Monday, May 04, 2015

Rookie Kaufman's first Tour title
EWBURGH, Indiana -- Rookie Smylie Kaufman won the United Leasing Championship by five strokes Sunday for his first Tour title.
Kaufman, the 23-year-old former Louisiana State University student rom Birmingham, Alabama, had two double bogeys on the back nine in a closing 1-over 73 to finish at 10-under 278 at Victoria National.
He matched the course record with a 64 on Saturday to take a four-stroke lead into the final round.
"I'm blown away. Shocked," Kaufman said. "I still can't comprehend it all, but I'm so excited about getting the win. It wasn't perfect. I made mistakes all week. I just stayed composed and believed in what I was doing."
Kaufman earned $108,000 to jump from 28th to fourth on the money list with $159,535. He was coming off consecutive fourth-place ties in the Louisiana Open and Mexico Championship after missing the cuts in his first three starts of the year.
He birdied Nos. 2-4 to take an eight-stroke lead at 14 under.
"When I got on the sixth, I already felt like I had won," Kaufman said. "I had to refocus. I looked at the leaderboard and knew I still had a lot of holes to play. That's a big lead and the tendency is to tune out at that point."
He had the double bogeys on the par-4 12th and par-3 16th.
"I really didn't eat much for lunch and I was out of gas," Kaufman said. "I was eating energy bars and drinking Gatorade for those holes. I started getting my energy back and started hitting better golf shots."
Jonathan Randolph (69), Adam Long (73) and Ryan Spears (74) tied for second.



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