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Golf: Streelman ends victory drought with Tampa Bay title

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Kevin Streelman, who went winless in his first 152 US PGA Tour events, finally captured his first title on Sunday with a two-stroke victory at the $5.5 million Tampa Bay Championship.

The 34-year-old American, whose best prior PGA result was a share of third at Puerto Rico in 2011, fired a bogey-free final round of four-under par-67 to finish 72 holes on 10-under 274 and defeat countryman Boo Weekley by two shots.

"It wasn't too long ago I was driving around in a car dead broke," Streelman said. "But it shows if you keep working hard and stay patient, you can accomplish something."

Streelman birdied two of the first three holes and added birdies at the par-3 13th and 17th holes to secure the victory, his 19-foot birdie putt at the penultimate hole and a par at the last good enough for the $990,000 top prize.

"That was really cool," Streelman said. "I just stayed really patient. I had a peace about me all day today. It was awesome.

"You've got to pick your battles. I had a couple numbers on the par-3s that I was able to pull off."

Streelman put his tee shot at the par-3 13th hole six feet (1.8 meters) from the cup and sank the putt to take the lead for good, calling his approach "the best shot probably of my life in that situation."

Weekley, who was in the clubhouse while the 54-hole leaders were barely on the course, fired a 63 to leap from six strokes off the pace and a share of 35th when the round began to the top of the leaderboard, only to finish second.

American Cameron Tringale was third on 277 with defending champion Luke Donald of England, Australian Greg Chalmers and American Justin Leonard sharing fourth on 278.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130317/golf-streelman-ends-victory-drought-tampa-bay-title