Blanks Bags Breakout Nwide Win


Nationwide TourGLENVIEW, Ill. -- Kris Blanks shot a 4-under 68 on Sunday to claim his first Nationwide Tour win at the Bank of America Open.
Blanks birdied the 17th hole to move in front of Bob May by a shot, then held on for the victory with a routine par at the 18th. He finished at 16-under 272 for a one-stroke win.
'Through four days it was probably as good as I've played in a while,' said Blanks, who claimed $135,000 for the win to move to No. 5 on the Nationwide Tour money list.
The top 25 players on the money list at the end of the season will earn PGA TOUR cards.
'I just hit the ball great all week,' Blanks said.
May fired an eight-under 64 in the final round to move up from a tie for 15th place overnight into solo second place. He birdied eight holes on Sunday, including the 18th, and had the clubhouse lead at 15-under 273 before Blanks birdied the 17th.
Casey Wittenberg (68) and Brendon De Jonge (69) shared third place at 13-under 275.
David McKenzie, one of two players who shared the third-round lead with Blanks, managed only an even-par 72 on Sunday to fall into a tie for fifth place at 12-under 276.
Spencer Levin (65), Kyle Reifers (69) and Tommy Tolles (70) shared fifth with McKenzie.
The other third round co-leader, Skip Kendall, stumbled to a 4-over 76 and dropped all the way into a tie for 31st place at 8-under 280 on a day when scores were generally low.
Blanks, meanwhile, was steady enough in the end to hold off the charging May.
He made two birdies in his first four holes, at the second and fourth, then stumbled to his only bogey of the round at the par-3 ninth. He came back with birdies at 12, 14 and 17 for the win.
The go-ahead birdie at the 17th was a tap-in, and Blanks played the par-5 18th like a man who realized all he needed was a par to win. He knocked his drive into the fairway, laid up short of the green with his second shot, then spun his approach to about 12 feet to set up the two-putt par.
'I was nervous,' Blanks acknowledged. 'But everybody's a little nervous. I just kept my composure and figured I'd be all right.'
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