For the longest time Sunday, it looked like Dustin Johnson was sleep-walking his way around the TPC Southwind.
Johnson was steadily making his way to victory at the St. Jude Classic, no one was challenging him and he was walking all over playing partner Andrew Putnam.
Just when things were getting a bit boring, D.J. brought the house down when he scored a walk-off eagle from 171 yards out at the 72nd hole.
His shot landed just inches from the cup, spun to the right and found the bottom of the hole. That final two got him to 19-under par and put an exclamation mark on his 18th career win. His closing 66 also moved him back to No. 1 when this week’s Official World Golf Rankings are recalculated.
He started the day tied at 15-under with Putnam. At the very first hole, Putnam stumbled badly, made double-bogey six and Johnson would never be challenged the rest of the way.
D.J. hit a rough patch but holed a 16-footer to save par at the 12th, then birdied 13 to start a triumphant walk to the clubhouse.
“I’m glad it’s over. What a cool way to end the day,” Johnson said of his final, spectacular shot of the afternoon. “I played really well all week. I was a little flat starting out today but I made a good put at 12 then the birdie at 13.”
For Putnam, it was a great week. He finished solo second at 13-under, his best-ever showing on the PGA Tour and that runner-up money will guarantee his tour card for next season. “I feel that I handled myself better than my score showed,” Putnam pointed out afterward.
Johnson now heads for the U.S. Open where he will be one of the favorites to win.
“I haven’t seen the course,” Johnson said, talking about Shinnecock Hills, the U.S. Open site. “But I’ll get in 18 there tomorrow. I’m really looking forward to it.”