Jordan Spieth gets first PGA Tour win

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Courtesy: Zimbio.com

 
19-year old Jordan Spieth outlasted Zach Johnson and David Hearn in a playoff, making par on the fifth extra hole to win the 2013 John Deere Classic.
 
What Happened
 
Before the playoff happened, the tournament really was anyone’s for the taking. Six players, including the three that went to extra holes, had chances to win on Sunday. Johnson actually had a one-shot lead as he went to the 18th, with Spieth in the clubhouse at 19-under par after holing out from the greenside bunker on the last. Johnson made bogey, falling to 19-under, while Hearn was able to make par on the last to get into the playoff. All three players made par on the opening four holes, and when they came back to the 18th, all three pushed their drives into the right rough. Hearn decided to lay up, landing in the first cut of rough. Johnson, who had landed directly behind a tree, tried to do the same but ended up hitting another tree and caroming into the water on the left side. Spieth, from a nearly impossible lie, hit a fantastic punch cut and got it to the back of the green. With Johnson out of it, Spieth hit a great putt to tap-in range, leaving only Hearn standing in his way. Hearn’s approach got him to about fifteen feet for par and when he missed the putt, Spieth was able to tap in for par and pick up his first PGA Tour win at just 19 years of age.
 
Final Leaderboard

  • 1. Jordan Spieth -19 *wins in playoff*
  • T2. David Hearn -19
  • T2. Zach Johnson -19
  • T4. Martin Flores -18
  • T4. Jerry Kelly -18
  • T4. Daniel Summerhays -18

What The Win Means For Spieth
 
We’ve been expecting this for a little while now, but it’s still crazy to think that Spieth at just 19-years old is a winner on the PGA Tour. The last teenager to win on the PGA Tour? Not Tiger Woods or Phil Mickelson, Rory McIlroy or Rickie Fowler, Jack Nicklaus or Arnold Palmer. You have to go all the way back to Ralph Guldahl in 1931 at the Santa Monica Open to find the last teen to win out here. Spieth has been close this year, with five top-10 finishes coming into the week, including a runner-up in Puerto Rico, and this certainly won’t be the last time we see him in the winner’s circle. In the short term, Spieth gets into the Open next week, as well as the Masters next year. He also officially qualifies for the FedEx Cup playoffs since with the win, he’s finally a member of the PGA Tour. All in all, that’s not a bad day for anyone, much less someone who doesn’t turn 20 for another couple of weeks.
 
Steve Stricker
 
Stricker’s part-time schedule has been an interesting mini-storyline to follow in 2013, but he has played in the first two majors, showing up at both the Masters and Merion for the U.S. Open. He will not be making the trip to Muirfield because it is his 20th wedding anniversary, and he wants to spend it in the U.S. with his wife and family. For a guy who has yet to win a major in his career, and appears to be playing some of the best golf of his life, it may seem like a curious decision, but he said earlier this week that he’s content with the way his career has unfolded, and I respect that. It’s certainly a different perspective, but there’s something to be said for someone with that kind of peace of mind.
 
Other Notes

  • Notables to miss the cut: John Huh, John Senden, John Rollins, Jonas Blixt, Ben Crane, Charley Hoffman, Louis Oosthuizen, Pat Perez, Luke Guthrie, Brendan Steele, Ricky Barnes, D.A. Points, Kyle Stanley, Bud Cauley, Scott Stallings, David Duval and Rory Sabbatini.
  • Three WD’s this week: Jeff Overton (wrist), George McNeill (no reason), Bobby Gates (wrist).
  • Other notable finishes: Stricker (T10), Harris English, Chad Campbell and Lucas Glover (T15), Ryan Moore and Chris Kirk (T22), Boo Weekley, Nick Watney and Mike Weir (T27), Charles Howell III, K.J. Choi and Ryo Ishikawa (T33), Kevin Streelman (T44), Ken Duke and Gary Woodland (T48), Carl Pettersson (T54) and Keegan Bradley (T61).
  • Four rounds of under par golf this week for Weir, which is the first time he’s done that since May 2010 at the Crowne Plaza Invitational.
  • Every year, the John Deere Classic charters a plane for the players to the Open, but this year, it couldn’t leave on schedule thanks to the playoff. I’m sure Johnson and Spieth are going to get it pretty good from the guys on the plane when they board tonight.
  • Tough to watch Hearn miss a short five footer that would have won him the tournament on the fourth playoff hole. He’s had a good year, but that would have made a world of difference for his career.
  • Much like Rich Beem has transitioned into TV commentary, I can definitely see Daniel Summerhays doing the same when he decides to stop playing.
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