OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (AP) – After waiting all day to play one hole of golf, Dana Quigley played it to perfection.

Quigley made an 11-foot birdie putt on the first playoff hole Monday to beat Tom Watson and Gil Morgan in the rain-shortened Bayer Advantage Classic.

Watson, the hometown favorite who also lost to Quigley in a playoff in the season-opening event in Hawaii, had a chance to win in regulation. But he left a long birdie putt hanging on the lip on his final hole, bringing a groan from the big gallery.

Watson played 12 holes Monday, finishing off a 6-under 66 to join Quigley and Morgan, who finished their rounds before rain suspended play Sunday, at 11-under 133. Rain washed out play Saturday, reducing the tournament to 36 holes for the third time in four years.

Quigley, playing his 261st straight Champions Tour tournament, hit a 6-iron to 11 feet on the 442-yard 18th in the playoff. Watson and Morgan each two-putted for par after leaving their approach shots much farther away.

“I really, really tried to birdie that hole. And that was the hardest that hole had played all week with the wind the way it was,” Quigley said. “I hit two of my best shots of the week right there.”

The 58-year-old Quigley has been on the roll of a lifetime, winning $761,200 in his last six events and never finishing lower than seventh. He beat Watson in sudden death to win the MasterCard Championship.

“For me to be on this ride, with such a positive mental outlook, it’s something I think all players try to achieve and very few get to this position where I am,” said Quigley, a 10-time winner on the Champions Tour. “It’s an amazing way to play golf when you’re never worried about anything. It’s just unbelievable.”

For Watson, it was another close, disappointing attempt to win in his hometown. He also lost to Quigley by one shot in regulation in 2000, when Quigley sank a 12-foot putt on No. 18.

“It was a familiar scene,” Watson said. “He made the putt again. He’s 2-for-2 against me. I’ve got to do something about that boy.”

Watson started the final round on the back nine and was 8 under through six holes when play was stopped. He birdied the par-3 17th, then holed a short putt for a birdie on No. 3 to pull within a stroke of Morgan and Quigley.

He caught them with a 12-foot birdie putt on the par-4 fifth hole.

Jack Nicklaus, who designed the course and had suggested this could be his final tournament action on U.S. soil, shot a 73 each day.

Asked after his round if this was indeed his final competitive round in the United States, the Golden Bear said in a television interview, “I have no idea. I always reserve the right to play in the Memorial Tournament. I might do that.”

But later he told reporters that he felt a nostalgic tug when he prepared to hit his drive on the final hole.

“As I walked to the 18th hole, as I hit my tee shot, I thought, “Yeah, this is probably going to be the last tournament round of golf I play here in the United States,”‘ said Nicklaus, who will play the British Open next month.

“I want to end as a golfer, not as a worn-out celebrity. And that’s the way I’m ending it, and I don’t like that. I want to end it as a golfer, to play my best.”

Jerry Pate closed with a 65 to finish a stroke out of the playoff at 10 under, and Dan Pohl (68) followed at 9 under.

AP-ES-06-13-05 2021EDT


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.