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Justin Thomas Beats Luke List in 1-Hole Playoff to Win Honda Classic 2018

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistFebruary 25, 2018

PALM BEACH GARDENS, FL - FEBRUARY 25:   Justin Thomas plays his tee shot on the third hole during the final round of the Honda Classic at PGA National Resort and Spa on February 25, 2018 in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

Justin Thomas beat Luke List in the first playoff hole to win the Honda Classic Sunday.

It was a jumbled leaderboard for most of the day, but both players closed strong to finish at eight strokes under par through 72 holes at Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. He followed up his Round 4 score of 68 with a birdie in the sudden-death playoff to secure the victory.

PGA TOUR @PGATOUR

EIGHT wins for @JustinThomas34 at age 24! He's won @TheHondaClassic in a playoff! 🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆🏆 #QuickHits https://t.co/bm679a7VRq

The win was the American's second of the 2017-18 season as he remains right on track to continue his dominance from last year.

                 

Final Leaderboard

1. Justin Thomas (-8)

2. Luke List (-8)

3. Alex Noren (-7)

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4. Tommy Fleetwood (-6) 

T5. Byeong Hun An (-4)

T5. Webb Simpson (-4)

7. Jamie Lovemark (-3)

T8. Emiliano Grillo (-2)

T8. Sam Burns (-2)

T8. Kelly Kraft (-2)

11. Dylan Frittelli (-1)

12. Tiger Woods (E)

Full results available at PGATour.com.

    

Webb Simpson and Tommy Fleetwood earned shares of the lead late but fell off as the round progressed, leaving only a few players in the hunt for a title.

Alex Noren made his move with birdies on No. 14 and No. 16, including this long putt to put him in the share of the lead:

PGA TOUR @PGATOUR

It's getting LOUD at @TheHondaClassic! Alex Noren from 35 feet! #QuickHits https://t.co/rfYgOYrTfk

He entered the clubhouse first at seven under, although List and Thomas had another hole to move ahead. They took advantage with several excellent shots to earn birdies on the 72nd hole to reach eight under and force a playoff:

PGA TOUR @PGATOUR

We're going to a playoff! @JustinThomas34 and Luke List birdie the 72nd hole at @TheHondaClassic! #QuickHits https://t.co/CsDA0sYRXD

The duo repeated the 18th hole, and Thomas came through with another birdie for the win. 

Justin Ray of Golf Channel noted the company he joined with his latest victory:

Justin Ray @JustinRayGC

Only 3 players in the last 30 years have had 8 or more PGA Tour wins before age 25: Tiger Woods (24), Jordan Spieth (11) and Justin Thomas (8).

Tiger Woods continues to make his way back toward contention in his third official PGA event since his latest back injury, putting together by far his best showing.

After missing the cut at the Genesis Open last week, he came through with a consistent week that saw him play the weekend and finish 12th. PGA Tour and Ray highlighted some of the impressive statistics for the tournament:

PGA TOUR @PGATOUR

70-71-69-70. Ranks this week ... • Proximity: 1st • Driving distance: 2nd • Scrambling: T11 • SG: Putting: 18th • Driving accuracy: T45 @TigerWoods' week is complete. https://t.co/Uy34UuLHwx

Justin Ray @JustinRayGC

Tiger Woods finished with an average proximity to the hole of 29'3", which is currently more than 2-and-a-half feet better than anyone else in the field.

Woods was as low as three strokes under par Sunday until a double bogey on 15 and bogey on 16 ruined his round. The "Bear Trap" of hole Nos. 15-17 were a major issue all week for the superstar, as ESPN's Michael Collins noted:

Michael Collins @ESPNCaddie

I hope Tiger Woods doesn't have a hunting license because he's gonna want to go on a bear hunt after this week's travails thru the Bear Trap. Tiger just three putted for bogey at the par four 16th dropping him from -3 to Even par in two holes. https://t.co/hA5ylp70g8

According to Bob Harig of ESPN, he was eight over for the tournament on the three holes despite finishing even overall.

Still, he wasn't quite as good as the top performers in this event, as Thomas brought home yet another title in his young career.

Players will be looking for a big payout next weekend at the WGC-Mexico Championship with a $10 million purse.

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