Clarke lands hole-in-one as Langer wins again on Champions Tour

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Clarke lands hole-in-one as Langer wins again on Champions Tour

Darren Clarke (Photo by Montana Pritchard/PGA of America via Getty images

A 16th hole ace was the highlight as Darren Clarke showed some early season form in grabbing a top-25 finish at the Cologuard Classic.

The 2011 Champion Golfer of the Year was two-under par on the day when stepping onto the 16th tee. His arrowed approach to the 180-yard obstacle bounced three times before hitting the flagstick and disappearing into the hole.

The excitement might have been all too much for the experienced campaigner who went on to bogey his penultimate hole but in signing for a three-under par 70, Clarke banked a little over $16,000 for his eight-under par 54-hole tally and tied 24th finish.

It was a familiar tale atop the board as Bernhard Langer took another step closer to the Champions Tour victory record by closing with an 8-under 65 to turn a four-shot deficit into a two-shot win in the Cologuard Classic.

Langer was flawless until the final hole at Tucson National. He made nine birdies in 17 holes to seize control Sunday, and he wound up two shots ahead of Woody Austin.

Langer won for the 41st time on the 50-and-older circuit. Hale Irwin holds the record with 45 victories, the last one coming in 2007.

That was the year Langer became eligible for the Champions. The 62-year-old German now has gone 14 consecutive seasons with at least one victory.

“I feel if I can play my best, I can win out there,” Langer said. “I can’t play at 80%. There’s too many good players nowadays that will lap me if I don’t play my best.”

He was good enough at Tucson National. Is he good enough to catch Irwin?

“I don’t think about it,” Langer said with a smile. “But I get reminded of it just about every week. One closer. We don’t live and die for records, but it’s fun to have a couple of them.”

Full scoring HERE

 

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