New putter proves crucial as Talor Gooch earns a first PGA Tour triumph at the RSM Classic

The American carded a final round 64 to end the week three shots clear of past champion at Sea Island Mackenzie Hughes.

Knock on a door often enough and, eventually, it will open.

That's how Talor Gooch was feeling after he completed victory in the RSM Classic at Sea Island.

The 30-year-old from Oklahoma had landed three top 10 finishes in each of the last calendar years ahead of this week.

Moreover, he had started the 2021/22 season by suggesting that he was ready to take a step up the career ladder.

In each of his opening five starts he had ended a round inside the top five.

Twice he had ended the week in such a position, but he had twice spurned the opportunity to earn that first win.

But those experiences were to prove instructive and he was also helped by a technical change early in the week.

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After sealing the deal with a 6-under-par 64 that left him three blows clear of Mackenzie Hughes, Gooch said: "Man, it was a great week. I played well all week and I had a couple opportunities where things could have taken a turn for the worse today, but I was able to make some clutch putts.

"At the beginning of the week I got together with Callaway and we got a new putter in the bag. It worked out pretty good for the week. I made a few putts."

He made just two bogeys all week and rarely looked like anything but the winner all Sunday.

Hughes, the 2016 champion at Sea Island, went low himself, with a 61, but every birdie he made was answered by the eventual champion.

Sebastian Munoz claimed solo third, a shot behind Hughes.

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For Gooch there was only one downside. His win qualified him for a berth at the Tournament of Champions in January meaning he will now need to cancel a holiday with friends planned for the same week.

"That's the only downfall to this," he said. "We're going to have to figure something out. We're going to have to make another date for that boys' trip."

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