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January 8 2013

5:35 PM

Johnson holds on to win season-opener

Dustin Johnson won for the seventh time in his career on Tuesday. (Stan Badz/PGA TOUR)

It took an extra day, but Dustin Johnson will take it.

Johnson withstood three days of weather delays, and a field of 29 other winners from 2012, to capture the season-opening Hyundai Tournament of Champions on Tuesday.

He shot a final-round 68 to finish at 16 under and four strokes ahead of Steve Stricker. Brandt Snedeker finished alone in third at 10 under.

"It gives me a lot of confidence going into this year," Johnson said. "I hit a few bad drives that cost me shots, but i played good golf today."

The 28-year-old has now won seven times in his career on the PGA TOUR and earns 500 FedExCup points with the victory.

It also marks the third time Johnson has won a weather-shortened event. He won the 2011 Barclays and the 2009 AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, both of which were shortened to 54 holes because of weather.

At Kapalua, Johnson had to wait until Monday -- originally scheduled to be the final round -- just to finish the first round after high winds battered the Maui coastline.

He raced out to the lead, playing the first 36 holes in 11 under and never looked back.

Monday, Johnson birdied three of his first seven holes and wasn't challenged until he made double bogey on the 13th. He bounced back one later, though, chipping in for eagle.

Johnson added two more birdies on the par-5 15th and capped off the victory with another on the par-5 finishing hole after reaching the green in two.

Johnson's preparation for the event began early, too -- he played six practice rounds at Kapalua before the event started.

He also became the third straight American to win there and won for the second time in four attempts when carrying the lead to the final round.

The Tuesday finish was the first on the PGA TOUR since Ben Curtis' victory at the 2006 Booz Allen Classic.

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