Bernhard Langer fired a bogey-free 7-under 65 on Sunday to claim a six-shot victory at the SAS Championship, the regular season finale on the senior circuit.
The 61-year old German entered his final day at Prestonwood Country Club holding a share of a three-shot lead along with Gene Sauers.
Langer edged slightly ahead of Sauers after turning in 32, and then pulled away on the closing nine with gains on Nos. 10, 12, 14, and 17 en route to a three-day total of 22-under par.
“Really, everything,” said Langer, when asked about the key to his weekend. “I drove the ball very, very well, hit a lot of fairways, putted extremely well for me and made a lot of putts.
“Two of the days I hit my irons pretty close, which helps. It’s obviously a high percentage to make a 10-footer than it is to make a 30-footer.”
With the win, Langer finds himself in a familiar place heading into the three-event Charles Schwab Cup playoffs: atop the points standings.
Despite a final-hole double bogey, Scott Parel shot 65 to finish alone in second at 16 under, one clear of Jerry Kelly who closed with a 68. Tom Lehman was next at 13 under following a 71.
Sauers briefly pulled ahead of Langer with a birdie on the second hole, but after that it was mostly a struggle for the 2016 U.S. Senior Open champ, who finished his final 12 holes at 4-over par en route to 75. He fell into a tie for fifth-place alongside Miguel Angel Jimenez (68) at 12 under.
2018 SAS CHAMPIONSHIP
TOP 5: FINAL ROUND
Pos-Player-To Par (Today)
1. Bernhard Langer -22 (-7)
2. Scott Parel -16 (-7)
3. Jerry Kelly -15 (-4)
4. Tom Lehman -13 (-1)
5. Gene Sauers -12 (+3)
5. Miguel Angel Jimenez -12 (-4)
BERNHARD LANGER: BY THE NUMBERS
Through 54 holes
DRIVING: 271.5 yards (16th)
FAIRWAYS: 86.7%, 39/45 (2nd)
GREENS: 79.6%, 43/54 (7th)
PUTTING/GIR: 1.535 (1st)
SCORING: 23 Birdies, 30 Pars, 1 Bogey
VIDEO: STRESS-FREE BIRDIE
EXIT QUESTION FOR BERNHARD LANGER
Q: And I think a couple years ago or a few years back you mentioned something about looking back, look at the technology, making sure you’re in line with those things. Aside from fitness, technology has really helped a lot of golfers in many aspects of their game. Has that been true for your yourself?
BERNHARD LANGER: Yeah. I’m not as technical involved whatever as some of the guys are nowadays. I’m still old school. I use some clubs that are pretty old and that kind of stuff, but I don’t have, what do you call that thing in front of you, the computer that shows all the spin rate and distance.
I’m sure it’s good, I just didn’t grow up with it. I like using it every once in a while but I don’t use it every single day when I hit balls like Dustin Johnson does.
I’m not saying it’s bad, it’s probably beneficial. I just haven’t gone that way and I don’t know much about shafts and this and that. I try the odd club. If I like it, it goes in the bag. If not, the old stuff stays in. That’s how it’s been.