Thursday, April 17, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Young guns like Watney lead the way at Match Play

Nick Watney hits out of a sand trap on 16 while playing Lee Westwood during the second round of the Match Play Championship golf tournament on Thursday in Marana, Ariz. Watney, a DHS graduate, beat the Westwood, the top-ranked golfer in the world. AP photo

By
February 24, 2011 | Leave Comment

MARANA, Ariz. — It hasn’t been a bad week for the Americans at this World Golf Championship. They have eight players in the round of 16, the most in five years. The surprise is the list of players.

Tiger Woods, Steve Stricker and Jim Furyk were gone after the first round. Phil Mickelson joined them on Thursday.

Leading the way is a new cast of emerging stars as, eight of the final 16 players left at the Accenture Match Play Championship arr under 30.

That list includes Davis High graduate Nick Watney, who steadied his emotions over the last three holes to knock out top-ranked Lee Westwood — the third straight year the No. 1 seed did not make it out of the second round.

Watney and Westwood halved the last three holes, although it wasn’t that simple.

The turning point came on the par-3 16th, when Watney hit into a bunker, left it in the bunker and blasted out to 5 feet. Westwood had two putts from 20 feet to square the match, but knocked his first putt 3½ feet by the hole. Watney made his putt for bogey, and Westwood’s par putt barely touched the hole.

Then, the former Blue Devil standout had a 5-foot birdie putt to win the match on the 17th and missed, giving life to Westwood. The Englishman had a 15-foot birdie putt to go into overtime, but it wasn’t close.

Watney — who led DHS to a Sac-Joaquin Section title in 1999 — is probably playing the best golf of his career, entering this event after having placed in the top six at each of his last three tournaments. Westwood, who took solace in going 18 holes “considering how badly I putted,” has yet to record a top-10 finish in four starts this year.

The highest seed remaining after two wild days was PGA champion Martin Kaymer, the 25-year-old “Germanator” who had to go 20 holes to beat Justin Rose.

Another rising star, Rickie Fowler, was 8-under par when his match ended on the 13th hole, with a 6-and-5 win that sent Mickelson to his worst loss ever in this fickle tournament.

Fowler was 5 under over the last four holes, which included a chip-in for birdie from behind the 10th green and a pair of eagles, the last one with a 4-iron from 232 yards that landed just beyond a ridge and rolled so close that Mickelson conceded the putt.

But this youth movement isn’t about the Americans. Equally impressive was Italy’s teen sensation, 17-year-old Matteo Manassero, who hit a 6-iron to 4 feet on the 17th hole and closed out Charl Schwartzel of South Africa to advance. Jason Day, a 23-year-old Australian, played like a veteran of match play the way he toyed with Paul Casey in a 4-and-2 victory.

Manassero keeps setting age records wherever he goes — the youngest to win the British Amateur, the youngest to be low amateur at the British Open and the Masters, the youngest to win on the European Tour.

“It’s a big sense of achievement for me,” Manassero said.

He was in control for much of his match against Schwartzel until nearly giving it away. His tee shot on the 16th bounced off the corporate tents and into a cactus, and the Italian felt as though he might have moved the ball while trying to remove a loose branch. So he conceded the hole to Schwartzel, and put it behind him quickly.

His 6-iron on the 17th set up birdie, and Manassero closed it out with a par on the 18th.

One youngster not invited to the party was 21-year-old Rory McIlroy, the No. 7 seed. He ran into Ben Crane, who played perhaps his quickest round ever — the match ended on the 11th hole, an 8-and-7 victory.

Crane has the reputation for slow play, although that wasn’t an issue.

“We played quick out there because he was making birdies,” McIlroy said.

U.S. Open champion Graeme McDowell had no trouble with Ross Fisher in a 4-and-2 victory, which assured he will move ahead of Woods in the next world ranking.

“I’m perhaps a better golfer than him in the last 12 months, but he’s definitely the greatest player that’s ever lived, I think,” McDowell said. “Of course, if someone told me at some point in my career I would be No. 3 in the world, I’d be proud of that fact.”

Kaymer, meanwhile, kept alive his chances of going to No. 1 when he held on to beat Rose and Westwood was beaten by Watney. The German will have to reach the championship match to go to No. 1.

With so much emphasis on youth, the oldest player in the field is still alive. That would be Miguel Angel Jimenez, the 47-year-old Spaniard with his love of cigars and red wine. Next up is Crane, who has never made it past the third round in this tournament.

“I don’t think anyone is going, ‘Wow, Ben Crane is really coming through this bracket. Look out! Gosh, sorry you’ve got to play Ben Crane. Boy, tough draw there,’” Crane said. “Rory didn’t have his best day and things were going in my favor.”

Things are going well for J.B. Holmes, too. He wasn’t in the field until Tim Clark withdrew, and he beat Ernie Els on the 18th hole.

The Associated Press

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Davis Enterprise does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

     
    Davis wins USA Today Best Cycling Town honor

    By Dave Ryan | From Page: A1

     
    Benefit set to help local bike legend

    By Adrian Glass-Moore | From Page: A1 | Gallery

    Jury deliberates murder, elder-abuse charges

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A1

     
    State’s health care sign-ups beat projections

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2, 1 Comment

    For the record

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2

     
    California residents divided on drought solution

    By San Francisco Chronicle | From Page: A2

     
    For the record

    By Dave Ryan | From Page: A2

    Three killed in attack on Ukrainian base

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2 | Gallery

     
    Downtown post office set to reopen

    By Thomas Oide | From Page: B3

    Run or walk to prevent child abuse in Yolo County

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B3 | Gallery

     
    Nominations sought for charity paint giveaway

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B3

     
    Scholar will discuss human trafficking in Friday talk

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Per Capita Davis: Now, for some good news

    By John Mott-Smith | From Page: A4

     
    Birch Lane hosts 50th anniversary party

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Hannah Stein reads poetry at gallery

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Davis Food Co-op to offer free bags on Earth Day

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Get in the picture with school board candidate

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    KDVS hosts on-air fundraiser April 21-27

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Tickets on sale for Pence Garden Tour

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Fundraiser planned for Allen’s campaign

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4, 3 Comments

    Food Co-op board plans open house

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Davis Downtown hosts candidate forum

    By Dave Ryan | From Page: A4

    Learn more about Google Glass at talk

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Barbecue celebrates winter shelter program

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

    Sign of things to come

    By Fred Gladdis | From Page: A8

     
    Davis Soroptimists celebrate 60 years

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

    .

    Forum

    Fancy meeting you here …

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B5

     
    Tom Meyer cartoon

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: A6

    Don’t miss a Trokanski dance

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

     
    Frank Bruni: The oldest hatred, forever young

    By New York Times News Service | From Page: A6, 4 Comments

    Expert: Free parking is a myth

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6, 1 Comment

     
    Have they really learned?

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

    A great community effort

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6, 2 Comments

     
    Public Health Heroes honored

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A6

    .

    Sports

    Landry evolves into UCD women’s lacrosse leader

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Huge inning propels Pleasant Grove past DHS

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

    Giants edge Dodgers

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    Foster steps down as Lady Blue Devil basketball coach

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    River Cats’ streak reaches six wins

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

     
    Youth roundup: Martinez, Chan come up big at gymnastics regional

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

    Kings drop season finale to Suns

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

     
    Angels get past A’s in extras

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B8 | Gallery

    .

    Features

    .

    Arts

    Wineaux: Good deals off the beaten path

    By Susan Leonardi | From Page: A7

     
    Rockabilly phenom to play at The Palms

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

    HellaCappella showcases a cappella singing

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

     
    ‘One’ singular sensation to open at DMTC

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

    25th annual state clay competition exhibit at The Artery

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

     
    .

    Business

    .

    Obituaries

    Tapan Munroe

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    .

    Comics

    Comics: Thursday, April 17, 2014

    By Creator | From Page: B6