Tue | Aug 22, 2017

Kisner holds on to win Colonial by stroke

Published:Monday | May 29, 2017 | 5:00 AM
Kevin Kisner reacts to sinking his putt on the 18th hole, winning the Dean & DeLuca Invitational golf tournament at Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth, Texas, yesterday.

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP): Kevin Kisner came so close several times before finally winning on the PGA Tour. He now has another victory, withstanding a charge by Jordan Spieth at Colonial, after two more runner-up finishes this year.

"You start questioning if you're going to win again after a while," Kisner said. "Everybody was questioning if I was ever going to win. Then I win, and then everybody questions if I was ever going to win again."

The affirmative answer came yesterday when Kisner birdied the first three holes on the back nine at Hogan's Alley to go ahead, then finished his 4-under 66 with a clutch par save at the 18th after a wayward tee shot and an approach off the back side of the green and well below the hole.

At 10-under 270, the 33-year-old Kisner finished a stroke ahead of Spieth (65), Sean O'Hair (66) and Jon Rahm (66) and earned a check of just more than US$1.2 million.

Kisner was a runner-up four times, including three playoffs during the 2015 season, before winning the RSM Classic in November 2015. Then came two more runner-ups this year.

Spieth was standing on a chair to see over the crowd at the 18th green after his bogey-free round when Kisner putted up the mound to five feet of the cup and then made the winning putt.

"I was going to take my chances with a (par) 4 and see what happened," said Kisner, who never considered a different club for his last two shots.

Rahm, who the last two years won the Ben Hogan Award as the nation's top college player, had just watched his 10-foot birdie chance skirt left of the hole.

Spieth, who had missed consecutive cuts at The Players Championship and the AT&T Byron Nelson, was trying to become the only player other than Ben Hogan to win consecutive Colonials. Hogan won five times, including the first two in 1946 and 1947, along with consecutive wins again in 1952 and 1953.

"I could look back at the end of the year and this could have been the most important round of the year," Spieth said. "I hope that's the case."

After starting the day five strokes behind 54-hole leader Webb Simpson, Spieth had birdies on the first two holes before a nearly 20-footer lipped out at the 453-yard number three hole. He also just missed a 12-footer at number nine, and a 25-footer at the 446-yard 12th hole rolled over the left edge of the cup, and had another near-miss on a 12-footer at number 17.