Garcia beats Koepka in AT&T Byron Nelson playoff

Sergio Garcia of Spain needed only a par on the first playoff hole to win the AT&T Byron Nelson after Brooks Koepka hit his drive into the water.

Garcia did that with ease after closing with a second straight 4-under-par 68 to catch Koepka down the stretch at TPC Las Colinas in Irving, Texas, and eventually claim his ninth victory on the PGA Tour to tie Seve Ballesteros for the most by a Spaniard.

“It’s awesome to be up there with Seve. …It feels amazing to win,” said Garcia, whose last victory in the U.S. came in the 2012 Wyndham Championship. “Obviously Brooks helped me a little bit, but I hit three really good shots in the playoff — tee shot, the second shot and the putt.

“I’m very proud of the way I played the last four holes in regulation and it wasn’t easy because I wasn’t feeling as comfortable as some of the other days. I knew I needed to give myself chances.”

Koepka, whose only PGA Tour victory came in the 2015 Waste Management Phoenix Open, had a three-stroke lead after making birdies on the seventh and ninth holes, but those were his last of the day and he stumbled with bogeys on the Nos. 14 and 15.

Garcia, who also won the tournament in 2004, caught him with a three-foot birdie putt on the 16th.

“I drew it back into the wind,” Koepka said of his drive in the playoff, which led to a double bogey-6. “I was hoping it might hit the rocks. I really didn’t have much the last 36 holes. I had no idea where the ball was going.”

Matt Kuchar shot 69 and finished one stroke out of the playoff in solo third, while Spencer Levin of Elk Grove posted a 66 was another shot back in a tie for fourth with Colt Knost (65), Charles Howell III (66), Robert Garrigus (66), Tim Wilkinson (68) of Australia (68) and Bud Cauley (70).

Hometown favorite Jordan Spieth, who started the day two strokes behind Koepka’s lead, struggled to a 74 and tied for 18th.




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