Golf Roundup: Wie disqualified
The golf roundup …
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. ó After finishing Friday and Saturday in second place at the State Farm Classic, Michelle Wie was one good round away from finally living up to her deep potential.
Then, minutes after tapping in her last putt of the third round, Wie sat red-eyed at a folding table in front of a couple dozen baffled reporters and photographers, explaining why she’d been disqualified from the tournament.
The 18-year-old, playing her best golf of the year, broke one of the game’s most basic rules: She failed to sign her scorecard before leaving the scoring area.
“I don’t know why or how it happened,” Wie said.
Wie took no questions before leaving the clubhouse at Panther Creek Country Club. She climbed into an SUV with her parents and drove away.
That left Yani Tseng leading the tournament at 18 under, followed by Katie Futcher at 16 under and Hee-Won Han and Ji Young Oh another shot back.
Sue Witters, the LPGA’s director of tournament competitions, disqualified Wie in a small office in an LPGA trailer at the course after asking her what had happened.
“I felt like I was telling somebody that there was no Santa Claus,” Witters said.
U.S. BANK CHAMPIONSHIP
MILWAUKEE ó Greg Norman won’t be the only Australian trying for a win on Sunday.
Fellow countrymen Nick Flanagan and Gavin Coles are tied for the lead at 11 under entering the final round of the US Bank Championship, a tournament that Norman himself won in 1989.
And if Norman should go on to become the oldest major champion with a win in the British Open, Coles and Flanagan won’t feel overshadowed.
“That would be definitely OK with me. I’m playing in America because Greg Norman showed us that we could play here. Norman, back in the 90s, was the guy we all looked up to,” Coles said. “It’s going to be unbelievable and I hope he does it.”
Flanagan fired a third-round 69, rebounding from a bogey at the 17th by knocking a hybrid to within 12 feet on the 557-yard, par-5 finishing hole and making a tap-in birdie to reclaim a share of the lead after Coles shot 68.
“I thought I hit a perfect putt. I don’t know how it missed,” Flanagan said of his eagle chance.
BLAINE, Minn. ó The only thing that slowed R.W. Eaks on Saturday was the weather. Eaks shot a 9-under 63 for a three-stroke lead over Gene Jones and Loren Roberts after the second round of the Champions Tour’s 3M Championship.