LA QUINTA, Calif. — Whereas Jon Rahm had loads of probabilities to pump his proper fist after good pictures on Sunday, the look of aid on his face after holding off rookie Davis Thompson put into perspective his victory at The American Categorical.
The Spanish star took benefit of errors by Thompson over the adventuresome remaining three holes and closed with a 4-under 68 to win by one stroke, his second PGA Tour win in as many begins this 12 months.
“I am, in a bizarre approach, glad that at the moment went the best way it went,” Rahm stated. “I’ve loved some runaway victories, I’ve loved some comebacks, however at the moment was definitely a battle. Out of the 5 birdies I made, what’s it, one, two, three of them have been tap-ins and the opposite two have been principally 6-footers. In order that tells you the story.”
Rahm pumped his fist a remaining time after tapping in for a two-putt par on No. 18 at PGA West’s Stadium Course.
Rahm and Thompson have been tied with three holes to play when Thompson, who led by way of 36 holes and shared the lead with Rahm coming into Sunday, pulled his drive right into a deep fairway bunker on the par-5 sixteenth and wound up with par. Rahm made birdie to take the lead.
On the par-3 seventeenth, Thompson selected to go away the pin in for his 50-foot birdie putt on the island inexperienced, and the ball squarely hit the pin and rolled away. The 23-year-old from Georgia dropped his putter and put his palms to his face. As he walked to the 18th tee after tapping in for par, he pulled his shirt up over his mouth in frustration.
“I normally at all times depart the stick in from a protracted distance,” Thompson stated. “I really feel prefer it helps me with my velocity. I am going to most likely play the ‘what if’ sport in my head for a very long time, sadly. I had a terrific learn. I most likely hit it too agency. If it had nice velocity it will have simply hit the flag and dropped. However we’ll by no means know. I am pleased with myself for this week.”
Rahm hit his tee shot right into a bunker on 18 however recovered properly with a shot to fifteen ft and pumped his fist. Thompson’s drive discovered the golf green however his method bounced on the inexperienced and ran down the slope behind it. The rookie hit a daring flop store that settled a foot to the best of the outlet. He shot 69.
“I had a terrific week,” stated Thompson, who made 5 eagles by way of the primary two rounds, tying the PGA Tour file for eagles in a 72-hole occasion. “Competing in opposition to the most effective on the earth is my dream and I did that at the moment and proved that I can cling with ’em. It was numerous enjoyable. A whole lot of nerves and I hit numerous high quality golf pictures below strain, which was actually cool.”
Rahm completed at 27-under 261 and gained for the ninth time on the PGA Tour. He strikes up one spot to No. 3 on the earth. He’s taking part in this week at Torrey Pines, whereas world No. 1 Rory McIlroy makes his 2023 debut in Dubai on the European tour.
Rahm now has gained 4 of his final six begins — he gained twice on the European tour on the finish of final 12 months. This was his seventh straight prime 10 worldwide, a streak that started after the Tour Championship in late August.
He turned the third participant since 2000 with a number of PGA Tour wins in January, becoming a member of Justin Thomas (2017) and Ernie Els (2003). And it was his third profession end at 27 below or higher, breaking a tie with Phil Mickelson for many in tour historical past.
“Heck of a begin,” stated Rahm, who gained the Sentry Event of Champions two weeks in the past at Kapalua. “Clearly Sentry and this one are very, very totally different golf programs and really totally different golf. You continue to need to go low in each of them. So fortunately the mentality is similar.
“Physique’s been feeling nice. My swing’s been feeling actually, actually good. And it exhibits, proper?. Even after I’m saying I is probably not as comfy as I would really like, I am taking pictures 64s as a result of every little thing is simply firing when it must.”
Xander Schauffele, two weeks after he withdrew due to again ache, closed with a 62 and completed two behind with Chris Kirk (64). It was his third profession spherical of 10 below or higher, making him the one participant in final 40 PGA Tour seasons to have three profession remaining rounds that low.
Taylor Montgomery was difficult Rahm and Thompson till he put his tee shot into the water on the seventeenth. He closed with a 66 and completed fifth.
Scottie Scheffler closed with a 67 and tied for eleventh. He narrowly missed a birdie putt on the ultimate gap that might have allowed him to return to No. 1 by a fraction of a degree over McIlroy. Scheffler will not be taking part in this week.
Data from ESPN Stats & Data and The Related Press was used on this report.