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Curtis comes up short at Oakland Hills

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2008 US Open 81x90BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. ' Ben Curtis plopped in a chair, sighed and had a question before one was asked of him.
Ben Curtis
Ben Curtis watches a putt. (Getty Images)
Anybody got a pillow? he joked Sunday.
Well, he might not have been kidding.
Curtis had to play 36 holes in the PGA Championship because thunderstorms suspended play Saturday before he teed off, forcing him to begin his third round at 7:30 a.m. Twelve hours later he came up short of winning a second major.
His 68-71 finish put him at 1-under 279 at Oakland Hills, tying Sergio Garcia for second place, two shots behind Padraig Harrington.
The strong showing earned him one of the automatic spots on the U.S. Ryder Cup team.
Quite a consolation.
Its almost a victory in itself, Curtis said.
The 2003 British Open champion had a one-shot lead through 54 holes, built a three-stroke cushion after birdieing the first hole and got to 4 under with a birdie at No. 6.
But Curtis shot at proving hes not a one-major wonder slipped away with three bogeys in a four-hole stretch starting at No. 8.
The 5-foot-11, 175-pound Curtis acknowledged he simply got tired and hit a wall at the turn.
Especially with the shape Im in, he said.
Garcia, playing a group ahead with Harrington, insisted that he didnt count out Curtis.
Ben was playing well, Garcia said. I could see that he was hanging in there nicely and he had a good start and he hung on tough.
I wasnt only focused about Padraig. I thought that Ben had a realistic shot at it, too. And he was 2, 3, 4 under there the whole day. Unfortunately, he made a couple bogeys coming in like I did, but it was a three-man race and Padraig came up on top.
After birdieing 12 and 13, Curtis cost himself a chance to win with bogeys at 15 and 17. But the aw-shucks guy from a small town in Ohio seemed to have a good perspective on his strong performance.
At the beginning of the week, every player in here would have said if anybody was under par, they would take it, Curtis said. You have to look at the big picture.
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