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Garcia stands up to pressure, wins Byron Nelson


Sergio Garcia of Spain, left, admires the Byrone Nelson trophy as he stands next to tourney namesake, Byron Nelson. Sergio Garcia of Spain, left, admires the Byrone Nelson trophy as he stands next to tourney namesake, Byron Nelson. 
 (Associated PressAssociated Press / The Spokesman-Review)
Sergio Garcia of Spain, left, admires the Byrone Nelson trophy as he stands next to tourney namesake, Byron Nelson. Sergio Garcia of Spain, left, admires the Byrone Nelson trophy as he stands next to tourney namesake, Byron Nelson. (Associated PressAssociated Press / The Spokesman-Review)
Associated Press

Sergio Garcia retooled his swing so it would hold up under the intense pressure of the final round. On Sunday, he only had to let the other guys fall apart at the Byron Nelson Championship in Irving, Texas.

Garcia made enough clutch pars to get into a playoff, then won for the first time in two years on the PGA Tour by tapping in for par on the first extra hole as Dudley Hart and Robert Damron self-destructed.

“Winning is always great,” Garcia said. “Those are the little things that get you going a little bit.”

Garcia closed with a 1-over 71, the first Byron Nelson winner in 11 years to fail to break par in the final round. He never would have guessed he could shoot that score and still win, or that a simple par would be enough in the playoff.

Hart, who birdied three of the last five holes to close with a 67 and get into the playoff, missed the fairway on the 18th and hit into a terrible lie right of the green. He duffed a chip and wound up with double bogey.

Damron holed a 7-iron from the 15th fairway for eagle and shot 66 to get into a playoff, just like he did three years ago when he won the Nelson on the fourth extra hole. Damron lagged his 50-foot putt to 4 feet, stepped up to it quickly and pulled it left.

All three finished at 10-under 270.

Tiger Woods tried to make a late charge despite hitting only three fairways Sunday. He shot 69 to finish one shot out of the playoff for the second straight week.

Duffy Waldorf (68) hit into the water on No. 17 to make bogey and also finished one shot back. Also at 9-under 271 was Tim Herron, who closed with a 64. Herron did not make a birdie on the par 5s all week.

Garcia, 24, who made his professional debut at the Byron Nelson five years ago, won for the fourth time on the PGA Tour and earned $1.04 million.

LPGA Tour

Lorena Ochoa won her first tour event, carding a 4-under-par 68 for a one-stroke victory over Wendy Ward at the inaugural Franklin American Mortgage Championship at Franklin, Tenn.

Ochoa, who became the first Mexican to win an LPGA tournament, had five birdies and a bogey in the final round and held off three-time winners Ward and Pat Hurst, finishing at 16-under 272.

The 2003 rookie of the year had three seconds and three thirds in her short career. Ochoa had 13 top-10 finishes entering this event and was coming off a tie for second last week after letting a share of the third-round lead slip away.

Ward, who lives in Edwall, Wa., closed with a 5-under 67 for a 273 total, while Stacy Prammanasudh (67) finished third. Hurst had a final-round 70 for a 275 total, good for fourth. Dorothy Delasin had a 68 and was fifth at 11 under.

Asian Open

Miguel Angel Jimenez of Spain won the Asian Open in Shanghai, China, closing with a 5-under-par 67 for a three-stroke victory after entering the final round six shots behind leader Simon Dyson of England.

Dyson, the leader through the first three rounds, finished with a 76 for a 277 total. Prayad Marksaeng of Thailand (71) was at 278 and K.J. Choi of South Korea (68) was at 279.

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