For Adam Scott, there’s no asterisk this time.
The 39-year-old Australian posted a 1-under-par 71 as Riviera Country Club www.therivieracountryclub.com in Pacific Palisades showed its teeth, and claimed a two-stroke victory over Matt Kuchar, Sung Kang of South Korea and Scott Brown in the Genesis Invitational.
Scott, who will climb to No. 7 in the World Golf Rankings this week, won at Riviera in 2005, beating Chad Campbell in playoff after rain shortened the tournament to 36 holes and the PGA Tour ruled it was an unofficial victory.
“It’s an amazing feeling,” said Scott, who won the Australian PGA Championship in his last start in December. “I’ve love this place since the first time I played here. It was tough out there today, but the crowd was amazing. I feel like they’re on my side. I’m just stoked. … The course is difficult in these conditions, with a little wind, and the greens were firm.
“This is a big step for the whatever this stage of my career I’m in is. I haven’t won (on the PGA Tour) for three years and this victory feels very special. Thanks to my family and my crew, and a shout out to everyone back in Australia.”
Scott, who claimed his 14th PGA Tour victory and 31st as pro, overcame a double-bogey 6 on the fifth hole and virtually wrapped up the title with an 11-foot birdie putt on the 17th hole en route to a score of 11-under 273.
Kuchar, who held at least a share of the lead after each of the first three rounds, birdied only the first and 17th holes in a 72, while Brown birdied the last hole for his third straight 68 and Kang sank a 25-foot eagle putt on the first hole to open his 69.
“It was one hard day out there,” said Kuchar, who won the Singapore Open recently. “Par was a good score on every hole. I thought I did fairly well, all things considered.”
Top-ranked Rory McIlroy, who shared the third-round lead with Scott and Kuchar, salvaged a 73 with a 19-foot birdie putt on the final hole and was three shots back in a tie for fifth with Max Homa of Valencia and Cal, who shot 70, Bryson DeChambeau of Clovis, who had a 69, Joel Dahmen, who finished at 71, and Hideki Matsuyama of Japan, who wound up at 69.
McIlroy hit a poor tee shot on the fifth hole that led to a triple-bogey 7 and never got back in the hunt.
“I hit a really bad shot and made triple, but played the rest of the holes in 1-under-par,” said McIlroy, the defending FedEx Cup champion. “I played very tough out there.”
Fifth-ranked Dustin Johnson, who won at Riviera in 2017, made two bogeys down the stretch for a 72 and was one more down in a tie for 10th with Chez Reavie, who sank a five-foot eagle putt on the first hole to kick-start his 69, and Talor Gooch, whose nine-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole left him at 71.
Third-ranked Jon Rahm of Spain closed with a 72 and finished in a tie for 17th that included sixth-ranked Patrick Cantlay of Los Alamitos and UCLA, who had a 68, and ninth-ranked Xander Schauffele of La Jolla and San Diego State tied for 23rd after a 69.
Second-ranked Brooks Koepka carded a 74 to tie for 43rd, defending champion J.B. Holmes tied for 51st with a 72, and 10th-ranked Justin Rose of England closed with a 75 to tie for 56th.
Eighth-ranked Tiger Woods, the tournament host, played the weekend in 76-77 and wound up 68th, or dead last among those who made the cut. Woods had not finished last since the 2015 Memorial Tournament.
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