It may be an unofficial money event on the US PGA Tour, but a win is a win for Steve Stricker and Sean O’Hair, neither of whom have won since 2012. They ended their droughts on Sunday with a better ball eight-under 64 to finish at 26-under 190 and win the QBE Shootout by two shots at Tiburon Golf Club in Naples, Florida.
After setting Tiburon’s Gold Course ablaze with a 15-under 57 in a two-man scramble on Friday, Stricker and O’Hair came back to earth with a second-round 69 in a modified alternate shot format. That opened the door for the Shane Lowry-Graeme McDowell team, who entered the final round in a tie for the lead with Stricker and O’Hair.
Lowry and McDowell got off to a fast start, making birdies on four of their first seven holes, which briefly gave them a two-stroke lead. Stricker and O’Hair immediately closed that gap, holing birdies at the eighth and ninth holes to match Lowry and McDowell’s front nine four-under 32. From there they never looked back, closing the door with a back nine four-under 32 that featured an eagle at the par-5 17th.
“We just really gelled well together,” Stricker said. “With his length the first day, getting some clubs into the greens, some short irons for me, we just fed off that first day quite a bit. We felt comfortable with one another.”
It’s the second time Stricker and O’Hair have won the event, but the first as a team. Stricker won in 2009 with Jerry Kelly, and O’Hair earned the victory in 2012 with Kenny Perry. O’Hair, a four-time tour winner, has not won an official event since the 2011 RBC Canadian Open, while Stricker hasn’t won since the 2012 Sentry Tournament of Champions.
Lowry and McDowell’s final-round six-under 66 brought their total to 24-under 192 and was good enough for solo second. The Brian Harman-Pat Perez team finished in solo third at 22-under 194.
Lexi Thompson and Tony Finau posted a final-round six-under 66 to finish at 21-under 195 in a tie for fourth.