Gusty afternoon winds couldn't slow down Texas rookie JJ Killeen. Having missed his last 3 cuts in his first season on the Nationwide Tour, Killeen fired a 7 under 65 in a round that was bogey free until #18. Greg Owen who led after his morning Tee time is one shot back. Things went south for Chris Cox early, as he snapped 3 duck hooks in a row on #1 at Wente OB, to open with an 11 at the toughest hole on the entire Nationwide tour schedule. After that disaster, Cox toughed it out to shoot 80. Defending Champ Omar Oresti is not back to defend, as last years success earned him his PGA tour card. Paul Stankowski who is battling back from 4 years of injuries after a fine PGA tour career, finds himself on both circuits. Stankowski fired a 1 over 73 Thursday and is 8 off Killeen's pace. Spencer Levin, the youngster from Elk Grove who finished second on the Canadian tour settled for a 75. The Greg Norman designed Course at Wente Vineyards features 3 of the 10 hardest holes on the Nationwide tour. Stanford grad Joel Kribel shot even par, while Pleasanton's Todd Fischer who became a father of twins on Sunday evening carded a 74.
Thursday, April 3, 2008
Tuesday, April 1, 2008
The Course at Wente hosts the Nationwide Tour. PGA tour hopefuls compete for $600,000 at toughest course on the schedule.Interview with Todd Fischer
Wente Vinyard in Livermore is know for it's grapes and the wine it produces. This week, the golf course meandering through the grapevines is the star. The long course with deep rough, hard and fast greens and everpresent wind challenges the pros at this Nationwide tour stop beyond any other on the circuit. The elevation gains and drops are spectacular, where choosing the right club can be an adventure. For the next few days, the atmosphere is casual with several pro-ams and practice rounds, but on Thursday, things get serious. Defending Champion Omar Oresti is not back having earned his PGA tour card, but many others who have played on the big tour but have not earned enough money to stick are here at Wente. One such player is a former USF star who won the Western NCAA tournament at Pasatiempo in 1992 is Todd Fischer. Sunday night, Todd's wife gave birth to twins but he still honored his pro-am obligation on Monday. The boy, girl and mom are doing fine.