Striking Gold: LSU golf alumni Burns, Toms achieve distinction with respective championships

Former LSU standout Sam Burns displays his trophy Sunday after winning the World Golf Championships-Dell Technologies Match Play. PHOTO COURTESY: LSU athletics

Sam Burns, a former LSU standout and the 2017 National Player of the Year, claimed his fifth career PGA Tour title on Sunday when he soundly beat Cameron Young, 6 & 5 in the championship match of the World Golf Championships-Dell Technologies Match Play at the Austin Country Club.

David Toms, a two-time All-American at LSU in 1988 and 1989, also won on Sunday on the PGA Champions Tour, winning the Galleri Classic in Rancho Mirage, California.

Burns advanced to the championship match after beating the World’s No. 1 ranked player in Scott Scheffler in the semifinals on Sunday. Burns and Scheffler’s match had to go three extra holes with Burns winning the match with a birdie on the third playoff hole.

Burns reached the semifinals with a 3 & 2 win over Mackenzie Hughes in the quarterfinals. He topped Patrick Cantlay, the World’s No. 4-ranked player, 2 & 1 in the round of 16.

The win is the biggest of Burns’ PGA Tour career and comes just two weeks before the Masters, which will be held April 6-9 in Augusta, Georgia. The win was worth $3.5 million dollars from the elevated PGA and final World Golf Championship event.

Burns is now just one of six players with five victories in the last three years.

Toms, who entered the final round with a one-stroke advantage, looked like he may have a challenge in the final round from Retief Goosen, who played much earlier in the round and moved up to 12-under after a round of 65.

But Toms had five birdies on the back nine to shoot is own 65 and finished 54 holes at 16-under 200 on the Mission Hills Country Club course which for decades was the home of an LPGA major.

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