Golf Glance: Koepka makes season debut; LPGA in Texas

Field Level Media’s Golf Glance provides weekly news and storylines from each of the major North American golf tours.

Bryson DeChambeau
Bryson DeChambeau. (Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports)

LAST TOURNAMENT: Safeway Open (Cameron Champ)

THIS WEEK: Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, Oct. 3-6
TPC Summerlin, Las Vegas, Nev. (Par 71, 7,255 yards).
Purse: $7 million (Winner: $1.26M – based on 2018)
Defending champion: Bryson DeChambeau
FedEx Cup leader: Sebastian Munoz
TV: Thursday-Friday, 4-8 p.m. ET; Saturday-Sunday, 5-8 p.m. ET (Golf Channel)

NOTES: World No. 1 Brooks Koepka will make his season debut. He skipped the event last year but finished runner-up, T4 and missed the cut twice in four appearances from 2014-17. … Phil Mickelson, who missed the cut last week, is playing in the event for the first time since 2005. … Munoz and Joaquin Niemann, already first-time winners this season, are also in the field, as is Matthew Wolf, who won the 3M Open over the summer for his first Tour win. … Koepka’s brother, Chase, and 17-year-old Akshay Bhatia, are playing on sponsors exemptions. Both are +50000 longshots by PointsBet … Canada’s Graham DeLaet, who has not played on Tour since October 2017, makes his return from back surgery. … TPC Summerlin has played host to the event since 1992. Jim Furyk (1995, ’98, ’99) is the only three-time winner.

BEST BETS: Koepka (+800 by PointsBet) makes his first start since the Tour Championship. He admittedly doesn’t focus as well on regular Tour stops, but does have five worldwide wins after Labor Day since 2012. … Cantlay (+1100) finished second by a shot last year, narrowly missing out on becoming the first player since Furyk to successfully defend at the event. At No. 7, he is the only other top 10 player in the field. … Adam Scott (+2000) finished T17 last week, fading after an opening 65. … Ryan Moore (+7000) is a long-time Vegas resident who also happened to set the tournament scoring record of 260 in 2012, which was equaled by Webb Simpson the following year. Moore brings good odds but is also coming off a missed cut – his fourth in nine events. … Kevin Na (+6600) also resides in Las Vegas.

NEXT WEEK: Houston Open, Humble, Texas

Sung Hyun Park
Sung Hyun Park. (Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports)

LAST WEEK: Indy Women in Tech Championship (Mi Jung Hur)

THIS WEEK: Volunteers of America Classic, Oct. 3-6
Old American Golf Club, The Colony, Texas (Par 71, 6,475 yards)
Purse: $1.3M (Winner: $195,000)
Defending champion: Sung Hyun Park
Race to the CME Globe leader: Jin Young Ko
Television: Thursday-Friday, 1-4 p.m. ET; Saturday-Sunday, 1:30-5 ET (Golf Channel)

NOTES: This is the final full-field event before the fall Asia swing leading up to the year-ending CMW Group Tour Championship in November. … Ko leads the Tour in official money ($2.638M), scoring average (68.851) and greens in regulation (79.9%). She is not in the field this week. … Players from South Korea have won 13 of the first 26 events in 2019. … The average age of winners on Tour this year is 24.56. … Stacy Lewis (16-under 268 in 2014) holds the tournament scoring record. … Gerina Piller, who lives 30 minutes away in Flower Mound, attended UTEP and is one of 13 Texas residents in the field.

NEXT TOURNAMENT: Buick LPGA Shanghai, Oct. 17-20


LAST TOURNAMENT: PURE Insurance Championship (Kirk Triplett)
NEXT TOURNAMENT: SAS Championship, Cary, N.C., Oct. 11-13

–Derek Harper (@DerekAHarper), Field Level Media