Mo Yoshimoto

The Takeaway

print article archives RSS

Casey steals Valspar by one

Monday, March 12, 2018

Valspar Championship

Palm Harbor, Florida



World No. 17 Paul Casey erased a five-shot deficit with 6-under-par 33-32=65 in Sunday’s final round at Innisbrook Resort and Golf Club to post 10-under 274, up 10 spots on the day and good for a one-shot victory over Patrick Reed (68) and Tiger Woods (70).


The 40-year-old, a pre-tourney 20/1 outright, claims his second PGA TOUR title (finally!) in 227 events, joining the 2009 Shell Houston Open 8 years, 11 months and 150 starts ago.


“Houston was obviously great fun. My eyes are much more open right now. I’ve taken a lot in,” Casey said afterwards.


“I said a couple of times if I don’t win this week, I actually want Tiger to win it. I’m glad it’s this way,” – also Casey.



The Englishman, who lives in Phoenix, landed nine (of 13) fairways and mustered nine greens in regulation, gaining 2.366 strokes around-the-green and 4.362 tee-to-green. He smothered one bogey with seven birdies, including a hat-trick on holes 11-13, and recorded 1.333 putts per GIR and 1.656 SG: Putting with a career-low 21 putts.


FUN FACT: At last week’s WGC-Mexico, where he finished T12, Casey played in the NINTH-to-last threesome in Round 4 and shot 5-under 66. This week, Casey played in the NINTH-to-last twosome in Round 4 and shot 6-under 65.



Final Leaderboard:



1- Paul Casey 70-68-71-65= 274 (-10)

T2- Patrick Reed 71-69-67-68= 275 (-9)

T2- Tiger Woods 70-68-67-70= 275 (-9)

4- Sergio Garcia 70-72-69-65= 276 (-8)

T5- Rory Sabbatini 70-71-67-69= 277 (-7)

T5- Justin Rose 70-69-66-72= 277 (-7)




Casey’s Position by Round:



R1: T8

R2: T2

R3: T11




Leader/co-leaders by Round:



R1: Corey Conners (finished T16): Drops to 0-for-1 as 18-hole leader/co-leader


R2: Corey Conners (T16): Drops to 0-for-1 as 36-hole leader/co-leader


R3: Corey Conners (T16): Drops to 0-for-1 as 54-hole leader/co-leader







A total of 78 players (77 pros, 1 amateur) from a field of 142 pros and two amateurs made the 36-hole cut of 3-over 145:



39 (of 72) EARLY/late

39 (of 71) LATE/early; 1 WD



11 players finished in the top 10:



EARLY/late (6):


Patrick Reed (T2); Sergio Garcia (4th); Rory Sabbatini (T5); Justin Rose (T5): Jason Kokrak (T8); Webb Simpson (T8)


LATE/early (5):


Paul Casey (Won); Tiger Woods (T2); Jim Furyk (7th); Branden Grace (T8); Trey Mullinax (T8)






9 (of 18) tourneys this season with a traditional draw:





EARLY/late: 4


LATE/early: 5 (Casey)







As mentioned, Casey’s maiden win was the Houston Open in April of 2009 (as 54-hole co-leader). That came in his 77th career event and sixth season on TOUR. Casey closed in even-par 72 and defeated J.B. Holmes in a playoff.









227: starts

168: cuts made (74.0%)


104: top 25s (45.8%)

51: top 10s (22.4%)

13: top 3s (5.7%)

2: wins (0.88%)



Wins by Season (snapshot):



2018: 1

2017: 0

2016: 0

2015: 0

2014: 0

2013: 0

2012: 0

2011: 0

2010: 0

2009: 1




Casey improves to 7-for-7 on the season with six top 25s and three top 10s (T8, AT&T Pro-Am; T7, CIMB). He is the TOUR-leader in consecutive cuts made with 27 straight.


Season Form: 1-12-49-8-11-19-7


Casey’s last missed cut was the 2017 Sony – nearly 14 months ago – and since, has recorded 20 top 25s, 11 top 10s, and six top 5s.


He wins in his fifth Valspar and first visit since a MC in 2014. Casey’s previous best was T37 in 2011 (64-71-71-74).


Valspar Form: 1-MC-MC-37-42







At 40 years of age, Casey is the second straight winner on TOUR in their 40s, following up on Phil Mickelson’s win in Mexico at age 47.







Through 18 events this season:



5 winners were in their 20s

9 were in their 30s

4 were in their 40s (Casey: age: 40)




Field Scoring Average:



This was the 18th playing of the Valspar with all 18 contested on the Copperhead Course. It was the third edition since undergoing a near-total restoration after the 2015 playing:



Yardage: 7,340

Par: 71 (36-35)


Cumulative scoring averages: R1: 72.86; R2: 72.29; R3: 70.68; R4: 71.03


Total: 71.97



Casey’s rounds: 70-68-71-65 for 12.853 SG: Total






Eleven players posted four rounds of par or better, including Casey, Reed and Woods, but Tiger was the only player to record four sub-par rounds.




How Casey Won on Sunday:



After opening in 70-68-71, he began T11 on 4-under, five back.


Casey turned in 3-under 33, erasing a lone bogey-5 at hole 3 with circles at 1, 4, 5 and 7, two of those 19-footers. Now 7-under total.


He converted an up-and-down birdie-4 at 11 from a greenside bunker, stiffed his second at the par-4 12th (from 148 yards out) to 13 inches for a kick-in, and then brushed in a 21-footer from the fringe at the par-3 13th to complete the turkey. Now 10-under.


After a routine par 5 at 14, Casey saved a 3 at 15 and then hit his drive on the par-4 16th in the left rough.


At that point, Reed, six groups behind, had birdied 10 to reach 9-under and was in the fairway at the par-5 11th.


Rose, playing out of the final twosome (eight groups behind), had just closed out a one-birdie 35, he too on 9-under.


Casey would save at 15, missed three more GIR at 16, 17 and 18 but knocked in par-savers each time, the longest from 5’2” at the last to post 10-under and complete a day- and week-tying low 65.


Reed reached 10-under with birdie-4 at 14 but walked off with bogey-5, three-putting from 45’9”, one of those whacks was a pitch shot after his first putt didn’t make it up the hill and came back to his feet.


Rose stumbled home with a birdie-less 37, squaring back-to-backs at 12 and 13 for T5, three adrift.


Sergio Garcia, four groups ahead of Casey, also carded a 65, eventually finishing a season-best 4th, two back.


Woods began the day T2, one back, and was in the penultimate pairing with Brandt Snedeker, who labored to 7-over 78, the worst round of the day. This after the duo had posted identical scores the first three rounds, including Saturday 67s, also paired together.


Tiger opened solidly with a two-putt birdie-4 but gave it back with a missed par-saver from 4’9” at 4, his lone blemish. He missed three scoring tries from inside of 14 feet at 5, 7 and 8, including a 9-footer at 8.


Tiger missed another 9-footer for birdie at the par-5 15th before curling-in a 43’8” bomb for birdie at 17. Now one back with one to play. Interestingly, he hit iron off the tee at the par-4 18th, leaving 185 yards for his second.


Tiger found the surface but his birdie to tie from 38’11” came up short, settling for a two-way T2 with Reed.  




Round 4 Stats Comparison (ranking of 78 players):



SG: Off-the-Tee:

Casey: 1.0 (13th)

Reed: 1.5 (4th)

Woods: 1.2 (T7)


SG: Approach-the-Green:

Casey: 1.0 (17th)

Reed: 1.4 (11th)

Woods: 0.7 (26th)



Casey: 35’11” (40th)

Reed: 32’2” (23rd)

Woods: 38’11” (52nd)


SG: Around-the-Green:

Casey: 2.4 (1st)

Reed: 0.5 (28th)

Woods: 0.1 (37th)


SG: Putting:

Casey: 1.7 (11th)

Reed: -0.4 (45th)

Woods: -1.0 (58th)


SG: Total:

Casey: 6.0 (T1)

Reed: 3.0 (T5)

Woods: 1.0 (T24)



Casey: 21 (1st); 13 one-putts

Reed: 28 (T25); 7 one-putts

Woods: 32 (T70); 4 one-putts




Patrick Reed: The 27-year-old was chasing his sixth TOUR title in 163 events, first since the 2016 Barclays, but settled for his fifth runner-up, first since the 2017 PGA Championship. It’s also the Texan’s second runner-up at the Valspar (P2/2015).


Season Form: 2-37-MC-MC-17-23-MC-MC-50-11

Valspar Form: 2-38-7-P2-CUT

FEC Rank: 33rd (UP 65)

OWGR: 23rd (UP four)



Tiger Woods: The 42-year-old was top debutant of 29 first-timers at the Valspar and the only top-10 finisher. He was chasing his 80th TOUR title in 332 events – 17th in Florida – and first since the 2013 WGC-Bridgestone 4 years, 7 months ago. Of course, this was just his 28th start since then, missing all of 2016 and making only one start in 2017.


The Jupiter, Florida, resident does collect his 30th runner-up, first since T2 at the 2013 Barclays, and records his first top 10 since T10 at the 2015 Wyndham, five starts ago.


Season Form: 2-12-MC-23

FEC Rank: 43rd (UP 89)

OWGR: 149th (UP 239)




Casey’s Weekly Stats (ranking of 78 players):



Birdies: 16 (T3)

Bogeys: 4 (T1)

Double Bogeys: 1 (T36)



Par-3 Scoring: 2.90 (T5)

Par-4 Scoring: 4.00 (T12)

Par-5 Scoring: 4.50 (T4)



Driving Distance (all drives): 280 yards (22nd)

Driving Accuracy: 24/52 (T68) at 46.15%

Greens in Regulation: 44/72 (T30) at 61.11%

Proximity to Hole: 35’3” (T22)

Putts per GIR: 1.682 (7th)

Total Putts: 103 (T1)

Putts by Round: 30-25-27-21

Scrambling: 23/28 (3rd) at 82.14%

All Around: (13th)



SG: Off-the-Tee: -0.18 (50th)

SG: Approach-the-Green: 5.02 (7th)

SG: Around-the-Green: 4.57 (3rd)

SG: Putting: 3.46 (15th)

SG: Tee-to-Green: 9.39 (6th)




Low Rounds:



R1: 67: Corey Conners

R2: 65: Tyrone Van Aswegen

R3: 65: Scott Stallings

R4: 65: Sergio Garcia, Paul Casey




Bogey-free Rounds:



R1: Jimmy Walker (69); Luke Donald (70)

R2: Tyrone Van Aswegen (65); Aaron Wise (67); Bill Haas (68)

R3: Adam Scott (66); Russell Knox (66); Austin Cook (69)

R4: Jamie Lovemark (68)




Updated Top 10 in FEC standings (points):



Casey collects 500 FEC points for the victory and jumps 38 places to 8th in the standings. Justin Thomas (idle) remains No. 1 in the standings for a third event in a row and a third week overall this season:



1. Justin Thomas (1,573)

2. Patton Kizzire (1,314)

3. Phil Mickelson (1,149)

4. Dustin Johnson (1,044)

5. Jon Rahm (982)

6. Brendan Steele (866)

7. Tony Finau (850)

8. Paul Casey (842); UP 38

9. Pat Perez (837); DOWN one

10. Jason Day (814)


Note: Chez Reavie (MC) dropped from 10th to 11th with 800 points.  




Updated Top 10 in OWGR:



With a Strength of Field rating of 370 (up from 290 last year), Casey banks 52.00 world-ranking points and climbs five spots to 12th in OWGR.



1. Dustin Johnson

2. Justin Thomas

3. Jon Rahm

4. Jordan Spieth

5. Justin Rose

6. Hideki Matsuyama

7. Rickie Fowler

8. Brooks Koepka

9. Sergio Garcia; UP two

10. Jason Day; DOWN one




Field Breakdown & Top-10 Finishes:



OWGR field average: 263rd    

OWGR average for top-10 finishers: 140th    



8 of the Top 25 in OWGR were in the field

3 finished in the top 10



No. 5 Justin Rose (T5)

No. 11 Sergio Garcia (4th)

No. 17 Paul Casey (Won)




20 of the Top 50 OWGR

6 finished in the top 10



No. 27 Patrick Reed (T2)

No. 28 Branden Grace (T8)

No. 41 Webb Simpson (T8)



Other Top 10s:



No. 122 Jason Kokrak (T8)

No. 235 Jim Furyk (7th)

No. 269 Rory Sabbatini (T5)

No. 388 Tiger Woods (T2)

No. 392 Trey Mullinax (T8); open-qualifier




Other Notables:



No. 4 Jordan Spieth (MC); top-ranked

No. 12 Rory McIlroy (MC)

No. 14 Henrik Stenson (MC)

No. 20 Matt Kuchar (T40)

No. 25 Charley Hoffman (MC)

No. 26 Gary Woodland (MC)

No. 34 Tony Finau (MC)

No. 44 Adam Hadwin (T12); defender

No. 47 Chez Reavie (MC); ends consecutive cuts made streak at 22




Career-Best Finishes:



Trey Mullinax (T8); open-qualifier

Corey Conners (T16); alternate

T.J. Vogel (T16); open-qualifier, non-member

Dylan Meyer (T74); amateur, sponsor invite




Season Leaders in Top-10 Finishes:



6: Brian Harman

5: Phil Mickelson

4: Justin Thomas, Dustin Johnson, Patton Kizzire, Chesson Hadley




Consecutive Top 10s on TOUR:



4: Phil Mickelson (P1-T6-T2-T5)

3: Justin Thomas (P2-P1-T9)


2: Sergio Garcia (4-T7)

2: Bubba Watson (T9-1)

2: Jason Day (T2-P1)




Consecutive Top-10 streaks ended at:



2: Adam Hadwin (T12-T9-T6)

2: Martin Laird (MC-T9-T9)




Consecutive Top-25 streaks on TOUR:



10: Jason Day (T2-P1-T11-T11-T17-4-T25-T6-T9-T24)


9: Justin Thomas (P2-P1-T9-T17-T14-T22-P1-T17-2)

6: Dustin Johnson (T7-T16-T2-1-T2-T17)

5: Alex Noren (T14-3-T16-T21-P2)




Consecutive Top-25 streaks ENDED at:



3: Jordan Spieth (MC-T14-T9-T20)




Season Leaders in Top-25 finishes:



8: Justin Thomas, Chez Reavie

7: Brian Harman, Brandon Harkins

6: Paul Casey, Luke List, Zach Johnson, Jason Kokrak, Phil Mickelson, Patton Kizzire, Daniel Berger, Cameron Smith, Austin Cook




TOUR Rookies:



TOUR Rookies:13

Top-10 finishes: 0



Corey Conners: Making his tournament debut and in the field as an alternate, the 26-year-old took top-rookie-honors with a career-best T16 on 3-under 281. It’s the first time this season in 11 starts that he’s been low rookie.


The Canadian led after each of the first three rounds (67-69-68) before stumbling to a birdie-less, 6-over-par 38-39=77, finishing seven in arrears.


Season Form: 16-59-MC-29-50-39-37-75-68-65-30

FEC Rank: 113th (UP 20)

OWGR: 519th (UP 89)




Picking a Winner:





13 (of 18) winners had a top-25 finish the start prior (72%):

Casey? Yes: T12 (WGC-Mexico)





7 (of 18) winners had a top-10 finish the start prior (39%)

Casey? No: T12 (WGC-Mexico)






Average winner’s pre-tourney odds outright (rounded)





In the last 111 events on TOUR, the pre-tourney fave/co-fave has won 8 times for a conversion percentage of 7.2%.



This Season:


18 tournaments

2 pre-tourney fave/co-faves won:


Jon Rahm: 8/1 (CareerBuilder)

Justin Thomas: 15/2 (CJ CUP)




This week’s favorite(s):


Jordan Spieth (8/1): The 2015 (playoff) winner missed the cut by two shots on 5-over 76-71=147. It’s his second MC of the season in seven starts and first at the Valspar in five appearances. The 24-year-old ranked 10th in SG: OTT but 136th in SG: Approach (-2.94) and 102nd in SG: Putting (-1.29).



Previous Four Winners on TOUR:


Phil Mickelson (idle)

Justin Thomas (idle)

Bubba Watson (idle)

Ted Potter, Jr. (MC); third straight MC










You can find Mo on Twitter @Bears3423.
Email :Mo Yoshimoto

Highest Searched Golfers over the last 7 days

Video Center

    Dose: Kittle explodes vs. DEN

    Dose: Kittle explodes vs. DEN
    Player News: Week 14

    Player News: Week 14
    Week 14 Starts: Baker Mayfield

    Week 14 Starts: Baker Mayfield
    Week 14 Sits: Mack, Peterson

    Week 14 Sits: Mack, Peterson
    Dose: Oh, Henry!

    Dose: Oh, Henry!
    DFS Analysis: Samuels, Allen

    DFS Analysis: Samuels, Allen
    Dose: Sanders Placed on IR

    Dose: Sanders Placed on IR
    Dose: Conner Out for Week 14

    Dose: Conner Out for Week 14