The Daily Wrap-up: Round 4, Legends Reno-Tahoe Open

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John Rollins moved from 33rd to 20th in the FedExCup standings.
August 09, 2009
PGA TOUR staff

RENO, Nev. (AP) -- Like the five times before when he led after three rounds, John Rollins looked as if he might squander a chance for his third PGA TOUR victory when he bogeyed three of four holes late in the Legends Reno-Tahoe Open.

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But this time, the 34-year-old Virginian righted the ship, made a birdie on the 636-yard, par-5 17th and hung on for an even-par 72 and a three-stroke victory Sunday at the Montreux Golf and Country Club course on the edge of the Sierra Nevada.

Rollins, who tied the course record with a second-round 62 and led by six strokes at the turn Sunday, offset an early double bogey with a chip-in eagle at the par-5 11th. But that's when the trouble began, with bogeys on Nos. 12, 13 and 15.

"It was a hang-on kind of day. I'm proud I managed to come out on top," said Rollins, who tied for second at Reno last year. "I had to battle a lot of emotions."

He finished at 17-under 271.

"After I bogeyed 15, I sort of kicked myself in the butt and told myself I'm not going to let this tournament get away from me," he said. "Luckily, we ran out of holes and we came out on top."

Martin Laird made a 5-foot birdie putt on the 18th to shoot a 66 and tie for second with Jeff Quinney, who also shot a 66 on the strength of six birdies. Joe Ogilvie (71) was fourth at 13 under.

"It's nice to birdie the last," Laird said. "The difference between (second and third) is a whole bunch of money and a whole bunch of FedExCup points."

Quinney said it was some of the best golf he has played since a six-week layoff in the spring because of a herniated disk.

"I was just focused and staying in the present with what I was doing and I pretty much thought Rollins was running away with it," he said. "I didn't know he made a couple of bogeys late."

Ryan Palmer, who started the day four off the pace in the final group with his friend Rollins, had four bogeys and two birdies on the front nine. He shot a 73 to join Alex Cejka (67) and Kevin Na (68) at 12 under.

Rod Pampling finished another stroke back after a 67 on Sunday that included an eagle on the par-5 11th, where he holed out from a bunker in the third round for a quadruple-bogey 9.

Rollins, who won the 2002 Canadian Open and 2006 B.C. Open, was the runner-up earlier this year at the Buick Invitational and Honda Classic. The $540,000 winner's check pushed his season earnings beyond the $2 million mark for only the second time in nine years on TOUR for a career total of more than $12 million.

Rollins sank an 18-foot birdie putt on the par-3 second hole, but he double bogeyed the par-5 fourth after he had to take a penalty stroke for an unplayable lie in the right rough off the tee. He chipped within 3 feet from 44 yards out on the 616-yard, par-5 fifth and made the birdie putt to make the turn at 36.

"I was relieved to get off the front nine even par," Rollins said.

On the 584-yard 11th, he drove 351 yards down the right side of the fairway, hit his approach 212 yards to just short of the green and chipped in from nearly 40 feet for the eagle that pushed him to 19 under.

"Once that happened you kind of feel like, `Well now, we're OK. Let's settle down and let's finish this thing off,'" Rollins said.

But he followed that with consecutive bogeys, hitting short in a bunker on the par-3 12th and missing a 13-foot put for par, then hitting his approach over the green on the par-4 13th before two-putting from 9 feet.

"I decided to make it interesting again," he said.

He hit another drive 348 yards on the 477-yard, par-4 15th but his second shot came up short in a deep bunker on the short side and his next went 25 feet past the hole before he two-putted again for "another silly bogey" to drop to 16 under -- ahead by only two -- with three holes to play.

Rollins hit over a pond to 16 feet on the par-3 16th, but his birdie try slid just past the left edge of the hole. After a 10-minute wait on the tee, he drove 333 yards in the middle of the par-5 17th. His second shot landed on the left fringe 34 feet from the hole to set up a two-putt birdie that gave him a three-stroke lead.

"That was much more comfortable than going to 18 ahead by only one shot or even tied," he said.

Other notables at the Legends Reno-Tahoe Open
Name Score Position Comment
Jeff Quinney 14 under T2 Quinney scored his second top-five finish in four events with a bogey-free final round in tough conditions at Montreux. Quinney is close to securing a card for next year after a tough spring, which was riddled with injuries.
Martin Laird 14 under T2 The Scot was second in the field in Driving Distance this week, averaging an incredible 348 yards a pop. Like Quinney, he's playing much better after a cut-filled start to the season.
Joe Ogilvie 13 under 4 Ogilvie's exemption for winning in 2007 runs out after this season, but he took a huge step towards retaining his card with a back-nine 33 on Sunday to finish solo fourth.
Sunday's best
EASIEST HOLE TOUGHEST HOLE
The par-5 17th hole was the easiest with a Sunday scoring average of 4.479.
EAGLES: 0 BIRDIES: 33 PARS: 39
BOGEYS: 1 OTHERS: 0
The par-4 eighth hole was the toughest with a Sunday scoring average of 4.397.
EAGLES: 0 BIRDIES: 4 PARS: 44
BOGEYS: 19 OTHERS: 4
SHOT OF THE DAY ROUND OF THE DAY
John Rollins all bur assured the victory with a chip-in for eagle on the par-5 11th hole on Sunday. Watch his shot Jeff Quinney had a bogey-free 66 that included only two missed fairways and only 26 putts. Check out his scorecard

His approach to the par-4 18th landed 20 feet right of the green in the rough, but he chipped to just inside 3 feet and made the putt for par.

FINAL-ROUND NOTEBOOK By Mark Williams, PGA TOUR Staff

John Rollins was 11-under on the par-5s at Montreux Golf and Country Club, 5-under on the par-4s and 1-under on the par-3s.

• For the sixth consecutive year, the winner shot a final-round in the 70s at the Legends Reno-Tahoe Open. Rollins fired a 72 Sunday to win. In that six-year period, only Will MacKenzie had an under-par final round and went on to win.

• Rollins continued a trend in Reno with players cruising to wide-margin wins. In 2008, Parker McLachlin won by seven strokes, and in 20087 Steve Flesch was a five-stroke winner. Rollins won by three.

Alex Cejka picked up his second top 10 of 2009 with his T5 at the Legends Reno-Tahoe Open. It was his first top 10 since THE PLAYERS Championship, where he tied for ninth after being the 54-hole leader at TPC Sawgrass.

Kevin Na earned his eighth top-10 finish of the season. While playing the front nine in 1-over Sunday, Na opened his back nine with three consecutive birdies and five total on the back nine to tie for fifth.

• Three weeks ago, Jeff Quinney tied for fourth at the U.S. Bank Championship at Milwaukee. It was his first top 10 of the season. Sunday in Reno, Quinney was back at it, shooting a final-round 66 to tie for second. He was 9-under on the par-4s this week.

• To read more of the final-round notebook, click here.

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