PALM HARBOR, Fla. -- John Senden never imagined it would take more than seven years to win again. Even more surprising is how he won the Valspar Championship. Sunday at Innisbrook had all the trappings of a tournament that is survived more than it is won. Robert Garrigus, who started the final round with the lead, hit a tee shot that bounced off a lawn chair and wound up next to a tree, leading to a double bogey. Kevin Na, playing in the final group, missed a 3-foot putt and made a double bogey during a meltdown at the end of his front nine. Each mistake brought more players into the mix on the Copperhead course until at one point there were nine players separated by three shots with more than an hour to go and the treacherous "Snake Pit" stretch of three fearsome closing holes ahead. But thats where Senden seized control -- on the 16th hole, with a shot into the trees. In a three-way tie for the lead with Na and Scott Langley, Sendens tee shot was headed for a tiny forest when it smacked off a tree and left him an opening. "I got a pretty good break there with hitting the tree and dropping straight down," he said. "Then I hit a really good second shot to get in some sort of position near the green. Walking up to the shot, I just felt like, OK, I need to hit a really good shot here to get this up-and-down and try to have a chance to do something down the stretch. "I thought it came out well," he said. "It disappeared. Amazing." He chipped in from 70 feet for birdie to break the tie. He made a 20-foot birdie putt on the next hole to stretch his lead to two shots. And when he could hear Na made a birdie putt on the 17th hole behind him to cut the lead to one, the 42-year-old Australian hit one might have been his best putt of the day that didnt go in. It was a 40-foot putt that went up a ridge and moved slightly to the right, and then went down the slope and sharply to the left. Senden hit it so well that he only had a few inches left to tap in for his par and a 1-under 70. All that was left was to wait to see if Na could make birdie and force a playoff. Na caught a flier out of the first cut of rough with a pitching wedge to 40 feet, and the birdie putt didnt have a chance. He closed with a 72 to finish second, his best result on the PGA Tour since he won at Las Vegas at the end of 2011. "I knew coming into today that I felt like if I shot par I had a chance to win," Na said. "If I break par, I felt like it was going to be a lock." Senden finished at 7-under 277, the third straight event on the Florida swing where the winning score was single-digit under par. He wasnt thinking about all the perks that go along with winning, though he was clear on one thing -- he wont have the week off the second week in April. Senden earned a spot in the Masters, always the biggest major for Australians, even with Adam Scott winning last year. He also locked up a berth in the PGA Championship, two World Golf Championships the rest of the year (at Firestone and Shanghai) and Kapalua to start next year. Its a good feeling for Senden, one that he had forgotten. His only other PGA Tour win was in 2006 at the John Deere Classic. Senden capped off that year by winning the Australian Open at Royal Sydney. "Its something that makes you believe more than you can get it done again, rather than just once and thinking back then in 06, Was it a flash in the pan? I dont believe so," Senden said. "But now it makes me feel (validated) from the John Deere." Scott Langley, hitting superb shots to account for the wind, didnt hit a green over the final four holes and still managed to save par on three of them. The one bogey on the 16th hole, when he went long of the green from the middle of the fairway, proved costly. Langley and David Hearn were the only players who shot par or better all four days. Langley closed with a 70 to finish alone in third. Garrigus made two double bogeys on his way to a 41 on the back nine. He also went 26 holes without a birdie dating to the third round Saturday, when he led by as many as four shots. By the time he made birdie at No. 14, it was too late. Garrigus, now 0-4 when he has at least a share of the 54-hole lead, closed with a 75. He tied for fourth with Will MacKenzie (69) and Luke Donald (70). "I know what Im not going to be doing next year -- fishing," said Garrigus, who figures he caught three dozen large-mouth bass this week. "Im going to bring a damn chain saw out to the place and cut a few trees down. I kept hitting it behind them all day. I just didnt get any breaks." Pittsburgh Penguins Gear . -- Manchester United thrilled a record crowd with a brilliant opening goal -- and even Cristiano Ronaldos unexpected entrance proved futile for Real Madrid. Cheap Penguins Jerseys . - Tiger Woods only made it through 10 holes Thursday — this time because of the weather, not his back. https://www.cheappenguinsjersey.com/ . Five years ago, Nestor and Zimonjic beat the American twins to win the title. But the Bryans, the worlds top-ranked team, needed 74 minutes to earn the victory Saturday as both Nestor and Zimonjic lost serve in the second set. Pittsburgh Penguins Store . Traditional contenders Brazil, Greece and Turkey drew the other three spots to complete the 24-team field for this summers tournament in Spain, basketball governing body FIBA announced Saturday at its meeting in Barcelona. Custom Pittsburgh Penguins Jerseys . Trailing by a goal after 20 minutes of play, Joe Pavelski responded with three goals and an assist as the Sharks snapped a two-game losing skid with a 5-2 victory over the struggling Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday. PHILADELPHIA -- In a change of recent fortune, luck was on Cole Hamels side this time. Wil Nieves doubled and had three hits and Hamels got a victory when he wasnt at his best as the Philadelphia Phillies defeated the Seattle Mariners 4-3 on Wednesday. Chase Utley had the go-ahead RBI and Ben Revere and Marlon Byrd drove in runs for the Phillies, who won for just the third time in their last nine. Kendrys Morales homered for Seattle, which was bidding to move 12 games over .500 for the first time since 2007. The Mariners, who are battling Detroit for the ALs second wild-card spot, lost for just the third time in 10 games. Hamels (7-6) snapped his string of seven straight starts going at least seven innings, but picked up the win in a rare reversal of fortunes. The left-hander entered Wednesday with the eight-best ERA in baseball but there were more than 100 pitchers with more victories. Hamels didnt have his best stuff against the Mariners, giving up three runs on nine hits with four strikeouts, one walk and two wild pitches, but he got just enough run support and a lift from the Philadelphia bullpen. "Hes pitched outstanding," Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg said. "He was due for a win like this with not his best stuff and his teammates picking him up. Hes on a long roll of good games and some of them without the run support. He was due for one today." Hamels said: "I think the team definitely played really well with getting the runs in when we needed to." Jonathan Papelbon struck out two in a scoreless ninth for his 30th save in 33 opportunities. Jake Diekman followed Hamels and struck out four in two scoreless frames and Ken Giles fanned the side in the scoreless eighth. James Paxton (3-1) took the first loss of his career after the shortest outing in his 10th start. He lasted four innings while allowing four runs - one earned - on seven hits. The 25-year-old Paxton was 6-0 in his career. "I probably couldve executed pitches a little bit better," Paxton said. "But they were finding holes with ground balls, a couple blooopers in there, but thats baseball.ddddddddddddquot; Philadelphia was helped by Paxton in the fourth. After Nieves led off with a single, Andres Blanco hit a liner off Paxtons left ankle. The pitcher retrieved the ball but threw it away to put runners on second and third with no outs. Nieves scored on a passed ball and Utleys RBI single made it 4-3. TRAINERS ROOM Mariners: Paxton stayed in the game after taking Blancos line drive off his left foot in the fourth inning. He said afterward he was OK. Phillies: OF John Mayberry Jr. had a pair of hits on Tuesday in his first rehab game with Triple-A Lehigh Valley at Pawtucket. Mayberry has been on the DL since July 21 with left wrist inflammation. UP NEXT Mariners: Seattle takes Thursday off before heading to Boston for a three-game series at Fenway Park beginning at 4:10 Friday afternoon. Felix Hernandez (13-4, 1.99) takes the hill for the Mariners for the first time since snapping his MLB record of 16 straight starts with seven or more innings and two runs or fewer. Phillies: Following Thursdays off day, RHP Kyle Kendrick (5-11, 4.90) takes the mound as Philadelphia opens a three-game home series with the Cardinals at 7:05 Friday. Kendrick is 1-3 with a 5.49 ERA in his last seven starts. Following his last start, Kendrick apologized a day after storming off the mound and not waiting for manager Ryne Sandberg when he was lifted after allowing three earned runs in five innings of a 6-5 loss to the Giants on Saturday. SUPPORT FOR TANEY Sandberg replaced his customary Phillies uniform and cap with one bearing the name of Taney at his postgame news conference and pledged the teams support for the Philadelphia team in the Little League World Series. "We all played Little League so we can relate," Sandberg said. "Its back to the basics of having fun and jumping around and doing all of the things they do. To have someone to cheer for and pull for, that doesnt happen every year. We have somebody to pull for." STREAK SNAPPED The Mariners had their streak of 15 straight wins when scoring three or more runs snapped. ' ' '
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