NOTES: Mom’s putter revived Points’ career

Winfield’s Kevin Streelman wasn’t the only Illinois golfer earning a trip to the Masters in March. D.A. Points, the former University of Illinois golfer, also did it by winning the Shell Houston Open last Sunday.

Like Streelman, Points will be making his second Masters appearance next week; both missed the cut in 2011. Unlike Streelman, his recent victory wasn’t his first on the PGA Tour. He won the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am in 2011.

Since that win, though, Points had missed 17 of 25 cuts, including seven of nine this year. When he did survive the 36-hole cuts this season he finished just tied for 63rd and tied for 68th. At Houston, though, he birdied the first five holes en route to a first-round 64, then finished off the win with up-and-down pars on the last two holes on Sunday after enduring a three-hour rain delay.

The clincher was a 13-foot par-putt on the last hole, the last of many he made after putting a 25-year old Ping putter that his mother once used in his bag.

COG SETS THE PACE: First competitive events of the Chicago season will be Saturday and Sunday when Cog Hill conducts Spring Scrambles. They’ll be held on the Nos. 1 and 2 courses on Saturday and the Nos. 2 and 3 courses on Sunday. Entry fee is $60 per team.

The Lemont facility has three of its four courses open. No. 4, Dubsdread – long-time site of the PGA Tour’s BMW Championship, will open on April 13 with a $155 greens fee, cart included. The other Jemsek Golf facility, Pine Meadow in Mundelein, opens on Thursday.

READY TO GO: Course operators have been stymied by fluctuating temperatures this spring, but the following courses have announced their openings: Oak Meadows, Maple Meadows and Green Meadows, in WHERE; Settler’s Hill and Tanna Farms, in Geneva; Foxford Hills and Cary Country Club, in Cary; Zigfield Troy, in Woodridge; Chevy Chase, in Wheeling; Arlington Lakes, in Arlington Heights; Ravisloe, in Homewood; and Schaumburg Golf Club.

Cantigny, in Wheaton, is to open on Friday. Fox Run, in Elk Grove, has nine holes open and the back nine – renovated by Aurora architect Greg Martin, will hold a grand re-opening on April 21. Most courses will base their openings on the weather, so a call ahead is advised.

COMING SOON: Eagle Ridge, Illinois’ premier golf resort in Galena, will open its South course next Monday (APRIL 8), The General on April 15 and the East course on April 22. The North layout is open year-around.

French Lick Resort, in Indiana, will open its Golf Academy on Friday.