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Turning Heads: How Nick Dunlap Defied the Odds at the PGA Tour

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Nick Dunlap held his nerve and became the first amateur to win a PGA Tour event since Phil Mickelson in 1991.

The 20-year-old made a six-foot par putt on the final hole to win The American Express by one stroke over South Africa’s Christiaan Bezuidenhout.

Because he is an amateur, the American will not earn any prize, leaving the $1.5 million (£1.2 million) winner’s cheque to Bezuidenhout.

“It’s so cool to be experiencing this as an amateur,” Dunlap added.

“Whether I made or missed that, if you had told me come Wednesday night that I had a putt to win this tournament, I wouldn’t have believed you.”

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Nick Dunlap held his nerve and became the first amateur to win a PGA Tour event since Phil Mickelson in 1991.

Mickelson, a six-time major winner, commented on X: “What an incredible effort by Nick Dunlap. Congratulations on an incredible victory.”

Dunlap, who had missed the cut in his previous three PGA Tour tournaments, now has a two-year exemption and entrance into the Masters, the US PGA Championship, and The Players Championship.

His stock was already high before this surprising victory, as he became only the second player to win both the US Junior Amateur and US Amateur titles, following Tiger Woods last year.

His final round at La Quinta’s Pete Dye-designed Stadium course included a double-bogey six on the short par-four seventh, where he pushed an iron shot off the tee into a lake, erasing his three-shot overnight lead.

However, the University of Alabama student responded superbly, shooting three birdies in his next nine holes and closing with a two-under 70 to hold off a charging Bezuidenhout and become only the seventh amateur to win a PGA Tour event.

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How Nick Dunlap Defied the Odds at the PGA Tour

The South African – who blasted a 138-yard wedge shot for an eagle two on the par-four 15th – also birdied the last in a seven-under 65 to set a clubhouse target of 28 under.

Dunlap, who had moved to 29 under with a birdie on the 16th, admitted he was uninformed of Bezuidenhout’s final-hole birdie and believed he had a two-shot lead as he stood over his second approach to the last.

His approach veered right and struck a spectator before resting a few yards off the green.

How Nick Dunlap Defied the Odds at the PGA Tour

He chipped up to six feet and sank the putt confidently after his caddie advised him, “It’s inside left; you’ve made a million of these before.”

When asked if becoming professional was the next logical step, he said, “I’m not sure. I need to take a second to process what just happened.

“That isn’t just a personal decision. It affects a lot of people, and I’m definitely going to try to appreciate it.”

SOURCE – (BBC)

Kiara Grace is a staff writer at VORNews, a reputable online publication. Her writing focuses on technology trends, particularly in the realm of consumer electronics and software. With a keen eye for detail and a knack for breaking down complex topics, Kiara delivers insightful analyses that resonate with tech enthusiasts and casual readers alike. Her articles strike a balance between in-depth coverage and accessibility, making them a go-to resource for anyone seeking to stay informed about the latest innovations shaping our digital world.

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NFL Distances Itself From Chiefs Kicker Harrison Butker’s Comments During Commencement Speech

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NEW YORK — The NFL has distanced itself from Kansas City Chiefs kicker Harrison Butker, stating that “his views are not those of the NFL as an organization.”

Butker spoke at the commencement ceremony at Benedictine College, a private Catholic liberal arts institution in Kansas, last week and claimed most of the graduating ladies were likely more enthused about getting married and having children.

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NFL Distances Itself From Chiefs Kicker Harrison Butker’s Comments During Commencement Speech

Butker also said that some Catholic officials were “pushing dangerous gender ideologies onto the youth of America.”

“Harrison Butker gave a speech in his personal capacity,” said Jonathan Beane, NFL senior vice president and chief diversity and inclusion officer, in a statement issued on Thursday. “His opinions do not represent the NFL as an organization. The NFL remains unwavering in its commitment to inclusion, which only strengthens our league.”

The three-time Super Bowl champion gave his about 20-minute speech Saturday at the school in Atchison, Kansas, about 60 miles (97 kilometers) north of Kansas City. He earned a standing ovation from graduates and other attendees.

Butker, who has made his conservative Catholic convictions known, also criticized Pride Month, which is especially crucial for the LGBTQ+ rights movement, as well as President Joe Biden’s abortion stance.

“I think it is you, the women, who have had the most diabolical lies told to you,” Butker concluded.

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NFL Distances Itself From Chiefs Kicker Harrison Butker’s Comments During Commencement Speech

“Some of you may go on to have excellent jobs in the world, but I believe the bulk of you are most excited about your marriage and the children you will bring into the world. I can guarantee you that my lovely wife Isabelle would be the first to state that her life truly began when she began to live her vocation as a wife and mother,” he said.

Butker, 28, claimed his wife accepted “one of the most important titles of all.” Homemaker.”

Butker also chastised The Associated Press for emphasizing a move toward conservativism in some sectors of the church.

Butker also made an oblique allusion to Pride Month, referring to a “deadly sin sort of pride that has a month dedicated to it.” Butker also criticized Biden’s views, such as his rejection of the Supreme Court’s reversal of the 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling and support for abortion rights, which are significant campaign topics in the 2024 presidential race.

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NFL Distances Itself From Chiefs Kicker Harrison Butker’s Comments During Commencement Speech

The 2017 seventh-round pick from Georgia Tech has emerged as one of the NFL’s greatest kickers, breaking the Chiefs franchise record with a 62-yard field goal in 2022. Butker helped them win their first Super Bowl in 50 years in 2020, added a second Lombardi Trophy in 2023, and kicked the game-winning field goal in overtime against San Francisco in February.

SOURCE – (AP)

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Clark Helps Liberty Become 1st WNBA Team To Have $2M In 1-Game Ticket Revenue

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NEW YORK — Caitlin Clark set a ticket sales record for the New York Liberty in her debut game in the Big Apple on Saturday.

The Liberty earned more than $2 million in ticket income for the game, setting a WNBA record, according to a source familiar with the matter who spoke anonymously because they were not authorized to discuss the team’s earnings.

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Clark Helps Liberty Become 1st WNBA Team To Have $2M In 1-Game Ticket Revenue

“That’s incredible,” Liberty star Breanna Stewart said when she learned about the record ticket sales. “I believe that the noise and attention that Caitlin has brought from Iowa to the WNBA is a collective win for everyone. When I initially joined in the league, teams were not earning money. It’s been a long time coming. I’m glad to be here, but not satisfied.”

The game had sold out, and tickets were in high demand on the secondary market. Clark’s first three games with the Indiana Fever have been quite well attended. The Connecticut Sun sold out their home opener for the first time in twenty years. Over 17,000 people attended the Fever’s home opener versus New York on Thursday night.

Clark had one of the best games of her brief professional career on Saturday, scoring 22 points, 15 of which came in the first half, but the Fever fell 91-80.

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Clark Helps Liberty Become 1st WNBA Team To Have $2M In 1-Game Ticket Revenue

She got going early against the Liberty, scoring 10 points in the first quarter, more than she did two days earlier in Indianapolis when she only had nine. She was more secure attacking on offense, hitting several of her trademark deep 3-pointers.

The league’s top overall pick was no stranger to performing on the greatest platforms, having introduced many new fans to the sport during her time at Iowa. She helped the Hawkeyes reach the NCAA championship game the previous two seasons and has regularly played in front of sellout crowds, such as the one in New York on Saturday.

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Clark Helps Liberty Become 1st WNBA Team To Have $2M In 1-Game Ticket Revenue

Clark had averaged 14.5 points, 4.5 assists, and 3.5 rebounds throughout her first two games.

She spent 10 minutes before the game signing autographs for scores of fans who had waited patiently for the rookie.

SOURCE – (AP)

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NASCAR Hopes Repaved Track, Softer Tires Make For More Competitive All-Star Race At North Wilkesboro

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North Wilkesboro, North Carolina – NASCAR hopes that a repaved course and softer tires will result in more competitive short-track racing for Sunday’s All-Star race at North Wilkesboro Speedway.

It couldn’t go any worse than last year.

After months of anticipation for the first race at the refurbished circuit since 1996, the All-Star race was a letdown, with Kyle Larson winning and taking home $1 million. He led for 145 of the 200 laps, at times by nearly 11 seconds, or more than half a lap on the 625-mile short track.

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NASCAR Hopes Repaved Track, Softer Tires Make For More Competitive All-Star Race At North Wilkesboro

Larson later boasted: “That was an old school (butt)-whipping, for sure.”

And that did not make for exciting television.

However, William Byron believes that this year’s race will be considerably closer. NASCAR tested softer tires on the short track during a rainy weekend in North Wilkesboro.

“This place is so different and unique; we almost need a couple more practices to get everyone closer,” remarked Byron. “There will be many comers and goers, and the gaps will be less because the pace is faster and there is less falloff. But I still believe it won’t be easy to finish the passes.

Larson is still aiming to race Sunday night after spending the week training for the Indianapolis 500.

Meanwhile, Kevin Harvick came out of retirement to drive Larson’s No. 5 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet during practice, which he never expected to happen.

“It’s definitely not the attire that I thought I’d be wearing this year,” Harvick joked while donning the Hendrick Motorsports fire suit.

However, Harvick, who now works in the broadcast booth, says it has been a good week.

Stewart-Haas Racing, Harvick’s former employer, even helped out by sending the chairs and seat rails he used while racing so he could fit better.

“Sometimes there are phone calls that you react to different than others,” Harvick stated. “When Rick (Hendrick) called and said what he needed and I said, ‘OK,’ everyone at Fox was kind enough to let us take the day to do what we needed to do.”

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NASCAR Hopes Repaved Track, Softer Tires Make For More Competitive All-Star Race At North Wilkesboro

Chase Elliott expressed interest in NASCAR’s experiment next year with an in-season bracket-style playoff, similar to what the NBA did this season.

“It sounds interesting, especially starting at Atlanta (Motor Speedway) with it now being a speedway thing,” Elliott stated. “But, yes, I believe it has the ability to add excitement to our year by doing something different. I have no problems with that.”

Chris Buescher and Tyler Reddick could have some bad blood this weekend. Buescher confronted Reddick in pit lane following last week’s race at Darlington, where Reddick forced him into the wall, eliminating his hopes of victory.

“When you are racing for the win, you are racing for the win,” Reddick stated. “In that moment I was trying to think how I could take my car that was in second place to first place.”

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NASCAR Hopes Repaved Track, Softer Tires Make For More Competitive All-Star Race At North Wilkesboro

Reddick stated, “The obvious thing is I drove in so deep that I needed the entire racetrack.” I did not have enough tires left to keep the outside lane free, so I’m simply trying to learn for the next time.

Denny Hamlin is the 19-4 favorite to win the All-Star race, edging out three-time champion Larson, according to BetMGM.

SOURCE – (AP)

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