Burns beats Riley in playoff for 2nd straight Valspar win
PALM HARBOR, Fla. (AP) — Sam Burns is a winner again in the Valspar Championship, this time with a lot more stress and plenty of more emotion.
Burns holed a birdie putt from just over 30 feet on the 16th hole to beat Davis Riley on the second playoff hole, giving him three PGA Tour victories in his last 22 starts.
Burns, who closed with a 2-under 69 to match Riley at 17-under 267, is the second straight back-to-back winner at Innisbrook following Paul Casey’s consecutive wins in 2018 and 2019. The tournament was canceled in 2020 because of the pandemic.
The victory moves Burns to No. 10 in the world for the first time, knocking Dustin Johnson out of the top 10 for the first time in seven years. Burns won last year by three shots.
Riley, a rookie contending for the first time on the PGA Tour, overcame a triple bogey on the par-5 fifth hole with a clutch 5-iron for birdie on the par-3 17th. He had a 15-foot birdie putt on the 18th for the win and left it out to the right, closing with a 72.
Both made pars on the 18th in the playoff, with Riley saving par from a front bunker. Neither looked to be in great birdie position on the 16th until Burns’ putt caught the left edge and went 180 degrees around the cup before falling in the back side. Riley hit a strong pitch needing to hole it to extend the playoff and missed long.
Justin Thomas (70) and Matthew NeSmith (71) finished a shot out of the playoff.
EUROPEAN TOUR/SUNSHINE TOUR
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa (AP) — Shaun Norris of South Africa lost a four-shot lead in the final round and then rallied at the end to close with a 2-under 70 to hold off Dean Burmester in the Steyn City Championship for his first European Tour title.
Burmester stormed into the lead with a birdie on the par-5 sixth and then an eagle on the par-4 seventh, and stretched his lead to two shots with a birdie on the 10th.
Norris answered with three birdies on his next six holes, and they were tied going to the 17th. Norris made a fourth birdie on the back nine as Burmester took double bogey, and the three-shot swing gave Norris some breathing room going to the last.
Norris finished at 25-under 263 for his 10th worldwide title.
Burmester closed with a 69.
The tournament also was sanctioned by the Sunshine Tour.
KORN FERRY TOUR
BROUSSARD, La. (AP) — Carl Yuan of China won the Chitimacha Louisiana Open for his first Korn Ferry Tour title, beating Peter Uihlein with a 12-foot birdie putt on the first hole of a playoff.
Yuan closed with a 6-under 65 to match Uihlein at 14-under 270 at Le Triomphe Golf and Country Club. Uihlein shot a 70.
Jose de Jesus Rodríguez (68) and Trevor Werbylo (70) were a stroke back.
Fatima Fernandez Cano of Spain won the Carlisle Arizona Women’s Golf Classic in Mesa for her second career Epson Tour victory. She shot an 11-under 61 at Longbow in the third round and closed with a 70 to finish at 17-under 271. As an LPGA Tour member and non-member of the Epson Tour, Fernandez Cano isn’t eligible to qualify for the Race for the Card. Dani Holmqvist (66), Sofia Garcia (68) and Laura Restrepo (72) were three strokes back. ... Former Women’s British Open champion Georgia Hall closed with a 1-under 71 for a five-shot victory in the Aramco Saudi Ladies International on the Ladies European Tour. Kristyna Napoleaova of Czech Republic and Johanna Gustavsson each shot 70 to tie for second. ... Harrison Crowe, a 20-year-old Australian amateur, shot a 4-under 67 and held on for a one-shot victory over Blake Windred in the New South Wales Open on the PGA Tour of Australasia.