Stanley wins in playoff at Quicken Loans National
POTOMAC, MD. — Kyle Stanley was in tears on the 18th green after he holed a five-foot par putt to win the Quicken Loans National in a playoff over Charles Howell III. He wept again in the interview room as he spoke about the long slump between his first and second career victories and the doubts that his game would ever return.
He believed he could win again. But he never really had to think about it until midway through his round on a wild Sunday at TPC Potomac.
“There was some doubt there for a little bit. Yeah, I mean, it’s no fun,” Stanley said, wiping away tears. “You certainly question if you’ll get back ... and have a moment like this. It makes this pretty special, for sure.”
On a day when about a dozen players had realistic chances to win, Stanley moved into a share of the lead for the first time with a birdie on the par-5 10th as the leaders faltered behind him. He never had the lead alone until the trophy was his.
Stanley and Howell began the day four shots off the lead, playing together in the fourth-to-last group. Stanley got into the mix with birdies on the fifth, sixth and eight holes, none of the putts longer than 10 feet.
Howell nudged ahead momentarily with a 27-footer for eagle on the short par-4 14th, only for Stanley to match him with a two-putt birdie. Both parred the final four holes to shoot 4-under 66s and finish at 7 under, and no one could catch them. Howell had a 21-foot putt to win on the final hole of regulation that rolled over the left edge of the cup.
Playing the par-4 18th again in the playoff, both missed their tee shots, with Stanley getting lucky to draw a good lie. Both missed the green. Howell’s chip came up short and he missed the 11-foot par putt. Stanley chipped to five feet and pumped his fist as the putt dropped. Stanley’s previous win came in 2012 at the Phoenix Open.
Kyle Stanley reacts after his shot on the 17th tee.