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Kuchar wins ADT Golf Skills Challenge

In a battle between two of the PGA Tour's young guns, Matt Kuchar won a duel with teen Ty Tryon at the ADT Golf Skills Challenge.

Kuchar, who began the final five skills tied for fifth, $3,000 behind Tryon, won the Challenge's final event to tie Tryon and then won the $50,000 first-place bonus in a tiebreaker.

Kuchar forced the tiebreaker by winning the final short iron event at the par-3, 13th hole. Tryon finished eighth in the final event.

Kuchar then won the one-shot tiebreaker on the same hole, making it the seventh time in the past nine competitions that the short iron event has decided the Skills Challenge champion.

The 1997 U.S. Amateur champion and 2002 Honda Classic winner, Kuchar totaled $105,000 in the nine-skill competition held at the Boca Raton Resort & Club. The nine-player field included four former major winners and future NFL Hall of Fame quarterback John Elway.

Tryon, the youngest player on the PGA Tour at 18, finished second with $55,000 and won three of the nine skills. Former four-time NCAA All-American Bryce Molder finished third with $51,500 and former Masters champion Craig Stadler finished fourth with $51,000.

"I'm a little disappointed in losing the playoff to Kuchar," said Tryon, "but it was a lot of fun."

Tryon said he especially enjoyed playing with Elway, even though he's a Tampa Bay Buccaneers fan.

"I'm glad that I wasn't on the football field with him, though," Tryon said. "He's huge."

Elway, the first non-tour player in the 11-year event, finished eighth with $45,000, beating out Peter Jacobsen by $1,000.

"[Elway] hit a lot of good shots," Stadler said. "He's a heck of a player. If he plays a little bit, he could be a decent 1 (handicap) or scratch golfer."

Molder began the final five skills by winning the trouble shot -- a shot from 120 yards with a large fiscus short of the green blocking the path. Players can opt to go left or right of the large tree, hitting a pitch and run shot.

Molder nestled his shot 3 feet, 10 inches from the hole, while Stadler got to within 5 feet, 4 inches. Leader Tryon failed to reach the green on any of his three attempts and finished ninth.

Three-time major winner Nick Price displayed his deft putting skill by holing two of three putts from 20 feet, while Stadler, Kuchar and Elway each holed one to tie for second place.

Tryon then won both the fairway bunker and chip shot skills. Tryon's fairway bunker shot from 110 yards came to rest 20 inches from the hole -- nearly three feet better than runner-up Kuchar. Tryon's chip shot also snuggled in tight at 6 inches, while Nick Faldo got to within 1 foot, 7 inches.

The two wins gave Tryon a $4,000 lead over Stadler headed into the short-iron event. Tryon's best effort on the final event finished more than 30 feet from the hole, leaving an opening for Kuchar, who capitalized with a shot to four feet for the win and the tie.


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