Patrick Cantlay Wins Memorial For Second Time
PATRICK CANTLAY won The Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village for the second time in three years, defeating Collin Morikawa in a playoff. The American, who now tops the FedEx Cup standings, won with a par after he and Morikawa had finished the week with 71s to end the tournament on 13 under par.
Less than 24 hours earlier, Cantlay and Morikawa trailed defending champion Jon Rahm by six shots and thought they were playing for second place - that was until Rahm was informed that he has failed a Covid-19 test and would have to withdraw. The Spaniard now has to self-isolate for 10 days.
“I'll definitely remember it slightly different. But the way it felt today, it felt no different. It is a very unfortunate situation and not anything I would wish on anybody. Jon played great for the first three rounds. So there's a little something that I can't quite put my finger on that makes it feel a little different but I really hit a lot of clutch solid shots today and so I think I'll remember that mostly,” Cantlay said of the circumstances.
Cantlay lost the lead three times in the final round, missing several crucial putts. But the 29-year-old stepped up on the 17th hole with a 23-foot birdie to join Morikawa at the top.
Cantlay missed a chance from similar range to win it all on the final hole but prevailed on the first extra hole.
“It's always special coming off the 18th green and shaking Jack Nicklaus' hand. We have a great connection and we are good friends so that makes it just a little more special,” Cantlay said. “He's taken me under his wing and to do it at his place with the advice and encouragement that he's given me over the years is very special for me.”
With his second win of the season Cantlay tops the FedExCup standings.
Cantlay and Morikawa started the round three clear of the nearest chasers but struggled early on. Cantlay bogeyed two of the first three holes but managed a 44-foot birdie putt at the second. Morikawa bogeyed two of his first four, bringing Scottie Scheffler and Branden Grace into contention.
Despite hitting just half of the 18 greens in regulation on Sunday, Morikawa looked set for his own double at Muirfield Village, having won the one-off Workday Charity Open at the venue last year.
He birdied the 11th and 15th to pull ahead of Cantlay, but when he failed to find the green with approach shots to the 17th and 18th, Cantlay took advantage. Despite clutch par saves on those two occasions another missed green in the playoff on 18 once again left his short game under pressure and this time the putt to extend didn’t drop.
“Obviously it sucks to lose a playoff. But today was a grind and that's all I could focus on. I couldn't really hit a green for my life,” said Morikawa.
“To get into a playoff to make the putts I needed to make, just to keep myself in it, I'm proud of myself. I didn't feel like I really ever played this game where I'm missing every green, chipping, making 10-footers. I like it the other way where I hit it a lot closer. But it's going to be something I'm going to learn from a lot and just look back and see how I can grow from this.”
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