Kuchar wins playoff for Barclays title
Paramus, NJ (Sports Network) - Matt Kuchar birdied the first playoff hole
Sunday to defeat Martin Laird and win The Barclays, the first playoff event of
Kuchar fired a five-under 66 and was the only player to post four rounds in
the 60s for the week. He was the first in at 12-under 272 and Laird, the
third-round leader, joined him after an even-par 71 that ended with a three-
putt bogey on 18.
Kuchar drove into the rough with his tee ball at the 18th in the playoff.
Laird also missed the short grass off the tee, but Kuchar hit a spectacular
shot that hit the green moving too quickly.
The ball was right of the flag, but kept riding a hill toward the cup.
Kuchar's ball finally stopped two feet from the stick, putting all of the
pressure on Laird.
"I knew I had to keep it low under some limbs, and just kind of chase it up
and run it on," said Kuchar. "I ran up to that back right bank and saw the
momentum build and they went just like a wave of people standing up and
cheering. I knew it was getting good."
Laird hit his shot to a very similar spot as Kuchar, but Laird's ball wasn't
moving quickly enough to funnel to the hole. Laird missed his long birdie
putt, then holed his par save to keep the pressure on Kuchar.
Kuchar rolled in the putt for his third PGA Tour win and second in as many
He moved atop the FedEx Cup points and PGA Tour money list with the victory.
"There's nothing like the feeling of winning a PGA Tour golf tournament," said
Kuchar. "You feel like you are the best player in the world for this week. I
mean, it's just an amazing feeling to think there's 125 of the best players in
the world started this week and I came out first."
Steve Stricker (66) and Kevin Streelman (68) tied for third place at 10-under
Rory Sabbatini (64), Vaughn Taylor (69), Ryan Palmer (69) and Jason Day (71)
shared fifth place at minus-nine.
Tiger Woods carded a solid four-under 67 on Sunday and tied for 12th place at
Woods did enough to advance to next week's field at the Deutsche Bank
Championship. He was No. 112 on the FedEx Cup points list, but his finish
moved him into the top 100, which is the yardstick for entry at the TPC
"I certainly haven't won all year. But this is a week that I was very close,"
said Woods, who won his second FedEx Cup last year. "I felt that if I would
have put it together on the greens for all four days I would have been right
there. But looking forward to next week."
When Woods gets to Boston next week, he'll be trying to chase down Kuchar for
the FedEx Cup title.
Kuchar began the final round five strokes behind Laird, but three birdies on
his front nine inched him closer. Laird was one-over through his front nine
thanks to three birdies, two bogeys and a double-bogey.
Laird moved two strokes clear of Kuchar with a two-foot birdie putt at the
12th. Laird sank several par putts in the six- to eight-foot range to stay
atop the leaderboard.
Kuchar answered with a nine-foot birdie at 16 and a two-putt birdie at 17. The
two were tied at 12-under until Laird made yet another six-footer, this time
for birdie at 17.
Armed with a one-shot lead, Laird drove into the rough at the 18th. He hit a
fantastic shot just off the green 25 feet from the stick. Laird hammered his
birdie putt eight feet past the cup, then his par putt never touched the hole.
He tapped in for his bogey, then ultimately lost one hole later.
"I'm not too upset about my three-putt on 18 because my first one I didn't
think I hit it too hard. I didn't know how fast that putt was," admitted
Laird. "I thought I would be a lot more gutted than I am right now. I'm really
happy how I played today."
Kuchar is happy about today and his entire 2010 season. He's ahead in the
FedEx Cup race and money list, had two top-10s in majors and made his first
Ryder Cup team.
"It's been an awesome year," said Kuchar. "I've been so happy with my
performance this year. And I knew it was a matter of time. It was one of those
things that I knew if I put myself in contention enough times I was going to
NOTES: Last year's winner Heath Slocum shot a three-under 68 and tied for
ninth with Adam Scott and Dustin Johnson at eight-under par...Luke Donald and
Padraig Harrington were playing their final rounds when they were notified
that European Ryder Cup captain Colin Montgomerie selected them with his
captain's picks...It was somewhat awkward for Harrington because he was
playing with Paul Casey, who was passed over by Monty...Next week is the
Deutsche Bank Championship, which was won by Steve Stricker last year.