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Peter Malnati wins PGA Tour’s 2024 Valspar Championship

2024 Valspar Championship

March Madness crowned another Cinderella on Sunday, only not on the basketball court but rather at Innisbrook Resort’s Copperhead Course Palm Harbor, Florida.

Peter Malnati, who hadn’t won in nine years, drilled his tee shot at the 17th hole to 6 feet and rolled in the putt to assume a one-stroke lead. With a finishing par, he closed with a final-round 4-under 67 to finish at 12-under 272 and win the Valspar Championship by two strokes over Cameron Young.

All the emotions poured out of Malnati, who held his four-year-old son Hatcher, and with watery eyes and a wide smile, said, “You wonder if you’re ever going to do it again.”

He had seen that winning moment on the PGA Tour so many times before where the family rushes on to the green and the victor gets a hug and kiss and lifts his child.

“That’s something that I’ve seen other families have and that has been my dream,” Malnati said. “If I had never had the moment I had today, I would have been completely fine. But, man, was that special.”

Indeed, it was. Malnati, a 36-year-old pro in his 10th year on Tour, had one career victory to his credit at the 2015 Sanderson Championship. He had to battle during the fall to maintain full exempt status this season by finishing 116th on the season-long points list. He’s ranked No. 184 in the world, the second-highest world ranking for the winner of the Valspar in tournament history and he drew the angst of his fellow pros who felt he was unworthy when he was awarded a sponsor invite into the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am in February. Moreover, winning at the Copperhead Course, where he had missed the cut in six of his seven starts at the Valspar Championship, with a career-best of T-60, seemed a pipe dream. To make matters worse, he entered this week coming off a final-round 81 at the Players Championship.

“I just kind of had to chalk that up as just one of those days you get in golf …I was off on all facets of the game,” he said. “When I got here and got to work on Tuesday I was really pleased, everything felt kind of as it had most of the week at Sawgrass, not how it did on Sunday. So I just haven’t missed a beat.”

2024 Valspar Championship

Peter Malnati accepts the Valspar Championship trophy after the final round of the Valspar Championship at Copperhead Course at Innisbrook Resort and Golf Club on March 24, 2024 in Palm Harbor,…


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