J.B. Holmes: Comeback Kid Claims 2014 Wells Fargo Championship


J.B. Holmes picked up his third career win on the PGA Tour by capturing the 2014 Wells Fargo Championship on Sunday at Quail Hollow in Charlotte.

Holmes, just a little more than two years removed from brain surgery, fired a 1-under par 71 in the final round and held off the hard-charging Jim Furyk and Jason Bohn for a 1-shot win, his first since the 2008 Phoenix Open.

Holmes finished at 14-under and will pocket a cool $1.242 million for his efforts as well as a spot in next week’s THE PLAYERS Championship.

Despite bogeys on 16 and 18 in the final round, Holmes eased into the win–his first since 2008–by maintaining a three-shot lead for most of the back nine on Sunday.

He is also the first Wells Fargo champion since Anthony Kim in 2008 to go on to win after holding the 54-hole lead.

“It feels great. It’s been a long journey for me, had some ups and downs, and it’s a great feeling to get one done,” Holmes told David Feherty of CBS on the 18th green right after holing his clinching putt.

In 2011, Holmes was diagnosed with structural defects in the cerebellum known as Chiara malformations.

He had to have two surgeries–the first to remove a piece of his skull, and the second because of an allergic reaction to an adhesive on the titanium plate at the base of his skull.

He then suffered an injury to his elbow from hitting balls while trying to make a comeback, and missed most of last season after breaking his ankle while rollerblading.

Phil Mickelson, still seeking his first win and his first top-ten of the season, stumbled to a final round of 76 and finished tied for 11th.

Mickelson, who has seven career top-tens in the Wells Fargo, started the day two shots back of the lead after firing a blistering 9-under 63 in Saturday’s third round.

As hot as his putter was on Saturday, it was just as cold on Sunday. A four-putt on 16 for double bogey summed up his day.

2013 U.S. Open champion Justin Rose finished fifth, and Rory McIlroy finished tied for eighth.

Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports