Justin Thomas, dad Mike, win PNC Championship; Charlie Woods shines in debut
ORLANDO - Make room for another winning golf ball in the Harmony Landing Country Club display case.
Mike Thomas collected balls at the Louisville, Kentucky Golf Club where he worked as a head pro (and continues to retire) from his son Justin's victories and other notable achievements since he was a young boy. Justin has won 13 PGA Tour titles, including the 2017 PGA Championship, since turning pro.
On Sunday, father and son teamed up to do 15 birdies and win the PNC championship at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club on Grande Lake with one stroke against Vijay Singh and his son Qass.
"I put it aside if that was what it made," Justin said of the winning ball. "I'll give it to him when I get my handbag."
PNC CHAMPIONSHIP: Money | Scores
Team Thomas shot 10 under 62 during the opening round on Saturday, but managed to make up a four-stroke deficit with seven consecutive birdies to open the round. As Mike noted, it didn't hurt to partner with the world's No. 3 player.
"We kept doing birdie after birdie," said Justin Thomas.
They mated to birdie 10 of the first 11 holes when Justin found something with his driver to set up simple short iron approaches. Mike, 61, who joked that the last time he played a competitive round with an aluminum shaft, contributed with a hot putter.
"Which made it easy for me," said Justin. "I've probably hit six putts all day."
When the Thomasen played the par 5 18th hole, Justin thought they needed a birdie.
"I knew the tournament wasn't over yet, but I felt like we'd won just because we had so much fun and how well my dad played," said Justin.
Short in half, he hit a delicate incline at 8 feet and let his father take care of the rest.
"I wanted my dad to do this putt that bad," he said.
They finished the tournament with the best 15-under-57 and 36-hole aggregates of 25-under-119. Team Singh kept it interesting until the end, reeling off nine straight birdies at one point before missing a 30-foot eagle putt that would have forced a playoff.
Lee Trevino, 81, the only player to have competed in all 23 PNC championships, shot a 13-under-59 with son Daniel and finished T-3, his best result of the event.
Team Thomas raised $ 200,000 and was the fourth team to win the PNC Championship on its first start and the first team to win with a father as a partner.
Jani Thomas, Justin's mother, was on the road for Mike and contributed to the team victory. While her boys answered questions from the media, she picked up three coronas with limes to celebrate. Indeed, it was a family affair at the PNC championship.
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