April 18, 2021 - 8:23 pm
Updated April 18, 2021 - 10:20 pm
Peter Uihlein came out firing, built a big lead, then coasted to victory Sunday at the inaugural MGM Resorts Championship at Paiute.
Uihlein, the only player to shoot all four rounds in the 60s in the Korn Ferry Tour event, closed with 69 to finish at 16-under 272 on the Sun Mountain course. Las Vegan David Lipsky and Jamie Lovemark finished four shots back.
“I just got off to a dream start,” said Uihlein, who won $108,000 from the $600,000 purse. “I made a nice par on 1, then birdied 2, 3, 4 and then 7. It was nice to get off to a start like that on the front.”
It was a start Uihlein needed given what Lipsky was doing. Playing 13 groups in front of the leaders, Lipsky challenged the course record, finished with a bogey-free 65 and posted 12 under while Uihlein was just beginning his day.
Lipsky’s score caught Uihlein’s attention.
“I got off to a great start, and then I saw David’s score,” he said. “From there on out, I knew what I had to do.”
Uihlein played what he called conservative golf after building a six-shot lead at the turn, but he refused to call it easy. With the wind gusting for a fourth consecutive day and the greens as fast as they had been all week, Paiute kept his attention to the finish.
The win is Uihlein’s second on the Korn Ferry Tour but first since 2017. He also has a European Tour title in 2013.
It’s validation for working hard over the past six months, said Uihlein, who seemed destined for greatness at a young age. His father, Wally Uihlein, was the longtime president and CEO of Acushnet, which includes Titleist, FootJoy and Scott Cameron among its golf brands.
Uihlein, 31, played college golf at NCAA powerhouse Oklahoma State, won the U.S. Amateur in 2010, but he hasn’t found as much success as a professional.
The Jupiter, Florida, resident hopes this victory is a step in the right direction. The points that come with it should get him close to the top 25 on the Korn Ferry standings and a promotion to the PGA Tour next season.
That promotion is something Lipsky has nailed down. Already inside the top 10 entering the week, his tie for second has sealed his status for 2022.
“To get my full-fledged PGA Tour card is awesome,” he said.
Lipsky’s round — and Uihlein’s, for that matter — were an anomaly Sunday when the wind was its strongest of the week. There were just 13 rounds in the 60s.
“It was tough, man,” Uihlein said of the wind. “But it was one of those things where everybody was playing in it, so you can’t stress about it. Nobody got it easy at any point.”
The conditions took their toll on two other Las Vegas players Sunday. Harry Hall, who was in contention the first three days, ballooned to a 79 to fall to a tie for 51st. Alex Kang, who started the final round in a tie for sixth, shot 76 and finished tied for 28th.
Greg Robertson is a freelance reporter who covers golf for the Review-Journal. He can be reached at email@example.com.
MGM Resorts Championship leaderboard
At Paiute Sun Mountain course
Peter Uilhein 68-67-68-69–272
David Lipsky 70-68-73-65–276
Jamie Lovemark 69-66-69-72–276
Taylor Moore 69-67-71-71–278
Four players tied at 279