Happy Memorial Day, ladies and gentlemen! We hope you’re all enjoying some time with family and friends and thinking about the men and women who served their country over the years. Also, we hope everyone receives a “power wagon” for Christmas.
Kok, no Pepsi
The Charles Schwab Challenge was always going to pale in comparison to the showdown between Phil Mickelson and Brooks Koepka at last week’s PGA Championship. Little did we know there wouldn’t be any drama whatsoever, even with Jordan Spieth in the mix. Spieth and Jason Kokrak faced off on a Sunday to forget, with neither bringing his best to Colonial Country Club. A final-round 70 was good enough for Kokrak to claim his second victory of the 2020-21 season. Results
Let’s start with the good. In the past eight months, Jason Kokrak has turned a zero-win PGA Tour career into a two-win one. Adding the Charles Schwab Challenge wagon to his CJ Cup plaque vaults him into the top five of the FedEx Cup standings. Perhaps even more impressive, Kokrak is now inside the top 25 of the Official World Golf Ranking for the first time in his career. He may even be in the conversation for a Ryder Cup spot. Sunday may not have shown him at his best, but this season has been special for the man who went “all in” last summer.
On the other side of the tee box, Jordan Spieth was no bueno on Sunday. He said afterwards that he “had no freaking clue where [the ball] was going to go.” In particular, the short-right miss haunted him on approach shots at Colonial, none more so than on the par-3 16th, after Kokrak had already dumped one in a greenside bunker. Still, it was yet another strong showing for Spieth. If he can compete on Sundays with his D game, brighter days must be ahead for the three-time major winner.
Major championship prep
It’s U.S. Women’s Open week! Olympic Club is ready to host a women’s major championship for the first time, and we’re keeping up to speed on all things USWO with the Victory Club!
The Victory Club offers fans who can’t make it to San Francisco virtual experiences, access to limited-edition merchandise, and exclusive content about the U.S. Women’s Open. Learn about this year’s qualifiers, how the Olympic Club is prepping for the event, and more by joining the U.S. Open Victory Club for free!
Out in Las Vegas, the LPGA Tour finished up its first regular season match-play event since 2017 with the Bank of Hope LPGA Match-Play. A bunch of the world’s best showed up at Shadow Creek a week ahead of a major championship to play (in our opinion) the best format golf has to offer. In the championship match, Ally Ewing bested Sophia Popov 2&1. Results
Women’s golf has been on a heater in 2021, and the reintroduction of match play upped the ante (pun most definitely intended). The round of 16 had a great mix of stars, up-and-comers, and veterans, making for an entertaining TV product. But it wasn’t surprising that Ewing and Popov, two players on the rise, scrapped their way to the final match. A number of top players seemed to have one eye on the upcoming U.S. Women’s Open, including Shanshan Feng, who conceded her third-place match to Ariya Jutanugarn in order to rest. Frankly, we get Shanshan’s POV on this one and appreciate her honesty. It would have been her seventh match in five days, and temperatures were around 100 degrees in the desert.
So perhaps the week before a major isn’t the ideal spot on the calendar for the LPGA Match-Play, but let’s hope the event sticks around because it has real potential.
Between the end of March and mid-May, Cameron Young missed five of six cuts on the Korn Ferry Tour. Over the past two weeks, he’s led after every round. Young got his second consecutive wire-to-wire win at the Evans Scholar Invitational. In two weeks, Young has gone from a middling KFT player to a lock for a PGA Tour card. A former teammate of Will Zalatoris, Young is another Wake Forest product ready to make a splash. Results
Bernd Wiesberger blitzed the field in Denmark to win the Made in HimmerLand by five shots. This is the Austrian’s eighth career European Tour win and his first since 2019. Rising Italian star Guido Migliozzi finished solo second and moved into the top 10 of the Race to Dubai. Results
Alex Cejka still has hopes of winning every senior major championship in 2021. After taking down Steve Stricker in the Regions Tradition a few weeks ago, Cejka dominated the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship at Southern Hills to remain perfect in senior majors this spring. Results
Through three rounds of stroke play at the men’s NCAA Championship, Oklahoma State has a commanding 13-shot lead, and Cowboys freshman Bo Jin leads the individual competition. The final round of stroke play takes place on Monday, and match play begins Tuesday morning. Leaderboard
PGA Tour rules officials Slugger White and Mark Russell worked their last event at the Charles Schwab Challenge. While they may not be on the course any more, the niche memes and costumes will live on.
The Latest from The Fried Egg
Final Notes from the 2021 PGA Championship – After a hectic week of travel, Andy Johnson finally had a chance to sit down and process an exciting week at Kiawah Island. He offers thoughts on Brad Marek, championship setup, and how the Ocean Course could get better.
What the New LPGA Tour Commissioner’s Top Priority Should Be – Last Friday, we messed up the link to this article by Meg Adkins on future possibilities for LPGA Tour coverage. You should read it! It’s good.
A Shotgun Start double feature! First, a Spotlight on the Cinderella stories and the what-ifs of the 2005 U.S. Women’s Open. We’ll also have your regular Monday episode, featuring thoughts on Kokrak vs. Spieth, Shanshan, and more. Listen to both on iTunes, Stitcher, and Spotify.