JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Sam Burns ran off four birdies in a six-hole stretch to start the back nine and pulled away for a 5-under 67 to win the Sanderson Farms Championship on Sunday for his second PGA Tour victory this year.
Against a list of contenders looking for their first win, Burns showed what it takes at the Country Club of Jackson by playing flawlessly on the back nine until it didn’t matter.
He seized control with a 15-foot birdie putt on the par-3 13th, a 5-iron to 15 feet that set up a two-putt birdie on the next hole and then a perfect pitch from behind the green on the reachable par-4 15th for a tap-in birdie.
Staked to a two-shot lead going down the 18th, he took a safe bogey from the greenside bunker to secure a one-shot win over resurgent Nick Watney and PGA Tour rookie Cameron Young.
Watney, coming off his worst season in more than a decade, closed with a 65 and had his best finish in more than three years.
Young’s hopes began to fade on the 14th with a clunker out of the rough into a fairway bunker that led to him having to make a 4-footer for bogey.
Still, he made a slick up-and-down from off the 18th green for par that gave him a 68 and a share of second, which sets him up well for the season.
With his second win of the year — in his first start of the new season — Burns moves into the top 20 in the world ranking for the first time. He ended a trend in which six of the last seven winners of the Sanderson Farms Championship captured their first PGA Tour title.
GALLOWAY, N.J. (AP) — Celine Boutier birdied two of her last three holes for an 8-under 63 and won the ShopRite LPGA Classic when South Korea’s best two players faltered down the stretch Sunday.
Starting the final round five shots behind, Boutier ran off six birdies on the front nine of the windy Bayside Course at Seaview to join a growing list of contenders.
The 27-year-old from France holed a 12-foot birdie putt on No. 16 and then birdied the par-5 18th from 5 feet to set the target at 14-under 199.
Jin Young Ko and Inbee Park, who shared the lead going into the final round, couldn’t catch her.
Ko and Park were one shot behind playing the par-5 18th. Ko hit a fairway metal to the right side of the green, leaving her some 70 feet away. She lagged that about 8 feet short. Park didn’t have the length to get home in two, and her wedge ran by about 10 feet.
Both missed their birdie putts, giving Boutier her second LPGA Tour victory, and her first on American soil. Her previous win was the 2019 Vic Open in Australia, two weeks before the LPGA Tour was shut down by the coronavirus pandemic.
Brooke Henderson of Canada birdied the 18th for a 64 and also wound up one shot behind. Park and Ko each closed with a 69.
ST. ANDREWS, Scotland (AP) — Danny Willett of England celebrated his birthday by closing with a 4-under 68 for a two-shot victory in the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.
The former Masters champion took a three-shot lead into the European Tour event’s final round, which was played over the Old Course at St. Andrews. Willett finished at 18-under 270 to claim his eighth professional win and his first since the BMW PGA Championship in September 2019.
Fellow Englishman Tyrrell Hatton, a two-time champion of the Dunhill Links, shot 67 and tied for second with Sweden’s Joakim Lagergren (66).
Willett extended his lead to four in the early stages. He was briefly reeled in by Richard Bland (68), but birdies at the ninth and 10th handed him a three-shot advantage once more and eight pars on the difficult closing stretch closed out the victory.
Bland made four birdies in a row from the fourth and added another at the ninth to join the lead. He tied for fourth with Shane Lowry (68).
Sophia Schubert closed with a 4-under 68 and made eagle on the par-5 18th in the third playoff hole to beat Fatima Fernandez Cano (70) of Spain and win the Carolina Golf Classic on the Symetra Tour. Schubert and Cano finished at 18-under 270. Emilia Migliaccio, playing as an amateur, birdied her last two holes for a 66 and tied for third with Brittany Marchand (67) of Canada. … Ga Eun Song closed with a 3-under 68 and won with a birdie on the third playoff hole to beat Minjee Lee of Australia (69) in the Hana Financial Group Championship on the Korean LPGA. Lydia Ko closed with a 68 and tied for fifth. … Marcus Helligkilde of Denmark closed with a 3-under 69 for a one-shot victory in the Swiss Challenge, his second European Challenge Tour victory in seven weeks. Nicolai Kristensen (67) and Jonathan Thomson (66) tied for second. … American Chan Kim picked up his sixth career victory on the Japan Golf Tour by closing with a 2-under 69 for a two-shot victory in the Vantelin Tokai Classic. … Daniel Greene closed with a 2-under 70 and beat Tristen Strydom in a playoff to win the Vodacom Origins of Golf at Humewood on the Sunshine Tour. … Markus Brier of Austria captured his first Legends Tour title by closing with a 3-over 75 for a two-shot victory over Rafael Gomez in the Farmfoods European Senior Masters. … Minami Katsu had a 2-under 69 and led by one-shot over Mao Saigo (70) in the rain-delayed Japan Women’s Open that will finish Monday.