Gomez tops Snedeker to win Sony Open in playoff


Fabian Gomez made birdie on the second extra hole to defeat Brandt Snedeker and win the Sony Open in a playoff. Here’s how things finished up in overtime at Waialae Country Club:

Leaderboard: Gomez (-20), Snedeker (-20), Zac Blair (-19), Si Woo Kim (-16)

What it means: This is Gomez's second PGA Tour victory, following his win at the FedEx St. Jude last June. Four shots back to start the day, Gomez fired an 8-under 62 and closed with back-to-back birdies on the 71st and 72nd holes to reach 20 under par. He was later tied by Snedeker. After both players halved the first playoff hole with pars, Gomez was able to birdie the par-5 18th for the second time Sunday and wrap up the victory when Snedeker’s attempt to halve slid by the hole. The 37-year-old Argentine was already 36th on the Olympic points list and has likely wrapped up a spot in Rio along with fellow countryman Emiliano Grillo. Gomez is the fourth player from Argentina to win multiple times on the PGA Tour, joining Angel Cabrera, Jose Coceres, and Roberto de Vicenzo.

Round of the day: Gomez went on 59-watch and appeared to be the man to beat when he pushed his score to 8 under through 12 holes thanks to seven straight birdies on Nos. 6-12. Though consecutive bogeys at 13 and 14 slowed his momentum and allowed Blair and Snedeker to keep pace, Gomez closed in style with back-to-back birdies on 17 and 18, including a 22-foot make from off the fairway at the home hole. Gomez’s 62 tied for the round of the week.

Best of the rest: The overnight leader, Snedeker found himself as many as five shots back before a second-nine rally and a birdie on the 72nd hole got him to 4 under for the round and 20 under for the championship. On all three trips down 18 Sunday, Snedeker hit driver and failed to find the fairway. On his final attempt, he found a fairway bunker and had to lay up short of the green. After a wedge shot finished behind the pin, his birdie attempt to extend the playoff wouldn’t go.

Biggest disappointment: Playing in the final group with Snedeker and Blair, Kevin Kisner never made a move. Just one back to start the day, Kisner shot an even-par 70 as two double bogeys erased four birdies. Nonetheless, the RSM winner racked up his eighth top-5 finish since the beginning of last season. Blair, to his credit, held or shared the lead for most of the day, but his eagle attempt on the 72nd hole didn't fall, leaving him one shot shy of the playoff.

Shot of the day: Gomez’s 22-foot birdie make from the apron to secure his spot in the playoff.

Quote of the day: “He’s very proud of himself and his caddie walking next to him. His caddie’s dad passed away just a few a weeks ago.” – Emiliano Grillo’s caddie, Jose Luis Campra, translating for Gomez