Russell Henley posts incredible closing 65 to win Shell Houston Open, earn Masters invite

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Russell Henley posts incredible closing 65 to win Shell Houston Open, earn Masters invite

PGA Tour

Russell Henley posts incredible closing 65 to win Shell Houston Open, earn Masters invite

Here is a recap of Sunday’s final round of the 2017 Shell Houston Open at the Golf Club of Houston in Humble, Texas:

Leaderboard

WINNER: Have a day, Russell Henley. The 27-year-old made 10 birdies in a scorching 7-under 65 to close the Shell Houston Open. Henley began the day four shots back, but it felt like he controlled the whole round. Henley actually birdied his final two holes of his third round and carried over that form to Sunday. Final-round tee times were moved up due to expected inclement weather, and Henley pounced. He birdied Nos. 2 and 4 but really challenged 54-hole leader Sung Kang with a string of three straight birdies from Nos. 6-8. Now 5 under for the round and 18 under overall, Henley had moved into a one-shot lead over Kang. Henley’s powers seemed to dissipate with a double bogey at the ninth. But he followed that with a birdie and added on another streak of three more from Nos. 13-15. By that point, he was 20 under and three ahead. Henley added an exclamation point by rolling in a 15-footer for birdie at 17 to move to 21 under and four ahead. He would close with bogey to finish 20 under and seal a three-shot win. Henley had a crack record at this event (top-7 finishes in last three Shell Houston Open starts coming in), but he had not won on the PGA Tour since the 2014 Honda Classic. This is Henley’s third PGA Tour win. The victory also earns him an invite to next week’s Masters. In three previous starts at the year’s first major, Henley missed the cut (2013), finished in a tie for 31st (2014) and placed solo 21st (2015).

JUST MISSED: A great week for Sung Kang, but there will certainly be disappointment. The 29-year-old had a six-shot 36-hole lead (a tournament record) and held steady Saturday to retain a three-shot margin ahead of the final round. But Henley’s onslaught was too much. Kang posted two birdies and two pars in a closing 72 to finish solo second at 17 under. Kang overall was 1 under on the weekend after going 16 under in the first 36 holes. Kang’s first PGA Tour win still eludes him, but this solo second marks his highest finish on the circuit.

SHOT OF THE DAY: How about a hole-in-one as your final shot of a 72-hole tournament? Unreal, Angel Cabrera.

QUOTABLE: “You never know what’s going to happen in this game.” – Henley in his winner’s press conference

CHIP SHOTS: Rickie Fowler makes it five finishes of T-16 or better in a row as he placed T-3 at 16 under. Fowler won last month’s Honda Classic, too. He finished at that 16-under number alongside Luke List. … Daniel Berger placed solo fifth at 13 under. … Rafa Campos, the native Puerto Rican who contended at last week’s Puerto Rico Open, placed seventh at 11 under. … Jon Rahm made it another top 10 with a tie for 10th at 9 under. … Phil Mickelson finished the week in a tie for 55th at even par.

UP NEXT: Not much, only the year’s first major. We’re kidding, of course! The Masters is now upon us and it’s a huge thrill! We have a crack staff onsite at Augusta National for all the action. Follow @GolfweekBabz, @GolfweekBRomine, @GolfweekCasey, @GolfweekNichols and @Dan_Kilbridge all week for insight and updates from Augusta. And go to Golfweek.com and our Facebook and Twitter feeds to keep up with all of our content and reactions from the Masters. This is exciting!

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