Kis­ner-Brown and Blixt-Smith head to Zurich Clas­sic play­off

The Hamilton Spectator - - SPORTS - THE AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

AVON­DALE, LA. — Kevin Kis­ner chipped in for ea­gle on the 18th hole as dark­ness fell Sun­day night at the Zurich Clas­sic golf tour­na­ment, lift­ing him and team­mate Scott Brown into a Mon­day play­off with Jonas Blixt and Cameron Smith.

Kis­ner’s chip-in — which skipped on a wet green, hit the pin and dropped in from nearly 95 feet — forced the 23-year-old Smith to make a 1½-foot birdie putt to re­main in con­tention for his first PGA Tour vic­tory.

They were at 27 un­der through four rounds at the TPC Louisiana in the PGA Tour’s first team event in 36 years.

Blixt, a Swede, and Smith, an Aus­tralian, haven’t bo­geyed a hole yet, and ap­peared to have the vic­tory wrapped up be­fore Kis­ner’s chip-in, which whipped the diehard crowd around the fi­nal green into a frenzy while Kis­ner waved both arms in cel­e­bra­tion.

The round fin­ished in barely playable dark­ness be­cause of a more than six-hour de­lay caused by thun­der­storms.

Each player on the win­ning team will take home $1.02 mil­lion and earn 400 FedExCup points.

Blixt and Smith led af­ter the sec­ond and third rounds, but had to over­come a re­mark­able surge by Brown and Kis­ner, who stormed into the lead with birdies on the first eight holes and 10 of their first 11.

Blixt made a 5-foot birdie putt on the 16th, and Smith did the same on 17 to put them back in the lead.

Smith then dropped a 57-yard approach on 18 within 2 feet, seem­ingly doom­ing Kis­ner and Brown to sec­ond place. In­stead, both teams will be back at it at 8 a.m. on the 18th hole to start the play­off.

Kis­ner and Brown each have one PGA Tour vic­tory. The 33-year-old Blixt has won twice, but not since 2013.

Kelly Kraft and Kevin Tway fin­ished third at 23 un­der.

The play­ers on each team al­ter­nated shots in the first and third rounds. In the sec­ond and fi­nal rounds, each player played their own ball and each team took the best score per hole. The play­off will be in the same for­mat as the fi­nal round.


Kevin Kis­ner re­acts to his 95-foot ea­gle putt on the 18th hole Sun­day.

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