Being no stranger to the big stage, 2011 Fedex Cup Champion Bill Haas found victory at the always-daunting Congressional Country Club.
Beginning the day in a four way tie for first place, Haas knew he could not just back into the title. Haas made an early birdie at the second before giving a stroke back to par at the 5th.
Even par for the day heading into the 8th, Haas rolled in a 12 foot birdie to reach 8 under for the tourney. On the following hole, Haas hit another brilliant approach setting up another birdie. Then on the treacherous par 3 tenth, Haas rolled in his third consecutive birdie to take a two shot lead over fellow FJ Staffer Roberto Castro.
Castro stuck with Haas over the back nine but could not chip away at his lead. Haas led by at least two over the entire back nine and calmly rolled in a three foot putt for par at the last to take home the title.
"I just kept the ball in front of me,'' Haas said. "Nothing too crazy.'' Always humble, Haas adds a fifth PGA Tour win to his record and moves to 7th in the 2013 Fedex Cup race.
Haas relied on the lightweight stability of his FJ Sport golf shoes throughout the week.
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D.A. Points came back from a nearly three hour rain delay to win the Shell Houston Open by one stroke over Henrik Stenson and Billy Horschel.
Beginning the day one back, Points made six birdies in the first 14 holes, racing to a one stroke lead before play ceased. With a two year PGA Tour exemption and a Masters invitation on the line, D.A. made clutch pars on the final four holes including up and downs on the final two to post the clubhouse lead at 16 under. No one could catch the total, which gave D.A. his second PGA tour victory.
Points trusted his XPS-1 golf shoes and FJ Sciflex glove en route to his win, "The XPS-1 gives me the comfort and stability I need to play my best golf." Continuing, "The SciFlex fits my hand and is breathable for the hot conditions we always play in."
Seven different FJ styles graced the top 25 of the Shell Houston Open. D.A. opted for max stability of the XPS-1, second place finisher Billy Horschel went for fashion forward performance in FJ Icon MyJoys. Other players in the top 25, Ben Crane in Contour, Oothuizen in DryJoys Tour, Bill Haas in FJ Sport, Westwood in FJ Icon, and Wheatcroft in the M:Project. FJ truly has a shoe for every golfer and every swing.
Shell Houston Open Shoe Count
FJ - 64%
Nearest competitor - 18%
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2011 Fed-Ex cup Champion, Bill Haas claimed his first victory of the 2012 season at Riviera CC, home of the Northern Trust Open.
Haas, two strokes down at the beginning of the final round, shot a two under par 69 to claim the clubhouse lead. Haas would then wait for the players chasing him to finish up their final rounds, eventually leading to a three way tie at the top.
With a three man playoff set, Haas wearing FJ ICON would hit the fairway and narrowly miss the green on his approach. Haas, no stranger to pressure, calmly chipped his ball to within five feet of the hole and brushed in the par saving putt to extend the playoff.
Moving onto the short and treacherous driveable par 4 10th, Haas pulled a driver and went for the green only to end up long and left of the 312-yard heavily guarded hole. Instead of playing his upcoming pitch directly at the tricky pin, Haas played the percentage shot to the middle of the green where he could easily make a par. Haas then sized up the 43-footer with several feet of break and poured it straight into the center of the cup for birdie. Both of his playing competitors would fail to convert their birdies making Bill Haas the 2012 Northern Trust Open Champion.
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Bill Haas had experienced playoff heartbreak twice this season but in his third attempt at this year's Tour Championship, with so much at stake, Haas would prove his metal as a clutch performer. Beginning the day three strokes off of the 54 hole lead Haas shot a two under par 68 to force an all-FJ ICON playoff with Hunter Mahan. Haas wore a traditional all black FJ ICON shield tip (#52271) while Mahan opted for the latest FJ ICON pyramid saddle pattern in all white (#52114).On the first sudden death playoff hole Haas would miss the par three 18th green wide right. Now with little green to work and a fluffy lie Haas hit a high flop shot to the tucked pin leaving him a tricky downhill ten footer for par. Haas gently rolled the difficult putt right into the center of the cup. Mahan, not to be outdone also got up and down for par from the right green-side bunker. Moving on to the par four 17th hole, Haas drove his ball into a fairway bunker on the right side of the fairway. He then followed with a slightly pulled approach shot that trickled into the green-side hazard. With the ball sitting half submerged in water, ten plus feet below the green, Haas chose to play it. His result was spectacular, hitting a high, spinning shot that stopped no more then three feet from the hole. After Mahan narrowly missed his birdie bid, both players headed back to the 18th for the third time on Sunday. Haas rifled a four iron directly at the center of the green leaving him a slick downhill putt from the back fringe. Mahan hit his tee shot into the same bunker from earlier in the playoff, only this time he failed to get up and down for par. This left Haas with a four foot putt to win THE TOUR Championship and the season-long FedEx Cup crown. Haas stuck to his routine and rolled the putt in center cut for this third career PGA Tour victory. The combined victory's earned Haas a a five year Tour exemption and a $11.4 million dollar pay day.
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Bill Haas led wire to wire to win the Viking Classic by three strokes for his second victory of the year. Haas, who won the Bob Hope Classic earlier in the year for his first career title, struggled a bit on Sunday but had built a five shot cushion to start the day which was enough to hold off several fellow FJ players. He closed with an even par 72 on Sunday and finished the week with a 15-under 273 total. In addition to extending his PGA Tour exemption through 2013, Haas moved to no. 26 on the money and also earned spots in the Masters and the U.S. Open.
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Bill Haas (FJ ICON style #52054) made a short birdie putt on the 18th hole to earn his first PGA Tour victory at the Bob Hope Classic on Monday, edging fellow FJ players Matt Kuchar (MyJoys) and Bubba Watson (FJ golf shoes, SciFlex glove) by one stroke with a bogey-free 8-under 64. Haas becomes the third consecutive FJ player to win this season, joining Geoff Ogilvy (SBS Championship) and Ryan Palmer (Sony Open).
Haas was the last of the co-leaders to play the 18th, and an outstanding 3-iron approach from 206 yards allowed him to two-putt his way to a 30-under 330 finish. He also birdied the par three 17th hole.
“I’d been wanting to win from the first tournament I played, but it’s a process, and there’s a lot to it,” said Haas. “It’s special, but I don’t know if it’s a monkey off my back. I know how hard it was to win, and I’m grateful.”
After grinding through five rounds on four courses in the rain-delayed tournament, Haas couldn't celebrate until he made it through the last hole with his hands shaking and fingers going numb -- and at that point, he didn't even know his father Jay, the 1988 Hope Classic champion, had made it back from the Champions Tour event in Hawaii to watch him.
“It’s definitely neat that down the road, 22 years from now, we can look at both our names on the list here,” Bill Haas said. “I’m not trying to compare myself to him. He’s almost unreachable.”
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