

Here’s what Doug Ferguson of the Associated Press wrote about on Sunday.

Mike Davis heard all of the complains, but the USGA’s executive director said the U.S. Open at Chambers Bay was a big success. Here’s Paul Ramsdell’s story about it in the Seattle Times.

The 115th U.S. Open was the “first completely made-for-TV major championship in golf history,” writes Dave Sheinan of the Washington Post.

Chambers Bay hogged the spotlight, and that’s not right, writes Christine Brennan of USA Today.

Can Spieth buck history and win the Grand Slam? 

Chambers Bay wasn’t so tough, according to this Golf Digest report.  Check out these numbers.

Golf Digest’s list of winners and losers, or birdies and bogeys.

Veteran golf writer Bill Dwyre of the Los Angeles Times had this take on the U.S. Open and Spieth’s victory.

Art Thiel of sportspressnw.com writes about Jordan Spieth and his caddie, Michael Greller, and the things swirling through their minds during the mind-humbling final half hour of the U.S. Open.

Billy Horschel took shots at the USGA following his final round, and here’s Adam Lewis’ take for sportspressnw.com. Horschel loved the spectacular beauty of Chambers Bay, but said it was a disappointing week because of the conditions of the green.

For Dustin Johnson, it was a choke, plain and simple, writes Chris Case of USA Today.

ICYMI, here’s Gary Player’s rant about Chambers Bay a couple of days ago. It’s worth listening to if you haven’t heard it.

Chambers Bay designer Robert Trent Jones not ready to get into a debate with Gary Player.

Chris Kirk took a sextuple bogey on No. 1 Sunday. For those of you counting, that’s a 10.

Here’s some quotes from the Open:

Geoff Ogilvy, the 2006 champion who closed with a 67, finished a few hours before Spieth. Assessing Chambers Bay, Ogilvy told the New York Times: “You have to move the ball both ways and you have to use your brain, which is a rare thing in modern golf and something we’re not very good at, I don’t think. It’s going to be a class act of a player who wins, and really that’s all you want.”

“It has been a strange atmosphere because [fans] can’t seem to get close and on some holes, there aren’t any. I watched Phil Mickelson tee off at the first today, and then people won’t see him until the second shot on the second hole, because you can’t get down the first. From a fan’s point of view, it must have been even a harder trek than for us players.” — Lee Westwood.

On Friday, Henrik Stenson said it was “like putting on broccoli.”

World No. 1 Rory McIlroy begged to differ Saturday. “I don’t think they’re as green as broccoli. More like cauliflower.”

Sergio Garcia on putting at Chambers Bay: “Obviously, luck is always a factor in golf, but this is pushing it a little bit,. This is beyond luck. Sometimes it’s hope. Some putts you hit and you hope it’s going to take the right bounce right or left . . . It just doesn’t feel right.”

Chris Kirk shot 78 to finish 21-over, last among those who made the cut, then tweeted: “The U.S. Open is a great tournament with incredible history. The USGA should be ashamed of what they did to it this week.”

Dustin Johnson, the disappointed runner-up: “You know, I played well today. I did everything I was supposed to do. I hit the ball really well, and I’m proud of the way I handled myself. I just really struggled getting the ball in the hole today. I didn’t think I was hitting bad putts; I thought I hit them pretty good. They just weren’t going in.”

 

Does Chambers Bay deserve another chance to host a major?

Golfers are already on the course for the final round of the U.S. Open at Chambers Bay.

Will this be the final time the course hosts a major professional golf event?

The place has been heavily criticized by players and golf analysts for the poor conditions of the greens and by the fans for the poor viewing areas.

I walked the place Thursday, Friday and Saturday as a spectator, and it’s tough going. The terrain makes it difficult to walk and all of the sand dunes, most of them off limits to fans, make it difficult to watch. The sight lines are non-existent on some holes and unless you’ve  plopped down in one of the grandstands, you can’t get close to many of the players.

Still, the uniqueness of the place, the beauty of it all, is stunning.

Would I pay $110 for a ticket if the U.S. Open came back? Not if they keep things the way they are. The USGA says it’s worried about the safety of fans, which is why it keeps fans off of the slippery hillsides and dunes. There are ways to get around that. Build some paths up those hills, cut out some amphitheatre-like seating some of the larger hills that have fantastic viewing areas.

Put some ropes up closer to the fairways and let the fans get closer to the players. There are certainly ways to make it more fan-friendly. The USGA blew it this time around concerning the fans.

And there are certainly ways to fix those greens. Some have already been re-done since the 2010 U.S. Amateur was played at Chambers Bay. Players rave about the greens on No. 7 and No. 13. Re-do the others. Give the players a unique test of golf, but let them put on greens that are as beautiful as the surrounding Puget Sound area. Because of the terrain and the slopes on the greens, the USGA can still make sure that the winning score will be closer to even par than -20.

So going into Sunday’s final round, I’ll be back at the course, but this time I’m working. There’s no cheering in the media center, but I’ll be pulling for the local guy, Central Kitsap Troy Kelly, to have the round of his life (he tees off at 10:29 a.m.), and I’ll be looking forward to what the USGA has to say about the future of Chambers Bay.

Will this be the course’s swan song with big-time golf, or is it just the beginning?

 

Golf: Kelly, Jonson bid for U.S. Open spots; U.S. Open Trophy, City Amateur at Gold Mtn

Troy Kelly and Carl Jonson will try to play their way into the U.S. Open at Chambers Bay on Monday.

They will be among 50 players gunning for three spots in the 36-hole U.S. Open sectional qualifier at Tumble Creek Club in Cle Elum.

Kelly, a Central Kitsap grad now living in Lakewood, has battled injuries on the PGA Tour. The former NCAA runner-up when he was at Washington qualified for the U.S. Open at Pinehurst, N.C., in 2005. His best finish on the PGA Tour was a second at The Greenbrier Classic in 2012. He also played in the British Open that year.

Bainbridge’s Jonson, who just completed his senior year at UNLV, made it through local qualifying earlier this year. He was the Washington State Golf Association Men’s Player of the Year in 2014 and qualified for the U.S. Amateur that was played in 2010 at Chambers Bay.

Washington All-American Cheng-Tsung Pan, recent runner-up at the NCAA national championship, is also in the field. He’s qualified for two U.S. Opens, including 2013 when the sectional qualifier was also at Tumble Creek.

Another former Husky, Richard Lee, is also entered. Lee, a past Bremerton City Amateur champion, has had some success on the PGA and Web.com tours, but hasn’t played this year because of an injury.

Brent Zapp, head pro at Chambers Bay, will try to qualify to play in the national championship on his home course

You can find the complete pairings and tee times here.

U.S. Open Trophy Tour at Gold Mountain

The U.S. Open Trophy Tour stops at Gold Mountain on Saturday (June 6). It’ll be there from 1-3 p.m.

Golfers are encouraged to take a photo with the trophy and share via social media using #usopenforall and #lexusgolf to have a chance to win two tickets to the final round of the U.S. Open at Chambers Bay.

City Am June 6-7

The annual Bremerton City Amateur, a 36-hole tournament, will be held Saturday and Sunday at Gold Mountain.

Golfers will play the Cascade Course on Saturday, and the Olympic Course on Sunday. Here’s Saturday’s pairings and tee times.

Mercer Island’s Charlie Kern, who finished his college career at William & Mary last month, will be back to defend his title. Kern’s best finish this spring was a tie for third at the Redhawks Invitational in April at Chambers Bay.

Bainbridge teen Sam Warkentin, who won a Class 3A state championship recently, and Olympic College standout Adam Barker are among the contenders. Past champion Scott Fenske and Devin Loudon, who won the 2014 Kitsap Amateur, also also entered.

Kenyan Fanslow from Tacoma, an NWAC standout while at Olympic College, is also in the field. He’s now at Northwest Nazarene and was the Great Northwest Athletic Conference Newcomer of the Year.

Another way to get to Chambers Bay

The Gig Harbor Chamber of Commerce announced that it will run a shuttle to Chambers Bay for the U.S. Open. Cost is $30 for a roundtrip and reservations are required. Read about it in this Tacoma News Tribune story.

 

Golf notes: Seattle Golf Show, Snorting Elk, Free golf, U.S. Open practice round tickets & more

The golf show, the golf show

Sunday is the final day of the Seattle Golf & Travel Show at CenturyLink Field Event Center.

Cost is $14 for adults with youth 17 and under free.  Hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Go to this website for more information.

Snorting Elk

The annual Snorting Elk tournament, held at Kitsap Golf & Country Club, drew a full field with 20 more golfers with handicaps of 0 or less. The field is probably the best for any tournament held on this side of the water.

Congratulations to Randy Grosz, a former Kitsap member now living in Portland, for putting it all together every year. Somebody from Oregon won with a 4-under 67. We’ll try to get complete results.

Free golf

In case you missed it, you can play Port Orchard’s Village Greens, an executive course run by Kitsap County Parks & Rec, for free on Monday, March 9 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Call 871-1222 for information. PGA Club pro Ron Weir is also staging free clinics (12:30-1:30 p.m. full swing; 1:30-2:30 p.m. short game).

Practice round tickets available for U.S. Open

Tickets for the four rounds at the 2015 U.S. Open, being held at Chambers Bay in University Point on June 18-21, have been sold out, but you can still buy tickets for the practice rounds.

For $100, you can buy a gallery ticket for all three practice days (June 15-17). They are free for active-duty military and children 12 and under who are accompanied by an adult ticket holder.

For more information to to purchase tickets online, visit usga.org/tickets.

U.S. Open qualifiers

The Home Course in Dupont (May 11) and Wine Valley Golf Club in Walla Walla (May 12) will be the only state courses hosting 18-hole local qualifiers for the  U.S. Open at Chambers Bay. They are two of 111 local qualifying sites across the country.

Pros and amateurs with a handicap 1.4 or lower are eligible. The top scorers at the local  qualifiers advance to play in sectional qualifiers, which take place June 8 in a 36-hole format at 10 courses around the country. Japan and England will host international sectional qualifiers on May 25.

Collegians

UCLA’s Erynne Lee, a senior from Central Kitsap, tied for third individually and helped the No. 5-ranked Bruins to a second-place finish at the Allstate Sugar Bowl Intercollegiate in Baton Rouge, La. Lee finished at 1-under 215, moving up to No. 48 in the Golfstate collegiate rankings and dropping her scoring average to 72.9 in 18 rounds. The Bruins and Pepperdine co-host the Wave Classic March 2-3 at the El Callabero Country Club in Tarzana, Calif. No. 3 Washington is the highest-ranked team in the field.

UNLV’s Carl Jonson, senior from Bainbridge, shot 75-75-76 and tied for 49th at the John Bruns Collegiate in Hawaii. Jonson’s scoring average is 73.6 after 18 rounds. His best finish this season has been a sixth. The Rebels host the Southern Highlands Collegiate Masters on March 9-11 at Southern Highlands Golf Club in Las Vegas.

Troy Kelly update

Central Kitsap grad and former UW golfer Troy Kelly has missed the cut in all four PGA Tour tournaments he’s entered this year. Still on a major injury exemption, Kelly has six tournaments left to earn $563,111 or 353 FedEx Cup points to maintain full-time playing privileges.

And finally, some linkage

ICYMI, Kitsap Golf & Country Club is opening its doors to the public beginning April 1. I wrote about it earlier this week.

Tiger Woods still No. 1 when it comes to earning money off the course, but the gap is closing, according to this Golf Digest story.

Dave Boling of the Tacoma News Tribune wonders if Tiger Woods will be ready for the U.S. Open.

Jimmy Walker leads the PGA Tour money list with $2,281,345 in winnings. Ryan Moore of Puyallup is currently No. 10 and former Husky great Nick Taylor, a Canadian, is No. 26. Here’s some others: No. 42 Andres Gonzales (Olympia/UNLV), No. 61 Alex Prugh (Spokane/UW), No. 75 Spencer Levin (No. 75, grandfather was a Bremerton High grad/New Mexico); No. 94 Michel Putman (Tacoma/Pepperdine), No. 122 Andrew Putman (Tacoma/Pepperdine), No. 184 Kyle Stanley (Gig Harbor/Clemson).

 

 

Links and quick hits: Villopoto to forego Supercross series to race in Europe

Links

Nobody has ever won five straight AMA Supercross Championships and Poulsbo’s Ryan Villopoto has a chance to do it, but he has decided to compete in the FIM 450 World Championships in Europe in 2015. Villopoto has reportedly signed a multi-million dealt to race in Europe. Here’s the link to the story on his own website rv2.com. A couple side notes: Villopoto, 28, was nominated for his third ESPY this year, and he also threw out the first pitch at a Padres game in late August.

Seattle Seahawks’ quarterback Russell Wilson says he used to be a bully when he was a young kid.

“Truthfully, I used to beat people up a lot,” Wilson wrote for ThePlayersTribune.com, a new website started by Derek Jeter. “Many of you readers probably think I have been Mr. Goody Two-Shoes my whole life, but honestly, I was a bully growing up. In elementary and middle school, I threw kids against the wall. I rubbed their heads in the dirt at recess. I bit them. I even knocked teeth out.”

Richard Deitsch of Sports Illustrated digs into the suspension of ESPN’s Bill Simmons. Interesting stuff, indeed. Simmons was suspended for three weeks after calling NFL commissioner Roger Goodell a liar on his podcast.

Here’s a couple different takes on the Hope Solo story. Kate Fagan of ESPNw.com equates Solo’s alleged assault of her 17-year-old sister and nephew to what Ray Rice did and thinks USA Soccer should suspend her immediately. Ta-Nehisi Coates of The Atlantic has a different take on the issue. Coates writes that there is a reason why we have a “Violence Against Women Act,” not a “Brawling With Families Act.”

Nobody wants to host the Olympics, writes Dan Wetzel of Yahoo! Sports. 

“Essentially the entire world has told the IOC it’s a corrupt joke,” he writes.

Quick hits

I’M STILL THINKING about Kansas City stealing seven (count ’em, SEVEN) bases in its wild-card victory over Oakland. And I’m think the Seattle Mariners need to find a way to keep James Jones in the lineup. Of course, a lot of that will depend on the development of Jones. He hit .250 with 27 stolen bases in 108 games (312 at bats). He hit .292 in June and looked like he could be the Mariners’ everyday center fielder. Then he crashed. He hit .287 before the All-Star break and .114 after. The M’s traded for Austin Jackson and Jones went back to Triple-A Tacoma before being recalled in September. It’ll be interesting to see what becomes of Mr. Jones. He could become a valuable piece of Seattle’s puzzle. Speed kills. If it’s not Jones, then they need someone like him.

I’VE ALREADY GOT a lot of positive feedback about my column on the late John Jarstad and his thoughts about the late Roosevelt Field in downtown Bremerton. Roosevelt was located just off the Warren Avenue Bridge, next to Olympic College. It’s now a … parking lot. It pains me to write that. Anyway, here’s the column in case you missed it.

OLYMPIC COLLEGE VOLLEYBALL coach Beth Donnelly has put together another strong team. The Rangers were second in the NWAC (Northwest Athletic Conference) and already own a victory over North Division rival Bellevue. They play an excellent brand of volleyball. Go see it for yourself. Next home games are Oct. 10 (Shoreline) and Oct. 15 (Edmonds).

LARRY DIXON KEEPS moving up Army’s career rushing list. The senior fullback from Olympic High is currently seventh in Army history with 2,424 yards on 400 carries. He has carried 62 times for 338 yards (5.5. per carry) and four touchdowns this season for the Black Knights (1-3), who host Ball State (1-3) on Saturday at 9 a.m. PST (CBS Sports Network).

“AMERICA’S ST. ANDREWS” a book about Chambers Bay written by Blaine Newnham, is available at Chambers Bay and can be ordered online at chambersbaygolf.com. The book chronicles the story of how Chambers Bay, which opened in 2008, was selected to host the 2015 U.S. Open.Robert Trent Jones Jr., the chairman and master architect of RTJ II, has written the book’s foreword.