|Pebble Beach Bites Weir on Sunday
Excerpts from Greg Beacham, The Associated Press
Weir, the winner of
last week's Bob Hope Classic, shot a steady 67 on Spyglass Hill,
generally considered the toughest of the three Monterey Peninsula
courses. Playing with fellow Canadian Wayne Gretzky, Weir
capped a bogey-free round with consecutive birdies on the final two
|Day 2: FRIDAY
Love outfoxes 'tricky' course for Pebble Beach lead
It's been two long, painful years since Davis Love III raised a trophy. Back injuries, neck injuries, elaborate mental blocks and plain old laziness — Love has battled them all.
Love shot a 5-under 67 on the tough Spyglass Hill course Saturday, taking a two-stroke lead over Mike Weir, Tom Lehman and Rod Pampling in a field kept tight and uneasy by the fast courses and ocean breezes.
Weir matched Love's 67 with a brilliant front nine, while Lehman and Pampling both remained steady. But Saturday — also the cut day in the pro-am — usually is a mere prelude to the real action at Pebble Beach.
|"No, nobody is out of the
hunt," Weir said. "Nobody who
tees it up on Sunday will be playing for position. Everybody thinks they
can win it. That's just the way this tournament is."
Weir arrived at Pebble Beach in top form off his victory last week in the Bob Hope Classic, and he scorched the front nine at Pebble Beach after beginning the day four strokes off the lead. Playing partner and fellow Canadian Wayne Gretzky even got into the spirit, playing his best round of the pro-am.
Starting with a 15-foot putt for an eagle on No. 2, Weir went 7 under through the first seven holes, chipping in from the fringe for another eagle on the sixth. But Weir missed birdie putts on the eighth and ninth holes, and he went 2 over on the back nine.
"I played outstanding today, just as good or better on the back nine," Weir said. "I caught a couple of really bad breaks at the end. I guess the golf gods had had enough of me making birdies for today."
Davis Love III lunges into lead, Weir tied for second at Pebble Beach
Two years after he erased a seven-stroke Sunday deficit to win the 2001 Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, Love is healthy and hungry again. He's also back on the gorgeous courses of the Monterey Peninsula, the site of his most recent victory - and he won't need a final-round comeback to take the next step in his personal comeback.
Love shot a 5-under 67 on the tough Spyglass Hill course Saturday, taking a two-stroke lead over Canadian Mike Weir, Tom Lehman and Rod Pampling in a field kept tight and uneasy by the fast courses and ocean breezes"No, nobody is out of the hunt," Weir said.
"Nobody who tees it up on Sunday will be playing for position. Everybody thinks they can win it. That's just the way this tournament is."
Richard Zokol of White Rock, B.C., shot 73 for a 15-over 231 total.
Six players held the lead for part of the third round, but Love jumped ahead with steady play at Spyglass - away from the celebrity-studded field crowding Pebble Beach Golf Links. But after an offseason of mental preparation and physical rehabilitation, Love is ready for any challenge.
Love holds off Tom Lehman for Pebble Beach win; Mike Weir ties for third
Davis Love III was right: Staying ahead is even tougher than coming from behind at the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am. Fortunately for Love, he's capable of doing both.
Tim Herron — who shot a final-round 66 — and Mike Weir finished third at 276, two strokes behind Love. Weir, off to the best start of his career, won last week's Bob Hope Classic and held the lead over playing partner Love on the front nine.
The native of Bright's Grove, Ont., had six birdies and two bogeys in his round. He takes home $290,000 US.
"It was unfortunate that I couldn't get a putt to go in on the back nine," Weir said. "But Davis played so well, I doubt I could have caught him."
Love said the win was even tougher than his triumph in 2001, when he made up seven strokes against Weir, Phil Mickelson and the rest of the field. Maybe that's because the conditions were gorgeous — and decidedly out of the ordinary at the normally soggy course.
Love fell behind Weir with two early bogeys. He made up the deficit with a phenomenal string of birdies — including the par-3 12th, where Love's tee shot took a serendipitous bounce off a greenside photographer to within feet of the cup.
In a tournament known for dramatic final-round comebacks —
particularly in the last three years, when Tiger Woods, Love and Matt
Gogel all roared from behind — Love became the first 54-hole winner to
hold on since Brett Ogle in 1993.