Gomez beats Snedeker in playoff to win Sony Open

Sun Jan 17, 2016 11:29pm EST
Email This Article |
Share This Article
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
| Print This Article | Single Page
[-] Text [+]

(Reuters) - Argentina's Fabian Gomez clinched his second PGA Tour title with a gripping playoff victory over Brandt Snedeker at the Sony Open in Honolulu, Hawaii on Sunday after producing a clutch birdie-birdie finish in regulation.

Gomez, who had squandered a two-stroke lead with six holes to play, comfortably two-putted for birdie on the second extra hole at Waialae Country Club, the par-five 18th, where Snedeker narrowly missed his attempt from 10 feet.

"I am very proud of myself," an emotional Gomez told Golf Channel, speaking through an interpreter. "My caddie's father passed away recently, just a few weeks ago, and this win is in his name.

"I felt pretty good during the round but with those two bogeys (on 13 and 14), I lost momentum and I felt a little nervous toward the end. But that birdie putt on 17 then gave me confidence."

Both Gomez, from 15 feet, and Snedeker, from 12, had earlier missed birdie putts on the first extra hole, also the 18th.

The duo had finished the 72 regulation holes at 20-under 260, American Snedeker carding a four-under 66 and Gomez, who landed his first PGA Tour win at last year's FedEx St. Jude Classic, signing off with a scintillating 10-birdie 62.

Little-known American Zac Blair, seeking his first victory on the U.S. circuit, led by two shots after eight holes and stayed in contention before finishing alone in third at 19 under with a closing 67.

A wildly fluctuating final round at Waialae effectively boiled down to a three-horse race between Gomez, Snedeker and Blair.

Snedeker and Blair, co-leaders overnight, stumbled early with bogeys at the par-three fourth, before Blair made his move with birdies at the fifth, seventh and eighth, where he drained a 20-footer, to forge two strokes clear at 18 under.   Continued...

Jan 17, 2016; Honolulu, HI, USA; PGA golfer Brandt Snedeker lines up a putt on the first hole during the final round of the Sony Open in Hawaii golf tournament at Waialae Country Club. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports