KH Lee Edges Spieth To Defend AT&T Byron Nelson

KH Lee Edges Spieth To Defend AT&T Byron Nelson

PGA TOUR

AT&T Byron Nelson

KH Lee Edges Spieth To Defend AT&T Byron Nelson

KH Lee joined illustrious company by winning the AT&T Byron Nelson in consecutive years. The 30-year-old South Korean becomes the fourth player to defend his title at this event and joins Sam Snead (1957-58), Jack Nicklaus (1970-71) and Tom Watson (1978-79-80). Lee fired a stunning 9-under 63 final round to record his PGA Tour career low round en route to his one-shot victory over local favourite Jordan Spieth. It was Spieth’s best career result at his home-town PGA Tour event.

In search of defending his title, Lee began the final round four shots off the lead held by Munoz. After early round birdies at holes 2, 3, 5 and 6, Lee collected his fifth birdie for the day at the par 5, 9th hole to make the turn in 5-under 31. His remarkable final round at TPC Craig Ranch, McKinney continued with an eagle at the par 5, 12th hole and a birdie at the par 4, 13th hole. Lee completed his brilliant bogey-free final round with a two-putt birdie at the 72nd hole. Lee carded rounds of 64, 68, 67 and 63 to get to 26-under. His winning score last year was 25-under. The win is Lee’s second PGA Tour title, which adds to his two wins on the Japan Golf Tour and two victories on the OneAsia Tour.

Spieth was looking for his 14th PGA Tour title and second win of the season after claiming the RBC Heritage in April. The 28-year-old made his PGA Tour debut at this event in 2010 as a 16-year-old amateur. He made the cut, becoming the sixth-youngest player to make the weekend at a PGA Tour event. Spieth finished that week in a tie for 16th place. Playing with Munoz in the final pairing, the former world No. 1 signed for a final round 5-under 67 to finish at 25-under and one-shot clear of Japan’s Hideki Matsuyama and Colombia’s Sebastian Munoz, who took a share of third place.

Matsuyama was searching for his ninth PGA Tour win. The 30-year-old from Japan won the Sony Open in January to tie KJ Choi for the most PGA Tour victories by an Asian-born player. The 2021 Masters champion produced an eagle at the final hole after stripping his hybrid approach shot from 232 yards into the 18th green to six feet from the cup. Matsuyama rolled in the eagle attempt to fire a superb 10-under 62.

Munoz was hoping to collect his second PGA Tour title after winning the 2019 Sanderson Farms Championship. The 29-year-old made a hot start to the week producing a near perfect 12-under 60 in the opening round that included two eagles and covering the back nine in just 28 shots. Munoz became the first player ever to post two rounds of 60 in the same Tour season and is just fifth player in PGA Tour history to have multiple rounds of 60 or lower. He also did it in November at the RSM Classic, where par is 70. Munoz closed with a 3-under 69.

Americans Xander Schauffle, Ryan Palmer and Justin Thomas took a share of 5th place at 23-under. Schauffele looked unlikely to make the weekend after opening his second round three over after three holes to fall a massive eight shots behind the cut line. The 28-year-old American rallied to pour in eight birdies during a ten-hole stretch between the 6th and 15th holes. Schauffele made the cut on the number and went on to card a 7-under 65 on Saturday. The five-time PGA Tour winner closed with a brilliant 11-under 61 on Sunday to record his 35th career top 10 finish on the PGA Tour.

Adam Scott was the best-placed Australian finishing in a tie for 32nd place at 16-under. The 2008 Byron Nelson champion closed with a 7-under 65, which included making an eagle at his final hole. Marc Leishman produced a hole-in-one at the par 3, 15th hole en route to his final round 5-under 67 that got him to a tie for 51st place.

The PGA Tour moves to Tulsa, Oklahoma for the PGA Championship at Southern Hills Country Club. Phil Mickelson has decided not to defend his title.

Final Scores
AT&T Byron Nelson

1. KH Lee -26
2. Jordan Spieth -25
T3. Hideki Matsuyama -24
T3. Sebastian Munoz -24
T5. Xander Schauffele -23
T5. Ryam Palmer -23
T5. Justin Thomas -23
8. Charl Schwartzel -22

Australians
T32. Adam Scott -16
T51. Marc Leishman -13
T51. Jason Day -13
MC. Cameron Percy
MC. Brett Drewitt

 

Photo credit: Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

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