Potter beats Kelly to win Greenbrier Classic

Rookie Ted Potter Jr.’s first PGA Tour victory means a lot more than the cool $1,098,000 that he bagged home. The 28-year-old rookie is all set to take a trip to his dream place in Augusta National.

Rookie Ted Potter Jr. made a 4-foot birdie putt on the third hole of a playoff with Troy Kelly on Sunday to win the Greenbrier Classic for his first PGA Tour victory. Simply winning, though, had been the top priority for a player who first joined the former Nationwide Tour in 2004 and didn’t have much success until last year. ”When you’re missing cuts every week, you get down on yourself,” Potter said. ”I mean, it’s hard to pick yourself back up. But the plus side for me is I was still young. I just knew I had plenty of time and just be patient and it will come back around again.”

Ranked 218th in the world, Potter overcame a four-stroke deficit with five holes to play, finishing with a 6-under 64 to match Kelly at 16 under. Kelly closed with a 66. Potter became the sixth first-time winner on the tour this season and jumped from 173rd to 51st in the FedEx Cup standings.

The 28-year-old left-hander had missed five straight cuts entering the Greenbrier Classic and his previous best finish was a tie for 13th. Charlie Wi and rookie Charlie Beljan tied for third at 14 under. Wi shot a 65, and Beljan had a 67. Webb Simpson lost a one-stroke lead on the back nine at the tournament for the second straight year. The US Open champion made three straight bogeys, shot 73 and tied for seventh at 11 under.

Daniel Summerhays finished fifth at 13 under after a 64. Martin Flores (67) was another stroke back. Simpson, the third-round leader, had gone 50 consecutive holes without a bogey but made three of them in a row starting at the par-5 12th. Joining him at 11 under were Robert Castro (63), Kevin Na (65), Sean O’Hair (66) and Ken Duke (70). Duke was within a shot of the lead on the 14th hole before fading with a pair of double bogeys.

Simpson can now shift his focus to domestic affairs as his wife, Dowd, is due to give birth to the couple’s second child within three weeks.

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