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Ramblin' Reck

August 16, 2011

RAMBLIN' RECK: Beginner’s luck?

Bradley just 1 breakthrough winner across sports world this week

TERRE HAUTE — Sunday and Monday were good days for first-time winners in some of the major sports events.

Keegan Bradley topped the list by winning the PGA Championship in his first appearance in one of golf’s majors.

He defeated Jason Dufner in a three-hole playoff to become the first player in at least 100 years to do that in a major. And he did it in spite of a triple bogey on No. 15, getting back-to-back birdies to gain the playoff against Dufner, who had three straight bogeys on the back nine.

This event will be known for Bradley’s feat and for Tiger Woods missing the cut after a horrible first two rounds.

Marcus Ambrose, a road-course ace, won the rain-delayed NASCAR race at Watkins Glen, N.Y., on Monday, his first Sprint Cup race victory in his 105th start. He became the first Australian-born driver to win a Cup race.

He joins David Ragan, Paul Menard and Regan Smith as first-time winners in Cup races this season. And he qualifies for the Sprint Summer Showdown in Atlanta, where he could win an extra million dollars if he wins that race.

Ryan Hunter-Reay won for the first time this season in IndyCar Series action in the rain-shortened race in New Hampshire on Sunday.

He was declared the winner by being in first place when cars began a caution period, preceding an aborted restart in which several cars incurred damage as rain fell on the track.

Race officials later said the race should not have been restarted after Will Power told them so in words that may cost him some extra bucks. The race winner said it was like driving on ice on the restart.

And so it went.

• On the links — Hoosier golfer Patrick Rodgers has been chosen as a member of the U.S. team that will meet amateurs from Great Britain and Ireland in the Walker Cup in September in Scotland.

Rodgers soon will begin his freshman year at Stanford after a stellar prep career at Avon High School. He was medalist in the 2010 state finals with rounds of 67 and 64 and was a top finisher this season.

Valley girls high school golf teams will be busy this week.

West Vigo played its first match on Monday at Rea Park and will go against South Vermillion and North Central at Sullivan Elks on Wednesday. Terre Haute South plays Northview today at Rea Park and goes to Linton on Wednesday while Terre Haute North faces Northview on Thursday. The Patriots were ranked 18th in the most recent poll.

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