SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Evan Harmeling displayed an incredible show of perseverance and sank clutch putts down the stretch to win the 2020 Savannah Golf Championship Sunday evening.
“I thought I did a good job of staying hungry,” Harmeling said with a smile. “I came out attacking and I like the mindset that I had.”
The Boston native came into Sunday’s final round with a one-shot lead over Kevin Dougherty and the rest of the field. But, it was Dougherty holding the one-shot advantage headed into the par-5 18th hole.
Harmeling drove the green and birdied, while Dougherty had to settle for a par to force a playoff at The Landings Club.
In the playoff, Harmeling launched a 3-wood to within 10-feet of the hole and put the pressure on his opponent. Dougherty had to settle for another par, opening the door for Harmeling in front of a tense gallery.
As Harmeling’s tournament-winning birdie putt dropped and the crowd roared, a huge smile broke out on his face.
“That’s why I love playing golf is to get in those situations and those situations making you play better,” Harmeling explained, when asked about the tight race between himself and Dougherty.
The Princeton University graduate knows he’s now part of this tournament’s short history. Harmeling said he’s excited to build a deeper connection with the area and treat it like a second home.
“The little that we’ve gone around [Savannah] is just sweet. We went out to Tybee Island and went to the beach a couple times this week,” Harmeling explained. “It’s a cool place, everyone is nice down here and welcoming. The course is in amazing shape — I’m looking forward to coming back!”