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Ben Crane was an afterthought beginning Sunday's final round three strokes off the 54 hole lead. Crane wearing DryJoys Tour and Pure Touch Limited, started his final round with seven straight pars before switching his game into overdrive on the par-4 eight by making his first birdie of the day. He would follow the birdie on eight with three more birdies over the next three holes. A bogey on number 12 only momentarily slowed Crane, as he made four more consecutive birdies from 14 through 17 to enter a tie at the top of the leaderboard with the two time 2011 winner Webb Simpson (FJ ICON #52039).
Both players would complete 72 holes at 15 under par to force the 18th playoff of the year on the PGA Tour. Beginning the playoff both players had something to prove; Crane, to win his first tourney of 2011 and Simpson a possible PGA Tour money title. Crane made the first move hitting his approach shot into the par-4 18th to six feet. Simpson would respond, hitting a tricky greenside bunker shot into tap in range. Crane's birdie putt narrowly missed the hole and both players left with a par. Both players would find the green on the par-3 17th. Simpson would putt first, lagging his put to three feet. Playing more aggressively, Crane ran his putt five feet by the hole, leaving himself a tough putt for par, but poured it into the center of the cup putting the pressure on Simpson. With a short putt to extend the Playoff Simpson would miss making Crane the 2011 McGladrey Classic winner.
The affable Wisconsin native, Steve Stricker won the season opening Tournament of Champions at Kapalua with a final round of a four under par 69 to finish the tournament at 23 under par, four strokes clear of fellow FJ Staffers Webb Simpson and Jonathan Byrd.
Stricker was in style all week wearing the new FJ Performance Apparel and split saddle DryJoys Tour's. He was, also, in total control of his golf game, attacking the golf course in Saturday's second round. Stricker made eight birdies and an eagle to finish off the round with a ten under par 63. The blistering pace gave him a five shot lead over Webb Simpson and the field heading into the third round.
During the third round, Stricker struggled to make birdies early but did not give up any ground as he birdied the final four holes to retain the five stroke lead he had at the beginning of the day. Now heading into the final round with a comfortable lead, Stricker kept his head down and continued his steady play to close out the field for the victory. Stricker lead the field in overall putting, scrambling, bogey avoidance (making only 4 bogeys all week on the rugged Kapalua golf course), and one putt percentage.
This is Stricker's 8th PGA Tour win in the past 3 years, which is the most amongst any player on the PGA Tour.
FJ Wins, You Win - Click here to win the products worn by Steve Stricker during his dominating performance at Kapalua