Xander Schauffele stands strong for clutch win at 2022 Travelers Championship
Xander Schauffele delivered the knockout punch when it mattered.
His lob wedge from 105 yards to 3 feet at the final hole clinched his sixth career PGA Tour title and first individual stroke-play victory since the 2019 Sentry Tournament of Champions.
“It’s incredible,” he said. “I knew I had to hit in the fairway (at 18) and put it on the green and make par.”
Schauffele did better than that, making the short birdie putt at the last to close in 2-under 68 at TPC River Highlands in Cromwell, Connecticut, for a 72-hole total of 19-under 261 and a two-stroke victory over Sahith Theegala and J.T. Poston at the Travelers Championship.
Schauffele had tasted victory just a few months ago when he partnered with Patrick Cantlay to win the Zurich Classic of New Orleans, the Tour’s lone official team event in late April. His so-called victory drought also didn’t reflect that he won the individual men’s gold medal in golf at the Tokyo Olympics.
At the Travelers, Schauffele, 28, opened with a pair of 63s, went a career-best 48 holes to start the tournament without a bogey and posted a career-low 54-hole aggregate of 193. Still, he was winless the four previous times he’d held the 54-hole lead or co-lead and it was a battle to the finish.
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In Gee Chun fades, then rallies past Lexi Thompson to win KPMG Women’s PGA Championship
In the shadow of the nation’s capital, the LPGA’s most tortured American star suffered heartbreak once more. Lexi Thompson hadn’t won on the LPGA in her last 50 starts, and it looked like she might finally collect her second major at the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship as the women competed at historic Congressional Country Club for the first time.
But once again, Thompson’s short game couldn’t withstand the pressure. She squandered a two-stroke lead with three to play and, after signing autographs, was too emotional to meet with the media and took off for the parking lot.
Meanwhile, winner In Gee Chun, the woman who made Congressional look like a cakewalk early on, leading by as many seven on the weekend, was still shaking long after it was over. Chun shot 75-75 in her last two rounds yet still managed to claim her fourth LPGA title and third major.
“I believe if I stick to my game plan and then I believe I had a chance in the back nine,” said Chun, “so I try to hang in there. I’m so happy I made it. My body is still shaking, though.”
Chun opened with a course-record 64 to storm out to a five-shot lead after the first round. Like Rory McIlroy at the 2011 U.S. Open at Congressional, Chun found herself at 11 under par through two rounds and six clear of the field.
But that near perfect play began to unravel late Saturday and Chun slept on a three-stroke lead in pursuit of her third different major title. Chun became an LPGA member after winning the 2015 U.S. Women’s Open and then recorded the lowest 72-hole score in major championship history, 21 under, at the 2016 Amundi Evian Championship. She went wire-to-wire that week as well.