PARAMUS, N.J. — Hunter Mahan pulled away with three straight birdies late in the final round Sunday to win The Barclays, ending more than two years without a title on the PGA Tour.
The victory was the sixth of his career, and one of the most important.
Mahan had gone 48 tournaments worldwide without winning and began the FedEx Cup playoffs at No. 62, guaranteed to play only two events. By closing with a 6-under 65 for a two-shot victory, he is assured of making the Tour Championship every year since the FedEx Cup began in 2007.
And by beating one of the strongest fields of the year, Mahan was sure to make a lasting impression on Tom Watson for when he makes his three captain’s picks for the Ryder Cup on Sept. 2.
“To get a win in an event like this and the timing, it feels unbelievable,” Mahan said. “So I’m extremely proud of myself. I felt great the last few weeks. My game was starting to come around. I knew this was around the corner, but to do it – and to do it today with a 65 – feels great.”
On a day when six players had at least a share of the lead, Mahan found a way to make it look like a comfortable win.
He rolled in a 10-foot birdie putt to take the outright lead on the par-3 15th, hit wedge to 3 feet for a birdie on the 16th and then rolled in a 20-foot birdie on the par-5 17th. That stretched his lead to three shots going to the final hole when Cameron Tringale bogeyed the 18th, and Mahan tried to inject a little drama.
Mahan drove into the trees, pitched out and then missed the green. But he holed an 8-foot putt for bogey.
EUROPEAN TOUR: Jamie Donaldson shot 4-under 68 to win the Czech Masters and secure a spot on the European Ryder Cup team.
Tied for second with Soren Kjeldsen overnight, Donaldson took the lead when his Danish opponent made two straight bogeys on the last two holes of the front nine. The Welshman surged further ahead with two birdies on the first three of the back nine.
Champions Tour: Scott Dunlap won the Boeing Classic when he made a short birdie putt on the first hole of a playoff against Mark Brooks.
Dunlap set up his winning putt on the par-5 18th hole with an outstanding approach to the right of the pin that bounced past the hole, and then drew back downhill to within four feet.
He missed his eagle try but made his next putt for his first Champions Tour victory.
LPGA TOUR: So Yeon Ryu won the Canadian Women’s Open on Sunday at London Hunt, breaking the tournament record at 23-under 265.
The 24-year-old Ryu closed with a 3-under 69 for a two-stroke victory over fellow South Korean player Na Yeon Choi.