No joke: Huh wins 8-hole playoff over Allenby|
Playa del Carmen, Mexico (Sports Network) - PGA Tour rookie John Huh parred
eight playoff holes Sunday to defeat Robert Allenby and win the Mayakoba Golf
Classic at Riviera.
Huh fired an eight-under 63 in the final round to get into the clubhouse at
13-under-par 271 at El Camaleon Golf Course.
Allenby, who hasn't won on the PGA Tour since the 2001 Pennsylvania Classic,
was five groups behind Huh and in the lead at 15-under. However, he faltered
to a double-bogey on the par-four 18th to close out a six-under 65.
The closing double-bogey left Allenby tied for the lead with Huh.
Chris Stroud, who was in the final group, was at 12-under with two holes to
play and could have tied or passed the duo, but failed to do so.
In the playoff, the Huh and Allenby matched pars on the first seven holes. On
the eighth, Allenby blinked. He tripped to a bogey, while Huh got and down for
his eighth par to secure his first PGA Tour title.
"I couldn't put it into words. It's amazing, you know. I can't believe it
happened right now," Huh exclaimed. "It's my rookie year and playing in my
fifth event on the PGA Tour, and I just couldn't put it in words."
A dejected Allenby said: "Obviously disappointed. Disappointed that I didn't
hit three-wood off 18 (tee) in regulation, like I should have. But that's the
way it goes. You make some mistakes sometimes, and that was a major one.
"I mean I had this tournament in the bag, a two-shot lead with one hole to
play and just played it like a rookie, pretty much."
Matt Every, who shared sixth place at the Sony Open in Hawaii, and Colt Knost
both closed with five-under 66s to share third place.
Third-round leader Daniel Summerhays stumbled to five bogeys on the front
nine, but fought back to shoot two-over 73 that left him tied for fifth with
Dicky Pride (66), Alejandro Canizares (66) and Stroud (71).
Stroud bogeyed the 16th, but still had a chance to get into the playoff with a
birdie on one of the final two holes. He parred 17 but, like Allenby, faltered
to a double-bogey at the last.
Huh, who started over an hour before the final group, jumped out of the blocks
with birdies on one and three. He eagled the fifth and also birdied the eighth
to help him make the turn at 10-under.
The 21-year-old was two strokes back at the time. Huh converted birdie chances
from the 13th to briefly grab a piece of the lead at 12-under.
Allenby poured in five consecutive birdie efforts from the second and his
birdie on the ninth moved the Australian one ahead of Huh at minus-13.
Huh joined him there with a birdie on the 17th. He parred the last, then
waited for the final seven groups to complete their rounds.
"I mean, I think that's the best score ever I have played on the PGA Tour,
especially on the last day, which is really good," said Huh before the
playoff. "Bogey-free, which makes it more greater."
Allenby birdied 13 and 14 to jump to 15-under par, where he led by two. He
parred the next three holes, then just needed a bogey at the last to snap an
11-year winless drought.
But the 40-year-old struggled to a double-bogey and failed to capitalize in
the playoff as well.
NOTES: With the $660,000 paycheck, Huh moved to ninth on the PGA Tour money
list...Summerhays and Stroud entered the final round as the only two players
with three rounds in the 60s...Summerhays easily posted his best finish on
tour...The PGA Tour heads to Florida next week for The Honda Classic, where
Rory Sabbatini was a one-stroke winner over Y.E. Yang last year.
02/26 20:11:59 ET