Lamely rallies for first PGA Tour title|
Rio Grande, Puerto Rico (Sports Network) - Derek Lamely fired a six-under 66
in the final round Monday to come from behind and win the rain-delayed Puerto
Lamely, who won for the first time on the PGA Tour, completed the event at 19-
The win was history-making too. Lamely became the first player since Keith
Clearwater in 1987 to tee off on the 10th tee and win the title.
"I'd seen progress every week. Unfortunately I kind of got hurt at the end of
last year and didn't get to practice all winter, so I'm just trying to play my
way back into playing well," said Lamely, who collected $630,000 for the win.
"I hit the right things the last few weeks, but didn't see the results and
finally got back to a golf course I've played and was able to relax a little
more and my game kind of came back."
That was possible because of the lengthy rain delays over the first two days.
The third round was finished earlier Monday and players remained in the same
groups for the final round.
Lamely closed within four of third-round leader Kevin Streelman thanks to a
third-round, nine-under 63 that he finished Monday morning.
In the final round, Lamely birdied 16 and 17 just after Streelman made double-
bogey at the first. That turn of events gave Lamely the lead, and he never
looked back from there.
Kris Blanks closed with a three-under 69 to take second at minus-17.
Steve Wheatcroft (70), Streelman (73), James Nitties (69) and Brendon de Jonge
(68) shared third at 16-under-par 272. Blanks and Wheatcroft could have forced
a playoff with an eagle on the par-five 18th at Trump International Golf Club,
but closed with a par and a bogey respectively.
Lamely started the final round four strokes behind Streelman. Lamely birdied
the 13th from 12 feet out, then dropped in back-to-back birdie efforts from
the 16th to jump to 16-under.
Streelman, in the next-to-last group out, stumbled to a double-bogey on the
first to slip to 15-under, meaning Lamely was one ahead.
Lamely parred the 18th and first. He birdied the par-five second and came
right back with an eight-footer for birdie on the third to get to 18-under.
The 29-year-old Lamely moved to 19-under with a 10-foot birdie putt on the
par-five fifth. He parred the final four holes, then waited more than two
hours to see if anyone could catch him.
"From last year playing on the Nationwide Tour and having three or four
chances to win, it really helped me for today," Lamely stated. "I was just
playing golf and not thinking about outcome."
Streelman bounced back from his double-bogey with birdies on three and five,
but was still two back and he would get no closer.
Blanks and Wheatcroft, who played alongside Streelman, both closed within one
of Lamely. Blanks had four birdies in a nine-hole span from the fourth to the
12th to move to 18-under. However, he played the final six holes in plus-one
with a bogey and five pars.
"I was talking to my caddie today, that it was actually a perfect scenario for
somebody who's never won to win because to do what Derek did, you come out of
the pack and you didn't have to repair," Blanks said. "You didn't even know
where you were. I had a foot-and-a-half putt for birdie on nine to pull ahead
of the guys I was playing with, and I thought I would be one ahead going to
the back side, and I was two back.
"So it was different. It was great for Derek to be able to go out and post
something...we were all trying to chase and just couldn't catch him."
Wheatcroft posted back-to-back birdies from the second, then birdied 10 and 13
to move within one of the lead. But he bogeyed two of the last three holes to
end three back.
NOTES: In 1987 when Clearwater won from the 10th tee, that came at the
Colonial when weather forced the final two rounds to be completed on the final
day and players remained in the same groups...Clearwater, then a rookie like
Lamely is this year, posted rounds of 64-64 to win by three over Davis Love
III...Michael Bradley, the 2009 champion, closed with a bogey-free, two-under
70 to share 15th at 12-under 276...The PGA Tour returns to action on Thursday
when Retief Goosen will defend his title at the Transitions Championship.
03/15 17:04:54 ET