Jason Dufner takes prize in PGA CareerBuilder Challenge

Dufner's scored his fourth win on the PGA Tour and first since the 2013 PGA Championship. Courtesy photo.
Dufner’s scored his fourth win on the PGA Tour and first since the 2013 PGA Championship. Courtesy photo.

American Jason Dufner parred the second hole of a sudden death playoff to defeat David Lingmerth of Sweden and win the $5.8 million CareerBuilder Challenge today at the TPC Stadium Course at PGA West.

Lingmerth began the round in fourth place, five shots behind Dufner, but forced the playoff by shooting a bogey-free seven-under-par 65, while Dufner shot a two-under-par 70 with four birdies and bogeys on the par-four second hole and par-three 13th.

Dufner sank a seven-foot par putt on the first hole of the playoff, which was held on the 18th hole, to force a second playoff hole.

Lingmerth put his approach shot on the second playoff hole into the hazard.

“The rough is a little heavy in some spots and it grabbed my club a little bit more,” Lingmerth said. “It really wasn’t a bad swing, I don’t think. I should have probably choked up a little bit more on the grip, that would have probably… helped me not have the grass grab it so much, so it turned the ball over.

“It was really not a bad swing, just a small mistake that was very costly, so a little disappointing.”

Dufner two-putted for the victory worth $1.044 million.

The sun was setting when Dufner and Lingmerth played the second playoff hole.

“I was actually kind of cold,” Lingmerth said. “My hands were freezing.”

Lingmerth received $626,400. He tied for second in the 2013 edition of the tournament, then known as the Humana Challenge.

Americans Phil Mickelson, Andrew Loupe and Kevin Na tied for third at 21- under-par 267, four shots behind the leaders. They each received $301,600.

Former President Bill Clinton presented Dufner with the tournament’s Bob Hope Memorial Trophy. The late comedian’s name was part of the tournament’s title from 1965 through 2011.

Dufner called it “pretty neat” to receive a trophy from a former president.

Clinton’s foundation is a sponsor of the tournament officially known as the CareerBuilder Challenge in partnership with the Clinton Foundation.

The 28-year-old Lingmerth was seeking his second PGA Tour victory. He won last year’s Memorial Tournament.

Dufner was among four golfers sharing the lead at the end of the first round, held a one-shot lead after the second round and a two-shot lead after the third.

Lingmerth took a one-shot lead over Dufner when he birdied the par-five 16th hole. Dufner, who was playing one group behind Lingmerth, regained a share of the lead when he birdied the 16th.

Dufner kept a share of the lead when he was able to save par on the par- three 17th, despite having his drive bounce off the green into the rocks outlining the water hazard, later describing it as probably “one of the worst shots I’ve hit all week.”

“Today the wind was I think in a tougher spot,” Dufner said. “It seemed to be going a little right-to-left with some help with a right pin, so you got to take on some gamble.

“I tried to hit it in the middle of the fairway or in the middle of the green and hold on up and I kind of pulled it a little bit.”

Dufner’s chip from the rocks hit the flagstick and rolled 13 inches from the hole.

“To be honest, I kind of thought it might have gone in,” Dufner said. “It hit the pin pretty hard right in the middle.”

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