Jon Rahm will be hard-pressed to enjoy a 72nd-hole moment better than the one he had on Sunday to clinch his first PGA Tour win.
The 22-year-old Spaniard sank a 60-foot eagle bid on the final hole at Torrey Pines’ South Course, capping off a final-nine 30 and a closing 65 to notch a three-shot win at the Farmers Insurance Open.
“I never thought it was going to be for eagle from 60 feet, especially at Torrey Pines, but the fact that it went in is just incredible,” Rahm said after the win. “The emotion just overwhelmed me. But man, that was a satisfying feeling.”
Rahm, enveloped by the cheers, had to wait to clinch the title, however, with the final four threesomes in front of him still to finish. However, as many of those players struggled on the tough Torrey South layout, it became clear that their final few holes were played in futility of chasing down the Arizona State product.
“I thought if I could get two more (birdies) coming in, I probably would have the trophy outright,” said Patrick Rodgers, recalling his thinking on the 13th tee. “And by the time I stepped up on 16 tee, I was four behind. I was out of the tournament by then.”
In the end, Charles Howell III and rookie Cheng-Tsung Pan were Rahm’s closest challengers at 10-under 278.
For Rahm, he’s a PGA Tour winner in his 12th start, a win anticipated since he finished tied for second in his pro debut at last year’s Quicken Loans National. Within four starts, Rahm had secured his PGA Tour status, making his just the eighth player in PGA Tour history to do that right out of college. Now, after becoming the first maiden PGA Tour winner at Torrey Pines since 1991, Rahm is in the top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking and heading to the Masters.
Ryan Ballengee is a Yahoo Sports contributor. Find him on Facebook and Twitter.