Los Angeles – Jim Herman finally earned that elusive second PGA title of his career, winning the Barbasol Championship by one stroke over Kelly Kraft who stumbled to the finish with two bogeys down the stretch.
Herman’s only other win on the PGA Tour came three years ago when he captured the Houston Open by one shot over Henrik Stenson of Sweden.
“The last couple of years have been a little lean. A lot of missed cuts. I never lost hope. I always wanted to win a second one. I didn’t want to just have Houston,” said Herman, who shot a final round two-under 70.
He rolled in three birdies and had one bogey on Sunday to finish with a 26-under 262 total on the Keene Trace Golf Club course in Nicholasville, Kentucky.
Kraft was in contention on the back nine until he made back-to-back bogeys on 16 and 17 which left Herman needing just a par on the par-four 18 to take the title.
Herman cooly landed his approach on the green then two putted for the victory.
“If you are not making birdies you are going to be chasing,” Herman said. “We just held off everyone else. It was just the two of us coming down stretch he made a couple of mistakes.”
Kraft shot a 70 while Austria’s Sepp Straka made a late charge but finished two shots back in sole third place after a six-under 66.
Australia’s Matt Jones fired a 63 to finish in a tie for fourth with Austin Cook who had a 70.
The 41-year-old Herman is a former assistant pro at one of President Donald Trump’s golf courses in New Jersey. He says he played a round recently with the President and got some putting advice which he put to good use.
“He gets me going in the right direction with golf,” said Herman. “I took his advice and put a new putter in play.”
Some might find it odd that a PGA Tour player would be taking advice from Trump, who has been accused of inflating his golf accomplishments and his claims to have won 18 club championships have also been widely challenged by a number of golf experts.
But Herman said his former employer inspires him.
“He motivates me and puts me in a good spot,” Herman said.
Leading scores after Sunday’s final round of the PGA Tour’s Barbasol Championship in Nicholasville, Kentucky (par-72, USA unless noted):
262 – Jim Herman 65-65-62-70
263 – Kelly Kraft 65-67-61-70
265 – Sepp Straka (AUT) 68-68-63-66
266 – Matt Jones (AUS) 66-70-67-63, Austin Cook 67-66-63-70
267 – Martin Laird (SCO) 68-66-70-63, D.J. Trahan 65-67-69-66, Josh Teater 65-70-64-68
268 – Sebastian Munoz (COL) 65-68-66-69, Dominic Bozzelli 67-68-65-68
269 – Cameron Davis (AUS) 67-69-69-64, Denny McCarthy 67-69-67-66, Jose de Jesus Rodriguez (MEX) 68-65-69-67, Bill Haas 65-66-65-73
270 – Nick Taylor (CAN) 63-72-69-66, Kyle Jones 67-71-65-67, Ryan Blaum 68-70-65-67