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Jordan Spieth is officially back in the winner’s circle, as he held off Charley Hoffman to win the Valero Texas Open on Sunday at TPC San Antonio. Here’s everything you need to know:
Leaderboard: Jordan Spieth (-18), Charley Hoffman (-16), Matt Wallace (-15), Lucas Glover (-12), Anirban Lahiri (-10)
What it means: Almost four years and 83 starts since his last PGA Tour victory – or any win for that matter – Spieth is a champion again. He looked in vintage form, closing with a cool and confident 6-under 66, and turned his Tour-best third 54-hole lead of the season into his first victory since the 2017 Open Championship. With four top-10s and now a win in his last seven starts, Spieth enters this week’s Masters Tournament with some nice momentum and will look to win his second green jacket while becoming the fifth player – and first since Phil Mickelson in 2006 – to win at Augusta National after also winning the previous week’s Tour event.
How it happened: Spieth entered Sunday tied atop the leaderboard with Wallace at 12 under, and two shots up on Hoffman. Early on, Spieth looked a little nervy, hitting a couple of wayward tee balls in the first few holes and birdieing the par-5 second despite not hitting a shot from the fairway. However, those nerves were short lived. Spieth never lost the lead and got things going by almost making an ace at the 174-yard, par-3 third. He made the 2-footer, one of his four front-nine birdies, to take his first solo lead of the day and never looked back.
“I actually felt really light,” he said afterward. “I felt like I just wanted to come out and smile, try and have some fun. That’s been kind of a challenge for me on these Sundays when I’ve been in contention.”
After years of fighting his swing, Spieth hit clutch shots down the stretch, looking especially sharp with his wedges, as he shook off challenge after challenge by Hoffman, the tournament’s all-time money winner who was fighting for a ticket to Augusta National. When Hoffman sunk a 20-footer at the par-3 16th to get to within a shot of Spieth for the third time in the final round, Spieth stepped up on the next tee and piped a drive to within 75 yards on the 366-yard, par-4 17th to set up another birdie and get back to two clear of Hoffman. And because Spieth always finds a way to make it interesting, he hooked an 8-iron into the rough – and barely over a video scoreboard – while laying up at the par-5 finishing hole but managed to escape with par and win by two.
Round of the day: Patton Kizzire went bogey-free with seven birdies to shoot 65 and notch his fourth finish of T-11 or better this season.
Shot of the day: Spieth hit some pretty wedge shots on the back nine to set up important birdies, but the tee ball at No. 3 was the spark to his closing round.
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) April 4, 2021
Biggest disappointment: Wallace. Spieth and Hoffman turned the finish into a two-man show as the Englishman, who closed in 69 thanks to three straight birdies to close, was essentially just a spectator in the final threesome.
Quote of the day: “Man, it’s been a long road. There were a lot of times I wasn’t sure if I’d be here talking to you [Golf Channel’s Todd Lewis] about this right now. I never really doubted in myself to be able to get back to where I wanted to go, but when you lose confidence a lot of times it’s hard to see the positive going forward. … This is a monumental win for me. It’s one that I’ve certainly thought about for a long time.” – Spieth