Sun Sentinel
PGA Tour
Stricker wins John Deere Classic



Silvis, IL (Sports Network) - Steve Stricker fired a seven-under 64 in the final round Sunday to win the John Deere Classic by three shots.

Stricker collected five birdies and an eagle in a flawless final round, claiming his sixth PGA Tour win, and second of the season, at 20-under 264.

Brandt Snedeker (65), Zach Johnson (66) and Brett Quigley (67) tied for second place at 17-under 267, while J.J. Henry (68), Tim Petrovic (69) and Matt Jones (69) shared fifth at 16-under 268.

The third and fourth rounds were both played Sunday -- a 36-hole marathon that was the result of a rain-out on Friday, which pushed the second round to Saturday.

At one point Sunday, when the final round had already begun and the third round was not yet completed, there was an eight-way tie atop the leaderboard.

"It was survival," said Johnson.

Stricker, who tied the course record with a 10-under 61 in the second round Saturday, also went 10-under on Sunday -- over two rounds. He shot a 68 in the third round and was tied for fourth place entering the last 18 holes -- where, Stricker said, fatigue was a factor.

"You're just trying to stay in it mentally," he said.

Stricker, after beginning the final round with back-to-back birdies at his first two holes, tied Johnson for the lead when he holed out for eagle from 98 yards on the par-four sixth.

Johnson later bogeyed his 14th hole -- No. 5 -- from the rough, while Stricker moved forward with a 16-foot birdie putt at the 10th. That gave him a two-shot lead over Johnson and three other players.

Petrovic would later tie Stricker for the lead with a 10-footer for birdie at the 13th, but only momentarily.

Playing in the same group, Stricker also birdied the 13th, from just three feet after a nice approach shot, to re-take the lead. And he wouldn't let anyone catch him again.

At the 17th, Stricker nearly holed a 50-foot putt for eagle, getting lucky when the ball caught the edge of the cup. If it hadn't, the ball would have rolled several feet past.

Instead, Stricker tapped in for a birdie and a two-shot lead. All that remained was a comfortable walk down the 18th fairway, the end to a long day.

"I just tried to keep patient today and go about my game plan like I've been doing every other day," said Stricker, who also won at Colonial this year. "It worked out. I hit a lot of good shots, putted well, and I'm very happy to be sitting here."

Quigley qualified for next week's British Open when Petrovic double-bogeyed the 18th hole after hitting into the water. But he'll skip the season's third major championship and play in Milwaukee instead.

Still seeking his first win in his 13th full season on tour, Quigley said his dilemma was first to find his passport -- which he did -- then decide whether or not he wanted to go.

Before playing the U.S. Bank Championship, Quigley will attend a Tuesday service for Beth Smith, the wife of golfer Chris Smith, who was killed in an auto accident last month.

"My heart is not into playing the British," said Quigley.

07/12 21:52:43 ET