May 24, 2015 / 10:41 PM / in 2 years

Ice cool Kirk wins by one shot at Colonial

(Reuters) - American Chris Kirk coolly got up and down from off the green at the 18th hole to salvage par and clinch his fourth PGA Tour title by one shot on Sunday at the $6.5 million Crowne Plaza Invitational in Fort Worth, Texas.

Chris Kirk hits his tee shot on the 1st hole during the final round of The Players Championship at TPC Sawgrass - Stadium Course. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

After watching playing partner Brandt Snedeker narrowly miss a 12-footer for birdie at the last, Kirk sank a clutch seven-foot par putt to seal victory with a closing four-under 66 at a rain-saturated Colonial Country Club.

That left Kirk at 12-under 268 after an intriguing last-day shootout at Colonial where five players held at least a share of the lead in the final round.

“Unbelievable, to be a part of the history of this tournament is just amazing to me,” Kirk told CBS Sports after adding his name to a list of winners at Colonial where golfing great and Fort Worth resident Ben Hogan triumphed five times.

”I’ve always loved this golf course and this has been my favorite tournament on the tour.

“I didn’t really feel like I was swinging that great early on in the week but somehow I was able to get it done,” said the 30-year-old, who never relinquished the lead after sinking a birdie putt at the 15th.

Asked if winning on the PGA Tour was becoming any easier, Kirk replied: “Absolutely not. I was as nervous as I have ever been today, for sure. Those up-and-downs the last couple of holes, and especially making that putt on 18, was pretty sweet.”

Snedeker signed off with a 67 to share second place at 11 under with fellow Americans Jason Bohn, who fired a best-of-the-day 63, and Masters champion Jordan Spieth (65).

“Very disappointed,” said Snedeker. “I played great and just didn’t make putts on the last three holes like you are supposed to win golf tournaments.”

American Kevin Na, who had been a stroke in front overnight, briefly stretched his lead to three with a birdie-birdie start but his title bid unraveled when he followed a bogey at the third with a double at the ninth.

Na finished with a 72 to share 10th place at nine under.

The start to the final round was delayed by three hours due to thunderstorms, and improved lies were permitted from anywhere on the par-70 layout after just under two inches of rain had saturated the course since Saturday afternoon.

Reporting by Mark Lamport-Stokes in Los Angeles; Editing by Gene Cherry

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