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Kiawah Island Golf Club

The Ocean Course


Ocean Course to Host 2012 PGA Championship

Kiawah Island - Ocean Course - Host for 2005 PGA Qualifier



The Ocean Course to host 2012 PGA Championship


Wednesday, June 22, 2005 - Last Updated: 10:42 AM 

Kiawah Island on course for PGA Championship

Announcement on major golf event expected Thursday


Of The Post and Courier Staff


Kiawah Island appears to have landed one of golf's four major championships.

A press conference is scheduled for Thursday morning at the Ocean Course, where it is expected to be announced that a PGA Championship will be coming to Kiawah as early as 2012.

Officials at the golf course were mum about the content of the announcement, which the resort termed "the most significant announcement in the history of South Carolina golf."

Although South Carolina hosts an annual PGA Tour stop and the 1991 Ryder Cup matches were played at Kiawah, a major championship has never been contested on Palmetto State soil.

The Ocean Course has close ties with the Professional Golfers' Association of America, which is the PGA Championship's sanctioning body. Roger Warren, Kiawah's director of golf, also is president of the PGA of America. The Ryder Cup matches and this week's PGA Club Professional Championship are both PGA of America events. The Ocean Course will host the Senior PGA Championship, another PGA of America event, in 2007.The PGA Championship, which is played in early August, is the fourth of golf's major championships, after the Masters, U.S. Open and British Open. The tournament is operated by the PGA of America, which is a separate entity from the PGA Tour. PGA of America officials are at Kiawah this week for the Club Professional Championship. Gov. Mark Sanford and Ocean Course designer Pete Dye are both scheduled to be at Thursday's announcement.

Warren did not return a phone message at his office Tuesday, but since coming to Kiawah in 2003, he has called landing a major for the Ocean Course a priority.

"As president, of course, I would recuse myself from any votes involving Kiawah," Warren said during the 2003 World Cup. "But we would love to get a PGA Championship. The events we've had here in the past have all been team play. But people would love to see the best players in the world play stroke play on this course. That is one of my goals. It's what I was hired to do, and I would be disappointed if it doesn't happen."

Sites for future PGA Championships have been awarded through 2011. The PGA of America also runs the Ryder Cup, but the first open date in the United States for that event, contested between teams from the U.S. and Europe, would be 2024.

In addition to the '91 Ryder Cup, the Ocean Course has served as the site of several international competitions. During the 2003 World Cup, word began leaking out that a PGA Championship was in the course's future. England's Paul Casey said he had been told by a European PGA Tour media official that a PGA Championship was in the works for Kiawah.

"It's going to be embarrassingly difficult, I think, when it comes here," said Casey, who at the time was ranked among the world's top 25 players. "It was a really tough but fair golf course (in the World Cup). It definitely rewards good golf. There is no luck out there."

South Africa's Rory Sabbatini said he thought PGA Championship rounds at the Ocean Course might take seven to eight hours. "It really stresses every part of your game," he said. Sabbatini also said he didn't think the Ocean Course would be very crowd-friendly, and that it looked like it would be a difficult walk for spectators.

But Warren said during the World Cup that any perceived negatives don't exist. He pointed out that the course was able to accommodate 25,000 fans for the Ryder Cup. During the Ryder Cup, there were only 16 players in four matches on the course at any one time during the first two days, while just 22 players competed on the final day.

A stroke-play event, such as the PGA Championship, would have 156 players spread out over the entire course. Warren also said during the World Cup that bleachers could be built over the dunes so the course could accommodate up to 50,000 spectators. He also said parking at the remote course is an issue that could be overcome.


1991 Ryder Cup

1997 World Cup of Golf

2001 UBS Warburg Cup

2003 World Golf Championships World Cup

2005 PGA Club Professional Championship

2007 Senior PGA Championship


2005 Springfield, N.J.

2006 Medinah, Ill.

2007 Tulsa, Okla.

2008 Bloomfield Hills, Mich.

2009 Chaska, Minn.

2010 Kohler, Wis.

2011 Atlanta

2012-14 TBA

2015 Kohler, Wis.







Saturday, June 25, 2005 - Last Updated: 7:50 AM 

Ocean Course winds wreak havoc at CPC


Of The Post and Courier Staff


KIAWAH ISLAND--Alan Morin had a beaten look as he walked out of the scoring tent Friday afternoon at the Ocean Course. The first-round co-leader in the PGA of America's Club Professional Championship bogeyed three of his last five holes, and signed for a 4-over-par 76.

In spite of all that, Morin, an assistant professional from Lake Worth, Fla., retained a share of the lead at even-par 144 midway through the $500,000 championship. Travis Long, an assistant from Henderson, Nev., shot 75 Friday and also is at 144. Morin and Long are one shot ahead of Jim Sobb of Barrington, Ill., who shot 74.

Suzy Whaley, who at one point late Friday was the only golfer in the field under par, bogeyed three of her last five holes and shot 74 to finish at 8-over 152, but easily made the cut. Seventy-five players made the cut at 10-over.

The winner of this tournament receives $67,000, while the top 25 earn exemptions into the PGA Championship at Baltusrol in August.

Bob Boyd of Wilmington, N.C., a former Country Club of Charleston pro, also made the cut at 75-153. Mike Lawrence of Easley missed by a shot, shooting 78-155, while George Bryan of Columbia finished at 81-159.

Only two players managed even-par rounds Friday as the Pete Dye-designed Ocean Course bared its teeth with a breeze averaging more than 20 mph. The average score of the 156 golfers was 79.065, shattering the previous CPC one-round record of 78.00 set in 1981 at PGA National. The highest round of the day was a 91 by Lee Johnson of Wichita, Kansas, who finished at 173. The par-3 17th was the most difficult hole of the day, playing to an average score of 3.858. The par-4 18th, at 439 yards, wasn't much easier, playing at 4.8.

Morin left no doubt that it was not a fun round.

"Even the downwind holes it was tough to make birdies," he said. "The wind was blowing 20 to 25 mph, so it was hard to pick a club. It was hard to make a decision."

Morin's walk on the wild side included just about every type of wildlife except birdies. On the 10th hole, Morin's approach shot squirted into the dunes, and he had to get a ruling about fire ants. And as he and his playing partners approached the green, a snake slithered across and into the dunes. He managed to sink a 10-foot putt to save his par.

"There was also a pretty big alligator on 12," Morin added.

Morin said the three bogeys he made coming down the stretch were "all 180-degree lipouts."

And even though he's still tied for the lead, he said he's tough on himself.

"I should still be at least 3 under right now," he said.

As whipped as Morin appeared, Whaley seemed almost giddy about her round of 74. The 38-year-old from Connecticut was the first woman PGA professional to earn a spot in the Club Pro Championship (2002) and was the first female in 58 years to qualify for a PGA Tour event, the 2003 Greater Hartford Open.

"I wouldn't have guessed this after my start," said Whaley, who double bogeyed the first hole after hitting her approach shot into the water. Whaley birdied the par-5 second, but bogeyed the par-3 eighth and made the turn at 38. But birdies on 10, 11 and 13 got her to 1-under for the day. She bogeyed 14, 16 and 18 for an even-par back nine.

"I feel like I shot 4-under-par today," she said. "I struggled coming home, but I'm here for the weekend."

Whaley said she really wanted to play four rounds at the Ocean Course simply because of its seaside setting, and she feels like she has a chance at winning.

"I wouldn't be playing if I didn't," Whaley said. "On this golf course, anything can happen."

Because bad weather is expected later today, tee times have been moved up, with players starting off both the first and 10th tees at 7:30 a.m., with the leaders starting at 9:30.




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