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PGA News: Scottie Scheffler cruises to 5-stroke win at The Players

PGA News: Scottie Scheffler cruises to 5-stroke win at The Players


Scottie Scheffler was mostly on cruise control on the way to a 3-under-par 69 in Sunday’s final round to win The Players Championship at Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.

Scheffler, who posted a 17-under 271, claimed the top prize of $4.5 million with a five-stroke advantage over Tyrrell Hatton of England at TPC Sawgrass.

The 26-year-old is now the reigning champion of the Masters and the TPC. The only other golfers to hold those two titles at the same time were Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods.

“I’m just trying to get a little bit better at a time, not overthink things and fortunately to be able to see some good results and enjoy some wins, and I’m very thankful,” Scheffler said.

It marked Scheffler’s second win on tour this year following the Waste Management Phoenix Open last month.

Scheffler will take back the No. 1 world ranking, even though he said Saturday it was “just an algorithm” he didn’t place much stock in.

“For me, I would much rather win the tournament than get back to No. 1 in the world,” he said Saturday.

Hatton carded Sunday’s best round at 7-under 65. When he finished, he was within range of Scheffler, but only if the leader tanked down the stretch. Instead, Scheffler expanded his lead to six shots after reaching the round’s midway mark with a three-shot advantage.

Scheffler posted birdies on five consecutive holes, Nos. 8-12, to provide a comfortable working margin. That included a chip-in for a birdie from the greenside rough at the par-3 eighth.

“I knew the conditions were going to get really hard late and I did a really good job of staying patient, not trying to force things, and then I got hot kind of in the middle of the round,” Scheffler said. “Tried to put things away as quickly as I could.”

He said he thrives on being in contention in the biggest tournaments.

“It’s a lot more fun being in the arena and being in the moment,” Scheffler said.

Hatton had birdies on the last five holes as part of a 29 on the back nine. That was the lowest back-nine score in a final round in the tournament’s history.

“I’m just out here trying to earn as many (FedEx Cup) points as I can and try and set myself up nicely,” Hatton said.

Tom Hoge, who set a course record with Saturday’s 62, shot 70 and finished at 10 under for the tournament in a tie for third place with Norway’s Viktor Hovland (68).

Hideki Matsuyama of Japan (68) was fifth at 9 under.

Hoge said other golfers envy Scheffler’s consistency.

“Seems like every week he’s right there with a chance to win,” Hoge said. “Just that consistency I think more than anything speaks to how well he’s playing.”

Min Woo Lee of Australia was in the final pairing with Scheffler and was tied for the lead through 53 holes before a bogey on the last hole Saturday.

Lee slumped to a seven-way tie for sixth place by shooting 76 on Sunday, unraveling early with a triple-bogey 7 on the fourth hole. He made up ground with birdies on Nos. 16 and 17 before another bogey on the last hole.

Alex Smalley checked in with a 74 and tied for 65th overall at 1 over, but his hole-in-one on the famed island green 17th hole provided some thrills.

–Field Level Media

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