Monday, June 24, 2024

Ortiz wins LIV Golf Houston, Aussie Herbert joint-sixth

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It was Ortiz’s first victory on the Saudi-funded league and second big win in the Houston area.

The Mexican closed with a five-under 67 to beat Poland’s Adrian Meronk by a stroke at the Golf Club of Houston. Ortiz won the 2020 Houston Open at Memorial Park for his lone PGA Tour title.

Ortiz, who made six birdies, including three in a row on holes 6-8, sunk a chip for bogey on No.18 to hang on for the victory.

“Don’t chunk it because people (were) going to get mad at me, so I just made sure I did,” he said.

“No kidding, I’ve been working on those chips. It’s easy right now. I don’t even know what I did. It was an easy chip.

“But I love playing here. Obviously, Texas treats me well. It’s my adopted home state. I’m just happy to get it done again in Houston.

“I think there was a switch there on 15 that I made birdie, he made bogey, and I just knew that I had to par in pretty much, and it was mine. That’s what I was trying to do.”

Champion: Carlos Ortiz of Mexico has no problem with Houston. PHOTO: Getty Images

Part of a four-way tie for the lead entering the day, the 33-year-old Ortiz finished at 15-under 201.

Meronk, who joined LIV Golf this year, shot a 68 to help Cleeks GC win the team title.

Area resident Patrick Reed (68) tied for third at 12 under with Spain’s David Puig (69), while Sergio Garcia (68) was fifth at 11 under.

Lucas Herbert enjoyed his best individual finish in a LIV event with a tie for sixth. PHOTO: Getty Images

Herbert had fives birdies in his third and final round, but bogeys on the 11th and 18th left him tied with India’s Anirban Lahiri (68) and Northern Ireland’s Graeme McDowell (69) at 10 under.

Marc Leishman (70) at four under, Matt Jones (73) one under and Cam Smith (80) four over helped the all-Australian Ripper GC team finish 10th.

On Saturday, Jon Rahm withdrew after playing just six holes because of an infected left foot, leaving his status in doubt for the US Open next week at Pinehurst No.2.

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