LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. Stephen Ames wanted to escape the chill of Calgary for the final PGA Tour event, a decision that paid off Sunday when he closed with a 4-under 68 for a one-shot victory in the Children's Miracle Network Classic.
Ames emerged from a typically crowded leaderboard at Disney with three straight birdies on the back nine of the Magnolia Course, then saved par from 65 feet out of the bunker to avoid a playoff with Tim Clark.
It was the first victory in a year that Ames already had deemed a success because of overhauling his swing to cope with nagging back issues. He took pride in being among the leaders in the final round of the U.S. Open and playing in the final group with Tiger Woods at the PGA Championship.
Clark, who has the most career earnings of anyone without a PGA Tour win, birdied six of his final 10 holes for a 66.
Ames made it tough on himself by putting his approach into a bunker, some 65 feet from the hole on the 18th. But he blasted out beautifully to 3 feet and calmly rapped in the putt for his third career victory. He finished at 17-under 271, the highest winning score at Disney since Woods won with the same score in 1999.
The consolation prize went to Kevin Stadler, who tied for 15th to move into the top 125 and keep his card for next year. Stadler finished at No. 124, while Matthias Gronberg locked up the final spot with a tie for 37th.
MIZUNO CLASSIC: At Shima, Japan, Momoko Ueda became the first Japanese player to win the Mizuno Classic in nine years, closing with a 5-under 66 for a two-stroke victory over American Reilley Rankin and Sweden's Maria Hjorth. Ueda finished with a 13-under 203 total on the Kinetsu Kashikojima Country Club course and earned $210,000 for her first LPGA Tour victory. Hiromi Kobayashi was the last Japanese winner, taking the 1998 tournament at Musashigaoka. Rankin and Hjorth, the 1999 champion, closed with 67s.
Shinobu Moromizato (67) was fourth at 8 under. English star Laura Davies, tied with Ueda for the second-round lead after a costly penalty Saturday, shot a 72 to tie for fifth at 7 under with Mi Hyun Kim (71), Chie Arimura (70) and Mie Nakata (71).
VOLVO MASTERS: At Sotogrande, Spain, Justin Rose won the European Order of Merit, then finished off Simon Dyson and Soren Kjeldsen to win the Volvo Masters. Rose secured the Order of Merit by reaching a three-way playoff at Valderrama, where the Englishman rolled in a 12-foot putt at the second extra hole to win the season-ending tournament. Rose rallied after blowing a four-shot lead, finishing with a 3-over 74. Dyson shot a 70 and Kjeldsen had a 67. They tied at 1-under 283. Rose earned $4,276,062 in 12 tournaments, the fewest played by any champion in the tour's modern history. Els skipped the tournament.
SINGAPORE OPEN: At Singapore, U.S. Open champion Angel Cabrera birdied the last hole for a 1-over 72 and a one-stroke victory over Vijay Singh in the Singapore Open. Cabrera had an 8-under 276 total. Singh closed with a 67. Adam Scott, the 2005 and 2006 winner, shot a 71 to finish that at 3 under. Phil Mickelson was 8 over after a 79.