Monday, September 14, 2009

Big lead means easy win for Woods

Associated Press

Tiger Woods left the drama to everyone else at Cog Hill.

One day after his course-record 62 gave him a seven-shot lead, Woods made sure no one else had a chance Sunday in the BMW Championship in Lemont, Ill. He closed with a 3-under-par 68 for an eight-shot victory over Jim Furyk and Marc Leishman.

It was Woods' sixth victory of the year, his fifth victory at Cog Hill, and his 10th victory by at least eight shots.

As Woods cruised around Cog Hill in his familiar red shirt, a dozen players behind him were scrambling for positions leading into the FedEx Cup finale at East Lake in Atlanta in two weeks.

Furyk's runner-up finish moved him up 15 spots to No. 3, meaning he can win the FedEx Cup with a victory at the Tour Championship. Leishman, who qualified for Cog Hill only by making an eagle on his last hole a week ago outside Boston, earned his first trip to the Tour Championship and will have an outside shot at the $10 million.

Most compelling, however, was the competition for the 30th and final spot in the Tour Championship.

The heartbreaker belonged to Brandt Snedeker, playing in the final group with Woods. Walking up the 18th hole, he learned he needed only a bogey to finish in the top 30. He missed his 12-foot par putt, then watched in shock as his 3-footer for bogey caught the left lip of the cup. Snedeker was so stunned that he missed the next two putts and took triple bogey.

That allowed John Senden to take the 30th spot by less than a half-point over Ian Poulter.

Woods finished at 19-under 265 for his 71st career victory, leaving two short of Jack Nicklaus for second on the PGA Tour's career list.

Cog Hill became the fourth course on which Woods has won at least five times. He has won seven times at Torrey Pines and Firestone, and six times at Bay Hill.

Shin takes LPGA playoff: Jiyai Shin shot a 7-under 64, then beat Angela Stanford and Sun Young Yoo on the second hole of a sudden-death playoff to win the P&G Beauty NW Arkansas Championship in Rogers.

Shin trailed by seven strokes at the beginning of the day. It was her third LPGA Tour victory of the year. Shin posted her final-round score around 12:30 p.m. local time, then had to wait a few hours for everyone else to finish. Yoo birdied No. 18 to tie for the lead, and Stanford qualified for the playoff with an 18th-hole eagle.

U.S. amateurs dominate: The U.S. team won its third straight Walker Cup, claiming three early singles matches for an insurmountable 14-6 lead over Great Britain and Ireland at Merion Golf Club in Ardmore, Pa. The final score was 16 1/2-9 1/2.

Americans Ricky Fowler and Peter Uihlein completed the weekend unbeaten in four matches.

Kingston prevails in Europe: James Kingston of South Africa won his second European Tour title, beating Anders Hansen of Denmark on the first playoff hole at the Mercedes-Benz Championship in Cologne, Germany.

This article appeared on page B - 3 of the San Francisco Chronicle.


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