MLS: Sporting K.C. trounces Toronto, 4-2. 4B NEXT TOUR CHAMP? Cadel Evans became the new overall leader and all but clinched the Tour de France on Saturday. Story on page 2B.
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LAWRENCE JOURNAL-WORLD ● LJWorld.com/sports ● Sunday, July 24, 2011
LAGA CITY TOURNAMENT
Golfers approve of Bend About three months ago, newly named Eagle Bend Golf Course superintendent Darin “Lumpy” Pearson hit the links with the idea of transforming Lawrence’s city-owned public course from a place locals dealt with to one people drove miles to enjoy. Through 90 days, the feedback on Pearson’s effort was outstanding. Those who worked at Eagle Bend said the course was in the best shape they’d ever seen. Those who played it regularly began to notice — and like — the changes immediately. Saturday, those points of view picked up a heavy dose of credibility from the dozens of golfers who poured off the course after their opening rounds at the Lawrence Amateur Golf Association’s city tournament. “The course looks beautiful,” said Doug Wilson, of Lawrence, who plays most often at Alvamar. “The greens were in the best shape I’ve ever seen them, and you can tell that they’re really trying to define the tee boxes and the rest of the course with nice mowing. It’s definitely some place I’d enjoy playing more.” One by one, other competitors offered up similar remarks. “It just makes it a much more enjoyable tournament when you’re playing on a well-caredfor golf course,” said Galen Smith, also of Lawrence. “Everybody knows city budgets. It’s tough. So for them to have the course looking this good in the middle of the summer is nice.” Words such as those brought smiles to the faces of the Eagle Bend employees, especially head pro John Morris. “It’s great,” said Morris, in his 11th year. “Everybody that came in just kept saying, ‘Hey, the course looks great.’ When people are saying that with this heat, what’s that tell you?” Funny Morris mentioned heat. Other than Eagle Bend’s hot new look, the sweltering summer temperatures were the most popular topic of conversation Saturday. As temperatures rose above the 100-degree mark yet again and the heat index soared to almost 120 degrees at some spots on the course, local golfers did all they could to stay cool. “Just the standard stuff, really,” Michael Rack said. “Drink lots of water and stay hydrated.” Added Tom Rainbolt: “We’re used to it by now. We’ve been golfing for the past couple of weeks in this stuff.” While most golfers wore sun visors, upped their water intake and sought out shade whenever possible, course officials made the rounds to ensure everyone was OK and all the water jugs were full. While some talked selfpreservation and others about the beauty of the course, one man had the vision to blend the two topics. “We think it’s bad on us out there,” said Dennis Gisel, who fired a 74. “But the golf course is under attack.” Asked if Pearson’s upgrades had made the course more difficult, Gisel was honest. “Not really,” he said. “It just looks better.” That was the idea in the first place, and now, with a big thumbs-up from some of the city’s best golfers, Eagle Bend seems poised for big things in the future. The golfers themselves, many of whom promised they’d be back after getting a firsthand look at the Bend’s facelift, get to do it all over again today at Lawrence Country Club. The final round begins at 9 a.m.
John Young/Journal-World Photo
SPENCER SCOTT CHIPS ONTO THE GREEN during the Lawrence Amateur Golf Association city tournament on Saturday at Eagle Bend. Scott shot a 76, six strokes behind open championship-flight leader Spencer Wilson, in the first round.
Wilson shrugs off 18th ownage for lead By Clark Goble Journal-World Sports Writer
Spencer Wilson was a bit nervous when he stepped onto the teebox on No. 18 at Eagle Bend during the Lawrence Amateur Golf Association city tournament. Not because he was struggling to that point. He played the first 17 holes in 1-under par. He was nervous because the last three times he played No. 18 at Eagle Bend in a tournament, he made three 7s. That’s right — three triple bogeys. “Eighteen has owned me,” Wilson said. Wilson put aside his jitters, made his sixth birdie of the round
and came into the clubhouse with the satisfying final birdie at the a 2-under 70 and the lead in the hole where things went so wrong open championship-flight field. recently. That lead held for the rest of the But Wilson, a 27-year-old assisafternoon. Wilson tant manager at will enter today’s Golf USA, wasn’t You can spray it in round at Lawrence some spots out here completely satisCountry Club with fied with the round, a 5-shot advantage and get away with it noting that he on Scott Wartman and still make some missed the fairway and a 6-shot advan- birdies.” a few too many tage on Spencer times and survived Scott and Mike without much — Golfer Spencer Wilson Rack. damage to the Wilson played scorecard. the first nine holes at even-par, “You can spray it in some spots making birdies at No. 2, No. 4 and out here and get away with it and No. 9. He bogied No. 3, No. 6 and still make some birdies, where No. 8. tomorrow we’re not going to be He made back-to-back birdies at able to do that,” Wilson said. No. 11 and 12, a bogey on No. 16 and He said his tall-face putter, like
the ones that he sells at Golf USA, helped. In his personal and professional opinion, the taller face helps the ball roll more smoothly. The shot of the day came from 20-year-old Evan Schmidt, who aced No. 13 en route to an up-anddown 82. His 7-iron approach shot on the 160-yard par-3 soared right toward the flag, took a couple small hops and trickled into the bottom of the cup. Schmidt graduated from Free State High and will be a sophomore on the golf team at Coffeyville Community College this fall. It was his first hole-in-one. “Now I can say that I’ve gotten a
Slippery Soria helps Royals win in 10
Recruit’s dad not Aggie yet
Closer wriggles out of jam; K.C. tops Rays, 5-4 KANSAS CITY, MO. (AP) — Joakim Soria (5-3) got Casey KotchSoria was at his best when the man on a comebacker, forcing out Kansas City Royals needed it Longoria at home. He struck out most Saturday night. pinch hitter Sam Fuld and Elliot Soria worked out of a bases- Johnson looking to end the 10th. loaded, no-out jam in the 10th, “You can’t say enough about Eric Hosmer doubled Soria, the job he did,” home the winning run Royals manager Ned in the bottom of the RAYS VS. Yost said. “Bases inning, and the Royals loaded, nobody out, and ROYALS rallied for a 5-4 victory that’s why he’s so great. over the Tampa Bay When: 1:10 p.m. He doesn’t get flustered. Rays. He doesn’t panic. He today The Royals have won just continues to make four straight to match Where: Kansas pitches and got us out of their season-high win- City, Mo. it and put us in a spot Pitchers: Cobb ning streak. where we could win. The Rays loaded the (2-0) vs. F. Paulino This is probably as bases in the 10th with (1-3) excited as I’ve been for none out, but failed to TV: FSKC (cable a win all year.” score. Mike Moustakas, who channels 36, 236) Rookie Aaron Crow, drove in the first three the Royals’ representaKansas City runs, knew tive at the All-Star game, began Soria was going to work out of the inning by walking Evan Lon- the jam. goria and B.J. Upton. He was “When you’ve got a guy on the replaced by Soria, who gave up a mound like that everyone on that single to Matt Joyce to load the Please see ROYALS, page 4B bases.
Please see LAGA, page 4B
By Gary Bedore firstname.lastname@example.org
Charlie Riedel/AP Photo
KANSAS CITY’S ERIC HOSMER, TOP RIGHT, celebrates with teammates Chris Getz (17) and Matt Treanor after hitting a double to score the winning run in the 10th inning of a 5-4 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays on Saturday in Kansas City, Mo.
College basketball recruiting notebook … John Reese, the father of bluechip senior point guard prospect J-Mychal Reese, told brazossports.com on Wednesday he was not leaving his head-coaching position at Bryan (Texas) High for an assistant-coaching post at Texas A&M. The Houston Chronicle reported on July 17 that Reese later this summer would join Billy Kennedy’s Texas A&M staff. That move would have made the Aggies the favorite to land J-Mychal, a 6-foot-1, 170pounder ranked No. 59 in the Class of 2012 by Rivals.com. J-Mychal, who averaged 28.3 points, 6.1 rebounds, 4.6 assists and 2.5 steals per game for his dad’s team last season, is considering Kansas University, Please see RECRUITING, page 4B