Sahith Theegala and Tom Hoge became the first rookie team to win the QBE Shootout in eleven years at Tiburon Golf Club on Sunday.
Theegala held a 15-foot birdie putt on the 72nd hole to close with a ten-under 62 in the four ball format after a season that saw him finish second twice having led down the stretch.
Their closest challengers Ryan Palmer and Charley Hoffman both missed 12-foot birdie attempts to force a playoff as they settled for second after a round of 65.
Despite the shootout being an unofficial PGA Tour event, Theegala was delighted to finally taste victory.
“It’s nice to get a taste of victory because it’s so hard out here,” Theegala said.
“Yeah, it means a lot, it’s awesome. I think we got along really well out there. We’re both pretty chill and pretty level headed and don’t go to extreme either way and I think we just fed off each other’s energy. We were talking about it, I think our games are just really good for like partnering in this format.
“Tom was striping his irons yesterday and that was huge in alternate shot, he left me a lot of kick-ins for birdie, and I was able to get it down there a little bit further than I normally with my tee shots. It was just a good — it just worked out great. And definitely a little bit ham and egg today, which is great.
“Yeah, it was fun to be in contention,” Hoge mentioned. “I don’t care what you’re playing for, it’s always fun coming down the stretch there. I had a great week here this week. The weather’s perfect, I wanted to come back so I was like, we’ve got to get a win so hopefully we can come back in the future.”
In third were three-time winners Harris English and Matt Kuchar after a 62 while Max Homa and Kevin Kisner shot 63 to claim fourth.
World number one Nelly Korda impressed throughout the week and she paired with Denny McCarthy to finish fifth.
Theegala was carrying an injury from the first hole having pulled his oblique muscle.
“It’s funny, I was just telling my mom at breakfast, knocked on wood how healthy I’ve been for the last four, five years, and testament to my trainer, Josh. I literally have played every tournament seemingly 100 percent.
“First swing of the day on hole 1, I got under it and I knew I had to save it, and I saved it and I just pulled the left side of my, it’s like my oblique, I think. It’s not even my back really. I was trying to massage my back to free this up, but as I kept swinging and I think a little bit of adrenaline too, it got a lot better on the back nine.
“It feels much better now. I think it’s just something I need to take three or four days off and it’ll be good. But I’m going to take more than that off. Yeah, no worries at all.”