A year that already is among the most memorable of Steve Stricker’s career added another chapter today when he won the US Senior Open in dominant fashion at Warren Golf Course at Notre Dame.
Stricker, who began the final round with a six-stroke lead, completed a wire-to-wire victory with a one-under par 69 for a 72-hole score of 19-under par 261, six better than Jerry Kelly and defending champion David Toms. The victory was the fifth of Stricker’s PGA Tour Champions career.
In each of the first three rounds, he equalled the best round of the day, providing him the cushion that he rode to victory. He birdied the first hole and his lead never fell below five. It was a methodical victory lap that included just a single bogey, only the second he made in 72 holes.
“It was a challenge, especially today,” Stricker said. “When you come out with a six-shot lead you have everything to lose and really nothing to gain. And I played that way today. I played very cautiously trying not to make mistakes. This game is hard to play that way.”
Kelly, his friend and fellow Madison, Wisconsin, resident, shot a one-under 69 and finished second for the second straight year in the US Senior Open. Toms carded a two-under 68.
In January, Stricker was named the US captain for the 2020 Ryder Cup, the first player so honoured without having a Major championship victory on his résumé.
Now he has two, both senior Majors, but Majors nonetheless. In May he won the PGA Tour Champions’ first Major of the season, the Regions Tradition.