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December 11, 2013 | By Diane Pucin
Hall of Fame golfer Greg Norman, once ranked No. 1 in the world and a two-time British Open champion, has joined Keegan Bradley, Zach Johnson and Rickie Fowler as well as defending champion Brian Gay in the field for the Humana Challenge in partnership with the Clinton Foundation golf tournament next month in La Quinta. Norman, a 20-time winner on the PGA Tour and winner of 70 tournaments overall, will play in the event, scheduled for Jan. 13-19, for just the third time in his career.
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January 19, 2014 | Bill Dwyre
  Young Patrick Reed regained consciousness just in time to make Sunday's final round of the Humana Challenge golf tournament at La Quinta interesting. He had described his first three rounds of 63-63-63 as similar to "being in a putting coma. " The other players in the tournament could only nod in agreement. Going into Sunday on the Palmer Private course, Reed had made a total of two bogeys. That, along with his 25 birdies and two eagles, gave him a seven-shot lead and reduced the victory expectations of the rest of the field to zilch.
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January 21, 2013 | By Diane Pucin, Los Angeles Times
Brian Gay, who has a soul patch and spiky blond hair, does not have his birthdate listed in the massive PGA Media Guide. One tour official said that was on purpose. Gay denied any age fear and said he is 41. Maybe age truly is only a number when you shoot a final-round 63 and then calmly sink a five-and-a-half-foot birdie putt on the second playoff hole. That's what Gay did Sunday to win the Humana Challenge tournament at the PGA West-Palmer course in La Quinta. Gay triumphed after being part of a three-man playoff that included Charles Howell III and David Lingmerth but not third-round leader Scott Stallings.
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January 18, 2014 | Bill Dwyre
Stop the presses. Patrick Reed made a bogey on his 14th hole Saturday during the Humana Challenge. But do not despair, all you Reed fans. He had already made an eagle on his seventh hole, No. 16. Along the way, just for fun, he sprinkled in eight birdies. Yes, the same golfer who shot 63 on Thursday and 63 on Friday did it again Saturday. The line now reads: 63-63-63 - 189. That's 27 under par. The expectation about the drama level for Sunday's final round, as golf competes for TV viewers with the NFL playoffs, is lots of yawns.
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January 20, 2012 | By Diane Pucin
Reporting from La Quinta — Ben Crane does not get down on one knee and make the sign of the cross when he holes out from the fairway for a birdie. There is no national craze known as "Craning. " But the golfer is just as intense about his Christian faith as Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow is, and Crane said he is thrilled to watch Tebow make public affirmations of faith. Crane spoke about Tebow and religion only when asked Friday, and not until he had thoroughly explained his round of golf at the Humana Challenge, which left him tied for the second-round lead with first-round coleader David Toms and PGA Tour veteran Mark Wilson.
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January 17, 2013 | By Diane Pucin
There are three co-leaders after the first round of the Humana Challenge, and none of them has won a PGA Tour event. So when the tournament ends Sunday at the PGA West Palmer course in La Quinta, it seems unlikely Jason Kokrak, Roberto Castro or James Hahn will be collecting the winner's check of $1.008 million. But for a day anyway, the threesome got to shine. Kokrak, at La Quinta Country Club; Castro, at PGA West Nicklaus; and Hahn, at PGA West Palmer, each shot nine-under-par 63s Thursday, which gave them a one-shot advantage over a quartet that included rookie Russell Henley, who won last week's Sony Open in Honolulu.
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January 21, 2012 | By Diane Pucin
Reporting from La Quinta -- All of a sudden it was windy, sunny and sandy at the Humana Challenge on Saturday. Gusts reported up to 50 mph blew a scoreboard into a lake on one course and made golf balls on the green at another course do a little dance without the aid of a putter before third-round play was suspended. Tournament leader Mark Wilson described seeing tree branches blowing past him on the La Quinta Country Club course and Zach Johnson said balls were moving around the green at the Nicklaus Private course.
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January 19, 2012 | By Diane Pucin
Reporting from La Quinta -- Camilo Villegas shot a "chill round" of nine-under-par 63 Thursday at the Nicklaus Private Course in the first round of the Humana Challenge. Villegas, a fitness buff who once posed for nude for the ESPN the Magazine body issue, is not shy about flexing his muscles for a female fan. At La Quinta Country Club, David Toms was the other guy in his group, the one wearing an orange shirt and playing with the biggest draw in the field, Phil Mickelson. The galleries that gathered at every hole to cheer for Mickelson actually perked up Toms, who also had a 63 and tied Villegas for the first-round lead.
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January 16, 2014 | Bill Dwyre
Thursday at the Humana Challenge was just another lousy day in paradise. The sun glistened against the mountains, temperatures hovered around 80, the wind took the day off and 112 pro golfers in a field of 155 shot under par. It was a day when there were more birdies than you'd see in an aviary at the three perfectly manicured golf courses in the desert city of La Quinta, After all the scoring carnage, the leader, at nine-under-par 63, was...
SPORTS
January 18, 2013 | By Diane Pucin
James Hahn stood and stared at his scorecard. He was looking at the numerical evidence of his glorious golf round Friday at the Humana Challenge. Hahn, a 31-year-old who has struggled and played on lesser golf tours ever since he graduated from California in 2003, counted four birdies, an eagle and a lonely bogey in his round of five-under-par 67 at La Quinta Country Club. He has a two-day total of 14-under-par 130 and is tied for the second-round lead with Roberto Castro whose aunt, Jenny Lidback, once won on the LPGA Tour.
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January 17, 2014 | By Bill Dwyre
  For pro golfer Patrick Reed, Friday was Groundhog Day in the Southern California desert. He woke up to blue skies, warm temperatures, minimal wind and greens as smooth as a puppy's tummy. Again. So he went out and shot 63. Again. Reed, a 23-year-old Texan, leads the Humana Challenge by two shots. In most stops on the PGA tour, a 63-63 start that is 18 under par would have sent the rest of the guys off to call the airlines for early departure. After all, what's the use?
SPORTS
January 16, 2014 | Bill Dwyre
Thursday at the Humana Challenge was just another lousy day in paradise. The sun glistened against the mountains, temperatures hovered around 80, the wind took the day off and 112 pro golfers in a field of 155 shot under par. It was a day when there were more birdies than you'd see in an aviary at the three perfectly manicured golf courses in the desert city of La Quinta, After all the scoring carnage, the leader, at nine-under-par 63, was...
SPORTS
January 15, 2014 | Bill Dwyre
If the storytellers have their way, Sunday in sports will be dedicated to neck surgeons of the world. Let's say that, in addition to Peyton Manning leading his Denver Broncos into the Super Bowl, Davis Love III is holding up a trophy on the 18th green of the Humana Challenge golf tournament at La Quinta. That might make it time to bronze some scalpels. Manning's neck surgery has been well-documented. So has his amazing comeback. Not so much Love's. A year ago at this event, Love went to the trainer's trailer and, complaining of neck pain, was put through the paces.
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January 7, 2014 | By Diane Pucin
Hall of Fame golfer Greg Norman, 58, withrew Tuesday from the Humana Challenge Golf Tournament scheduled for Jan. 13-19 because of a knee injury. The two-time British Open winner is meeting with orthopedic surgeon James Bradley in Pittsburgh early next week. He's had knee and shoulder surgeries performed by Bradley in the past. “Early next week, I will be evaluating Greg's right knee to determine the extent of a persistent, ongoing injury and establish an appropriate treatment plan,” Dr. Bradley said.
SPORTS
January 21, 2013 | By Diane Pucin, Los Angeles Times
Brian Gay, who has a soul patch and spiky blond hair, does not have his birthdate listed in the massive PGA Media Guide. One tour official said that was on purpose. Gay denied any age fear and said he is 41. Maybe age truly is only a number when you shoot a final-round 63 and then calmly sink a five-and-a-half-foot birdie putt on the second playoff hole. That's what Gay did Sunday to win the Humana Challenge tournament at the PGA West-Palmer course in La Quinta. Gay triumphed after being part of a three-man playoff that included Charles Howell III and David Lingmerth but not third-round leader Scott Stallings.
SPORTS
January 20, 2013 | Bill Dwyre
Golf celebrates its winners and tortures its losers. It isn't a game, it's a giant thumbscrew. At first glance, Sunday presented the opposite. Everything was idyllic in the California desert, where they play the Humana Challenge (formerly the Bob Hope) every year at this time. It isn't always like it was on this tournament closing day at the Palmer Private Course in La Quinta, where the temperatures drifted into the high 70s, the skies were bluer than a decked-out Bruin on the 50-yard line, and the swaying palm trees never swayed.
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January 19, 2013 | By Diane Pucin
Scott Stallings, who has an easy smile and a sweet swing, sneaked away with a five-shot lead after three rounds of the Humana Challenge on Saturday. While many were congratulating 39-year-old Stewart Cink on his six-under-par round of 66 that jumped him from 15th into a five-way tie for second or were busy biting nails waiting to see whether Phil Mickelson made the cut (he did), Stallings shot a nine-under 63 at the PGA West Nicklaus course and earned himself a big advantage heading into Sunday's final round.
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January 18, 2012 | By Diane Pucin
Reporting from La Quinta  - Bob Hope's spirit is everywhere at the Palmer Private at PGA West golf course. Photos are posted, walkways are named for him, his golf cart is exhibited as if it is a museum piece. The tournament used to be called the Bob Hope Classic. Beginning Thursday it's the Humana Challenge in partnership with the Clinton Foundation. And if Hope's aura is still felt, it is Bill Clinton's physical presence that helped save this event. As recently as two years ago, it seemed as if the tournament that had once been a calendar must for every great player might disappear.
SPORTS
January 19, 2013 | By Diane Pucin
Scott Stallings, who has an easy smile and a sweet swing, sneaked away with a five-shot lead after three rounds of the Humana Challenge on Saturday. While many were congratulating 39-year-old Stewart Cink on his six-under-par round of 66 that jumped him from 15th into a five-way tie for second or were busy biting nails waiting to see whether Phil Mickelson made the cut (he did), Stallings shot a nine-under 63 at the PGA West Nicklaus course and earned himself a big advantage heading into Sunday's final round.
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