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Johnson saves season with win

October 13, 2008|From the Associated Press

Zach Johnson found his putting touch in time for a season-salvaging victory at the Texas Open in San Antonio.

"I've been working on my putting over the last six weeks with my teachers, and it really paid off this week," Johnson said. "I had a tough year, but the putts started to fall in today and that's why I'm at the top of the leaderboard."

The 2007 Masters champion who entered the week with only one top-10 finish this year, Johnson followed his third-round 62 with a six-under-par 64 on Sunday for a two-stroke victory over Charlie Wi (61), Mark Wilson (63) and Tim Wilkinson (64).

The win in the Fall Series event, capped by a five-foot birdie putt on 18, was his first on the PGA Tour outside Georgia. In addition to the Masters, he won the 2004 BellSouth Classic and 2007 AT&T.

"This week I was just concentrating on the process, not the outcome," said Johnson, who finished at 19-under 261. "I had six weeks off this fall [after not qualifying for the FedEx Cup playoffs] and I just rededicated myself to getting back to what I used to do."

Wi parred the final two holes. "I didn't look at the scoreboard until I got to the 15th hole. I knew Zach was close, but I was playing very good," Wi said. "I was very happy to make those birdies on 15 and 16. I wish I could have made one more."

Third-round leader Rory Sabbatini shot a 72 to finish seven strokes back at 12 under.

Johnson never trailed on the back nine, but Wi and Wilkinson kept the pressure on with birdies putts of their own. On the par-four 18th hole, Johnson hit his drive more than 300 yards and put his nine-iron approach to five feet.


South Korea's In-Kyung Kim won the Longs Drugs Challenge for her first LPGA Tour victory, closing with a one-over 73 in gusty conditions for a three-stroke victory over Angela Stanford.

The 20-year-old Kim, the 2005 U.S. Girls' Junior winner in her second season on the tour, birdied the final two holes for a 10-under 278 total on the Blackhawk Country Club course in Danville, Calif. She earned $180,000.

Stanford, the Bell Micro LPGA Classic champion last month in Alabama, finished with a 75. LPGA Championship winner Yani Tseng (72) was third at six under, and top-ranked Lorena Ochoa (72) finished fourth at four under.

Kim struggled down the stretch, missing a short birdie putt on No. 13 and bogeying the 14th and 16th holes. She nearly drove into a creek on the par-four 17th but caught a fairway bunker, hit her approach to eight feet and made her birdie putt.


Down by four strokes with 14 holes to play, D.A. Weibring soared past a fading Nick Price and held off a host of challengers to win the Senior Players Championship in Timonium, Md., his first major tournament victory in 65 tries.

Weibring closed out a two-under 68 with a two-foot par putt on the 72nd hole. He finished at nine-under 271, one stroke better than hometown favorite Fred Funk (66).

Price (71), Ben Crenshaw (66) and Jeff Sluman (69) were at seven under, and Jay Haas (68) followed at six under.

Weibring earned $390,000, the biggest payday in his career.

It was his fifth win in six years on the Champions Tour, and one of the most significant of his career. He was 0 for 39 in major tournaments on the PGA Tour and 0 for 25 on the 50-and-over circuit.

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