CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Three years after he turned professional, 23-year-old Rickie Fowler finally notched his first PGA Tour victory.
Fowler won the Wells Fargo Championship after topping Rory McIlroy and D.A. Points on the first extra hole in a sudden-death playoff. Fowler made birdie when he sank a 4-footer on the 18th; McIlroy and Points both made pars.
Fowler began the final round three off the pace but grabbed a share of the lead on the back nine. Fowler’s only other victory as a professional came at the Korean Open last year, where he beat McIlroy by six shots.
McIlroy posted a final-round 70 for a 14-under total in a bid to win his fourth PGA Tour title and second at Quail Hollow.
It appeared that D.A. Points had the victory in the bag when he approached the 18th tee in regulation with a one-shot lead. Points had gone 40 consecutive holes without a bogey, but bogeyed the par-4 18th when he failed to get up and down from a greenside bunker. The bogey dropped him into a tie with McIlroy and Fowler at 14 under.
Webb Simpson began the day with a one-shot lead over Ryan Moore and Points. His Sunday 73 paled in comparison to earlier in the week when he carded 65-68-69 on his home course.
Lee Westwood shot the day’s low round, a 66 to finish at 11 under, three shots back in a tie for fifth.
Phil Mickelson, who had made the cut on the number, fired a final-round 71 and finished T-26.