Two playoffs, a rainout, redemption and the inevitable: how to summarize the third week of May 2017 in professional golf. If you can’t glean the rest of the story from that eight-word tease, read the rest of our weekly tour mash for the entire back story.
PGA Tour: Horschel Wins AT&T Byron Nelson in Playoff
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) May 21, 2017
Billy Horschel and Jason Day were already in for a playoff at 12-under par when James Hahn lipped out his approach at the last in an effort to join them. If that doesn’t get your juices flowing, you’re dry, mate.
The 2017 AT&T Byron Nelson will debut a new home next year, the Trinity Forest Golf Club designed by from Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw. A playoff ending seemed an appropriate send off for the TPC Four Seasons Las Colinas. Off went Day, the No. 4-ranked golfer in the world, and Horschel, the 2014 FedEx Cup Champion, each in search of a first victory in 2017, to extra holes.
Make that extra hole. It was over quickly. Horschel made a routine, two-putt par and Day inexplicably yanked his 4-footer for par. Just like that, Horschel had returned to the top of the podium for the first time since the fall of 2014. What a way to snap a string of four missed cuts.
Related: Horschel’s Winning WITB
LPGA Tour: Lexi dominates for 8th tour victory
— Lexi Thompson (@Lexi) May 17, 2017
When you fly into the week, you deserve a shot at victory. Lexi Thompson matched three 65s with one 69 after sky-diving into Kingsmill. Those numbers totaled 20-under and earned her a five-stroke victory over In-Gee Chun. Kingsmill was her first win of the 2017 campaign, and it helped salve the wounds from last month’s ANA Inspiration debacle.
Thompson was never seriously threatened in her Sunday march to victory. A number of golfers were positioned to make a Sunday run at the title, but other than Chun’s 4-under 67, none materialized. The LPGA Tour moves on to Ann Arbor, Michigan, next week for the Volvik LPGA Championship.
Related: Lexi Thompson’s Winning WITB
European Tour: Quiros Returns to Winner’s Circle in Sicily
— The European Tour (@EuropeanTour) May 21, 2017
Greatness for Alvaro Quiros was predicted by more than a few pundits and golf experts back in the day, but things didn’t work out as forecast for the long-hitting Spaniard. After winning the Dubai Double (Desert Classic and World Championship) in 2011, the Cadiz native would drop outside the top-700 golfers in the world and wait six years before securing a seventh European Tour title.
The dry spell showed as Quiros saved his worst round of the week for Sunday. Fortunately for su altura, only Zander Lombard of South Africa could muster enough birdies to tie him. They went away to a playoff, and Quiros made par at the second extra hole to claim the title. Despite his gift with the big stick, it was the putter that saved the week for the champion.
Champions Tour: Langer Claims Year’s First Senior Major
— PGA TOUR Champions (@ChampionsTour) May 21, 2017
Forty-seven wins on the world’s regular tours, 32 on the world’s senior tours. They say that Bernhard Langer turns 60 in 2017. We’re not convinced it matters. Langer continues to hit the shots and continues to win. On Sunday, the German champion claimed his 8th senior major at the Regions Tradition.
For a time, Fred Funk was tied atop the leaderboard, but a triple bogey on the 12th did him in. The Maryland native tumbled down to a tie for fourth. Scott Parel, in second at sunrise, acquitted himself quite well on the final day. He posted 70 to tie Scott McCarron for the runner-up spot. No one could match Langer, who dropped nine birdies against one bogey over the final 18 holes. His five-stroke margin of victory tied him with Jack Nicklaus for most senior tour major titles.
Web.com Tour: Sunday’s rains hand title to Jaeger at BMW
Stephen Jaeger knows the alternating tastes of glory and agony. Jaeger won the Ellie Mae Classic on the Web.com Tour in July of 2016, then finished three spots out of the top-25 on the season-long money list, barely missing his PGA Tour card.
On Sunday morning, Jaeger awoke in South Carolina with a one-stroke lead over three talented pursuers. All hoped to make the BMW Charity Pro-Am their first win of 2017. By 2 p.m., weather in the form of precipitation had eliminated all hope for a start to Round 4. As a result, Jaeger’s one-shot margin over Andrew Yun and Tyler Duncan of the U.S., and Xinjun Zhang of China, was made official.
With the victory, Jaeger jumped 96 spots, from No. 103 to the top-10 in the season-long chase for one of 25 PGA Tour cards. Yun and Zhang also moved inside the top-10, while Duncan ascended inside the magic, 25th spot.