A fifth top-10 finish since May saw Seamus Power move up to a career high 70th in the world rankings as he missed out on a second PGA Tour title of the season at the RSM Classic, finishing seven shots adrift of winner Talor Gooch.
The West Waterford man started the final day at Sea Island Resort in Georgia three behind Gooch but, chasing the American late in his round, a costly tee shot which found the water led to a double-bogey at the 16th.
That meant he would eventually finish in a share of fourth at 15-under after a two-under 68, banking $288,000 though Power will undoubtedly be frustrated he couldn’t mount more of a challenge at the top.
Instead, Gooch was able to lift his first PGA Tour title as he closed out his third round lead with a fine six-under 64 to reach 22-under, which saw him over the line with ease, three shots clear of runner-up Mackenzie Hughes.
The Canadian put up a spirited fightback, shooting an eight-under 62 to finish 19-under, but ultimately Gooch had too much of a buffer to be caught.
The 30-year-old was bogey free on his final day to close things out in style, starting strongly with birdies on the second and fourth to extend his advantage and then rattling in four birdies in the first six holes of his back nine.
Even though Hughes battled back with four birdies in his final six holes to post a competitive total, with Sebastián Muñoz having wrapped up third place at 18-under, Gooch parred his way in to make sure there would be no late drama.
“First time winning on the PGA Tour, to finish the season off like I just did, it’s a dream come true,” said Gooch, who had two top-fives in his previous five events before winning.
“I thought about these types of interviews my whole life sitting in the showers, giving my winning speech, my winning interview, so it’s an absolute dream come true.
“I turned pro in 2014 and I didn’t get through Q-School until 2016, and so I had a couple years – let’s just say lean years – where there’s a lot of doubt that would creep in. I had to learn how to believe in myself in some tough times.
“I was able to get through Q-School and get to the Web.com in 2017. Then got my card after one year and just started my fifth season on Tour. It’s been a journey for sure and I wouldn’t have it any other way, though.”
While Gooch was on his way to winning the title, Tyler McCumber was finishing off with a putt for a 59, however when it slid by he would instead settle for an outstanding 10-under 60 that saw him share fourth with Power, Cameron Smith and Tom Hoge at 15-under.
Power does have the consolation of moving up to 70th in the world rankings after this result, edging closer to the top-50 which would earn him lucrative invites to events such as the Masters and the World Golf Championships.
He will be greatly encouraged by his performances this year, though, and the hope is that he can carry that momentum into 2022, starting with a first trip of his career to the Sentry Tournament of Champions in Hawaii in January.
- Full scoring HERE
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