Monday, May 18, 2009

From combined dispatches

SAN ANTONIO | Zach Johnson made a 12-foot birdie on the first playoff hole to beat James Driscoll and repeat as the Texas Open champion Sunday.

Seven months after winning for the first time at La Cantera Golf Club, Johnson’s even-par 70 was good enough for a 15-under 265 and forced the sudden-death playoff with Driscoll, who surged from eight strokes back.

“I feel very lucky,” Johnson said.

“You want to put the pressure on your opponent. There’s no doubt about it. It’s not like he hit a bad shot. He hit 20-plus feet. He hit a good putt. So it just kind of went my way.”

Johnson vaulted to the top of the FedEx Cup standings with the win, his second this year.

Paul Goydos had birdied on 16 to take a one-stroke lead, but the 44-year-old and sympathetic favorite bogeyed the last two holes to finish 14 under. Goydos was playing four months to the day his ex-wife died, a tragedy that led him to leave the tour briefly.

“For 70 holes I did really good,” Goydos said. “Didn’t hit a good putt on 17 and didn’t hit a good shot on 18. And guys who play like that will do it.”

Australia’s Marc Leishman (68), Sweden’s Fredrik Jacobson (67) and three-time champion Justin Leonard (69) finished at 13 under.

Driscoll was an afterthought at 5 under when the final round began, eight strokes behind Johnson and his group that included Goydos and Leonard. After wrapping up his 62, he had to wait more than an hour for Johnson to finish his round.

Oh beats Pettersen

CLIFTON, N.J. | Seeing the likes of Brittany Lincicome, Paula Creamer, Suzann Pettersen and Michelle Wie didn’t intimidate Ji Young Oh in the least in the final round of the Sybase Classic.

The 20-year-old, straight-hitting South Korean went into the final round with the idea that it was her tournament to lose, and she went out and won it.

Oh shot 2-under 70 on a raw, cold, windy day the second-best final round - and benefited from a couple of mistakes by Pettersen on the back nine to capture the $2 million event by four shots at 14 under.

Fergus outlasts rain

HOOVER, Ala. | Keith Fergus’ routine was disrupted by a four-hour rain delay, the chilly weather was hardly to the Texan’s liking and he even had to buy a long-sleeve shirt to finish the round.

On the bright side, Fergus managed to slosh his way to a victory in the rain-shortened Regions Charity Classic, shooting a second straight 6-under 66 to beat Gene Jones by three strokes.

“I wish we could have played 54 holes, but we didn’t, and I’m sitting up here with the trophy,” Fergus said, grinning. “I’m not giving it back.”

Lowry wins Irish Open

BALTRAY, Ireland | Irish amateur Shane Lowry capped off his remarkable debut on the European Tour by winning the Irish Open title on the third hole of a playoff against Robert Rock of England.

Lowry, who missed a 3-foot putt to win on the last hole of the fourth round as he and Rock finished tied at 17-under 271, finally sealed victory on the third extra hole.

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