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AP photo by David J. Phillip / Billy Horschel tees off on the 17th hole during the championship final against Scottie Scheffler at the Dell Technologies Match Play on Sunday in Austin, Texas.

AUSTIN, Texas — Billy Horschel didn't find much to admire about his golf Sunday except that he was the last man standing in the Dell Technologies Match Play.

And that was a thing of beauty.

Horschel won six out of his seven matches over 122 holes in golf's longest event, and he had just enough left in the tank in strong wind to hold off Scottie Scheffler, 2 and 1, in a sloppy final of this World Golf Championship tournament at Austin Country Club.

His only birdie was a chip-in from 40 feet below the fifth green, yet Horschel didn't lose another hole.

Scheffler lost his putting touch that carried him to so many big moments throughout the event, yet he managed to stay in the match. He twice had to take penalty drops — with Horschel in the fairway — and he still didn't lose the hole.

"It wasn't pretty," Horschel said. "I feel sorry for the fans watching the coverage because they didn't see any great golf shots, or very few of them at that. They saw a lot of sloppiness. They saw a lot of pars win holes.

"It was just one of those days where you knew you just had to keep grinding it out, trying to give yourself the best opportunity to make easy pars and hopefully that was going to get the job done," he said. "I didn't have my great stuff."

Neither did Scheffler, who who reached the final by taking down three former Match Play champions and two players from the top 10 in the Official World Golf Ranking. His only birdie in the final match was a 35-footer that Horschel conceded after driving into the ravine on the second hole.

"I just wasn't able to make any birdies this afternoon," Scheffler said. "I couldn't really get that spark that I needed, and I gave myself some opportunities. Just wasn't able to make the putts."

The 24-year-old University of Texas graduate had the support of the Austin crowd and Longhorns supporters who shouted, "Hook 'em," and Scheffler too often obliged.

He went left on the par-5 sixth and had to take a penalty drop. He pulled his approach into the water on the par-5 12th. He hooked another drive off the roof of a two-story hospitality tent left of the 15th fairway.

Through it all, he managed to make Horschel sweat it out until the 17th. Scheffler, who missed two putts inside 10 feet on the back nine that would have won holes, missed from 10 feet for birdie on the par-3 17th to end it.

Horschel, the No. 32 seed, won for the sixth time on the PGA Tour, but it was the 32-year-old Floridian's first individual title in nearly four years. A former Walker Cup player, he had failed to make it to the weekend in his previous four appearances in the Match Play.

"You just never know when you're going to win," Horschel said. "You just never know when it's going to be your time."

Horschel took his first lead when Scheffler's chip left of the seventh green was too strong and rolled 12 feet by, and he took a 2-up lead to the back nine when the Texan missed a 5-foot par putt on No. 9.

Horschel didn't make it easy on himself. He was poised to take control on the par-5 12th when Scheffler's approach went into the water. Horschel had a wedge to the green and sent it over the flag into a bunker, leaving him a shot he couldn't get any closer than about 18 feet. He wound up with a bogey, and Scheffler had a 10-footer for par to win the hole.

He missed.

Two holes later, Scheffler stuff his approach into 5 feet on No. 14 with a chance to get to 1 down. He missed again.

The match looked as though it would end on the par-5 16th when Scheffler went so far to the right up the hill that his only play was back to the fairway, and he did well to get on the green some 35 feet away. Horschel smartly laid up, but his wedge to a back pin went into the bunker. He managed to save par this time to stay 2 up, and it ended a hole later.

So many times, Scheffler had been able to make all the big putts at all the right moments. That included his 10-foot birdie putt on the 17th hole Sunday morning that led to a 1-up victory over Matt Kuchar in the semifinals, when Horschel beat France's Victor Perez, 3 and 2.

"I think I did that pretty much every time this week until the last match," Scheffler said. "I mean, that's golf. That's what happens."

Kuchar, trying to tie Tiger Woods' record with a fourth appearance in the championship match, didn't make a putt longer than 3 feet, 6 inches in his semifinal loss to Scheffler.

Perez wasn't much better in his semifinal match. The Frenchman lost three holes on the back nine to Horschel by making bogey or worse, including a three-putt on the 14th hole.

Kuchar beat Perez in the consolation match, 2 and 1.

 

Breezy victory in Dominican

PUNTA CANA, Dominican Republic — Joel Dahmen won the Corales Puntacana Resort & Club Championship for his first PGA Tour victory, avoiding a playoff when the wind pushed playing partner Rafael Campos' final birdie try to the left.

The 33-year-old Dahmen closed with a 2-under 70 on the windswept seaside course to finish at 12-under 276, wrapping up a PGA Championship berth and a spot in the Sentry Tournament of Champions to start next year.

Campos, also seeking his first PGA Tour win, had a 71 and shared second with Sam Ryder (67).

Chattanooga's Stephan Jaeger, who led after an opening 66, closed with a 74; the former Baylor School and University of Tennessee at Chattanooga standout finished at par and tied for 48th.

 

LPGA: Wire-to-wire winner

CARLSBAD, Calif. — Inbee Park opened her LPGA Tour season with a wire-to-wire victory in the Kia Classic.

The seven-time major champion finally put it all together at Aviara Golf Club, winning her 21st LPGA Tour title after finishing second on the scenic course in 2010, 2016 and 2019. She tied LPGA founder Marilynn Smith for 25th place on the victory list.

Park closed with a 2-under 70 and finished at 14-under 274 to win by five strokes — the lead she took into the day — over Americans Amy Olson (68) and Lexi Thompson (69).

After making three birdies in a four-hole stretch around the turn, Park bogeyed the 12th and 13th, then got the two strokes back with a 40-foot eagle putt on the short par-4 16th. She three-putted the 18th for a bogey.

Park gave the tour its first international winner of the year, after Americans Jessica and Nelly Korda and Austin Ernst swept the first three tournaments.

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