PGA Tour rookie George McNeill,32, shot a five-under-par 67 here Sunday at the Frys.com Open at Las Vegas to win his first PGA Tour Title with a 23-under total of 264. Leading by five strokes entering the final round, McNeill pocketed $720,000 in a tournament without a top-20 player.
McNeill reeled off birdies at his first three holes. McNeill picked up four more strokes on the back nine, and only messed up with a bogey at the 18th tee.
“To even think about having to go back to tour school and to do this is pretty special,” said McNeill, whose previous best finish was a tie for third at the Canadian Open. “I feel good with everything that went on this week, and hopefully I can continue.”
D.J. Trahan his closest challenger, tried to apply some pressure, after opening his round with four straight birdies.
He picked up three more birdies, and just one bogey the rest of the way, but couldn’t overtake McNeill, who had a five-shot lead over Trahan and Garrigus when he started the day.
“In the sense that know I have a job for the next two years, that takes the pressure off,” McNeill said. “But there’s a lot of things on the tour and with my own game that I want to accomplish.”
“Obviously, everybody wants to win a major. I want to play in the Masters. I played in three US Opens, and I made the cut for the first time this year. But I want to play in the Masters and the British and the PGA. All the majors I’d love to play in. I know what a US Open is like, but I want to see what the others are like. There’s a lot of stuff I want to accomplish.”
Kent Jones and Robert Garrigus were tied for third at 15 under, both having played nine holes.
Rookie McNeill, who worked as an assistant club professional at Forest Country Club in Fort Myers, Florida a year ago, is bidding to become the 11th first-time winner on the 2007 PGA Tour.