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Fate smiles on Kyle Stanley in first win
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Kyle Stanley rebounded from a devastating loss to win the Phoenix Open, overcoming an eight-stroke deficit Sunday in a comeback as unlikely as his collapse last week at Torrey Pines.
In tears seven days ago in San Diego after blowing a big lead - dropping the final strokes with a triple-bogey 8 on the final hole - and losing a playoff, Stanley took advantage of Spencer Levin’s meltdown Sunday to win his first PGA Tour title.
“I’m not sure what I’m thinking right now,” Stanley said. “I just needed to focus on playing golf. I needed to put last week behind me.”
He cried again, this time tears of joy.
“I just want to thank my mom and dad. They’ve done a lot for me. I’m speechless,” Stanley said in the scoring area moments after the victory.
Ben Crane had a 66 to finish a stroke back.
“I just didn’t have it,” Levin said. “Maybe I was looking ahead too much and trying too hard. What are you going to do? I tried my best.”
“I really feel for him,” Stanley said. “You don’t want to wish that on anyone. He’s a very good player…. I feel bad for him.”
Stanley parred the final three holes, playing a great recovery shot from under cactus to the right of the short par-4 17th.
He birdied Nos. 2, 3, 8, 9 and 11 to get to 13 under, and within three strokes of the faltering Levin.
Last week at Torrey Pines, Stanley led by seven shots early in the final round and still had a four-shot lead as he stood on the tee at the par-5 18th.
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