Team Titleist is on the ground at the 112th U.S. Open Championship and long-time Titleist Staff Professional Dennis Miller was the center of attention for most of yesterday morning. The Director of Golf at the Mill Creek Park in Youngstown, Ohio, Dennis became an online sensation when his remarkable winning 20-foot putt in a sudden death playoff during June 4th qualifying was caught on tape. Just when it looked like his Pro V1 golf ball would stop short of the cup, it dropped in after approximately five seconds and after Miller looked away.

What makes the story even more interesting, is that Miller was debating whether or not to even go to the event because he was the third alternate. He never played a practice round and had never even played the course before the 36-hole qualifier. He decided to go because it was a good opportunity to play historic Scioto Country Club, in suburban Columbus, Ohio. In fact, he went to a Cleveland Indians game on Sunday, the night before the tournament. He had entered U.S. Open qualifying 11 times prior with his best finish being four shots out.

"There has been a tremendous outpouring of love and support from my community, my family, my friends," said Miller. "I received over a thousand text messages and emails, and I'm trying to get back to everybody. If I haven't, I apologize. But it's been a whirlwind since last Monday. But, you know, the community really embraced me. They stepped up. Some of my sponsors and things of that nature. It's been fantastic. Quite a journey so far."

"You could not script this story," said the 42-year old Miller. "If I birdied one of the final holes in regulation, I'm probably the same story as many of the other great stories ... Mill Creek Metro golf professional, made it to the U.S. Open. But to do it with the cameras rolling, the ball hanging on the lip. I can't tell you how excited my family is."

Reality set in for Miller on Tuesday, the morning after the excitement.

"I still have a job to do back in Mill Creek," he said. "And we actually had a Chamber of Commerce golf outing the next day. We had 300 golfers out there and I worked about 14 hours that day. That was my preparation up to this week. It's been a whirlwind. We're trying to enjoy it."

In case you missed, you can check out the putt that landed Dennis in San Francisco below:

The USGA offers 13 sectional qualifying sites for the U.S. Open – 11 in the U.S. and two overseas in Japan and England. Approximately 750 golfers compete at the sectional qualifying level for about half of the 156 available spots in the U.S. Open.

Sectional qualifying is a demanding 36-hole, one-day marathon, with only a handful of available spots at each site. Qualifying spots are determined by the field's numbers and strength. The USGA established two "tour" sites in Columbus, Ohio, and Memphis, Tenn., for members of the PGA Tour who either have just competed at The Memorial (Columbus) or are preparing to play the FedEx St. Jude Classic (Memphis).

Dennis Miller joins the following sectional qualifiers, each of whom trusted a Pro V1 or Pro V1x golf ball to play their way into the field at the 2012 U.S. Open Championship.

Lake Hamamatsu CC, Shizuoka, Japan - May 21, 2012
Toru Taniguchi
Hiroyuki Fujita
Dong-Hwan Lee
 
Walton Heath Club, Surrey, England - May 28, 2012
Lee Slattery
Gregory Bourdy
Mikko Ilonen
George Coetzee
Matthew Baldwin
Matteo Manassero
Peter Lawrie
 

Canoe Brook Country Club, Summit, NJ - June 4, 2012

Brian Gaffney (Titleist Leadership Advisory Staff Member), Rumson, NJ
Mark McCormick (Titleist Staff Professional), Middletown, NJ
 

Springfield Country Club, Springfield, OH - June 4, 2012

Brice Garnett (medalist)
John Peterson
 

Lake Merced Golf Club/TPC at Harding Park, Daly City, CA - June 4, 2012

James Hahn (medalist)
Michael Allen
 

Scioto Country Club/OSU Scarlet Course, Columbus, OH - June 4, 2012

Charlie Wi (medalist)
Blake Adams
Kevin Streelman
D.A. Points
David Mathis
Steve Marino
Martin Flores
Edward Loar
Dennis Miller
Morgan Hoffman
Scott Piercy
 

Woodmont Country Club, Rockville, MD - June 4, 2012

Shane Bertsch (medalist)
Michael Thompson
Paul Claxton
Darron Stiles
Nicholas Thompson
Jeff Curl
 

Lakeside Country Club, Houston, TX - June 4, 2012

Bob Estes (medalist)
Alistair Presnell
Brian Rowell
 

Black Diamond Ranch (Quarry Course), Lecanto, FL - June 4, 2012

Scott Langley (medalist)
 

The River Club, Suwanee, GA - June 4, 2012

Jason Bohn (medalist)
 

Germantown Country Club, Memphis, TN - June 4, 2012

Tommy Biershenk (medalist)
Joe Ogilvie
William Lunde
Hunter Haas
Roberto Castro
 

Village Links of Glen Ellyn, Glen Ellyn, IL - June 4, 2012

Anthony Summers (medalist)
Tim Herron
 

 

It's been 14 years since the U.S. Open was last contested at Olympic Club in San Francisco.

That was 1998, before Luke Donald, Adam Scott or Geoff Ogilvy first played in a PGA Tour event. Before Rickie Fowler and Kyle Stanley had even teed it up in the American Junior Golf Association.

In other words, not many players in the field are used to racing around this Olympic track, especially not under U.S. Open conditions.

Which means it's time to hit the books. Team Titleist recently caught up with Luke, Adam, Geoff, Rickie and Kyle to talk about their U.S. Open prep and forming a game plan for the year's second major.

Check it out in the above video.

On the most significant Sunday of her young career, 22-year-old Shanshan Feng trusted a Titleist Pro V1x to near-perfection.

In a historic display of confidence and precision, Feng closed out the Wegman's LPGA Championship with a bogey-free 5-under 67 to come from behind and win her first LPGA title and major championship.

Feng's breakthrough performance highlighted a five-win week for Titleist players around the world, including Pro V1x loyalist Lee Westwood's 22nd European Tour title.

 Titleist Pro V1 and Pro V1x players have now combined for 75 wins across the worldwide professional tours in 2012, more than seven times the nearest competitor with 10 and more than all competitors combined.

A total of 9,098 players have teed up Titleist golf balls in those same events, more than six times the nearest competitor with 1,492 and more than all other golf balls combined.

Feng's Sunday at the Wegman's LPGA was simply stunning. Her 67 was not only the best round of the day, but also the tournament, resulting in a 6-under 282 total.

She hit 16 greens in regulation and missed only three fairways, avoiding Locust Hill Country Club's costly, gnarly rough, on her way to five birdies spread throughout the round.

The final birdie came on 17, where Feng rolled her Pro V1x in from 7 feet to help clinch the two-shot victory over a host of major champions.

"I would say first of all I'm really, really, happy that I won the tournament. I still can't believe it. I think after this week it's going to give me a lot more confidence. I believe I can win again in the future," said Feng, the first player from mainland China to win on the LPGA. Earlier this year, she became the first Chinese player to win on the Ladies European Tour.

"Hopefully it's going to help golf in China because I want to be (tennis star) Li Na for golf in China. I want to be like a model that the other juniors can follow my steps and get on the LPGA."

Feng was one of 100 players in the field that relied on Titleist golf balls for their success, more than six times the nearest competitor with 15 and more than all competitors combined.

• EUROPEAN TOUR: Pro V1x loyalist Lee Westwood shot four consecutive rounds in the 60s (68-64-68-68) as he cruised to his third-career victory at the Nordea Masters in Sweden.

 Westwood's 19-under 269 victory total at Bro Hof Slott GC was the result of total confidence and control, his final round highlighted by a 7-footer for eagle at No. 12 and a 5-foot birdie putt at the 15th.

“I played really well this week – you don’t win tournaments by five shots without playing well,” said Westwood.

"I hit some really solid shots. It didn’t look like I was hitting it close on the last three holes but I can tell you those last three holes I hit it exactly where I wanted to every time."

Westwood recorded his first European Tour victory in this event in 1996 and won again in 2000.

• CHAMPIONS TOUR: Titleist players finished in each of the top three positions at the season's second senior major, as Tom Lehman withstood day-long rain and challenges from fellow Pro V1 loyalists and co-runners-up Bernhard Langer and Chien Soon Lu to win his second straight Regions Tradition.

 "Today was a real test of perseverance, just trying to move the ball forward. Don't try to bite off too much, don't get too aggressive," said Lehman. "Just play shots I know I can hit."

Lehman shot a final round 4-under 68 for a 14-under 274 total and two-shot victory at Shoal Creek, becoming the fourth player to win the Regions Tradition multiple times. The win also marks Lehman's sixth Champions Tour victory.  

Titleist was the top golf ball choice of 53 players in the 76-player field, more than five times the nearest competitor with nine and more than all other golf balls combined.

Titleist also led in iron sets (19); and sand, lob and approach wedges (57).

• NATIONWIDE TOUR: Lee Williams (Pro V1x) won the Mexico Open for his first Nationwide Tour title, closing with a 2-under 70 for a one-stroke victory over Paul Haley II (Pro V1). 

Williams finished at 14-under 274 at El Bosque, while Haley, who won the Chile Classic in March, shot a final round 4-under 68. 

A total of 108 players in the field trusted Titleist Pro V1 and Pro V1x golf balls for their success, more than eight times the nearest competitor with 13 and more than all competitors combined.

Titleist was also first in iron sets (51); sand, lob and approach wedges (175); and putters (57).

• CANADIAN TOUR: Pro V1x loyalist Andrew Roque fired a final round 9-under 61 to rally and win the Times Colonist Island Savings Open.

Roque, the first-round leader and Canadian Tour Q School medalist, finished at 14-under-par 266 to win by three strokes at Uplands Golf Club. 

The 23-year-old made the turn in 2-under for the day, and then caught fire down the stretch, birdieing his final seven holes of the day. 

• PGA TOUR: Titleist Brand Ambassador John Merrick (Pro V1x) shot a final round 1-under 69 to match his best PGA Tour finish with a runner-up performance at the FedEx St. Jude Classic. He finished one shot behind the champion and was followed by four players who tied for third, including Nick O'Hern (Pro V1 ), Chad Campbell (Pro V1x) and Ryan Palmer (Pro V1x).   

Titleist was the top golf ball choice of 103 players, more than six times the nearest competitor with 16 and more than all other golf balls combined. Titleist was also the No. 1 choice in sand, lob and approach wedges (124); and putters (65). 


Titleist golf ball loyalist Stacy Lewis and Titleist Brand Ambassador Jay Haas led a group of five players into the Titleist Winners’ Circle this week, advancing the 2012 worldwide win count for the #1 ball in golf to 70, more than eight times the nearest competitor with 8.

On the LPGA Tour, Lewis, who relies upon the Pro V1x golf ball for her success, started the final round of the ShopRite LPGA Classic with a six-stroke lead. She closed with an even-par 71 en route to a 12-under par 201 victory total and four-shot win. The win was the second of the year for Lewis and the third of her LPGA career. She won the Mobile LPGA Classic in April, and captured her first-career victory at last year's Kraft Nabisco Championship. 

With the win, Lewis becomes the highest-ranked American on the LPGA Tour, advancing to No. 3 in the Rolex Women's World Rankings behind fellow Pro V1x loyalists Na Yeon Choi and world No. 1 Yani Tseng.  Ten years ago such an achievement would have been unthinkable, as a serious back injury nearly ended her career.

"I'm speechless," Lewis said after the victory.. "To go from back surgery where I couldn't even sit up by myself to now playing golf, having fun with it, playing with the best players in the world and being one of them? It doesn't get any better than that."

Fellow Pro V1x loyalist Katherine Hull sank a 10-foot birdie putt at the final green to finish alone in 2nd place at 8-under 205 after closing in 3-under 68.

 Titleist was the top golf ball choice of 98 players (68%) in the 144-player field, more than seven times the nearest competitor with 13.


 On the Champions Tour, Haas, who trusts Titleist from tee-to-green and throughout the bag, posted a tournament record-tying 16-under 197 total to win the Principal Charity Classic by five strokes, becoming the first golfer to win the event three times. Haas, the winner in 2007 and 2008, led by three shots after shooting 65 in the second round and made it stand up with a final round 5-under 66.

"(Saturday) I really played well," Haas said, " but (Sunday) was a special round. And to kind of take hold of it and not give them a chance … that was pretty special. There was no smoke and mirrors. It was good solid golf, and hopefully it will boost me for the rest of the year."

His five-shot margin of victory was the largest of the season on the Champions Tour. The win was the 16th of Haas' Champions Tour career.

Here's a closer look at Jay Haas' Titleist equipment:


Ball: Titleist Pro V1
Driver: Titleist 910D2 9.5º (Bassara W 50 for Titleist)
3-wood: Titleist 910F.d 15.0º (Project X Graphite Tour Issue 7)
Hybrids: Titleist 910H 17º ( NV 105), Titleist 909H 21º (NV 105)
Irons: Titleist CB 4-PW
Wedges: Vokey Design SM4 54º, 60º
Putter: Scotty Cameron Studio Design

Titleist was the top golf ball choice of 55 players (68%) in the 81-player field, more than five times the nearest competitor with 10.


 NATIONWIDE:
James Hahn (Pro V1x, 910H hybrid/18º, Vokey Design SM4 sand/54º and lob/58º wedges, Scotty Cameron Newport 2 303 GSS putter), who started the final round four shots behind the overnight leader, earned his first career Nationwide Tour victory when he topped Scott Parel (Pro V1x, Scotty Cameron Del Mar prototype putter) with a birdie on the second hole of an all-Pro V1x sudden death playoff at the Rex Hospital Open. Hahn closed with a 4-under par 67 to join Parel at 13-under 271 after 72 holes.

"This week is probably one of the best weeks I've ever had in my life," Hahn said. "It's been a long time since I won a golf tournament. To be out here and considered a Nationwide Tour champion, it definitely had a good ring to it."

Titleist was the top golf ball choice of 101 players (65%) in the 156-player field, more than five times the nearest competitor with 19. Titleist was also the field favorite in the wedge (147) and putter (56) categories.


 KOREA PGA:
Titleist Brand Ambassador JinHo Choi (Pro V1x, 910D3 driver/9.5º, 910H hybrids/17º/21º, CB/4-5 and MB/6-9 irons, Vokey Design pitching/48º, sand/54º and lob/60º wedges, Scotty Cameron Circle T putter) captured the Meritz Solmoro Open, edging KyungNam Kang (Pro V1, 910F fairway metal/13.5º, 910H hybrid/19º, Vokey Design gap/52º and lob/58º wedges, Scotty Cameron Studio Select Newport Circle T putter). Choi, who trailed Kang by one shot heading into the final round, closed with a 2-under par 69 for an 8-under 276 victory total, two shots clear of Kang, who shot a 1-over 72.

Titleist golf ball loyalists Moon, KyongJun and Kim, GiWhan were among three players who tied for 3rd, another two shots back, as four of the top five finishers relied upon Titleist golf balls for their success.

Titleist was the top golf ball choice of 98 players (63%) in the 156-player field, nearly four times the nearest competitor with 27. Titleist also topped the wedge category with 73 in play.


 SOUTH AFRICA:
Titleist Golf Ball loyalist Jake Roos (Pro V1x) carded a final round 9-under par 63 to tie Titleist Brand Ambassador Justin Harding (Pro V1x, 910D3 driver, 910F fairway metal, CB irons, Vokey Design wedges, Scotty Cameron putter) at 17-under par 199 in regulation at the Lombard Insurance Classic. Roos went on to win the first playoff hole to secure his second victory of the season following his Platinum Classic title earlier this year.

Titleist was the top golf ball choice of 53 players (74%) in the 72-player field, more than three times the nearest competitor with 15.

PGA TOUR: The top Titleist finishers at The Memorial were Pro V1x loyalists Spencer Levin and Daniel Summerhays, who tied for 4th place. Levin owned a one shot lead heading into the final round, while Summerhays closed with a 3-under 69.

Titleist was the top golf ball choice of 76 players (63%) in the 120-player field, more than six times the nearest competitor with 12. Titleist was also the field favorite in iron sets (34), wedges (109) and putters (47).

EUROPEAN TOUR: Pro V1 loyalist Joost Luiten was one of four players who finished one shot behind the champion at the ISPS Handa Wales Open at a wet and windy Celtic Manor Resort.

Titleist was the top golf ball choice of 93 players (60%) in the 156-player field, more than three times the nearest competitor with 26.

 

The PGA Tour has returned to Dublin, Ohio this week for the 36th edition of The Memorial Tournament. The demanding track at Muirfield Village is a favorite tour stop of the best players in the world,offering a challenging test of golf for those hoping to get their games in top shape heading into the U.S Open.

Titleist Brand Ambassador Erik Compton shot a 5-under 67 in the first round yesterday, one off the tournament lead. The Memorial is a special venue for the 33-year-old. Compton is the recipient of two heart transplants, and the donor of his second heart was a 26-year-old man named Isaac Klosterman, who was born in Dayton, Ohio and lived in Columbus at the time of his death. In 2009, one year after Compton received Klosterman's heart, tournament organizers extended Compton a sponsor's exemption to The Memorial. The invitation kick-started Compton's career on the PGA Tour.

“It’s just a great story, obviously, and … for me it’s a special place,” Compton said. “For me there’s not a day that goes by that I don’t think about my donor. To be able to play here, regardless of whether I play good or bad, it’s just always a nice week".

 The current lead is held by Compton's fellow Titleist Brand Ambassador Scott Stallings, who made one of only four birdies on the 18th hole at Muirfield Village for a 6-under 66 on Thursday, a great score considering the course is playing firm and fast this year.

"Obviously the golf course was much softer last year, (and) you had more opportunities to hit it close," Stallings said. "You kind of had to play away from some of the flags today. It was definitely the firmest I've ever seen it."

Both Scott and Erik will be relying on Titleist Pro V1x golf balls to manage the second-shot perils for which the 7,265-yard Muirfield layout is famous.

In total, 76 players in the Memorial field are trusting Titleist golf balls for their success, more than six times the nearest competitor with 12 and more than all other golf balls combined. Titleist is also first in iron sets (34); sand, lob and approach wedges (145); and putters (47).

For a look at some of the Titleist players and equipment in this week’s field, take a look at Team Titleist’s slideshow from the practice rounds by clicking the image below.

 

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