William McGirt poses with the trophy after winning at Muirfield Village
Dublin, Ohio - William McGirt and John Curran. Yep, those were the two names left at
Jack Nicklaus' Memorial event after 72 holes of regulation play. Safe to say it's likely
that nobody had those two on their fantasy rosters with the likes of Jason Day, Rory
McIlroy, Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler and the rest of the games' elite on hand at Muirfield
Village . . . but that's why they play the game.
With the weather forecast of rough stormy conditions for the afternnon, the PGA Tour staff
moved up the the tee times to an a.m start. Early on, the contenders appeared to be Matt
Kuchar, Dustin Johnson, McGirt and Curran. Kuchar stumbled midway through his round and
never fully recovered as the conditions worsened. Despite his amazing ball striking all day,
Dustin Johnson simply couldn't make a putt until the 18th. Meanwhile, William McGirt just
kept converting clutch par putts, and Curran was solid - especially at the 17th, where he
stiffed his approach from the fairway bunker and drained the putt to tie McGirt at 15 under
par. In the playoff, Curran was safely on in regulation (at the 18th). McGirt in the greenside
bunker, once again hit a bold explosion in tight to save par and send the sudden death duel
back to the 18th tee.
Playoff hole No.2 - McGirt airmailed his approach from shortgrass over the green. Curran
playing from the right fairway bunker pulled his shot over the green and into the spectators.
Curran hit his pitch from the short side onto the green but was a long way from par. Moments
later, McGirt executed a fantastic escape from the cabbage behind the green to a makeable
six feet. Curran missed his par attempt . . . and as was the case all day, McGirt poured the
clincher in the heart for his first PGA Tour title in 165 career starts (also earning a 3 year
Afterward McGirt talked about that last up and down "It was a solid 9 or 10," McGirt said
(rating the pitch from behind the green on the 2nd playoff hole). "The good news was - it was
uphill and it was right edge, hit it all you want."
Dustin Johnson finished third at -14. World No.3 Rory McIlroy shot 68 on Sunday to finish solo