May 22, 2015


Golf

Zack spinning a magical month

Johnson jacked as PGA Tour heads to final playoff event

LAKE FOREST, Ill. -- Zach Johnson is having a September to remember, and there's still one very big week to go.

In one tournament, he made a 25-foot birdie putt on his final hole to earn the last spot on the Presidents Cup team. In the next one, Johnson made a bunch of big putts in the final round of the rain-delayed BMW Championship for a six-under 65 for a two-shot victory over Nick Watney.

Zach Johnson vaulted to No. 4 in FedEx standings after winning the BMW Championship on Monday.

CHARLES REX ARBOGAST / THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Zach Johnson vaulted to No. 4 in FedEx standings after winning the BMW Championship on Monday.

Next up?

His win Monday at Conway Farms gave Johnson the No. 4 seed going into the Tour Championship, giving him a clear shot at the FedEx Cup and its $10 million prize.

"It's hard to grasp the last two weeks of golf," Johnson said. "It's not like you have to win every week to win that FedEx Cup. You've just got to win at the right times, or play well at the right times. And I like the momentum I have for next week."

Johnson's 10th career win came at the expense of Jim Furyk, who endured another dose of final-round disappointment. Furyk, who had a one-shot lead, has failed to win the last six times he had at least a share of the lead going into the last round. He holed a 12-foot birdie putt at No. 10 to build a two-shot lead, but played the last eight holes in two over and wound up with a 71 to finish alone in third.

Furyk had to settle for slice of history Friday as the sixth player in PGA Tour history with a 59. Only three players in that exclusive club went on to win -- Al Geiberger is the only player to win when the 59 was not in the final round.

"I don't know if I used them all up on Friday and knocked them all in or what, but I just wasn't able to get the putts to go," Furyk said.

Johnson wasn't the only player who felt like a winner Monday.

Luke Donald, a member at Conway Farms, was No. 54 in the FedEx Cup and was on the verge of being left out of the top 30 players who advanced to the Tour Championship. He ran off four straight birdies on the back nine, atoned for a bogey on No. 16 with a birdie on the 17th, and then saved par from a bunker on the 18th hole for a 66 to tie for fourth. That moved him up to No. 29 to get him into East Lake.

Watney was at No. 34, and he went from playing his way into the top 30 to nearly winning the tournament. Watney closed with a 64 and was tied for the lead until Johnson made an 18-foot birdie putt out of the first cut on the 16th hole, and a 12-footer for birdie on the next hole.

"The guys ahead of me were ahead of me for a reason -- they've been playing well all year," Watney said. "Luckily for me, I kind of pulled everything together."

Tiger Woods will be the No. 1 seed, though he doesn't go there with much momentum. Woods started the final round in cool, breezy conditions just four shots behind and was never a factor after missing a short par putt on the opening hole. He closed with a 71 and tied for 11th, seven shots behind.

"It was not a very good putting week," Woods said, who was coming off a tie for 65th on the TPC Boston. "It's just one of those weeks where I just didn't have it."

Henrik Stenson, a winner in Boston and angry enough in Chicago that he snapped off the head of his driver during the final round, will be the No. 2 seed at East Lake, followed by Masters champion Adam Scott, Johnson and Matt Kuchar.

Steve Stricker, who played in the final group with Johnson, was one shot off the lead when he started the back nine bogey-double bogey. He closed with a 72, a round that cost him one of the top five seeds.

Johnson put his post-season in jeopardy by skipping the opening FedEx Cup playoff event to attend his brother's wedding. He was at No. 27 before he arrived for the BMW Championship and started the week just wanting to make sure he was in Atlanta.

He did that and more, giving him 10 wins in his 10 years on the PGA Tour.

Johnson finished at 16-under 268 and earned $1.44 million, pushing his career earnings just past $30 million.

 

-- The Associated Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition September 17, 2013 D5

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective January 2015.

Winnipeg Free Press | @WinnipegNews

May 22 10:08 am

Inflation rate drops in Manitoba, but still third-highest in Canada wfp.to/R8o

Winnipeg Free Press | @WinnipegNews

May 22 10:00 am

So-called 'conversion therapy' has no place in Manitoba health-care system: Blady wfp.to/R8Q

Bruce Owen | @fpbowen

May 22 9:54 am

Still facing opposition in Manitoba, Minnesota Power’s transmission line moves forward: virginiamn.com/news/local/mp-…

Winnipeg Free Press | @WinnipegNews

May 22 9:52 am

Rights commission disappointed in decision after pregnant woman fired wfp.to/R81

Winnipeg Free Press | @WinnipegNews

May 22 9:38 am

Scheduled visits help clog ERs, critics say wfp.to/R8H

Scroll down to load more

Top