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Sunday, September 15, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Sports >  International sports

Golf capsules: Brooks Koepka wins in Memphis, claims regular-season points title

Brooks Koepka waves to the crowd as he leaves the 18th green after winning the World Golf Championships-FedEx St. Jude Invitational Sunday, July 28, 2019, in Memphis, Tenn. (Mark Humphrey / Associated Press)
Brooks Koepka waves to the crowd as he leaves the 18th green after winning the World Golf Championships-FedEx St. Jude Invitational Sunday, July 28, 2019, in Memphis, Tenn. (Mark Humphrey / Associated Press)
Associated Press

Brooks Koepka turned his final-round duel with Rory McIlroy into a runaway for his first World Golf Championships title.

Koepka had three birdies in a four-hole stretch on the front nine to take the lead and never trailed the rest of the way, closing with a 5-under 65 for a three-shot victory in the FedEx St. Jude Invitational in Memphis, Tennessee.

With his third victory of the season, Koepka wraps up the regular-season points title a week early and claims a $2 million bonus from the Wyndham Rewards program. He is assured to going into the FedEx Cup playoffs as the No. 1 seed.

Koepka finished at 16-under 264 and earned $1.745 million.

McIlroy, in his first final-round pairing with Koepka, didn’t make a birdie until the 14th hole on the TPC Southwind and closed with a 71 to tie for fourth.

Webb Simpson had a 64 to finish second. Marc Leishman (67) was another shot back. Tommy Fleetwood (66) and Matthew Fitzpatrick (69) joined McIlroy at 11 under.

Koepka won for the seventh time on the PGA Tour, and he became the sixth player to win a major championship and a World Golf Championship in the same year. He won the PGA Championship for the second straight year in May, and was runner-up in the Masters and U.S. Open. He tied for fourth last week at the British Open.

He also had a pair of top 10s in this WGC when it was at Firestone, and he had a pair of top 3s at the TPC Southwind when it was the St. Jude Classic.

LPGA Tour

Jin Young Ko won her second major title of the season at the Evian Championship and returned to No. 1 in the women’s world ranking.

Ko closed with a 4-under 67 in the rain and seized control when Hyo Joo Kim took a triple bogey from the bunker on the 14th hole. Ko won by two shots over Kim (73), American rookie Jennifer Kupcho (66) and Shanshan Feng (68).

Ko won the ANA Inspiration, the LPGA Tour’s first major of the year.

Kim, who won the Evian five years ago, had the lead until her tee shot plugged in front of the face of a bunker. Her next shot rolled back into her footprint in the sand, and she three-putted after getting on the green.

Ko finished at 15-under 268 and earned $615,000 to move ahead of U.S. Women’s Open champion Jeongeun Lee6 on the LPGA Tour money list. Ko widened her lead in the Race to CME Globe and replaced Sung Hyun Park at No. 1 in the world.

Kupcho, a former NCAA champion at Wake Forest who won the inaugural Augusta National Women’s Amateur in April, earned $290,778 for her three-way tie for third.

PGA Tour Champions

Bernhard Langer closed with a 4-under 66 in the rain at Royal Lytham & St. Annes to win the Senior British Open and extend his record with 11 senior majors.

Langer, who started the final round three shots behind Paul Broadhurst, ran off six birdies through 14 holes to seize control with a four-shot lead, and a pair of late bogeys didn’t cost him. The 61-year-old German finished at 6-under 274 for a record fourth Senior British Open title.

Heavy rain delayed the final round by nearly six hours.

Broadhurst, trying to win this major for the second time in four years, closed with a 71 to finish alone in second, two shots behind.

Retief Goosen of South Africa closed with a 66 to tie for third with American Tim Petrovic (68) at 3-under 277.

In his last appearance at the Senior British Open, three-time champion Tom Watson shot 73 and tied for 64th. The 69-year-old Watson, who won five British Open titles, said Saturday he would no longer player the tournament. In 18 appearances, he never missed the cut.

Langer has won senior majors in six seasons.

PGA Tour

Collin Morikawa birdied his last three holes to win the Barracuda Championship in Reno, Nevada, making him the second player this summer to go from college to a PGA Tour winner.

Morikawa, who graduated from Cal last month, closed with seven birdies against no bogeys in the modified Stableford scoring system, giving him 14 points in the final round at Montreaux Golf and Club.

He finished with 47 points for a three-point victory over Troy Merritt, who had the lead on the back nine until the 22-year-old Morikawa made his final charge. Merritt had a chance to win on the par-5 18th with an eagle, but his chip raced 12 feet by the hole and he missed the birdie putt. He finished with seven points in the round.

Morikawa joins Matthew Wolff of Oklahoma State as players who have gone straight from college to their first PGA Tour victory. Wolff won the 3M Open in Minnesota three weeks ago, making an eagle putt on the final hole to beat Morikawa.

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