Campbell earns third career win at Hope
PALM DESERT, Calif. -- Chad Campbell let one slip away a week ago.
Not this time.Jeff Gross/Getty ImagesCampbell broke par in all five rounds at the Bob Hope.
Campbell, who hadn't had much success in the past when he went into the final day with a lead, shot a scrambling 71 Sunday to hold off Scott Verplank and Jesper Parnevik and win the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic.
"It's nice to come back after the way things worked out last Sunday, to come out today and get the job done," said Campbell, who was tied with David Toms for the lead in Hawaii last week before shooting a closing 70 to Toms' winning 65.
Campbell took the Hope lead in the second round of the 90-hole tournament and never gave it up, although Verplank briefly drew even early in the closing round.
Campbell's 1-under round put him at 25-under 335, three shots in front of Verplank and 2000 Hope champion Parnevik.
Verplank, one stroke behind Campbell beginning the day, had a 73 and Parnevik made a charge with a 67 during a round when gusty wind in the afternoon made the new Classic Course at Northstar tricky.
"None of us played any good, to be honest," Verplank said. "The wind picked up, the golf course changes immensely. I was just a little quick. I don't know whether it was the wind or nerves or whatever it was."
John Huston finished fourth with a 68 and 339 total. Former Hope winners Phil Mickelson and Mike Weir tied for fifth with John Senden. Mickelson, the tournament champion in 2002 and 2004, shot a 71 to finish at 19 under along with Weir (70) and Senden (73).
It was the sixth time Campbell had entered the closing day of a tour event either tied for the lead or alone at the top -- and only the second time he came out with a victory. He finished in a second-place tie with Rory Sabbatini behind Toms in Hawaii.
Campbell's closing round in the Hope bore little resemblance to his steady play the first four days, when he shot 63-66-68-67 and had only two bogeys.
His final round included a double-bogey, two bogeys, three birdies, an eagle and several scrambling pars.
After coaxing in a 32-foot eagle putt on No. 9 to go to 26 under and open a four-shot lead, Campbell hit into rocks and high grass alongside the fairway on the par-4, 474-yard 10th. He wound up with a double-bogey 6 to lose the two shots he picked up a hole earlier.
After pars over the next two holes, Campbell "salvaged" a bogey on No. 13 after hitting his tee shot into the water and his next shot into a bunker. He recovered by hitting from the sand to within 6 feet of the pin, then sinking the putt for a 5 on the par-4, 399-yard hole.
"The 6-iron I hit out of the bunker was what saved the whole day," he said. "To be able to hit that shot, make the putt and go to the next hole, hit it right down the middle and make a birdie, two birdies in a row.
"To do that just gives me a lot more confidence in final rounds."
Verplank, meanwhile, was having troubles of his own and, after being tied with Campbell on No. 7, never caught him again.
Parnevik, who was 5 under and far back in the field after three rounds, was pleased with the way his game came around. He said he had been putting so poorly that he didn't even think he was going to make the cut going into Saturday, but he shot a fourth-round 62 to make it.
"So it was amazing to actually have a chance to win today," he said. "I was praying for the wind to be here today, which it actually got up on the back nine. I thought that was my only chance."
The only other time Campbell held onto a lead over the final 18 holes was in the 2003 Tour Championship. His only other tour victory was the 2004 Bay Hill Invitational.
The Hope tournament was a pro-am for the first 72 holes, with the players rotating among four courses.Notes:
The Chrysler Group and the tournament agreed in principle to extend the contract as title sponsor of the event for four years, to 2010. Chrysler has been associated with the tournament since Bob Hope put his name on it in 1965, and Chrysler became the title sponsor in 1986. ... Campbell became only the third player since 1997 to lead after four rounds and win the Hope. Mickelson did it in 2004 and Joe Durant in 2001.
Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press
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