Golf

Chris Kirk wins Colonial

Chris Kirk is presented with a plaid jacket after his win at the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial on Sunday.
Chris Kirk is presented with a plaid jacket after his win at the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial on Sunday. Star-Telegram

The final round of the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial began with a three-hour rain delay Sunday.

The wait was worth it for Chris Kirk.

Kirk made a 7 foot par putt on the 18th hole to avoid a potential playoff to win the tournament title. He shot a final-day 66 to finish at 12 under 268.

“I couldn’t be more pleased with how I played coming down the stretch today,” Kirk said. “My first three wins on Tour have all been little tap-ins on the last hole. To step up and make a putt that I knew was to win is something I’ll never forget.”

The sun replaced the rain in the early evening as a logjam built down the stretch with Kirk, Jason Bohn, Masters champ Jordan Spieth, and Brandt Snedeker.

Bohn and Spieth went to the clubhouse at 11 under. Bohn shot a 63, Spieth a 65.

“The second round set me back. I tried to come back, pretty far down on the weekend was tough,” Spieth said. “I played the weekend 8-under. I’m proud of that.

I would have liked to maybe go back to 16, but other than that, I’m really proud of the way that we finished on 18 there giving it a chance. Chris just made a really, really solid putt.”

That left Kirk, who was holding a 1-shot, and Snedeker, who was one back.

Snedeker missed a 14 foot birdie shot that would have put him in a tie for first with Kirk. He had to settle for par and a three-way tie with Bohn and Spieth for second.

“I played very aggressive and I hit a lot of high-quality shots. I had some opportunities,” Bohn said. “I didn’t hit my best shots coming down the stretch so that was a little disappointing. I made a great putt on 18 to try to get to 12 and it just lipped out.

“All in all, I’m thrilled, very pleased.”

Kirk sank his par shot to claim the plaid jacket.

Bohn got into contention on the final day in record fashion.

John Huh matched the second-lowest score on the back nine in the history of the tournament. Then 30 minutes later, Bohn did the same on the front nine.

Huh fired a 6-under par 29, joining eight others who have gone that low. The most recent was Jeff Overton in 2010.

Huh, who started on No. 10, had six birdies, including three in a row to start the day. He finished with a 64 and 8-under 272.

The back-nine record at Colonial was established by former champion Keith Clearwater, who shot a trailblazing 28 in 1993, the year he finished ninth. Clearwater was Colonial’s 1987 champ.

Bohn carded six birdies, including three in the “Horrible Horseshoe” of Nos. 3-5, and joined nine others with a 6-under 29 over the 69 years of tournament play at Colonial.

Wayne Levi holds the record with a 28 in 1993. He finished 18th that year.

“You can take a lot away from a round like this just knowing if you get kind of in contention that you’re still giving yourself a chance,” Bohn said. “I knew I had to put my foot on the pedal. I knew nobody was going to back up.”

Weather was again the focal point when the final round began.

Sunday’s start was slowed more by standing water left by overnight thunderstorms that produced flood conditions around the city.

The start was pushed back from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m.

The biggest challenge was standing water around the course. The Colonial grounds crew, which has done a superb job against the elements all week, used squeegee brooms and pumps to clear the water.

“I can’t say enough about Scott Ebers and his staff at the golf course here at Colonial,” PGA tournament director Mark Russell said. “They just did a great job for us.”

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