Published: Monday January 14, 2013 MYT 1:45:00 PM
Updated: Monday January 14, 2013 MYT 1:49:19 PM
Rookie Henley opens PGA Tour career with win
HONOLULU, Hawaii - US PGA Tour rookie Russell Henley birdied his last five holes en route to a seven-under par 63 on Sunday and a three-shot victory at the Sony Open in Hawaii.
Henley, making his first start as a member of the PGA Tour, showed the nerve of a veteran as he shattered the tournament scoring record with his total of 24-under-par 256.
After setting both the 36- and 54-hole scoring marks for the event - the first full-field tournament of the 2013 season - Henley broke the 72-hole record by four strokes at Waialae Country Club.
Henley, 23, also set a record for the lowest 72-hole total by a rookie in PGA Tour history in a win that earned him an invitation to the Masters, the first major of the year scheduled for April 11-14 at Augusta National.
He became the first rookie to win his first start as a tour member since Garrett Willis in 2001.
South Africa's Tim Clark birdied the final four holes, and seven of the last 11 overall, to match Henley's 63. That left him in sole possession of second place on 21-under 259.
Scott Langley, a fellow rookie who shared the overnight lead with Henley, carded an even-par 70 and finished tied for third on 17-under 263 with Charles Howell, who posted a 66. - AFP