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Armour wins Texas Open

The Associated Press

SAN ANTONIO — Tommy Armour III had the lowest 72-hole score in PGA Tour history Sunday, finishing the Texas Open with a 5-under-par 65 to end the tournament at 26-under 254.

Armour broke the record of 256 by Mark Calcavecchia at the par-71 Phoenix Open in 2001.

Armour finished seven strokes ahead of defending champion Loren Roberts and Bob Tway.

“I’m telling you it was scaring me a little bit,” said Armour, who needed only 108 putts over the four days. “Every putt went in the hole.”

The victory was worth $630,000, more than double what Armour had earned on tour this year.

Armour shot a 64 in Thursday’s opening round on the La Cantera Golf Club course in the limestone hills north of San Antonio. He followed that with a 62 on Friday and a 63 Saturday.

“He’s lapping the field here this week,” said Roberts, whose 261 matched his winning score here in 2002.

Armour came into the final round with a string of 81 consecutive holes without a bogey, and he added nine more to that total before missing an 8-foot par putt on the 460-yard 10th. He also bogeyed the 18th after hitting his drive into a bunker.

Duffy Waldorf, who began Sunday’s round alone in second, was fourth at 262, while Australian Aaron Baddeley shot 263 and Dan Forsman 264.

Roberts (62), who began the day far back at 11 under, carded five birdies on the front nine. After a bogey 5 on the 460-yard 10th, he birdied the 142-yard 13th before sinking a 32-foot putt for eagle on the par-5 14th to reach 18 under. He finished with a birdie on 18.

Baddeley, two shots behind Roberts at Sunday’s start, also shot a 62. He had a 62 in his opening round, but tumbled down the leaderboard with a 70 and a 69 in the middle rounds.

Champions Tour — In Conover, N.C., Craig Stadler birdied his first four holes en route to a 6-under 66, overtaking Larry Nelson to win the Greater Hickory Classic.

Stadler, who started the day two shots behind Nelson, joined Bruce Lietzke and Tom Watson as the only two-time winners on the Champions Tour this season.

Stadler finished at 15-under 201 with his stellar final round, while Nelson was two shots back after his 70. Jim Thorpe closed with a 66 for third, three shots behind Stadler.

Stadler, playing in his 12th event since turning 50 in June, also won Ford Senior Players Championship in mid-July. He followed that with a victory at the B.C. Open on the PGA Tour the next week.

The best final-round scoring average (68.82) heading into this weekend’s event belonged to Stadler, and his hot start was the key to his bogey-free round.

A birdie on No. 7 gave him a 5-under 31 on the front side and a two-shot lead over Nelson as he made the turn.

Stadler’s 8-foot birdie putt on No. 11 got him to 15 under. A few minutes later, Nelson three-putted from 25 feet on the same hole for a bogey to fall four shots back.

Stadler received his biggest break of the week when his drive on No. 14 missed the water by a few yards as he clung to a three-shot lead.

Nelson never made a move down the stretch as Stadler closed with eight straight pars.

Joe Inman, who hasn’t won since 2000, shot a second-round 63 to trail Nelson by one shot heading into Sunday. But Inman bogeyed two of his first six holes and then had a double bogey at No. 9 to drop to 7 under and out of contention.

Bob Gilder also started the day at 10 under but faltered on the back nine and closed with a 74.

European PGA Tour — In St. Andrews, Scotland, Lee Westwood shot a 5-under 67 and won the Dunhill Links Championship by one stroke, withstanding a birdie-birdie finish by Ernie Els.

Westwood had a 267 total in a tournament played over three links layouts. The Englishman won the German Masters four weeks ago for his first victory in almost three years. He won eight titles in 2000 but none until Munich.

“A month ago you’d never have thought it,” he said. “It just shows how quickly you can turn it around.”

Westwood enjoyed a stretch of five birdies in six holes in the middle of his round. He parred the last five holes of the $800,000 tournament.

Els of South Africa had a 64 for 268 and Raphael Jacquelin of France shot a 69 and was third at 270. Maarten Lafeber (67) of the Netherlands and Darren Clarke (70) of Northern Ireland were at 271.

Els trailed Westwood by three shots with two holes to play. His second-place finish consolidated his hold on the European Order of Merit.

Westwood put himself in position to win with a course-record 62 in the third round at Kingsbarns, highlighted by a 218-yard double-eagle 2 on the final hole.

Westwood’s victory earned him a spot in this week’s Amex Championship in Atlanta.

PGA champion Shaun Michael birdied the last two holes for a 70 that left him at 279.

“I just didn’t make any putts,” he said. “That was frustrating because I felt the golf course was really easy today.”

Sam Torrance, a former European Ryder Cup captain, and 15-year-old son Daniel won the pro-am by three strokes.


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