Couples & Duval Win Shootout


David Duval and Fred Couples won the Shark Shootout with a closing round 11-under-par 61 Sunday.

Duval and Couples finished with a 32-under 184 and won by six strokes, the largest margin since the tournament began in 1989.

"I wasn't worried if I hit a bad shot," Couples said. "In fact, he (Duval) probably hit his best shots when I hit a bad one. That tells you a lot about him."

Couples and Duval made only one eagle in the three-day event. The pair's 30 birdies and no bogeys earned them a shared win of $350,000 in the $1.5 million event.

Duval won the event for the first time. He finished second with Scott Hoch in 1997.

It was Couples' third Shootout win. He partnered with Raymond Floyd in 1990 and again in 1994 with Brad Faxon.

"I didn't play as well today as I did the first couple of days," Duval said. "But I sure like playing with Freddie. I'm going to play in the Skins game next week and that's it for me for this year."

Hoch and Scott McCarron shot a 61 to finish the tournament at 190, 26-under par. They each earned $100,000.

"We won the consolation tournament," Hoch said, who added that it would have been tough to beat the winners since the final round used the scramble format.

In that format, both partners hit their tee shots on each hole. They select the best of the two shots and play their second shot from that selected spot. This format is followed after each shot throughout the tournament.

"I really thought we would birdie every hole today," Couples said. "And with this format I knew we were going to win before we started. But, maybe everyone else felt that way too."

John Cook and Peter Jacobsen's 61 moved them into third place in the tournament. The pair finished at 191.

Andrew Magee and Jay Haas finished with 24-under to come in fourth. Greg Norman and partner Steve Elkington's 12-under par 60 left them fifth.

Norman, the tournament host, is concluding the event's 11-year stay in California. The Shark Shootout will continue in Doral, Fla.

Norman, the 44-year old Australian who now makes his home in Hope Sound, Fla., said he felt "a little bit of sadness."

"We built up a nice tournament but there's a new chapteto be played out in the Shark Shootout," he said.

Ryder Cup captain Ben Crenshaw and Bruce Lietzke's 8-under 64 was their best round of the tournament and left them at 209. Each earned $37,500 for the tournament.

Crenshaw missed the cut in all of the 13 tournaments he entered in 1999.

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