Points victory to D.A at Pebble Beach
BY Bruce Young | US PGA Tour | 2011 AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am | Final Round | 14 Feb 2011
D.A.Points has broken through for his first PGA Tour victory with a two shot win at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro Am.
It has taken Points 128 starts to secure his maiden victory at this level. A four time winner on the Nationwide Tour Points has been between the two tours since first joining the PGA Tour in 2005. The 34 year old had started this season well with a 5th place finish at the Farmers Insurance event two weeks ago and a top twenty at the Waste Management Phoenix Open and so came to Pebble Beach with some hope of another good week.
This has not been an event Points has played well in his few years on the PGA Tour however. In four starts he has missed three cuts but in playing partner Bill Murray he seemed to find a likely foil.
Not only did Points win the professional side of things but he and Murray won the Teams event.
“I think one of the pivotal parts was on 16, said Points referring to the pairing of he and Murray. “My caddie asked me, how do you feel and I said, not very good. And I stood over a long par putt and I hollered over at Bill like he had hollered at me a few times this week; the crowd would be happy if you could make that. That loosened me up and he hit a great putt and almost went in. That helped.
“Pebble Beach may be the most iconic place in America to play golf and to win here is just a dream come true and I’m so grateful to have this opportunity,” said Points after his win.
Murray saw it in a much simpler fashion. “I knew the only chance D.A. had to win was if we could make it through the entire week without asking him what the initials D.A. stood for, and I didn’t, and he’s the champion.”
Long time leader Steve Marino, also looking for his first PGA Tour victory, made a mess of the 72nd hole taking a triple bogey 8 and slipping from a share of second to a share of 4th. Marino had led from halfway through round two until he was passed by Points’ pitch in for eagle at the 14th and a long curving putt at the 15th.
“I tried to kind of finesse my drive down there and get it left of the trees but got it out to the right and we had nothing out of the bunker, said Marino on his disaster at the last. “We had 200 yards to the hole (for his third), and I knew I was two back so I was trying to hold my 4-iron and I just pulled it and hit it in the water and after that, it was — kind of the wind was out of my sails. I fought so hard today and felt like I played pretty good and just didn’t work out for me. It was kind of, the last hole, knowing you’re fighting so hard to win, doesn’t happen, it’s kind of a bummer.”
Hunter Mahan was the beneficiary of Marino’s misfortune despite three putting the last. He finished two shots behind Points and two ahead of Tom Gillis.
Aaron Baddeley chipped in at the last to finish as the leading Australian in a share of 6th position while Steve Bowditch recorded his best ever PGA Tour finish when 9th. Bowditch will rue the dropped shots at the 17th and 18th but it was an encouraging week and the US$163,000 won’t go astray.
Stuart Appleby and Matt Jones were next best in 15th position while Marc Leishman was 21st.