Adam Hadwin certainly did not make it easy for himself in the final round at Innisbrook, but he clinched his first ever PGA Tour win on Sunday.
Hadwin’s first three rounds of the Valspar Championship were full of jaw-dropping shots, but he was in survival mode down the stretch. His tee shot on the 16th landed in the water and he coughed up a two-shot lead after double bogeying the hole.
Tied with Patrick Cantlay at 14-under heading into the 17th, Hadwin stayed poised and parred the last two holes while Cantlay bogeyed the 18th, giving Hadwin the one-shot victory. After the win, Hadwin said:
You’re never quite sure when you’re going to get the job done. I just went there today and stuck to what I do best, just hit some quality golf shots and really made the game super easy outside of hole No. 16. I feel a little fortunate after that hole to be sitting here, but I’ll certainly take it, and I can’t wait for everything that comes with this win.”
Hadwin also punched his ticket to the Masters by winning the Valspar title. He will have to postpone his upcoming honeymoon, but it’s probably safe to say he and his fiancee do not mind the schedule change.
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) March 12, 2017
While Patrick Cantlay’s final hole bogey is heart-breaking, it’s still great to see him finish in second. Cantlay has endured tremendous adversity over the last few years.
The former top-ranked amateur from UCLA spent a total of almost two years between 2013 and 2016 battling a stress fracture in his back. Then, last year in February, Cantlay tragically lost his best friend, Chris Roth, in a hit-and-run as the two were walking in Newport Beach, California.
Cantlay made a tremendous run in the final round reeling off five of his seven birdies on holes 10 through 14. But his bogey on the 18th was unfortunately the difference. Cantlay summed it up by simply saying, “I didn’t finish the deal.”
Jim Herman, who came out firing in Round 1, finished tied for third with tour rookie Dominic Bozzelli.
h/t: espn.com, golfchannel.com