HUMBLE, Texas – As the would-be winning putt tracked toward the hole, Beau Hossler raised his putter in anticipation of his first career PGA Tour victory. Instead, his breakthrough will have to wait.
Hossler’s 30-foot birdie attempt on the final hole of the Houston Open would have closed out Ian Poulter, but it just crept past the right edge while giving Poulter a perfect read on the upcoming 19-footer he had to tie. The Englishman made it to force a playoff, then won on the first extra hole after Hossler bladed his ball into the water from a greenside bunker.
“I said yesterday that I wanted to beat these guys at their best, and I think I saw Ian’s best today,” Hossler said. “It’s a bummer, but I’m very proud of the way I played.”
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Hossler started the day with a share of the lead, but he faced a three-shot deficit after only eight holes as Poulter got off to a fast start. The former University of Texas standout then rallied back, with four straight birdies on Nos. 12-15 to take a one-shot lead to the 18th tee.
Hossler had played his way into contention multiple times before this season, but he typically faded on the weekend and his final-round scoring average of 73.4 ranked 193rd entering this week. Despite the overtime loss, the 23-year-old saw plenty of positives after closing with a 67 and playing his final 25 holes of regulation without a bogey.
“I feel great about my game. I’m very proud of the way I handled myself under pressure,” Hossler said. “I can’t look and be negative about the week. I was really hoping I would get it done this week, but my time will come soon.”