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Cam Davis defeats Troy Merritt on fifth playoff hole for first PGA Tour win

Cam Davis holds the winner's trophy after claiming victory at the Rocket Mortgage Classic.
Cam Davis holds the winner’s trophy after claiming victory at the Rocket Mortgage Classic on Sunday.
(Carlos Osorio / Associated Press)

Cam Davis won the Rocket Mortgage Classic on Sunday for his first PGA Tour title when Troy Merritt missed a 6-foot par putt on the fifth hole of a playoff.

Davis missed putts to win on each of the playoff holes. The 26-year-old Australian left 6- and 18-foot putts high, a 25-foot putt low and a 19-footer high. He misread a break on a 12-foot putt on the fifth playoff hole, then won when Merritt made bogey.

Davis closed with a 5-under 67 to match Merritt (68) and Joaquin Niemann (68) at 18-under 270 at Detroit Golf Club. Niemann dropped out of the playoff with a bogey on the first extra hole, his first bogey of the week.

Niemann had a chance to win it on the 72nd hole, but left a 17-foot putt high.

Olympic athletes have relied on unique workouts and sports psychologists to overcome the shutdown robbing them of a chance to hone their competitive edge.

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Davis holed a 50-foot sand shot for eagle on the par-5 17th and birdied the par-4 18th to get to 18 under.

Niemann followed with two shots that went 569 yards and he two-putted from 14 feet to take the lead at 18 under, but he quickly had company.

Merritt, who was in the final group with Niemann, made his fourth birdie in a five-hole stretch to share the lead. Davis joined them with the eagle-birdie finish.

The 22-year-old Niemann shared the second- and third-round lead and was runner-up for the third time, including coming up short in a playoff at the Sentry Tournament of Champions.

Last week at the Travelers Championship, Harris English beat Kramer Hickok in an eight-hole playoff that tied the second-longest sudden death in PGA Tour history. Hickock stuck around to watch the playoff in Detroit after finishing 6 under.

Alex Noren (64) had a share of the lead at 17. He got out of the heat and humidity, but planned to leave the comfortable clubhouse as soon someone was a stroke ahead of him and that happened with a trio of competitors. Noren tied for fourth with Hank Lebioda (68).

Bubba Watson surged up the leaderboard earlier on the hot and steamy afternoon with a 64 to put him at 16 under. That briefly gave him a share of the lead, and he tied for sixth with Brandon Hagy (68).


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