June 6, 2010 (UPDATE 330 PM PST) –Waking up this Sunday, June 6, and taking a look at the leaderboards of the PGA Tour, LPGA Tour, and Champions Tour events being played, was like the Las Vegas Golf Region looking at itself in the mirror. Las Vegas golfers Rickie Fowler and Tommy Armour III were in the lead heading into the final round on the PGA Tour and Champions Tour, while Craig Barlow and Skip Kendall were making charges on the Nationwide Tour. A clean sweep by Vegas? Stay tuned. Fowler couldn't close and finished second to Justin Rose. Armour III finished second to Price, while Barlow and Kendall finished in a tie for 7th.–By Brian Hurlburt.
It may be tough to confirm, if ever, in the history of the three tours, have golfers from the same region swept an entire weekend by winning events on all three tours, but no matter what is yet to come on Sunday, the Las Vegas presence on the leaderboards just re-affirms how viable of a golf destination and community that Las Vegas is. Fowler, who led by three at The Memorial presented by Morgan Stanley, purchased a home in Las Vegas prior to Las Vegas' 2009 PGA Tour event, the Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. Armour III, who was tied for the lead at the Principal Charity Classic, grew up on the fairways of the old Desert Inn Country Club. Barlow, who was two shots off the lead midway through the final round at the Melwood Prince George's County Open, is a native of the area. Click the previous links for LIVE SCORING and results from each event. Kendall, who was one shot off the lead late in the final round, is a former UNLV golfer.
The Las Vegas Golf Region is the home to more than 30 pros who play the major tours who have very strong ties to Las Vegas golf courses. Many live in the Las Vegas Golf Region on a permanent basis, some grew up here and moved away, others played at UNLV, and a few have second homes in the area but spend plenty of time here playing and practicing during down times. The Las Vegas Golf Region is also the home to more than 50 Las Vegas golf courses including Bear's Best Las Vegas, 18 holes created by Jack Nicklaus. These Las Vegas golf holes replicate 18 of Jack's favorites from courses he has designed around the globe including PGA West, Castle Pines and Cabo Del Sol. Click now for the official website of Bear's Best Las Vegas where you can make your official Las Vegas golf tee times with the official course management of this Las Vegas resort golf course. Bear's Best is a former host of the Las Vegas PGA Tour event.
Fowler, who is a rookie this season but has challenged for a title a few times already in his young career, is feeling good about the opportunity of leading wire-to-wire. And being restless the night prior to the final round won't be a problem. "It's just like any other night," Fowler said after the final round. "I felt great this week. It's the best I've felt being in contention at a tournament. You know, I felt, for example, at the Waste Management in Phoenix this year, I guess I was a little bit shaky that last round, even though I played bogey-free and played well. I feel a lot more comfortable this week, and I think that just goes to show being in contention prior definitely helps. I'm just going to go get a good meal, get some good food in me, and get ready for tomorrow."
Armour III has always been known for his ability to go very low. He still holds the all-time PGA Tour scoring record for a PGA Tour event (2003 Valero Texas Open), and he fired a 60 during the 1999 Las Vegas Invitational over the holes of the Las Vegas Country Club. He went very low again in the second round this weekend at Glen Oaks Country Club. He tied the course record with an 8-under par 63 during the first round. "I played good from the first hole until the last hole," Armour told PGATour.com. ""It's preparation. I prepare to play good." Armour III was a 2008 inductee into the Las Vegas Golf Hall of Fame. Earlier in 2010 he fired a 61 during the ACE Championship. Armour III entered the final round in a tie with Nick Price at 10-under par.
Barlow, who for many years was fully exempt on the PGA Tour but injuries derailed him, was lingering around the leaders of the Nationwide event for the entire weekend. A tough double bogey on the 9th hole of the final round dimmed his chances, but even with that was just two shots out of the lead heading into the back nine. Barlow is a former Southern Nevada Golf Association Player of the Year. Barlow entered the final 18 holes in a tie for fourth. Kendall played for UNLV before current Hall-of-Fame golf coach Dwaine Knight took over. He was the first golfer to play at UNLV to have great success on the PGA Tour.