ORLANDO, Fla. Tiger Woods made a 25-foot birdie putt on the final hole Sunday to win the Arnold Palmer Invitational by one shot, extending his PGA Tour winning streak to five and keeping intact a perfect season in golf.
In his biggest challenge since this streak began seven months ago, Woods outlasted 45-year-old Bart Bryant and won with a birdie putt on the final hole for the first time in seven years. He turned and slammed his cap to the ground, letting out a roar to celebrate his 64th career victory, tying Ben Hogan at No. 3 on the PGA Tour list.
Bryant sat in the scoring trailer and listened. "I heard a big cheer, and I got up and left," he said. "That's why he's Tiger Woods."
Palmer stood behind the 18th green with thousands of sun-baked fans who have come to expect nothing less from Woods. The King smiled and nodded his head, a royal approval of a captivating conclusion at Bay Hill. Not since Bay Hill in 2001 has Woods won a PGA Tour event with a birdie on the 72nd hole to win by a shot. Woods finished at 10-under 270 and earned $1,044,000.
Woods closed with a 4-under 66 and won Bay Hill for the fifth time in his career, becoming the first player in PGA Tour history to win four tournaments at least five times. Next up is the CA Championship at Doral, which he has won six times.
LPGA TOUR: At Huxquilucan, Mexico, Sweden's Louise Friberg won her first LPGA Tour title in her fourth career start, closing with a 7-under 65 for a one-stroke victory over Taiwan's Yani Tseng in the MasterCard Classic. Friberg, 10 strokes behind Ji-Young Oh at the start of play Sunday after opening rounds of 72 and 73, had an eagle, six birdies and a bogey in the 65 the best score by three strokes in the final round.
CHAMPIONS TOUR: At Santa Clarita, Calif., Zimbabwe's Denis Watson won the AT&T Champions Classic for his third Champions Tour title in two seasons, beating Loren Roberts with a birdie on the third hole of a playoff Sunday at Valencia. Watson, the 2007 Senior PGA Championship and Boeing Classic winner, birdied the par-5 18th in regulation for a 7-under 65 and a share of the top spot with Roberts (70) and Brad Bryant (72) at 7-under 209. Bryant was eliminated on the second extra hole. Watson set up his winning putt with a 9-iron form 152 yards to 20 inches on the par-4 10th.