April 19, 2017 - 9:08am
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PGA of America
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Junior Invitational
Pritchard/PGA of America
Here's a look at the tee times for the prestigious Junior Invitational at Sage Valley Golf Club, won by Austin Eckroat in the boys' division in 2016.

Tee times for the Opening Round of the Junior Invitational on Thursday, April 20:

8:30 a.m. -- Pak (Scotch Plains, NJ), Adrien Pendaries (France), Matthew Wolff (Agoura Hills, CA)
8:40 a.m. -- Matias Honkala (Finland), Eddy Lai (San Jose, CA), Kyle Vance (Audubon, PA)
8:50 a.m. -- Brandon Mancheno (Jacksonville, FL), Davis Shore (Knoxville, TN), Khavish Varadan (Malaysia)
9:00 a.m. -- Fred Lee (Australia), Max Schmitt (Germany), Trey Winstead (Baton Rouge, LA)
9:10 a.m. -- Alejandro Aguilera (Spain), Garrett Barber (Stuart, F), Reese Ramsey (Austin, TX)
9:20 a.m. -- Kaiwen Liu (China, Joaquin Niemann (Chile), Mason Nome (Houston, TX)
9:40 a.m. -- Jacob Bergeron (Slidell, LA), Wilson Furr (Jackson, MS), Garrick Higgo (South Africa)
9:50 a.m. -- Ricky Castillo (Yorba Linda, CA), Cole Hammer (Houston, TX), Min Woo Lee (Australia)
10:00 a.m. -- Austin Eckroat (Edmond, OK), John Axelsen (Denmark), Karl Vilips (Australia)
10:10 a.m. -- Nicholas Lyerly (Salisbury, NC), Jeewon Park (South Korea), Rayhan Thomas (India)
10:20 a.m. -- Eugene Hong (Orlando, FL), Justin Kim (Rome, GA), Marcus Svensson (Sweden)
10:30 a.m. -- Jonathan Goth-Rasmussen (Denmark), Cameron John (Australia), Travis Vick (Houston, TX)
10:50 a.m. -- Noah Goodwin (Corinth, TX), Kaito Onishi (Japan), Patrick Welch (Providence, RI)
11:00 a.m. -- Ryan Gerard (Raleigh, NC), Thomas Mulligan (Ireland), Trent Phillips (Inman, SC)
11:10 a.m. -- Paul Chaplet (Costa Rica), Brandon Gillis (Nashua, NH), Sean Maruyama (Japan)
11:20 a.m. -- Noah Norton (Chico, CA), Kristoffer Reitan (Norway), Jack Trent (Australia)
11:30 a.m. -- Edgar Catherine (France), Walker Lee (Houston, TX), Wocheng (Aden) Ye (China)
11:40 a.m. -- Falko Hanisch (Germany), Won Jun Lee (South Korea), Michael Sanders (Davidson, NC)

Tee times: Junior Invitational, Round 1
April 18, 2017 - 12:26pm
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T.J. Auclair
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Tiger Woods
USA Today Sports Images
Tiger Woods reveals first course design for the public at Missouri's Big Cedar Lodge Resort.

Tiger Woods announced on Tuesday that his first design for a public golf course will be at Big Cedar Lodge in Ridgedale, Missouri.

The name of the 19-hole course -- that's right, "19" -- will be "Payne's Valley," a tribute to the late Payne Stewart, a three-time major winner who was born in Springfield, Missouri.

Along with the big course, slated to open in 2019, Woods will also design a par-3 course for guests of Big Cedar Lodge.

Woods teased the announcement in a tweet on April 12:

Woods was at Big Cedar Lodge for Tuesday's announcement, along with Johnny Morris, owner of the resort and founder of Bass Pro Shops, as well as Stewart's widow, Tracey and Tom Lehman.

As a designer, Woods has completed two courses: Bluejack National near Houston, Texas and Diamante's El Cardonal in Mexico.  

Tiger Woods to open first public course at Big Cedar Lodge
April 18, 2017 - 9:26am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
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Inevitably, you're going to encounter wildlife on the golf course. But an entire herd of kangaroos? That's what happened recently in Australia.

If you play golf, you're going to encounter wildlife over the course of the round.

Maybe it's a gator or a snake. Maybe it's beautiful birds. Perhaps it's annoying geese. Even deer.

In Australia, it isn't uncommon to come across a kangaroo.

Or, in the case of Sanctuary Point at St. George's Basin Country Club, TONS of kangaroos.

Check it out this video from a gentleman named Greg Tannos, who encountered the herd:

Golfer's ball finds fairway... in the middle of a herd of kangaroos
April 18, 2017 - 9:14am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
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Dustin Johnson
USA Today Sports Images
After withdrawing from the Masters due to an injury -- literally at the last minute -- world No. 1 Dustin Johnson is on track for a return at the Wells Fargo Championship.

On the eve of the 2017 Masters, world No. 1 and tournament favorite Dustin Johnson suffered a lower back injury when he fell down some stairs at his rental home in Augusta.

There's probably never a "good time" to get hurt, but this was especially disappointing for Johnson who had just won in three consecutive starts and was in in peak form for the season's first major.

Johnson went to Augusta National the next day hoping to tee it up in Round 1, but after a brief practice session where he was experiencing significant pain, he decided to withdraw one minute before his scheduled tee time.

RELATED: World No. 1 Dustin Johnson withdraws from Masters after freak fall on stairs

"To get injured on Wednesday afternoon, the day before the tournament starts, is a major disappointment," 2018 Ryder Cup USA Captain Jim Furyk told PGA.com in a Q&A. "That late in the game, all your preparation is done. You're not only thinking about the next day, but you're raring to go.

"I'm sure Dustin was disappointed to have to miss it because of how well he's been playing. Maybe he thinks it's a missed opportunity. But he'll have plenty more chances. I really feel bad for him, but more importantly, I hope he gets back to 100 percent soon."

As of Tuesday, it appears things are looking up for Johnson.

Golf.com's Jessica Marksbury reached Johnson by phone to find out how he's progressing.

"It's still a little bit bruised," Johnson told Marksbury. "But today I hit balls, and everything was pretty good. It's a little tight, but I can swing just fine. I was very happy with my practice session today. I was hitting it very well. Hardly any issues. I would say it’s about 85, 90 percent."

Johnson told Marksbury he laid on the couch and watched the Masters, but, "I didn't like watching though. That's one thing I don't want to do anymore."

Johnson announced last week that he intends to make his return at the Wells Fargo Championship, May 4-7. Johnson stressed that he isn't rushing back, but called a practice session where he hit balls all the way through driver, "very reassuring."

Good news, indeed. 

Good news on the health front for world No. 1 Dustin Johnson
April 17, 2017 - 10:08am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
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Wesley Bryan
USA Today Sports Images
Long-known as a golf trick-shot artist, Wesley Bryan saved his best trick to date for Sunday at the RBC Heritage.

Ask any PGA Tour player and he'll tell you that outside of winning a major, the most difficult tournament to win is one played in your home state.

In the 48-year history of the RBC Heritage at Harbour Town on South Carolina's Hilton Head Island, no South Carolinian had ever slipped in to the Tartan jacket given to the tournament's winner.

Until Sunday, when PGA Tour rookie Wesley Bryan turned the trick -- just his latest trick.

RELATED: Meet the Bryan Brothers -- golf's trick-shot artists | Bryan Brothers up the ante

The 27-year-old Bryan from Columbia and a University of South Carolina alum, fired a 4-under 67 in the final round for a 13-under 271 total, to hold off Luke Donald by a single shot.

Over the last few years, Bryan has been on a meteoric rise.

After qualifying to play on the Web.com Tour in 2016, Bryan won three times on that tour, earning the rare "performance promotion" that grants a Web.com player an immediate promotion to the PGA Tour.

And now, just in the middle of April during his rookie season, Bryan has already locked up a win, a two-year-exemption and a spot in the 2018 Masters.

It was only a few years ago when people were asking this question about Bryan: "Yeah, but can he actually play?"

The answer has turned out to be a resounding "YES" but the question was legitimate.

Wesley, you see, along with brother, George, got themselves on the golf map as arguably the best golf, trick-shot duo the world has ever seen, churning out viral video after viral video.

Many of the early videos were shot at the golf academy of their father, George, a PGA professional, in Chapin, S.C.

Here's a small sampling of their work:

So, yeah, that question of whether or not Bryan could play at a high level was a fair one. Clearly spending all that time mastering trick shots couldn't leave a whole lot of time for working on one's complete game.

But somehow, Wesley Bryan pulled it all off.

Oh, and Bryan's win on Sunday was no abberation. It was the completion of a steady progression, his fourth top-10 this season.

Clearly, Wesley Bryan is no one-trick pony. 

Wesley Bryan: From trick-shot artist to PGA Tour winner