SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) – Michael Allen, with a little help from David Frost, has gone from practically unknown on the Champions Tour to practically unbeatable.
Allen and Frost shot a better-ball 10-under-par 62 Sunday for 29-under 187 and a one-stroke victory over John Cook and Joey Sindelar in the Liberty Mutual Legends of Golf championship.
Allen won the 2009 Senior PGA Championship, then went winless in 40 consecutive events until winning at TPC Tampa Bay last week. Now, he's the top money-winner on the senior circuit and leads in the Charles Schwab Cup race.
“Well, for sure, Michael couldn't have done it without me,'' Frost said with a laugh.
Frost eagled the 14th to put the team at 29 under at The Club at Savannah Harbor and that proved to be the difference as, moments later, Cook cut the lead to one with a 45-foot birdie at No. 18.
“I was a little nervous over that chip,'' Frost said, recalling that Allen had driven into the trees and was essentially out of the hole. “The ball was lying downhill, but it came out just right and rolled down, into the hole. We didn't make a bogey all week, and we got lucky when we needed to.''
The leaders made par the rest of the way. Allen sealed it despite a heavy downpour that swept in over the Savannah River just as they finished teeing off on the final hole. His 40-foot birdie attempt from just off the green hung on the lip of the cup, but that was all the team needed.
And he gets to go home a hero – again.
“God, it took so long to win the second one,'' Allen said. “Then, I had the breakthrough last week. It was great having David on my side. I've never won two real tournaments in a row in my life.
“Now, I know my kids will jump all over me and tell me how great I am.''
It was the first time a player on the over-50 circuit had won two in a row since Cook won at the end of 2010 and the start of the 2011 season.
The win was extra sweet for Allen coming in Savannah. His wife was working here when he proposed to her 21 years ago.
“So, I've always loved this place,'' Allen said.
Three teams tied for third at 27-under: Andy Bean and Chien Soon Lu (62); Jeff Sluman and Brad Faxon (63), and Tom Purtzer Brad Bryant (64).
The winners each received $230,000 and 230 points in the season-long Schwab Cup race. Allen went into the Legends Cup race with 620 points, 157 ahead of Bernhard Langer.
The Legends was first played in 1978 in Austin, Texas, and is considered the event that launched the 50-and-over tour. It was all team play until 2002, but always unofficial money. The tournament was played in four cities and on eight courses before coming to Savannah in 2003 as an individual event. It went back to team play and official money in 2008.