Spectators this weekend at the U.S. Senior Open will be allowed to enter the Omaha Country Club gates with one plastic water bottle per person for the final two rounds on Saturday and Sunday. Temperatures are expected to be around 90 degrees both days.
There will be no water stations on the course, however, for refills.
Couples gives young fan a prized possession
Cameron Colt, age 3, had a prized souvenir to take home, even if he's too young to realize it.
As he walked from the 18th green to the first tee, Fred Couples handled his golf ball to the toddler. Cameron was with his father, Scotty Colt of Omaha.
The elder Colt noticed that Couples put no markings on his Bridgestone ball. Remarked an onlooker, “He's in the fairway so much he doesn't need to.”
Late bogeys costly for Des Moines golfer McCoy
Des Moines amateur Mike McCoy sweated out the afternoon wave of players only to miss the cut at 7 over. Bogeys on the final two holes were costly.
The insurance executive said it still was an enjoyable week. He was paired in the championship with Gary Hallberg, who shared the lead after Thursday's first round, and David Eger. In Wednesday's practice round, he played with Tom Watson.
“Another consummate professional,'' McCoy said. “I've admired Tom forever and watched him hit a lot of shots over the years.”
Riegger cools off after hot start to second round
Early starters didn't have fast starts Friday, save for John Riegger. A month into his senior tour career, he shot a 5-under 30 for the lowest score of the tournament on the front nine. He birdied holes 2, 4, 5, 6 and 8.
“And then the adventure started,'' Riegger said. “I drove it perfect on 10, had 135 yards to the hole, trying to hit a little wedge and thought I hit a pretty good shot, and it spun back to the front of the green. That hole location there today is just brutal.”
He three-putted the green for bogey, one of four he made coming in to shoot 39 on the back nine and 69 for the day. He's at 1 over entering the weekend.
“If you'd have told me after I hit my tee shot on 10 I'd struggle the way I did coming home, I'd have said you're crazy,'' Riegger said. “But that's U.S. Open golf.”
Defending champion Chapman misses cut
Roger Chapman's reigns are over, first at the Senior PGA and now at the U.S. Senior Open after his 76 Friday left him at 10 over. He's the first Senior Open defending champion to miss the cut since Allen Doyle in 2007.
“Just played rubbish, that was it. Drove the ball terrible,'' the Briton said. “This was not what I wanted. I had a great 12 months in the USGA. Omaha Country Club has been fantastic, too.”
Marsh, Pate withdraw; Horrobin shoots 80
Graham Marsh (hip) and Jerry Pate (medical condition) withdrew prior to the second round.
Peter Horrobin didn't make the cut, but ESPN2 fulfilled his 89-year-old mother's dream by showing the first Jamaican-born golfer in the Senior Open a couple of times late in Friday's telecast. He shot an 80 Friday following Thursday's 70.
Hill near 14th hole gives fans great vantage point
There are very few ways that a golf course could ever be compared to a concert venue. You likely didn't hear silence mixed with polite claps at last week's rousing Justin Bieber concert.
Omaha Country Club's 14th hole has an odd attraction about it, however. The landscape around the 14th green works like an amphitheatre.
A hill crawls upward beyond the green, giving onlookers a place to sit down and extend their legs across the grass with a close, downhill view.
The hill behind the 14th also provides a view of the course that is arguably unmatched at OCC.
“We get to see … the 11 green, 12 tee and 14 green,” said onlooker John Krager, who chose the hill as his view of choice on his only day at the course. “So we've been hanging out here just kind of watching all three.”
While he and his daughter, Katie, clown around and have fun in the grass, they get every angle they could ever want to enjoy the golf.
Looking forward gives you a front-row seat for the 14th green, where players like Joe Daley had some incredible shots throughout Friday.
To the right, you'll see blasts coming out of the 12th tee box. Split the difference, and you can see the final putts on the short par-3 11th.
The convergence of holes can seem quite confusing from the perspective of the security officials trying to manage the different crowds around the hill.
One second they are raising their arms — the universal sign for silence — for a drive on the 12th. They then have to subdue any more cheering because of an impending putt on 14th.
Then again, they get an even better spot than the fans at this incredible location.
“It's such a great vantage point,” one official remarked, seemingly in awe.
Even such a great spot has its flaws. You might notice your skin reddening quite a bit after an extended visit.
“Right now we're surrendering the shade for a decent spot to watch,” he said.