Janesville69.5°

Wagner rallies, wins Sony Open

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Associated Press
January 16, 2012
— Johnson Wagner worked so hard in the offseason that he told friends he was going to win early in the year, and he hardly wasted any time.

Wagner played bogey-free over the last 12 holes, a winning recipe on a tough day at Waialae, and closed with a 3-under 67 to pull away from a half-dozen contenders and win the Sony Open on Sunday.


As for that mustache getting so much attention? It’s going to stay for at least another week, and maybe until he gets to Augusta National in April. The third win of his career earned him an invitation to the Masters.


Wagner was among six players who had a share of the lead at some point in the final round. He was the only guy to stay there, and wound up with a two-shot win over Carl Pettersson, Sean O’Hair, Harrison Frazar and Charles Howell III.


Edgerton native Steve Stricker, who won last week’s season-opening Tournament of Champions in Hawaii, struggled to a final-round 74 and finished tied for 38th.


Coming into the year, Wagner only had seven top 10s in 139 starts on tour, including two wins. He opened the year at Kapalua with a tie for ninth, and then rallied from a two-shot deficit to win the Sony Open.


Frazar had the best chance. He had the outright lead briefly after a birdie at No. 10, then made pars the rest of the way for a 67. Pettersson overcame a double bogey on the second hole and finished with four birdies on the last six holes, also for a 67.


“My first top 10 as an American,” said Pettersson, the Swede who became an American citizen in the offseason.


O’Hair had a 30-foot eagle putt on the 18th hole that burned the edge. He had to settle for a 67, while Howell birdied his last hole for 69 to join the group tied for second.


Jeff Maggert and Matt Every, tied for the lead going into the last day, both collapsed early. Every was 4 over through six holes and rallied for a 72. Maggert missed a slew of short putts and shot 74.


Keegan Bradley hit 8-iron into about 6 feet for eagle on the par-5 ninth, creating a five-way tie for the lead at that point.


along with Maggert, Every, Frazar and Wagner.



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