STATELINE, Nev. (AP) — Billy Joe Tolliver won his third title at the American Century Championship, setting a record with 84 points in the modified Stableford system at the celebrity tournament.
“I told my caddie last night that I’m not straying from the game plan. I’m hitting the shots I always hit, the same club, the same everything,” Tolliver said. “In this format, especially with a par-5, par-3 and par-5 finish, somebody could get 28 points if they are incredibly lucky, so I had to go make a score.”
The former NFL quarterback eagled the last hole at Edgewood Tahoe and had two birdies in his final round. He finished 19 points ahead of Dallas Cowboys’ quarterback Tony Romo, Hall of Fame quarterback John Elway, former Atlanta Braves’ pitcher John Smoltz and actor Jack Wagner.
Tolliver won $125,000 for adding to his 1996 and 2005 titles.
His 84 total points broke the previous record of 78 set by former Atlanta Falcons quarterback Chris Chandler in 2007.
Elway had a chance to finish alone in second place, but made double bogey on the last hole. He also reached the 546-yard, par-5 16th in two, but missed his eagle putt.
“I played the best golf I could,” Elway said. “I knew he was going to be tough to catch because he wasn’t going to back up as well as he’s been playing. One thing I’ve learned over time is that you can’t make too many things happen. I was just trying to make every second shot I could.”
Two-time defending champion Rick Rhoden rallied to finish among the top 10, scoring 23 points to place eighth with a 58 total. Its the first time Rhoden has finished outside the top four in 20 appearances.
Michael Jordan scored his best round of the tournament, scoring 23 points and finished in a tie for 22nd.
Using an assortment of swinging styles, including left-handed, Charles Barkley was unable to avoid finishing last in the 82-player field for the fifth straight year. Barkley concluded play with -93 points, six fewer than American bobsled gold medalist Steven Holcomb.