|After birdies on Nos. 15 and 16, all that was left for Webb Simpson was closing the book on his first PGA Tour victory. (Chuck Burton/Associated Press)|
Simpson’s victory hits close to home
Webb Simpson grew up in North Carolina, and his favorite memory of the Wyndham Championship was caddying for Neal Lancaster as a teenager during a pro-am.
That might change now that he’s won the tournament.
Simpson claimed his first PGA Tour title yesterday in Greensboro, shooting a 3-under-par 67 to win by three strokes.
The 26-year-old Raleigh native finished at 18-under 262 and collected $936,000.
“I really couldn’t think of a better place to win than here in Greensboro,’’ Simpson said.
George McNeill (64) was at 15 under, with Tommy Gainey (69) another stroke back in the final event before the PGA Tour playoffs.
After taking the lead late in Round 3, Simpson opened his final round with eight straight pars before moving to 16 under with a birdie on the par-4 ninth.
He stayed there until late in the day. Birdies on the par-5 15th and the par-3 16th gave him a three-shot lead with two holes to go.
The Wyndham annually marks the last chance for players to claim spots in the playoffs, and some big names came to Greensboro hoping to play their way in.
Padraig Harrington finished at 6 under and jumped from No. 130 to No. 124. The top 125 qualify for The
Among those who didn’t make it: Justin Leonard missed a 13-foot putt on the 18th, and that left him at No. 126.
LPGA - Suzann Pettersen won the
In the playoff, Choi’s second shot on the par-4 18th went into the water to the right of the green, and she missed a putt for bogey before Pettersen sank her winning putt.
Choi finished with a 73 to match Pettersen at 6 under.
With the tourney’s conclusion, Christina Kim earned the 10th and final points spot on the US Solheim Cup team and captain Rosie Jones added youngsters Vicky Hurst and Ryann O’Toole to the squad that will face Europe in Ireland Sept. 23-25. Cristie Kerr topped the points list, and Morgan Pressel, Stacy Lewis, Angela Stanford, Paula Creamer, Michelle Wie, Brittany Lincicome, Brittany Lang, and Juli Inkster also earned automatic spots.
Champions - Fred Couples knocked in a 3-foot birdie putt on the third playoff hole to defeat John Cook and win the Seniors Players Championship in Harrison, N.Y., for his first major victory on the Champions Tour.
Couples missed a birdie putt on 18 that would have given him the win after trailing by two strokes most of the day. He won the playoff when a second shot on the 17th hole landed a few feet shy of the hole, setting up a tap-in for the win.
European - Oliver Fisher shot a 3-under 69 to win the Czech Open in Celadna by two strokes over Mikael Lundberg and earn his first tour victory.
Nationwide - James Nitties won the Midwest Classic in Overland Park, Kan., for his first tour title, shooting with a 6-under 65 for a five-stroke victory.