SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Webb Simpson was in big trouble Sunday when he drove into the right-side water on the par-5 15th hole at TPC Scottsdale.
"I didn't think it was over," Simpson said. "But I thought, 'I'm going to really have to do something special to get back in it.'"
He did — at friend Tony Finau's expense on a course that played tougher than usual with firm greens and a touch of wind.
Simpson birdied the final two holes of regulation to force a playoff with Finau, then won the Waste Management Phoenix Open with a 10-foot birdie putt on the first extra hole.
Two strokes ahead with two holes left, Finau missed an 18-foot birdie try in the playoff on the par-4 18th after driving left into the church pew bunkers.
Simpson two-putted for birdie from the fringe on the short par-4 17th and made a 17-footer for birdie from the edge of the green on the 18th. Finau, after hitting a 366-yard drive and an approach to eight feet, missed a chance to win when his birdie try slid right.
Simpson closed with a 2-under 69 to match Finau at 17-under 267.
"Today was a lot different. Today played tougher," said the 34-year-old Simpson, the 2012 U.S. Open champion who secured his sixth PGA Tour victory and first since two years ago at The Players Championship. "I thought the pins were very tough, by far the toughest day of pins, course was longer, we had wind. We hadn't had wind all week, so everything today was harder."
Finau closed with a 70. The 30-year-old missed a chance for his second PGA Tour victory but got sympathy from Simpson.
"It's hard. He is a great friend," Simpson said. "Our wives are friends, and he's one of the best guys on tour. So it is a bit tough."
Justin Thomas, who is No. 4 in the World Golf Ranking, closed with a 65 and tied for third with Nate Lashley (68) and Bubba Watson (66) at 14 under.
Baylor School graduates Harris English and Keith Mitchell each closed with a 69 and were among those tied for 16th at 10 under. Luke List (72), another former Red Raiders standout, was a stroke further back in 25th.
Back to winning
KING ABDULLAH ECONOMIC CITY, Saudi Arabia — Graeme McDowell used a steady final round at the Saudi International to end a long drought.
The 40-year-old from Northern Ireland closed with a par round of 70 for a two-stroke victory and his first European Tour title since 2014. He adds his 11th European tournament championship to four on the PGA Tour and one on the Asian Tour.
The 2010 U.S. Open winner at windy Pebble Beach, McDowell protected his lead on a breezy afternoon by the Red Sea to finish at 12-under 268, holding off late pressure by fifth-ranked Dustin Johnson, who was trying to repeat as champion.
The 35-year-old American made an eagle on the par-5 18th by chipping in over a bunker for a 67 as McDowell saved par on No. 17. McDowell then sank his 5-foot putt to par the 18th and hang on.
His first title on his home tour since the 2014 French Open will push him back into the top 50 in the world.
"It's special," he said. "I want to be back up there one more time just to be able to play against these guys."
World Golf Hall of Famer Phil Mickelson closed with a 67 to share third place with Belgium's Thomas Pieters (65) and Malaysia's Gavin Green (70).
McDowell's partner in the final pairing, Victor Dubuisson, fell away after dropping five shots from Nos. 10-14 on his way to a 4-over 74. The Frenchman was among five players tied for sixth place at 7 under, a group that included Spanish veteran Sergio Garcia (66).
McDowell began the day with a one-shot advantage and never fell out of at least a share of the lead at Royal Greens Golf and Country Club. Johnson made an eagle-3 on No. 4, yet he carded only one more birdie until his flourish on the final hole.
Top-ranked Brooks Koepka closed with a 72, including a double-bogey 6 on the ninth hole, and tied for 17th place, eight shots back.
Riley's wait over
PANAMA CITY, Panama — Davis Riley won for the first time since he was at the University of Alabama, closing with a 1-under 69 for a one-shot victory over Roberto Diaz in the Korn Ferry Tour's Panama Championship.
The 23-year-old from Hattiesburg, Mississippi, had a one-shot lead going into the final round and seized control with an eagle on the par-5 12th hole. He had mixed results in the first two events of the season in the Bahamas, finishing eighth and then missing the cut, but he put together rounds of 67, 70 and 64 at Panama Golf Club to set up his finishing touch.
Mexico's Diaz, who was five shots behind after the third round, avoided bogeys for a 65 to finish alone in second. Chile's Mito Pereira (70) and a trio of Americans — Lee Hodgers (69), Ben Kohles (68) and Max McGreevy (70) — tied for third, two shots behind Riley.