Final-round notes: 3M ChampionshipJuly 12, 2009
Dave Senko, PGA TOUR Staff
Bernhard Langer's dramatic eagle on the final hole proved the difference as he posted a one-stroke victory over Andy Bean. Playing one group in front of the final group, which included Bean, Langer chipped in from 20 feet just off the green to build a two-stroke advantage. Needing an eagle himself on No. 18 to tie, Bean could only muster a birdie and finished second to Langer for the second time this year. He was also a runner-up at the Mitsubishi Electric Championship at Hualalai in January. Scott Hoch closed with a 66 to finish third two strokes back. Tom Kite was fourth, while Nick Price and Steve Thomas were T5.
Bernhard Langer's victory was his second consecutive win on the Champions Tour. He prevailed by six strokes at the Triton Financial Classic in his last start. The win was also his fourth win in 2009 and his eighth career win on the Champions Tour in 37 starts.
With his win, Bernhard Langer earned 263 points in the season-long Charles Schwab Cup race and he opened up a 660-point margin over Larry Mize in the season-long race. Langer now has 1,425 points followed by Larry Mize (765), Michael Allen (720), Loren Roberts (625) and Andy Bean (619).
Here are Bernhard Langer's statistics for the event.
Fairways Hit -- 34 of 42 (81.0%/T37)
Greens in Regulation -- 43 of 54 (79.6%/T9)
Putts Per Round -- 28.0/T11
Driving Distance -- 284.0/T13
Mark O'Meara enjoyed a successful sendoff for his visit to this week's British Open Championship by shooting a final-round 8-under-par 64 on Sunday. He finished T6, his sixth top-10 finish in 10 starts this year.
In the Greats of Golf Challenge, Team Army (Arnold Palmer, Al Geiberger and Don January) defeated Team Ryder Cup (Billy Casper, Gene Littler and Tony Jacklin) for the title. Each team finished with scores of 22-under-par 122, but in a match of scorecards, Team Army was declared the winner. Al Geiberger's eagle at No. 18 ended up besting the birdie-4 by Team Ryder Cup for the title. Team International (Chi Chi Rodriguez, Lee Trevino and Charles Coody) finished third, one stroke back.
Larry Mize continued his strong play in 2009. He posted a pair of 67s on the weekend and finished T7. It was his fifth straight top-10 finish and sixth in his last seven starts. He picked up 56 Charles Schwab Cup points and moved into second place in that race behind Bernhard Langer.
A total of 52 players finished with rounds under par and 37 posted rounds in the 60s, more than the previous two rounds combined (33). The field averaged 70.456 on Sunday and 71.397 for the tournament. That was the highest average for the event since 2004 (72.198).
Scott Hoch's third-place finish was just his third top-10 finish of the year, but his second top-five finish in his last three starts. He was T4 at the Triton Financial Classic. His three straight rounds in the 60s gave him nine straight sub-par rounds. Hoch also led all players with just 78 putts this week.
Defending champion R.W. Eaks finished T22 in defense of his 2008 title.
Steve Thomas' sixth-place finish was his best on the Champions Tour and earned $70,000, the largest check of his career.
After a week off, the Champions Tour begins the first of three consecutive major championships starting in England at the Senior British Open at Sunningdale Golf Club (Old Course) where Bruce Vaughan defends. The following week the U.S. Senior Open will be contested at Crooked Stick Golf Club near Indianapolis. Three weeks later, the Tour holds the third major championship when the JELD-WEN Tradition is played at the Crosswater Club at Sunriver Resort in Sunriver, OR.