March 22, 2022

Sam 'Burns the Field' at the Valspar Championship

Sam 'Burns the Field' at the Valspar Championship

Sam Burns shot a final round 69 on Sunday to win his second straight Valspar Championship in a two-hole playoff over Davis Riley to capture his third PGA Tour win and jump into the top 10 in the world.

Burns continued his strong play through the Florida swing shooting all four rounds in the 60s.  His love affair with the Cooperhead course at Innisbrook is apparent as his last eight rounds have been in the 60s.

Burns credits caddie Travis Perkins for keeping him patient and consistent, “Travis did a great job keeping me focused and patient all week.” 

After a final round 76 last week at The Players Championship, Burns admitted he struggled with his swing and patience calling in his long-time swing coach Brad Pullin for an emergency workout.  Burns' success at the Cooperhead course is no shock as his four-round total of 267 matches last year's winning mark.

Burns' 32-foot birdie putt on the second playoff hole was bitter-sweet as his long-time friend Davis Riley was faced with a difficult chip to tie.  As for Riley, some second-place finishes are better than others.  Riley received $850,200 and 300 Fed Ex Cups points for his efforts and all but locks up his PGA Tour card for the 2023 season. 

Riley, a two-time winner on the Korn Ferry Tour during the overlap season is not your typical rookie on the PGA Tour.  Riley was the victim of the Covid combined 2020-21 seasons on the Korn Ferry Tour as he was the leading money winner during the pandemic stricken seasons. 

Riley will gain valuable experience after bouncing back from a triple-bogey eight on the par 5 fifth hole birding three of his final 13 holes to force a playoff.

Burns has elected to withdraw from this week's Dell Technologies WGC at Austin, and not play in the Valero Texas Open in two weeks to rest his back and prepare for The Masters next month.