Stricker makes a push on moving day at the U.S. Open

Steve Stricker was so close to having a dream third round at the U.S. Open.

The 50-year-old, backed with a throng of vocal supporters watching his every move, charged down the back nine at Erin Hills on Saturday with birdies on three of his last four holes as he approached the par-5 18th. It’s a beast of a hole at 637 yards, and for someone that doesn’t hit it as far as he once did, it can be daunting. Stricker pulled out his 3-wood and took aim.

“(I was trying) to stay out of those bunkers and ended up putting it in one of them,” he said afterwards. “From there you’re behind the eight-ball.”

The Edgerton native still managed to give himself a chance at a long birdie putt, but missed that and would end up three putting, finishing the round with a 3-under 69, leaving him at 2-under for the tournament.

“Yeah, a little disappointing the way I finished there on 18,” Stricker said. “Really a solid day, though, all the way around. I made some saves when I had to. Made some good putts, but it would have been nice to get a birdie look at 18 instead of making a bogey.”

Still, it was a breakthrough for Stricker, who had a total of five birdies for the round that left him six shots off the lead when he left the course. And though it’s unlikely that he’ll be able to make a run up the leaderboard on Sunday, he at least gave himself an outside chance.

“It depends on the weather, I guess,” Stricker said when asked what he could shoot on the final day. “It’s tough. This is a tough course for me.

“(Still,) I expect to be where I’m at or better. I still feel like I’ve got some game. It’s coming a little harder, it seems like, on a regular basis. But I still feel like I do a lot of good things to compete out here.”

No matter what he shoots, he’ll have the crowd on his side. As he was coming down the 18th fairway, he got a standing ovation, and the cheers for his birdies could be heard all over the course grounds.

“I’ve been feeding off of them all week,” Stricker said of the crowd. “It’s been fun. The ovation I got going up 18 is unbelievable. The support all the way around has been tremendous.”

Steve Stricker Update

Wisconsin’s own Steve Stricker finished up his first round at Erin Hills for this year’s U.S. Open Thursday evening. He was part of one of the last half dozen  groups to walk off the course yesterday after a round he shot 73. Stricker had an up and down front nine and a consistent par heavy back nine.

(AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

He started his Thursday round teeing off at 3:20 pm starting on the first hole. Stricker started his round off strong, as he birdied his first two holes  to start the day at two under. He then ran into trouble holes three and four and ended up bogeying both to bring him back to even par. Stricker finished his last five holes of the front nine adding four pars and yet another bogey.

He made the turn at hole number 10 and parred ever single hole on the back nine. Stricker finished the day at +1 and shot a 73, good enough to put him in a tie for 61st place. He tallied two birdies, 13 pars, and three bogeys in his first round of the U.S. Open.  For fans who had hopes of Stricker taking home his first PGA Major Championship, there is still a chance for the home state hero . So far this season, Stricker has been starting out slow. He has an overall score over par for his first round in tournaments. After the first round, Stricker seems to find his groove as he has an overall score under par for all of the final three rounds in tournament play this year.

Stricker teed off this morning at 9:35. He is in a group that features tour veteran Stewart Cink and
Roberto Diaz. Stricker is currently through five holes and is -1 on the day and is sitting at even par for the tournament.

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Hauser brothers to transfer from Marquette

Marquette is losing two of its top players. Brothers Sam and Joey Hauser announced their transfer from the program early Monday afternoon. The school confirmed it with a tweet of its own. Thank you Marquette 💙💛 pic.twitter.com/UbPEVjzPnf — Sam Hauser (@Big_Smooth10) April 15, 2019 Thank you Marquette 〽️🔷 pic.twitter.com/FOg3qEy8I7 — Joey Hauser (@jjhouz24) April 15, […]

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Rickie Fowler shoots a 7-under 65 to take early U.S. Open lead

Rickie Fowler has never won a major tournament in his career, but the 28-year-old is off to a great start as he looks to capture his first.

Fowler was one of the first to tee off Thursday morning at the 117th U.S. Open being played at Erin Hills just outside of Hartford, and he has everyone chasing him, as he posted a 7-under 65 to position himself atop the leaderboard.

“It was nice. You don’t get many rounds at a U.S. Open that are stress free,” Fowler said. “Simple day when you look back on it and how we kind of pieced our way around the golf course, but a lot easier said than done.”

By shooting 7-under, Fowler tied the record of Jack Nicklaus and Tom Weiskopf for the lowest round to par in the first round of a U.S. Open.

“That’s cool, but it’s just the first round,” Fowler said when told of the mark. “I’d rather be remembered for something that’s done on Sunday.”

Steve Stricker earns spot in U.S. Open after winning qualifier

MEMPHIS — A rain delay and the pressure of trying to earn a spot to play in the U.S. Open in his home state couldn’t deter Madison’s Steve Stricker from winning a qualifying round Monday evening.

The 50-year-old shot a 4-under par 67 in round one and a 6-under 65 round two to win the qualifier with an overall 132. Five players finished a stroke behind Stricker, with the top nine finishers earning a spot at Erin Hills June 12-18.

Prior to Monday’s action, Stricker attempted to earn his way to Erin Hills by asking the USGA for an exemption — a request that was quickly denied.

“It means a lot,” Stricker said. “Not getting an exemption was a motivational factor. Not that I deserved one, but it’s been driving me to achieve this goal. And, I’m just happy that I’m going to get to play. It’s a relief to get to play in the first one in my home state.”

Stricker will be participating in another big golf event in his home state beginning on June 23rd — The American Family Insurance Championship at University Ridge in Madison. It’s part of the PGA Champions Tour for golfers aged 50-plus. Stricker spoke with the Wisconsin Sports Zone Network during Media Day about his chances of earning a spot at Erin Hills after failing to earn the exemption.

Stricker hasn’t played in the Open in three years, but has played the Erin Hills course a handful of times. He says his biggest obstacle will be finding a way to gain an extra 20 yards on his drive because of the sheer size of the course.

Stricker finishes fourth at British Open

TROON, SCOTLAND — While Henrik Stenson went on to win the British Open on Sunday to become the first Swedish man to win a major, Wisconsin native Steve Stricker finished fourth.

Stenson shot an 8-under 63 in Sunday’s final round, holding off Phil Mickelson for his first major title. Stricker’s overall 2-under 69 qualifies him for a spot in the Masters, as well as the Open Championship in 2017.

Stricker’s performance was also his best finish at an Open Championship, finishing tied for seventh at Birkdale in 2008.

Wisconsin’s Skip Kendall Will Play In PGA Champions Event In Madison

MADISON, Wis. (June 3, 2016) — Wisconsin native Skip Kendall will play in the first-ever PGA TOUR Champions American Family Insurance Championship, June 24-26, at University Ridge Golf Course in Madison. Kendall received a sponsor’s exemption from American Family, as did fellow PGA TOUR Champions player Stan Utley.

Kendall was born and raised in the Milwaukee area, before playing collegiate golf at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas. He then hit the professional golf ranks, winning four times on the Web.com Tour, and earning 26 top-10 finishes on the PGA TOUR and three top-10 finishes on PGA Tour Champions. Kendall won the Wisconsin State Open in 1988 and 1989.

Stan Utley has competed on PGA TOUR Champions since 2011 after a career on both the Web.com and PGA tours. He won his sole PGA TOUR title at the 1989 Chattanooga Classic, along with three Web.Com wins.

Fans can purchase tickets for the American Family Insurance Championship at the tournament website at www.amfamchampionship.com. Options include $25 general admission tickets valid any day of the championship, in addition to three-day general admission and clubhouse passes with special amenities.

Active duty, reserve and retired military personnel can enjoy a free three-day pass and any child 15 and under also gets free admission to the tournament with an adult admission.

Fans can also follow the tournament’s social media channels: Twitter: @amfamchamp; Facebook: American Family Insurance Championship; and Instagram: AmFamChampionship.
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About the American Family Insurance Championship
The PGA TOUR Champions tour, American Family Insurance and 12-time PGA TOUR winner and Wisconsin native Steve Stricker announced last June this new Wisconsin golf event. The inaugural American Family Insurance Championship will feature an 81-player field competing for a $2 million purse. The no-cut event will include two Pro-Am events on June 22-23 followed by three days of tournament play, June 24-26. Proceeds from the event will be donated to the Steve Stricker American Family Insurance Foundation for distribution to the American Family Children’s Hospital and other charities.