Andrew Novak (66) closes birdie-birdie for maiden Korn Ferry title




 

Andrew Novak birdied each of his final two holes to earn his first career Korn Ferry Tour victory at the LECOM Suncoast Classic.

Novak, 24, started the final round in Lakewood Ranch, Fla., one shot off the lead, and he was part of a crowded leaderboard as the tournament entered the closing stretch. But thanks in large part to birdies on Nos. 17 and 18, two of the seven hardest holes at Lakewood National GC, he closed with a 6-under 66. That left him at 23 under, one shot ahead of John Chin and two shots clear of Taylor Montgomery, both of whom closed with rounds of 64.

Former U.S. Amateur champ Peter Uihlein, who held a one-shot lead entering the final round, faded to a tie for 20th after a final-round 74.

Full-field scores from the LECOM Suncoast Classic

Novak's title aspirations appeared on life support when he made a triple bogey on the second hole of his third round, but he bounced back to birdie each of the next four holes en route to a 66 that set up Sunday's breakthrough. The win is Novak's third top-15 finish of the young season, and it moves him to No. 3 on the season-long points list - a position that virtually guarantees that he'll earn a PGA Tour card for the 2020-21 season.

Other notable finishes include former PGA Tour winner Robert Garrigus, who tied for 11th at 18 under, while veteran Jamie Lovemark a tie for 17th. Also among the group at T-17 was former Masters champ Mike Weir, who will be eligible for the PGA Tour Champions when he turns 50 in May and closed with a 7-under 65.

The circuit will now take a week off before heading to Mexico for the El Bosque Mexico Championship.

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