After a five-man playoff and Monday finish, Mackenzie Hughes of Canada claimed his first PGA Tour title with victory in The RSM Classic at Sea Island in Georgia.
After lack of daylight prevented the conclusion of a playoff for The RSM Classic on Sunday evening, four players (Mackenzie Hughes, Blayne Barber, Henrik Norlander and Camilo Villegas) returned to the Sea Island resort to decide the tournament on Monday morning.
All four players missed the green on the par-3 17th and only Mackenzie Hughes was able to get up-and-down to save par. He faced the hardest shot from off the green and he was furthest from the cup after his pitch up a slope didn’t quite make it to the green. But he holed out from there and watched on as the three others were unable to make their par putts.
Hughes had led the tournament after an opening round of 61 and he held on to top position going into Sunday. He had to battle through the closing 18-holes, saving par a number of times from tricky positions.
“It was quite a fight out there,” he said. “I didn’t have my best stuff but I found a way to dig deep and just get in that playoff.”
Billy Horschel was eliminated on the first extra hole, completed after regulation play on Sunday afternoon. The other four playoff protagonists played the 18th hole again but couldn’t be separated at which point darkness halted play.
3 Talking points from The RSM Classic
1 – Mackenzie Hughes is a two-time Canadian Amateur Champion and was playing in just his fifth event on the PGA Tour after graduating through the web.com tour. He is the first rookie to win wire-to-wire on the PGA Tour for 20 years.
2 – Neither Henrik Norlander nor Camilo Villegas have full status on the PGA Tour and a victory would have been crucial for them. In the end they came up just shy, despite making great runs down the stretch during regulation play. Norlander closed with a superb 65, including a birdie on the 72nd hole. The Swede was the first to post 17-under and secure his place in the playoff.
3 – Billy Horschel was the top ranked of the five men to make the playoff and he would have been most people’s favourite to win as extra holes commenced. But he missed a two-foot par putt after grazing the hole for birdie on the first playoff hole. He made no excuses for the miss.
“I took my time and just blocked it,” he said.
The RSM Classic
Sea Island Resort, Sea Island, Georgia
Purse $6,000,000, par 70
1 Mackenzie Hughes (Can) 61 67 68 69 265 $1,080,000
T2 Blayne Barber (USA) 63 68 68 66 265 $396,000
T2 Billy Horschel (USA) 66 66 65 68 265 $396,000
T2 Henrik Norlander (Swe) 67 67 66 65 265 $396,000
T2 Camilo Villegas (Col) 66 67 64 68 265 $396,000
T6 Jim Furyk (USA) 64 69 68 67 268 $194,250
T6 Jamie Lovemark (USA) 67 66 70 65 268 $194,250
T6 Cheng Tsung Pan (Tai) 66 64 67 71 268 $194,250
T6 Ollie Schniederjans (USA) 66 68 66 68 268 $194,250
T10 Stewart Cink (USA) 62 71 67 69 269 $150,000
T10 Russell Henley (USA) 67 65 70 67 269 $150,000
T10 Patrick Rodgers (USA) 69 65 65 70 269 $150,000
Note: Player score in bold signifies Titleist ball usage