Rookie Hadley holds off Lee, wins Puerto Rico


Rookie Chesson Hadley won his first career PGA Tour title Sunday at the Puerto Rico Open. Here’s the skinny on the final round at Trump International Golf Club

The leaderboard: Chesson Hadley (-21); Danny Lee (-19); Ben Martin (-17); Wes Roach, Richard H. Lee, David Toms, Carl Pettersson and Jason Gore at -16

What it means: It’s a life-changing breakthrough for Hadley, the former Georgia Tech product who won the 2013 Tour Championship. That gave the 26-year-old playing privileges on the big circuit, and he seized the opportunity in only his 11th start of the season. Prior to this victory, he was the only Tour rookie with two top-10 finishes (Vegas, Pebble Beach).

Round of the day: Hadley birdied the final two holes to stay two shots clear of Lee, the 2008 U.S. Amateur champion. Hadley went 3 under for his first seven holes, then ran off nine consecutive pars to hold steady. He shot rounds of 68-65-67-67 to post 21-under 267.   

Best of the rest: After an opening 73, Chris Stroud shot up the leaderboard and closed with 65 Sunday to post a T-9 finish. Second-year Tour player Scott Langley also posted a final-round 65, finishing joint 19th.

Biggest disappointment: Looking to score another victory for the veterans, David Toms and Carl Pettersson could only muster Sunday 69s and fell five shots behind Hadley, in a tie for fourth.