WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, W.Va. — Joaquin Niemann is going to give International Team captain Ernie Els something to think about when he makes his captain's picks for the Presidents Cup.
Niemann became the first player from Chile to win on the PGA Tour, closing with a 6-under-par 64 on Sunday for a six-stroke victory in A Military Tribute at The Greenbrier.
The 20-year-old Niemann entered the final round of the 2019-20 season opener with a two-stroke lead and held off challenges from Tom Hoge and Richy Werenski. Niemann birdied the final three holes to finish at 21-under 259 at Old White TPC, which has quickly become one of his favorite venues.
"I just never thought this moment was possible," Niemann said. "I can't wait to go back home and celebrate with all of my friends."
Hoge, who had eight birdies and three bogeys in a 68, wound up second.
"A couple bad shots I would like to have back, but it was a good week and good way to start the year," he said.
Baylor School graduate Harris English closed with a 67 for his first top-three finish since 2016. He shared third place at 14 under with fellow former University of Georgia golfer Brian Harman (65) as well as Nate Lashley (69) and Werenski (69).
While eight players have already qualified for the International Team that will play the United States in December at Royal Melbourne Golf Club in Australia, Els will choose his team's final four members the week of Nov. 4.
"Being on the Presidents Cup is just a dream," Niemann said. "It's a really good team this year. There's a lot of good players fighting for those spots. This win definitely helps."
Niemann grew up in Santiago, won a pair of junior world titles and was the top-ranked amateur in the world before turning professional in 2018. He played his first full season on tour last season, finishing No. 67 in the FedEx Cup standings.
In 2017, Niemann finished tied for 29th as an amateur at The Greenbrier after receiving a sponsor's exemption. He improved to a tie for fifth in 2018.
Niemann said the resort's dozens of amenities have steered his mind away from the pressure of golf. Among the activities he participated in before the tournament started was exploring the rugged side of West Virginia with his caddie in an off-road vehicle.
"I was just feeling like I was going to win the tournament from the first day," he said. "I was in that mindset."
Niemann is the first third-round leader to win at The Greenbrier since its debut in 2010. He shot 64 in the final round for the third straight year.
He told himself before the round started to go out and have fun.
"I was just trying not to think of anything else," Niemann said. "My caddie made me laugh to try to forget about it. The last couple of holes I was feeling great."
This is the first year since 1931 that there has been more than one PGA Tour winner younger than 21. Matthew Wolff won the 3M Open in June at 20 years, 2 months.
Niemann's youthful exuberance showed up late.
"Normally I'm not too excited," he said. "I normally don't do fist pumps. The emotions on the last couple of holes was crazy. Just making those putts on the last three holes was unbelievable. I couldn't resist."
Sergio Garcia celebrates
AMSTERDAM — Sergio Garcia won the 100th edition of the KLM Open by one shot, holding his nerve with a closing par to finish off a 3-under 69, post an overall score of 18-under 270 and make Denmark's Nicolai Hojgaard (68) the runner-up.
Garcia kissed his young daughter Azalea and threw her up in the air on the 18th green at The International after holing a short putt to seal his victory with a final round that mixed four bogeys with seven birdies.
"Great week, amazing," Garcia said. "We had a great week, and it's great to win again."
The 39-year-old Spaniard played it safe on the 18th, just moments after 18-year-old Hojgaard narrowly missed an eagle putt on the same hole.
"It was nice I only needed a five on the last," said Garcia, the 2017 U.S. Masters champion who secured his 16th career victory on the European Tour.
Garcia, who also has 10 PGA Tour wins, won for the first time since repeating at the Andalucía Valderrama Masters in 2018.
A trio of Englishmen rounded out the top five: Matt Wallace (68) was third at 15 under, a stroke ahead of James Morrison (70) and two ahead of Callum Shinkwin (74).
Jerry Kelly wins again
GRAND BLANC, Mich. — Jerry Kelly closed with a bogey-free 4-under 68 for a two-shot victory in the Ally Challenge, with his second PGA Tour Champions win this year moving him a little closer to the top of the Charles Schwab Cup standings that determine the season champion.
Kelly started the final round with a one-shot advantage in the tournament over standings leader Scott McCarron and Woody Austin. Only one of them challenged Kelly, who finished the 54-hole tournament at 16-under 200.
McCarron fell apart with four bogeys in a five-hole stretch around the turn and closed with a 75 to tie for 15th at 8 under. Austin caught Kelly briefly with a birdie on No. 3, but he never could conjure up the vibes at Warwick Hills Golf and Country Club, where Austin earned his first of four PGA Tour victories.
Kelly had a pair of birdies on the front nine, and he seized control on the back when Austin made a bogey on the par-4 15th. On the par-3 17th, Kelly made his final birdie for a three-shot lead.
Austin birdied the 18th for a 69 to finish alone in second. Steve Flesch (66), Tim Petrovic (67) and David Toms (68) tied for third at 12 under.
Kelly also won two months ago in his native Wisconsin at the American Insurance Family Championship. He became the fourth multiple winner this year on the 50-and-older tour, joining McCarron (three victories), and Bernhard Langer and Steve Stricker (two).
Kelly earned $300,000 but remained at No. 2 in the Schwab Cup standings, $492,083 behind McCarron with three more events before the tour's three-tournament postseason.
Ooltewah's Gibby Gilbert III (69) tied for 33rd at 3 under.