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By : BGA Proshop
Having started the final day with a three stroke lead over Rory McIlroy, Gary Woodland thought that shooting a 5 under on the Sunday would give him a good chance for his first win of 2019. But unfortunately Woodland ran into a kid called Xander Schauffele, who was the PGA Tour rookie of year in 2016-2017, shot an amazing course equalling 11 under 62 to win by a shot. He even had the chance to break the course record if his 11 foot eagle putt on 18 had dropped.
Schauffele started the day 5 shots back from Woodland and it wasn’t looking good as he bogeyed his first hole but went on to make two eagles and 8 birdies to win the Sentry Tournament of Champions.
After the round as Schauffele waited for Woodland to finish his round he said “Honestly, I’m a little speechless. It was a crazy day and I was a bit nervous too. Sitting in that room they asked if I wanted to come out here and watch [Woodland finish], but a camera would be on me. ‘Ya know, I think I’ll just hang out in here.'”
Woodland was gracious — and playful — in defeat. The long-hitting 34-year-old sought out Schauffele immediately after his round and gave him a friendly shove. A reporter asked what Woodland told him in the exchange.
“Congrats,” Schauffele said, laughing. “He knows he could kick my a– if he wanted to, so…”
“Gary’s been very kind to me since I’ve been out here on Tour, and he’s just a really cool dude,” Schauffele said.
“Sixty-two is obviously an awesome round of golf, and hats off to Xander,” Woodland said in his post-round interview. “That’s really, really good.”