Luke List birdied the first playoff hole to beat Will Zalatoris in the Farmers Insurance Open on Saturday, notching his first PGA Tour title in his 206th start.
List, 37 and ranked 151st in the world, delivered a sensational final round on the South Course at Torrey Pines in La Jolla, California, where his seven birdies included four in a row on the front nine and a 13-footer for the clubhouse lead at the 18th.
His six-under-par 66 put him at 15-under 273, and he had to wait a tense two hours to see if he’d be caught, with Zalatoris, former world No 1 Jason Day and current No 1 Jon Rahm leading the charge.
“It feels unbelievable,” said List, who celebrated with his wife, Chloe, as he held their young daughter Ryann. “I’ve worked really hard and to just have my family here means the world to me, so my daughter could see that. It’s all worth it for this moment.”
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Zalatoris, who started the day tied with Day for the lead, fired a one-under 71, moving to 15-under with birdies at the fifth and sixth and then parring his last 12 holes.
Despite an errant tee shot at the 72nd hole, he had an eight-foot putt for birdie and the win, but it ran out of steam and he and List headed back to the 18th tee to open the playoff with the light already fading on the California coast.
Both found the right fairway bunker off the tee – their balls nestling inches apart.
Both blasted out into the fairway and from there List’s masterful approach hit the green and curled toward the cup, leaving him a one-foot birdie putt.
“I was just hoping for a playoff, and once I got that opportunity I just said, you know what, like I’m going to birdie this playoff hole whatever it takes.
“Then I walked up and my ball’s plugged and I said I’m still going to make birdie. I was super pumped,” added List, who earned an invitation to the Masters.
He tapped it in, putting the pressure on Zalatoris, whose putt – similar to the one he faced in regulation – didn’t threaten the hole.
“It was a lot of fun,” said Zalatoris, runner-up at last year’s Masters to Hideki Matsuyama who remains in search of a first tour title. “I fought like hell all day.”
With darkness falling “fast”, Zalatoris said, he had to “rely on past history” on the playoff hole.
“I really couldn’t see much in terms of the read, but I’m not even that disappointed with that part. I made three pars on 18 this week, and that’s just not going to get it done.”
Australia’s Day had moved to 15-under with a spectacular eagle at the par-four 14th, where he holed out from 118 yards out in the fairway.
But he bogeyed 16 and 17 before capping his round with a 10-foot birdie at the par-five 18th to finish in a tie for third with Rahm and Cameron Tringale.
Spain’s Rahm, who won his first Major title at the US Open on the same Torrey Pines course last June, nabbed three of his four birdies in a burst at the seventh, eighth and ninth holes. He drained a 26-footer at 17 to pull within one shot of the lead but he couldn’t take advantage of the par-five finishing hole.
He closed with a 71, while Tringale carded a 70.
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