Justin Thomas wins FedExCup title, $10 million bonus; Xander Schauffele wins Tour Championship.
USA TODAY Sports
ATLANTA — With six holes to play in last week’s BMW Championship, the third event of the FedExCup Playoffs, rookie Xander Schauffele’s chances of advancing to The Tour Championship seemed remote.
Seven days later he won the PGA Tour’s season finale.
With nerves of a veteran and a game that held up under the pressure in a battle against some of the game’s best players, Schauffele claimed his biggest win and largest paycheck Sunday when he birdied the 72nd hole at East Lake Golf Club to topple Justin Thomas by one shot. The two were tied before Schauffele two-putted from just off the green on the par-5 18th for the separating birdie, the final putt circling nearly the entire cup before dropping. He signed for a 2-under-par 68 to finish at 12 under and one clear of Thomas (66).
Thomas didn’t leave empty handed – his runner-up finish netted him the FedExCup and the $10 million bonus.
Russell Henley closed with a 65 to finish in a tie for third with Kevin Kisner (70). Paul Casey, who led by two after 54 holes, shot 73 and finished fifth.
“I thought it missed, that’s why I couldn’t even react to celebrate because I thought I just missed a two‑footer to win,” said Schauffele, 23, who added that the ball did a “ring-around-the-rosy” before dropping. “Still kind of in shock. … It’s just unreal.”
Making it to the Tour Championship didn’t seem realistic last Sunday when Schauffele was well outside the final cutline to get to East Lake. Just as he was starting to think about his offseason, he started putting up red numbers in the final round of the BMW Championship. With four birdies and an eagle in his last six holes at Conway Farms Golf Club north of Chicago, he moved to No. 26 in the FedExCup standings and gained entry into The Tour Championship.
The win was his second of the season and netted him $1.575 million. He also finished third in the FedExCup standings for another $2 million.
Thomas, 24, capped a dream season by leapfrogging Jordan Spieth to win the FedExCup and the $10 million bonus. While he fell one shot short of winning for the sixth time this season, his five wins, which included his first major title at the PGA…