Story By: Tim Hill
Photos By: Hal Jalikakik
Every year the Byron Nelson has continued to bring the excitement of the best PGA players to the Dallas area, and with the end of the AT&T Byron Nelson Classic at the TPC Four Seasons Las Colinas, todays finish was one of the best ways to send the tournament to its new home in 2018.
On Sunday, Billy Horschel did something special for the fans and for his caddie, fulfilling his promise from a few weeks ago in the Players and beating world No. 3 Jason Day on the first playoff hole to claim the AT&T Byron Nelson, his first victory since winning the TOUR Championship and the FedExCup in 2014. It ended unexpectedly and abruptly, with Day missing a 4-foot par putt on the 18th hole that would have extended the playoff after both players finished at 12 under in regulation.
“I was never a fan of this course,” Horschel said, “Now I am and I won — and I don’t want to leave.”
“Listen, I’ve missed a short putt not too long ago to lose a playoff,” said Horschel, who missed a 2-foot par putt to fall out of a five-man playoff at the RSM Classic in November. “I know the feeling. You always want to win with a birdie on the last hole. It’s the way the game of golf goes sometimes.”
Day, Horschel and James Hahn took turns atop the leaderboard throughout the entertaining final round. Hahn needed eagle at the par-4 18th to join the playoff and nearly pulled it off, lipping out his approach shot from 121 yards and tapping in for birdie to finish solo third at 11 under.
Controversy has followed Horschel at times due to his eccentric behavior and candid opinions. It’s why he’s remained a prominent name three years since his last win and throughout some rough stretches. Now he’s back in the spotlight for all the right reasons following his fourth Tour win.