Aaron Wise of the USA held off Australia’s Marc Leishman to win the rain-delayed AT&T Byron Nelson by three shots at Trinity Forest GC in Dallas, Texas.
Aaron Wise wins AT&T Byron Nelson
21-year-old Aaron Wise fired a closing round of 65 at Trinity Forest GC to post a tournament-record total score of 23-under-par. He claimed his maiden PGA Tour title by three shots over Marc Leishman.
Aaron Wise began the final round at Trinity Forest in a tie for the lead with Leishman but they faced a four-hour delay because of rain before they could head out for their closing 72 holes.
When they did, the rain had softened the course and a lack of wind meant final round scoring was superb.
Branden Grace set the pace with a scintillating 62 and he was followed by 63s from Keith Mitchell and J.J. Spaun.
But Wise wasn’t intimidated by the low numbers being posted. He carded five birdies on the last six holes of the front nine and then made a further gain on the 10th. When Leishman bogeyed that hole, Wise had a four-shot lead. The rookie was able to cruise in with eight straight pars to secure the title. He is the second youngest ever winner of this event, only beaten to that record by Tiger Woods.
“It’s everything I’ve dreamed of,” said Wise. “I felt like when it rained today I was really going to tear the course up just because it allowed me to hit driver, which is my strength. I got a lot of short irons in my hand and was able to make a lot birdies.”
With rounds of 61 and 66, Marc Leishman had set a 36-hole scoring record for the Byron Nelson but with 69 then 68 on the weekend, he had to be content with second place.
“I’m still happy with the way I’m striking the ball, really well,” Leishman said. “Hit a couple loose shots where I could have probably put a bit of pressure on him and didn’t – and that’s probably the difference in the end.”
Branden Grace, Keith Mitchell and J.J. Spaun, who all went low on Sunday, shared third spot.
Jordan Spieth is still seeking victory in his hometown event. He finished in a tie for 21st.
Felt like I played better than I scored,” Spieth said. “Typically when you say that, it just means putts didn’t go in.”
Adam Scott needed to finish in a two-way tie for ninth to move into the top-60 on the Official World Golf Ranking and secure a place in the U.S. Open. He couldn’t have come any closer… He ended the event in a three-way tie for ninth.
AT&T Byron Nelson
Trinity Forest GC, Dallas, Texas
Purse: $7,700,000 Par: 71
1 Aaron Wise (USA) 65 63 68 65 261 $1,386,000
2 Marc Leishman (Aus) 61 66 69 68 264 $831,600
T3 Branden Grace (RSA) 66 68 69 62 265 $400,400
T3 Keith Mitchell (USA) 65 68 69 63 265 $400,400
T3 J.J. Spaun (USA) 64 69 69 63 265 $400,400
T6 Ryan Blaum (USA) 66 69 67 66 268 $257,950
T6 Kevin Na (USA) 66 65 69 68 268 $257,950
T6 Jimmy Walker (USA) 64 67 70 67 268 $257,950
T9 Charles Howell III (USA) 69 69 65 66 269 $207,900
T9 Adam Scott (Aus) 67 65 72 65 269 $207,900
T9 Kevin Tway (USA) 67 65 70 67 269 $207,900
Note: Player score in bold signifies Titleist ball usage