Luke List enjoys an unlikely win after 'rollercoaster' finish at Sanderson Farms Championship
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Written by Adam Stanley @Adam_Stanley
A five-man playoff in the fall could have meant a next-day finish. It was a last-minute thing to even have the playoff to begin with after a missed 8-footer on the final hole brought four guys who thought they were out of it back very much into it.
And then there was Luke List.
List had a 45-foot birdie try in the first playoff hole at the Sanderson Farms Championship. Someone had to step up and do it, right? Turns out, it was him. He drained it. A winner, again.
Luke List drains birdie two win five-man playoff at Sanderson Farms
And a celebration in Mississippi with his family – wife Chloe and two kids Ryann and Harrison.
List, now 38, is the first to admit that he’s not that young anymore. Fifteen years older than Ludvig Åberg, who was one of the five in the playoff at The Country Club of Jackson. But thanks to the ongoing and ever-loving support of his family, and especially his wife, he feels like he still has some good golf left.
“I think all my emotion kind of came out after that putt, and then it was just shock, really, still. But to have them there means everything. The last one my son was a little smaller and he's starting to get into golf a little bit. But just my wife, she's incredible, and her steadiness and perseverance to keep me level and positive is a job in itself,” List said.
“It’s just tough sometimes backing myself, and she's always got my back. It was really special having her and my kids here.”
Luke List’s interview after winning the Sanderson Farms Championship
List got off to a solid start in Mississippi, firing rounds of 66-66 before staying steady through the weekend. He shot a 2-under 70 on Sunday. List started the week No. 119 in the FedExCup standing but is set to move up to No. 61 – meaning he’ll be firmly in the mix for the Next 10. The win also earned him a spot in The Sentry and the Masters – a nice treat for someone who lives in Augusta, Georgia – amongst plenty more rewards as a TOUR winner for the first time since the Farmers Insurance Open in 2022.
List said he was overthinking things a bit to start Sunday – since he had a number in mind he wanted to get to – but that “hindered” his play. He tried to free things up as the day went on and finished at 18 under.
Ben Griffin, the 54-hole leader, was over par on the day but was still very much in the driver’s seat as he got to the 18th tee. Griffin ended up missing an 8-foot par attempt on the 72nd hole and dropped him to 18 under as well along with List, Åberg, Scott Stallings, and Henrik Norlander.
On the first playoff hole Griffin had a 30-foot birdie try, Åberg had a 53-foot birdie try, while Stallings and Norlander were just off the green. No one else ended up getting their birdie attempt all that close, and List rolled his putt right in the center.
“Just to have the opportunity to get in a playoff, I felt like, ‘Wow, OK, this is a gift,” List said. “Then my mindset just switched into, ‘OK, let’s try to make a birdie any way I could.’ Didn’t hit the best (approach) shot but I told my caddie, ‘I’m making this,’ and somehow rolled it in.”
List was thrilled with the way he hung in there mentally this week. He was quick to admit he didn’t have his ‘A’ game with his ball-striking, but a solid putter and a deft touch around the greens kept him in it until the very end. And then it was that putter that helped him take this tournament across the finish line.
“Usually in the past I would kind of fold up and get a little frustrated, and I was able to just hang in there. My caddie did a fantastic job on keeping me present, and just very fortunate to come out on top,” List said.
In another ceremony that was shrouded in darkness, List’s first PGA TOUR title came in a playoff, topping Will Zalatoris at Torrey Pines. That week, List started Sunday five shots back of the lead and had to wait nearly two hours to see how things would finish up. That week, he finally got to give something to his daughter she really wanted.
“She’s been telling me for a long time, ‘Daddy I want a trophy,’ and I finally got one,” List said that week. He finally broke through for his first title in his 206th TOUR start.
List said his daughter was on him to win another one. The surfboard he got for winning at Torrey Pines was well received in the List household and she was pretty excited to hear of the Sanderson Farms Championship unique chicken trophy.
“I think we’ll have to get her a mini version of it,” List said. “But it’s nice to have your kids present and old enough to appreciate it and share with them. And I’m very fortunate.”
From being fortunate to even getting into a playoff to then having the opportunity to celebrate with his family, it was quite the Sunday night for Luke List,
“Yeah,” he said with a smile, “it’s been an interesting last hour.”