Kevin Sutherland pulled off a come-from-behind win, rallying from four shots back with nine holes to play to earn his fifth career PGA Tour Champions title at the Cologuard Classic in Tucson, Ariz.
Sutherland, who started the day two shots behind overnight leader Mike Weir of Canada, shot 4-under 69 on Sunday to finish at 15-under 204 and two shots clear of Weir. Weir, who was going for his first Champions win in his first season on the 50-and-over tour, finished with a lackluster, even-par 73 that featured three birdies and three bogeys.
“I just kind of hung in there on the back side and I wasn’t swinging my best at it today,” said Sutherland, who turned at 1-under for the day before combatting a bogey on the back nine with four birdies. “I was struggling a little bit with the wind – my rhythm was all off and everything — and all of a sudden I made a couple birdies.
“Made birdie on 10, made birdie at 12, then the chip-in at 16 was huge. It kind of flipped everything. All of a sudden, we’re tied. Then I made the two best swings I’ve made all week were on this last hole. Makes you feel good.”
Steve Stricker (68) and Scott Parel (71) finished tied for third at 12-under and Jeff Maggert (70) finished alone in fifth place at 11-under.
Rounding out the top 10 in a tie for sixth were Jerry Kelly (70) and Tim Petrovic (72), and Spain;s Miguel Angel Jimenez (70), David Toms (73) and Mark O’Meara (72) finished tied for eighth at 8-under.
Defending champion and Charles Schwab Cup standings leader Bernhard Langer shot to finish T-14 at 6-under with South Africa’s Ernie Els (72) and Kenny Perry (73). The 63-year-old Langer, winner of 41 Champions titles, has not won since his victory in Tucson last March.
Baseball Hall of Fame pitcher John Smoltz, making his third Champions start, closed with a 77 to finish T-67 at 8-over.
–Field Level Media
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