FedEx Cup Playoffs: Barclays 2016
Farmingdale, N.Y – The day at A.W Tillinghast’s Black course at Bethpage State Park started out with Rickie Fowler holding a one-shot lead over Patrick Reed in the 2016 edition of the Barclays Championship (the first playoff event of the FedEx Cup Playoffs). Both players would secure a spot on the U.S Ryder Cup squad with a win, but it was Fowler who blinked first.
For Fowler, it was an opportunity lost. He was on auto pilot through his first 64 holes of the championship, having made only one bogey on one of the toughest layouts in America. He had complete command of his game. On the back nine, his driver betrayed him with bad misses left. Bogeys at the eleventh & fifteenth and a crucial double bogey on the sixteenth was fatal to any hopes of winning or securing an automatic spot to Hazeltine. His wild tee shot with an iron on the eighteenth added insult to injury and brought a four over par 39 on the inward side for a final round 74 and a tie for 7th at 6 under par. For Patrick Reed, it was a story of patience.
After a three-putt at the par 3 third, Reed settled down with a near eagle that led to a tap-in birdie at the fourth, a chip in birdie at the fifth, and a routine birdie at the par 5 seventh. After turning in 34, Reed made another birdie at the twelfth – building a three-shot lead midway through the back nine. Reed stumbled coming home as well, but that’s what a U.S Open course the pedigree of the Black is designed to do – punish any mistake. Bogey at the last was all he needed for a final round 70 and 9 under par total, to win by one over Sean O’Hair and Emiliano Grillo.
For Reed, it was his fifth career PGA Tour victory and his first since Kapalua in 2015. “To build a lead to come down the last couple was huge,” Reed said. “Especially around a place like this because those last holes are just so difficult.” Reed is now on top of the FedEx Cup Playoff standings.
The FedEx Cup Playoffs continue over the Labor Day weekend at TPC Boston.