No Charity Needed Toms Takes Title

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- David Toms fired a 7-under 64 on Sunday to win the St. Jude Classic at the TPC at Southwind. Toms finished at 20-under-par 264 and won by three strokes over a hard-charging Nick Price.
 
'It was pretty special for me to win here,' said Toms. 'I just have so many people that I'm friends with here, my golf teacher is here, and the place is pretty dear to me. It means a lot. It's more than just a regular tournament. It really does mean a great deal.'
 
Toms became the seventh multiple winner on the PGA Tour in 2003 after he titled at the Wachovia Championship in May. The win on Sunday was his ninth since joining the PGA Tour.
 
Bob Estes (65), Fredrik Jacobson (67) and overnight leader Richard S. Johnson (69) shared third place at 16-under-par 286. Two-time U.S. Open champion Lee Janzen (68) and Ben Crane (67) tied for sixth place at minus-15.
 
Toms began the final round a stroke behind Johnson, a tour rookie who used to make his home on the European Tour. Toms' round did not get off to a great start as he nailed a tree with his tee ball and stayed in the left rough. He chipped out and failed to get up and down for par.
 
Toms sank a 10-foot birdie putt at two, two-putted from the fringe for birdie at three, drilled a 12-foot birdie putt at four and made it four birdies in a row with a tap-in birdie at five. That birdie stretch tied him for the lead at 16-under par.
 
The 2001 PGA Champion knocked a 7-iron to 15 feet to make birdie at the eighth and take sole possession of first at 17-under par. Price and Janzen reached 18-under par and Toms tied them in first when he holed a 12-footer for birdie at No. 10.
 
Toms birdied No. 12 but dropped a shot at 13 when his 8-iron sailed over the green. He had a difficult chip and ran it eight feet past the hole. Toms missed the par putt to remain tied for the lead.
 
Janzen fell down the leaderboard when he three-putted the 14th. Toms reached the putting surface at the par-3 hole with a 3-iron and holed an amazing 50-footer to go ahead by two strokes.
 
'That's one of those putts that I'll remember for a long time because in winning the golf tournament, that was a big part of it,' said Toms, who pocketed $810,000 for the win. 'That was a putt that I could have three-putted very easily, and to make it, that helped tremendously.'
 
Toms put the tournament out of reach at the par-5 16th. He knocked a 5-iron to 12 feet and drained the putt to get to 21-under par for the tournament, which was good for a four-shot lead over Price, who was in the clubhouse, and six over Janzen, who bogeyed 16 and 17.
 
Toms three-putted from 30 feet at the 17th green to drop his lead to three but it would not matter as Toms parred 18 to clinch the victory.
 
'I felt good about my chances just because I felt like I was playing well,' said Toms. 'I was playing better and better every day. Was I the guy to beat? I don't think I'd go that far, I just know that if I played my game I was going to be there in the end.'
 
Price fired a 62 on Sunday to go with a 65 on Saturday. The two-time former champion nearly missed the cut on Friday but put himself in good position to win, had it not been for Toms' outstanding play.
 
'I can't play much better than the way I played this weekend,' Price said. 'If I don't shoot 73 on Thursday, I'd probably have a realistic chance at winning.'
 
Johnson took a lot out of his closest chance at winning on the PGA Tour despite never matching his playing partner, Toms, in the final round.
 
'My goals for the beginning of the year was to win a tournament, and that's still what I'm going to try to do this year,' said the Swede. 'I'm very pleased how I performed overall over here, so it gave me a good confidence boost for the future.'
 
David Peoples finished alone in eighth at 14-under-par 270, followed by Hank Kuehne (66), Fred Funk (66), Jay Haas (68), Kirk Triplett (68) and Chris DiMarco (68), who tied for ninth place at minus-13.
 
Related Links
  • TheGolfChannel.com Bio: David Toms
  • Full-field scores from the FedEx St. Jude Classic
  • Full coverage of the FedEx St. Jude Classic