Crane Grabs Open Tuneup
Memphis, Tenn. — Ben Crane won the St. Jude Classic on Sunday for his first PGA Tour title since 2011, closing with a 3-over 73 for a one-stroke victory.
Crane went wire to wire for his fifth career victory. He played 30 holes on the last day because of rain delays at TPC Southwind, finishing the final 12 holes of his third-round 69 in the morning to take a three-shot lead into the final round.
He two-putted for bogey on the final hole to finish at 10-under 270.
Troy Merritt was second after a 71. Webb Simpson (65), Matt Every (70) and Carl Pettersson (69) were 8 under, and Ian Poulter had a 64 to tie for sixth at 7 under,
Phil Mickelson, among those tuning up for the U.S. Open at Pinehurst, left winless in his 20th event since the British Open. He tied for 11th at 6 under after a 72.
LPGA: Park Breaks Out
Waterloo, Ontario — Inbee Park won the Manulife Financial Classic for her first LPGA Tour title in more than 11 months, matching the course record with a 10-under 61 for a three-stroke victory.
A week after losing the top spot in the world ranking to Stacy Lewis, Park finished at 23-under 261 at Grey Silo for her 10th LPGA Tour title and first since the U.S. Women’s Open.
The 25-year-old South Korean player had only one bogey in 72 holes — on the fourth hole in the first round. On Sunday, she played the front nine in 5-under 31 and added birdies on Nos. 10, 12-14 and 18.
Park ended a 20-event tour winless streak.
Last year, she swept the first three majors and finished the season with six victories. She also won a Ladies European Tour event three months ago in China.
Christie Kerr closed with a 62 to finish second.
LEGENDS OF GOLF
RIDGEDALE, Mo. (AP) — Jeff Sluman and Fred Funk teamed to win the Champions Tour’s Legends of Golf, and Jim Colbert and Jim Thorpe topped the Legends Division for players 65 and older.
Sluman and Funk finished with a 6-under 48 at Top of the Rock, the first par-3 course used in a PGA Tour-sanctioned event, to beat Jay Haas and Peter Jacobsen by a stroke.
The winners finished at 20-under 159. They opened with an 11-under 61 in better-ball play on the regulation Buffalo Ridge course and had a 50 on Saturday on the par-3 layout.
Haas and Jacobsen, the second-round leaders, finished with a 50.
Sluman and Funk had a 1-under 26 in the opening alternate-shot nine and closed with a 5-under 22 in the best-ball nine. Sluman also won last year, teaming with Brad Faxon in Savannah, Georgia.
In the nine-hole Legends finale, Colbert and Thorpe had a 4-under 27 in better-ball play for a three-stroke victory over Bruce Fleisher and Larry Nelson. Colbert and Thorpe finished at 11 under for 45 holes.
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Alabama’s Emma Talley wrapped up the United States’ Curtis Cup victory, beating Britain and Ireland’s Bronte Law 4 and 3 in the opening singles match at St. Louis Country Club.
The United States won 13-7 to improve to 28-7-3 in the biennial competition, rebounding from a 10 1/2-9 1/2 loss in 2012 at Nairn in Scotland — the Americans’ only loss since 1996.
After Stanford’s Mariah Stackhouse and Mississippi State’s Ally McDonald halved their rain-delayed foursomes match with Stephanie Meadow and Georgia Hall, the United States needed only one point in the eight singles matches to regain the cup. Talley, the U.S. Women’s Amateur champion from Princeton, Kentucky, was quick to provide it with the victory over Law.
McDonald and Southern California’s Annie Park also won singles matches for the U.S, and Stackhouse, the first black player in U.S. Curtis Cup history, halved her match.
WESTLAKE, Ohio (AP) — New Zealand’s Steven Alker won the Cleveland Open in the longest playoff in Web.com Tour history, beating South Africa’s Dawie van der Walt with a birdie on the 11th extra hole.
Alker and van der Walt parred for first 10 holes in the playoff at Lakewood Country Club before Alker finally broke through on the par-4 18th.
The 11-hole playoff broke the tour record of nine set it 1998 in Eric Booker’s victory over Notah Begay III in the Lehigh Valley Open, and matched in 2009 in Gary Christian’s win over Mathias Gronberg in the Northeast Pennsylvania Classic. It also matched the record for the longest playoff in a PGA Tour-sanctioned event, set in the 1949 Motor City Open when Cary Middlecoff and Lloyd Mangrum were declared co-winners because of darkness.
Alker bogeyed the final two holes of regulation for a 6-under 65, while van der Walt birdied the last two holes for a 66. They finished at 14-under 270.
ATZENBRUGG, Austria (AP) — Sweden’s Mikael Lundberg won the Lyoness Open for his third European Tour title, beating Austria’s Bernd Wiesberger with a 40-foot birdie putt on the first hole of a playoff.
Lundberg closed with a 7-under 65 to match Wiesberger at 12-under 278. Wiesberger, the 2012 winner, finished with a 69. Dutchman Joost Luiten, the winner last year, was a stroke back after a 72.