LA QUINTA, Calif. (AP) — Jon Rahm beat Andrew Landry with a 12-foot birdie putt on the fourth hole of a playoff Sunday in the CareerBuilder Challenge.
In fading light on the Stadium Course at PGA West, Rahm finished off Landry for his second PGA Tour title and fourth worldwide victory in a year. The 23-year-old Spaniard will jump from third to second in the world ranking behind Dustin Johnson.
“It’s hard to believe, to be honest, passing Jordan Spieth, three-time major champion,” Rahm said. “I only have two wins and he’s got 10-plus, right? I never thought I was going to be at this point in my life right now.”
Rahm overcame surprising par-5 problems in regulation to shoot 5-under 67. Landry, playing a group behind Rahm in the final threesome, forced the playoff with an 11-foot birdie putt on the water-guarded 18th for a 68. They finished at 22-under 266.
“Tournaments like this build character,” Rahm said. “I’m just proud of myself to hit what’s probably my least favorite club, which is the 3-wood, three times in a row dead center on my line on 18 — four times if you include the regular play.”
After Rahm made his birdie putt on the fourth playoff hole, Landry missed an 11-footer.
Rahm and Landry each missed chances to win on the first two extra trips down 18. Rahm’s 9-foot birdie try slid left on the first, and Landry’s 8-footer went by to the right on the second. They missed long birdie tries on the third extra hole, the par-4 10th.
Rahm parred the four par 5s on Sunday, with the Pete Dye-designed layout playing tougher with many pin positions on the edges of greens, after going 13 under on 12 par 5s in the first three rounds with an eagle and 11 birdies.
The former Arizona State star was second behind Johnson two weeks ago at Kapalua in his first start since winning the European Tour’s season-ending event in Dubai in November. Rahm will open his Torrey Pines title defense Thursday in San Diego.