Joaquin on sunshine

A Military Tribute at the Greenbrier (golf tournament) ended on Sunday with Kevin Na as the champion. Na fired an opening round of 69 but reeled off rounds of 63, 65, and 64 to cruise to a 5-shot victory. Kelly Kraft, Brandt Snedeker and Jason Kokrak were the closest finishers to Mr. Na. Leaderboard

Na Na Na, What’s My Name

Prior to this very second, 6:24 pm on July 8th, I would have guessed that Kevin Na had 4 or 5 PGA Tour victories. The Greenbrier victory is just Kevin’s second tour victory despite being one of the most consistent guys on the circuit. Over the last ten seasons, only thirteen players have fifty-five top-10 finishes or more, Kevin Na being one of them. His lone victory came in Vegas in 2011. He has experienced some criticism for slow play and complaining, but he is one of the most well-liked guys on tour. This victory is huge for his career and was clearly emotional for him as well.

Cantlay Killer

Since defeating Patrick Cantlay in the 2011 U.S. Amateur at Erin Hills, Kelly Kraft has really struggled to reach his full potential. The last two seasons have been much better to Kraft, and his 2nd-place finish at the Greenbrier ties the highest finish of his career. He now has three top-10 finishes on the season and seems to be gaining momentum in his third full PGA Tour season.

Other Leaderboard Notes

Joaquin Niemann’s 5th place finish was enough for him to earn full PGA Tour status for the 2019 season. Niemann now has four top-10 finishes in eight PGA Tour starts. You’ll want to read THESE Justin Ray stats for starters. He has also made over $800,000 this season, not bad for a 19 year old. $$$$$$

Jason Kokrak notched his best PGA Tour finish since 2016 with his 3rd-place finish. Kokrak has finished between 65 and 95 on the FedEx Cup rankings each year since 2013.

Harold Varner III’s bid for his first PGA Tour victory came up short with his final-round 72 to finish T-5. HV3 also finished in the top 10 at The PLAYERS in May.

John Peterson came up just a few FedEx Cup points short of gaining his status back following his major medical exemption. Peterson had previously said that he would quit playing professional golf if he did not retain his card, so a big decision lies ahead of him.

Brandt Snedeker, Kraft, Kokrak, and Austin Cook all earned exemptions into the Open Championship with their top-5 finishes this week.

“I can make things out of clay, or lay by the bay, I just may!”

The European Tour got the golfing world off to a hot start on Sunday with an electric finish to the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open. Russell Knox came from 6 shots behind to start the day and won a playoff over Ryan Fox. Knox made nearly identical 50-footers on the 72nd hole and the playoff hole in order to seal the victory. Ryan Fox hit the ball about 70 yards past Russell Knox in the playoff, but Knox was able to make the putts needed down the stretch. Fox missed mid-range putts on his final hole as well as the playoff in search of his first European Tour victory.

Spaniards Jorge Campillo and Jon Rahm finished in 3rd and T-4th as well. This was Rahm’s 50th career PGA Tour start and his 20th top-5 finish. <-- NUTS

What did you Sei?

Sei Young Kim won the LPGA’s Thornberry Creek Classic on Sunday at a score of -31 under par. In fact, 14 women were at -17 or better. Kim shot rounds of 63, 65, 64, 65 to win by 9 and move up to 12th in the season-long race for the CME Globe. In a world where par doesn’t matter, the scores shot by the ladies this week were staggeringly impressive.

The Illinois Trifecta

3 major championships will be held in the state of Illinois this week; the Senior PLAYERS Championship, the inaugural Senior Women’s U.S. Open, and the John Deere Classic. The John Deere will be held at TPC John Deere as always, while the Senior PLAYERS takes on Exmoor Country Club. The real prize might just be the Senior Women’s U.S. Open as it will take place at Chicago Golf Club.

With the U.S. Senior Women’s Open being held at one of golf’s most historic venues, here’s a dive into Chicago Golf Club’s rich history, with a few little-known facts from the club library.

Andrew Green part II

The second part of our podcast with golf course architect Andrew Green is live. In part two, we discuss Andrew’s restoration projects, which include Inverness, Oak Hill and Scioto among others. Listen on iTunesStitcher or the website.

Quick Hooks

Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson are apparently trying to play a $10 million match this year. Details TBD.

Nelson Ledesma notched his first Tour victory in New York with a 2-shot victory. Leaderboard

The United States beat the pulp out of the International team at the Palmer Cup in France. Full Scores

A swing and a miss on the LPGA Tour.