Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Colonial to win at Burns Rallies, Alker wins first senior major

Fort Worth, Texas ( Associated Press) – Sam Burns scored a 38-foot birdie putt on the first playoff hole at the Colonial, more than two hours after he finished his round to defeat top-ranked Scotty Scheffler on Sunday.

After finishing his 5-under 65 at 9-under, Burns was at the clubhouse when, at one point, Schaffler was one of five players tied at 10-under.

A strong wind and a strange sequence changed all that. And Schaffler needed three clutch puts for 72 to get into the playoffs that matched the 25-year-old’s standout and close friends.

Burns’ seven-stroke comeback came in 1994 from Nick Price, the greatest in the final round to win the Colonial.

The playoffs began with the duo driving to No. 18 in the fairway, the same hole where Schaeffler had made a 6-foot run into the bunker just moments earlier after reaching his 72nd hole.

Scheffler got into the green with his approach in the playoffs, but was 36 feet away. Burns hit from the back edge of the green and used his putter, the ball rolling the last few feet into the cup. Schaeffler scored a good run with his put, but did not birdie the whole day.

It was the third win of the season for Burns, and his fourth overall in his previous 27 starts. The world number 10 won Valspar for the second time in March.

Colonial winning with a plaid jacket and a custom-made Schwab Firebird Trans Am totaled $1,512,000.

Masters champion Scheffler was on her way to a fifth win in her last 10 starts. He became the first player since Tom Watson in 1980 to miss a PGA Tour season with five wins before the start of June.

PGA Tour Champions

Benton Harbour, Mich. ( Associated Press) — Steven Elker avoided mistakes down the stretch and closed with 8-under 63 for a three-shot win at the Senior PGA Championship, his third title and first major this year.

Alker started the final round four shots behind and drew a three-way tie with Stefan Ames and Bernhard Langer on the last nine.

Langer consistently missed Green on the hole and bogged down to fall back. Ames hit his drive in the par-4 14th water and had to scramble for the bogie.

Elker, playing in front of Aims, made birdies in the 15th and 16th holes to regain control and Aims could not catch it.

Alker finished at 16-under 268. Ames finished second with 70, while Langer (71) was alone in third.

Alker, 50, from New Zealand spent the bulk of his career on the Korn Ferry Tour and a few seasons on the PGA Tour and European Tour. Since turning 50 last summer, he has captured PGA Tour Champions with four wins in his last 11 starts.

The victory takes him to the next year’s PGA Championship at Oak Hill. Alker’s career was so ordinary before 50 that he never qualified for the PGA Championship.

european tour

CROMVOIRT, Netherlands ( Associated Press) – France’s Victor Perez birdied Ryan Fox in the fourth hole of the playoffs to win the Dutch Open for the second European Tour title of his career.

They went into the 17th hole of Bernard’s Golf and matched each other stroke for stroke on three trips down from No. 18 in the playoffs, with Perez surviving a birdie putt from 15 feet and then 30 feet.

On the fourth playoff hole, Perez rolled into another long-distance put on the 17th green and Fox missed it.

Fox looked certain to win in regulation when he chipped in for a birdie at No. 11, holed 80 feet for an eagle at No. 12 and then 45 feet for a birdie at No. 14 for a three-shot lead. pierced through.

However, the 35-year-old New Zealander took to the water on a par-5 18, missed the green with his approach, and drove his fourth shot into the greenside bunker and double bogeyed for 68.

Playing back two groups, Perez pierced from 35 feet for the 17th-placed birdie and went into a portion of the lead at 13-under par and missed the 18th-placed 7-foot birdie putt for the win. He scored 69 runs.

Poland’s Perez, Fox and Adrian Meronck, who finished one shot outside the playoffs, took three places for the British Open as part of their qualifying series.

Korn Ferry Tour

GLENVIEW, Ill. ( Associated Press) — Harry Hall made a 7-foot birdie on the third playoff hole to defeat Nick Hardy in the NV5 Invitational, his second Korn Ferry Tour win in two years.

Hall and Hardy each birdied for 6-under 65 in a par-5 18th place at The Glen Club, finishing 22-under 262.

He played downwind twice in the playoffs, and Hardy went up-and-down to birdie from behind the green and behind the green, while Hall had a pair of long birdies. On the 17th hole of par 3, Hall hit his tee shot from close range, while Hardy again missed the green.

Hall made the winning putt, denying Hardy his first Korn Ferry Tour title.

Other Tours

Scott Vincent of Zimbabwe made up a seven-shot deficit by closing with 7-under 65 and beating Australia’s Anthony Quayle on the second playoff hole to win the Mizuno Open on the Japan Golf Tour. Vincent, Coyle, Brad Kennedy of Australia and Justin de los Santos of the Philippines earned the four spots available for the British Open through their international qualifying series. … Gina Kim won her first Epson Tour title when she closed with a 73-even for a two-shot victory over Maria Fassi and Carolyn Inglis at the Innova Mission Inn Resort & Club Championship. … Javier Sainz won for the first time on the European Challenge Tour by overcoming a six-shot deficit at 6-under 65 and beating Jeremy Freiberghaus (71) in the playoffs at the Farmfoods Scottish Challenge. … Sweden’s Lynn Grant closes out at 5-under 67 for a one-shot win over England’s Cara Gainer at the Mithra Belgian Ladies Open. It was Grant’s second women’s European Tour victory in five starts this year. … Dion Germisuse closed with 8-under 64 for a six-shot victory at the Cicence Classic, his first title on the Sunshine Tour. … Jose de Jesus Rodriguez of Mexico shoots 8-under 64 for a two-shot win over Austin Hitt at the Jalisco Open over PGA Tour Latinoamerica. … Sakura Koiwai shot 1-under 71 and won the Resort Trust Ladies at the Japan LPGA with two shots over Nana Suganuma and Pei-Ying Tsai. … Eun Ji Jeong closed with 4-under 68 and won a four-way playoff on the fifth extra hole capturing the E1 Charity Open on the Korean LPGA.


More Associated Press Golf: https://apnews.com/hub/golf and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Nation World News Desk
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