- The Washington Times - Monday, September 24, 2007

VERONA, N.Y. — Two months ago, Steve Flesch was down and almost out. Now there seems to be no stopping him.

Flesch, who missed the cut in half of the first 20 PGA Tour events he entered this year, continued his resurgence yesterday, shooting a 1-over 73 to beat Michael Allen by two shots and win the inaugural Turning Stone Resort Championship.

It was the left-hander’s second PGA Tour victory of the year, and the $1.08 million payday boosted his earnings for 2007 to $2.2 million to vault him from 70th on the money list to 25th.

“Eight weeks ago, I was fighting to keep my job out here,” said Flesch, who also earned a spot in the 2008 U.S. Open as a multiple winner since the last Open. “I wasn’t playing great, missing a lot of cuts by a shot. And when I did make a cut, I was shooting even par on the weekend. You’re just waving guys by when that happens.

“It’s funny. This game is all confidence,” Flesch said. “One little spark can turn your year around, turn your game around. All my friends and family told me to hang in there, keep working hard. But at some point you want results. You can only hang in there so hard and have these guys beat your brains in for so long before you start losing a little bit of confidence.”

It was Flesch’s fourth career victory on the PGA Tour and marked the third straight time he has won after holding the 54-hole lead. The third-round leader has won five of the last eight events on the PGA Tour, dating to Flesch’s victory at the Reno-Tahoe Open in August.

Wiebe converts first shot

CARY, N.C. — Mark Wiebe became the 12th Champions Tour player to win in his first start on the 50-and-over circuit, leading wire-to-wire in the SAS Championship.

Wiebe, a two-time winner on the PGA Tour, closed with a 5-under 67 for a tournament record 18-under 198 total on the Prestonwood Country Club course. He beat Dana Quigley by four strokes to take the $300,000 first-place check.

Westwood cruises

SUTTON COLDFIELD, England — England’s Lee Westwood won the British Masters for his second victory of the season and 18th overall on the European tour, closing with a 7-under 65 for a five-stroke victory over countryman Ian Poulter.

Westwood, the Andalucian Open winner in May, made a 40-foot birdie putt on the 16th hole and a 30-footer for eagle on the 17th. He had 15-under 273 total at the Belfry.

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