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Golf

Scott surges to first WGC title at Firestone

The Associated Press
Published:   |   Updated: March 20, 2013 at 05:20 PM
AKRON, Ohio -

Adam Scott hit all the right shots Sunday in a round that was close to flawless and earned him his first World Golf Championship title.

He celebrated with a caddie who has won quite a few more.

Steve Williams, fired last month by Tiger Woods after a 12-year partnership, felt like a bigger winner when Scott rolled in one last birdie for a 5-under 65 and a four-shot victory in the Bridgestone Invitational.

Williams, who had been on Woods' bag for 72 wins — including 13 majors and 16 world titles — called it "the best win of my life."

It was Scott who hit the shots, such as a chip-in for birdie on the 12th and a birdie putt just inside 30 feet on the 14th that enabled him to pull away from 19-year-old Ryo Ishikawa over the final hour at Firestone.

Even so, Williams became part of the show this week, especially since Woods was playing for the first time in nearly three months. Williams took a jab at Woods in an interview off the 18th green by saying that of his 145 wins in his 33 years as a caddie, this WGC title with the affable Australian made it the "the greatest week of my caddying in my life."

That would include 13 majors, including an unprecedented four in a row through the 2001 Masters.

Fans chanted Williams' name as he walked toward the 18th green, and Williams smiled back. One fan shouted out, "How do you like him now, Tiger?"

By then, Woods was long gone.

After missing three months with a leg injury, he finished a tournament for the first time since the Masters on April 10 and closed with a 70 to tie for 37th, 18 shots behind.

Williams referred to himself as a "great front-runner" in a CBS Sports interview on the 18th green, even though he didn't hit a shot.

The sideshow took away from a high level of golf.

Scott played the final 26 holes without a bogey, and he couldn't afford to drop any shots.

He finished at 17-under 263 for the lowest winning score at Firestone since Woods won at 259 in 2000. Rickie Fowler and world No. 1 Luke Donald each had a 66 and tied for second.

Ishikawa, who stayed with Scott for most of the round until the Australian pulled away, made a bogey on the last hole for a 69 that dropped him into a tie for fourth with Jason Day (69).

PGA: Scott Piercy squandered a three-stroke lead, then dodged more trouble down the stretch before making a 7-foot par putt on the final hole to win the Reno-Tahoe Open in Reno, Nev., by one stroke. It was his first PGA Tour title.

CHAMPIONS: Jay Haas birdied the final hole to win the 3M Championship in Blaine, Minn., by one shot.

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