Kevin Kisner beats Matt Kuchar in Match Play final

Kevin Kisner made it to the Dell Technologies Match Play final for the second straight year, and this time, he got it right.

A week that began with a loss — 2 up to Ian Poulter in group play — ended with the biggest victory of Kisner’s career when he holed a 20-foot birdie putt to close out Matt Kuchar 3 and 2 in the chilly championship match at Austin (Texas) Country Club.

“It was a long week. I prevailed. And I’m a world golf champion,” said Kisner, who became the first player to win Match Play after losing in the championship match the previous year. That one wasn’t close, as Bubba Watson raced to a big lead and ended the match in 12 holes.

Kisner didn’t trail against Kuchar, though it was tight at the turn until Kuchar made too many mistakes. He missed a 12-foot putt on the 10th that would have tied the match, and on his next swing, he put his tee shot into the water on the par-3 11th.

Kisner, equipped with a 2-up lead, took it from there. He halved holes by making putts from 6 feet and 4 feet, and then seized control on the 15th when Kuchar’s chip was too strong and led to another lost hole.

Kisner’s third career victory was worth $1,745,000.

Kisner advanced to the final by beating Francesco Molinari 1 up in one Sunday semifinal, and Kuchar stopped Lucas Bjerregaard 1 up in the other semifinal.

PGA Tour: Graeme McDowell shot a 3-under-par 69 to finish at 18-under 270 for a one-shot win over Chris Stroud and Mackenzie Hughes at the Corales Puntacana Resort & Club Championship in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic.

“It’s difficult to win on the PGA Tour,” McDowell said. “Don’t like calling this a second-tier event, but obviously the best players in the world are in Austin, Texas, this week. Still got a great field down here.”

LPGA Tour: In Carlsbad (San Diego County), Nasa Hataoka shot a 5-under 67 to finish at 18-under 270 and claim a three-shot win over five players at the Kia Classic.

Inbee Park (1-under 71), Sung Hyun Park (68), Jin Young Ko (65), Azahara Muñoz (67)and Danielle Kang (65) tied for second.

Other tours: Stephen Gallacher birdied three of his last four holes for a 1-under 71 to finish at 9-under 279 for a one-shot win over Masahiro Kawamura in the European Tour’s Indian Open in New Delhi. … Scott Parel made a 12-foot par putt to match Kevin Sutherland on the fifth hole of a playoff before play was suspended because of darkness in the PGA Tour Champions’ Rapiscan Systems Classic in Biloxi, Miss. They will finish Monday morning at Fallen Oak.

This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/sports/golf/article/Kevin-Kisner-beats-Matt-Kuchar-in-Match-Play-final-13730840.php.

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