Lincoln Parish resident Sam Burns sank a 30-foot putt on the second playoff hole to defeat longtime friend Davis Riley and repeat as the champion of the Valspar Championship at Innisbrook at Palm Harbor, Florida.
Burns, a Shreveport native and member at Squire Creek Country Club, sank the long putt on the 16th green, pumping his fists as he secured his third PGA victory of the year.
“All through today, just trying to make sure that I never got too high or too low and just tried to stay even-keeled,” he said. “And to see that go in, I mean, that’s just what I felt.”
Burns entered Sunday trailing Riley by two strokes. Burns closed with a two-under-par 69 and watched from afar as Riley had a 15-foot putt on the 18th green that would have won it. Riley’s putt missed right and two playoff holes later, Burns held the trophy.
With the win, Burns moves into the Top 10 in the world rankings for the first time in his young career, passing Dustin Johnson who falls out for the first time in seven years.
Both golfers finished the 72 holes at 17-under-par forcing the playoff.
“Man, it’s crazy,” Burns said. “Davis played well today, especially the way he finished. I tried to stay steady. I didn’t make a lot of mistakes. A lot of time on Sunday if you plot your way around, make a bunch of pars, throw in a few birdies, a lot of times it works well. So happy.”
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