Finau wins second straight PGA Tour title

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Tony Finau has changed the conversation about him in less than a calendar year.

The American ran away with the Rocket Mortgage Classic on Sunday at Detroit Golf Club to become the first player in three years to win consecutive PGA Tour events in the regular season. He closed with a five-under 67 for a five-shot victory and a tournament-record 26-under 262 total.

It was his fourth career victory, and third title in 11-plus months. Finau began his stretch of success last August at The Northern Trust, where he had his first victory in five years and 142 PGA Tour starts.

"I'm proud of the way I've fought through adversity in my career," Finau said.

"They say a winner is just a loser who kept trying, and that's me."

Finau ended a drought in Detroit, winning for the first time in six attempts when he had or shared the 54-hole lead in a PGA Tour event.

And, he did it easily.

Taylor Pendrith (72), Patrick Cantlay (66) and rookie of the year front-runner Cameron Young (68) tied for a distant second.

"I wasn't that close ... Tony put on a show," Young said.

Cam Davis (67) was the best-placed Australian in a tie for 14th at 15 under. Jason Day (66) was a further shot back while Adam Scott (65) finished 10 under.

With Finaul's sixth birdie at No.17 and a closing par, he broke Nate Lashley's tournament record of 25 under set in 2019 during the inaugural PGA Tour event.

The PGA Tour will close the regular season at the Wyndham Championship beginning Thursday. Players on the bubble will have one last shot to finish in the top 125 of the FedEx Cup standings to earn a spot in the playoffs and a full card next season.

Finau and Pendrith started Sunday tied after a third round that seemed like match play, and a potential Detroit duel turned into a dud.

The 31-year-old PGA Tour rookie from Canada hit an errant tee shot on the second hole to the right in the rough behind tree branches and pulled a nine-foot putt on the hole to lose the lead for good.

Cantlay, world No.4, had his third straight round in the mid-60s after opening with a 70. Young bounced back from a first-round 71 to finish second for the fifth time.

"I'd be lying if I said it was easy to just watch other people win," Young said.

"Obviously, today Tony beat us all by a lot."

Finau began to pull away from Pendrith with an 11-foot birdie putt at the 4th and a tap-in for birdie at the 7th.

A par-saving, 11-foot putt at No.9 was pivotal.

"When that lipped in, that gave me some momentum and then I was in control of the golf tournament," Finau said.

Finau was the 3M Open winner last week in Minnesota, where he rallied from five strokes back to win by three. Brendon Todd was the last PGA Tour player to win two straight in the regular season, pulling off the feat in 2019.

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