Martin posts first PGA Tour victory in Las Vegas
(Reuters) - Ben Martin fended off a strong challenge from fellow American Kevin Streelman to win the $6.2 million Shriners Hospitals for Children Open by two strokes in Las Vegas on Sunday.
Overnight leader Martin briefly surrendered a big lead before curling in a 45-foot eagle putt at the par-five 16th to regain his advantage over the fast-finishing Streelman at the TPC Summerlin in Nevada.
Martin punctuated the victory with a birdie at the final hole to card 68 and finish at 20-under-par 264 for his first PGA Tour victory in his 56th start.
Streelman, who had recorded five birdies in six holes to charge into contention, missed a six-foot birdie putt at the last, moments after Martin's eagle at the 16th, to finish with a 65 and on 18-under-par 266.
"I didn't hit it hard enough," Streelman said. "I had a left edge putt (but) it broke off on me."
Briton Russell Knox was third on 16-under.
"It was an awesome way to finish, four-under in the last four holes," Martin told Golf Channel after securing $1.08 million and an invitation to next year's Masters.
"My heart was beating out of my chest (after the eagle). I'm glad I looked calm. I didn't feel like I had much going all day but that was huge."
Martin, the 2009 U.S. Amateur runner-up, had never led into the final round on tour, though he had finished third three times and was pleased to have continued his incremental improvement to finally clinch a title. Continued...