Thirteen years ago it was Jean van de Velde. On Sunday it was Adam Scott. The authors of two of the most epic final round collapses at The Open Championship. Van de Velde blew a three stroke lead by triple bogeying the 18th hole and lost in a playoff. Sunday Adam Scott bogeyed the final four holes, allowing Ernie Els to backdoor his second Open Championship win, and fourth major. It was a superlative week for the league, as we manufactured 11 top tens, and there was some serious juking and jiving on the leaderboard, as we find out in this week’s wrapup.
Bryce continued his torrid pace, as Ernie Els final round 68 gave him his first ever major win. It’s also Bryce’e fourth win in the last 8 weeks, and streak that has seen him go from last place all the way to third. The 370 points put up by double B is the third best single week output in SSF history. Bryce had great depth this week, as despite a poor final round, Tiger Woods still managed to grab a tie for third and 80 points, while Dustin Johnson quietly put up a top ten as well. Throw in a 25 spot from Bill Haas and 15 from former champ Padraig Harrington, and it was quite the week. Bryce now has 6 wins on the year, just one short of single season record. With the way his team is playing, making up the 500+ points between him and first isn’t out of the question.
O what could have been for Brent. For most of Sunday morning, his main concern was whether or not Luke Donald would get a top five. That changed when Adam Scott started playing Beast-style golf (bogey golf), and blew what looked to be his first major win. Scott’s 2nd place showing got him 95 points, but Brent was thinking about 105 he lost Scott finishing in the runner-up spot. Still, it was a solid week for last year’s 2nd place team, as Luke Donald shot a final 69 to finish in 5th and grab 65 points. Throw in 25 from the tier 3 & 4 specialist Peter Hansen and 15 each from K.J. Choi and Rickie Fowler, and Brent up 215, his best week of the season. Brent fell a spot in the overall standings, but is only about 100 out of third place.
Even when it seems like Dave’s week is falling apart, he still puts up a good number. That happened again, as he banged out a 170-burger. Graeme McDowell had a final round he’d rather forget, but a top 5 is still good for 65, and his owner has to be pleased as it was McDowell’s debut on his roster this season. Zach Johnson was able to hold for another 50 points, giving him an amazing 495 on the year. It was a bit of a waster Osicki for the league leader, as Lee Westwood could only muster 15 points, a surprise given his consistency in majors. Bubba Watson had a tough Sunday finishing in a tie for 19th. But all in all, 170 points is another good week for Dave, making him one week closer to winning the league.
Let’s face it. Lawrence has faced a lot of heat for some of the decisions he’s made this year. But on Sunday, it was his turn to laugh, as Miguel Angel Jimenez scored a top ten. The result has prompted the Spanish government to create a new statutory holiday, ‘Miguel Angel Day’. But Jimenez wasn’t the only player from Lawrenceland. Ian Poulter shot a final round 67 to score 50 points, and in doing so is quickly changing his nickname from ‘5-point Poulter’ to ’50-point Poulter’. This was the third time of the season the Englishman has scored exactly fifty points. Lawrence also received scoring finishes from Nick Watney and Keegan Bradley, for a total of 140, equalling his best week of the year. The score goes a long way to helping Lawrence set the all-time record for fewest points in a season (1885).
For the second time in as many weeks, Fuchs failed to get his roster in. Luckily, he was paying enough attention to implement a mulligan on Brandt Snedeker and save his week. Snedeker played bogey free golf through the first 40 holes, giving him the lead, before faltering on the weekend, but he still finished in third and scored 80 big points. John Senden scored 15, the only other player to score on Andrew’s team, as he fell two places and his now in 6th. A tough drop for the man who once lead the league.
Beast may have scored the second fewest points of the week, but he is still in store for a hearty congratulations. Matt Kuchar’s birdie on the 18th gave him a top ten, and gave Beast his 100th career top ten, the first player in league history to accomplish such a feat. WELL DONE BEAST! Unfortunately, there wasn’t much else that went right for the 50-year-old, as small point totals from Steve Stricker and Jim Furyk brought his total to 90, and saw him fall to fourth place, his lowest position in a VERY long time.
Finally we come to the commish. Not a great week for the two-time defending champ. His two prodigal sons, Phil Mickelson and Rory McIlroy scored zero. Newly acquired Francesco Molinari could only muster 15 points. Same goes for Jason Dufner. And former champion King Louis (Oosthuizen) double bogeyed 18 to fall out of the top 10 and only score 25 points, for a total of 25, leaving James more 245 points back of first.