PALM BEACH GARDENS, FLORIDA – MARCH 03: Kyoung-Hoon Lee of South Korea and caddie Darren Woolard prepare to tee off from the fifth tee during the final round of The Cognizant Classic in The Palm Beaches at PGA National Resort And Spa on March 03, 2024 in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)

Korea’s K.H. Lee birdied three of his remaining five holes at the Cognizant Classic in The Palm Beaches on Monday morning to finish tied fourth for his best outing on the PGA TOUR this season.

Lee, a two-time PGA TOUR winner, returned to PGA National Resort (The Champion) to complete his final round in 5-under 66 where his 13-under total saw him finish four back of winner, Austin Eckroat who closed with a 67 to secure his maiden PGA TOUR victory by three shots.

Chinese Taipei’s rising star Kevin Yu posted a closing 69 for his third top-10 of the season in a share of ninth place while compatriot C.T. Pan, who finished tied third in Mexico in the previous weekend, finished T28 after a 71 which was good enough to earn him a spot in this week’s Signature event, the Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard, through the AON Swing 5 ranking.

The 32-year-old Lee was pleased to snap a run of three missed cuts with a strong finish at PGA National, and is now looking forward to his next start at TOUR’s flagship event, THE PLAYERS Championship at TPC Sawgrass next week.

“I was able to finish strong until the end with great play. I haven’t been performing well recently but I feel like my game is coming around. I feel great,” said Lee, who posted a T7 at the Shriners Childrens Open in October for his last top-10 finish.

“I think this week was certainly the week which brought my confidence back. I was able to produce some good moments. There’s still a lot to play for this season, so I will keep pushing forward.”

Since finishing outside the Top-50 of the final FedExCup points list last season, Lee has not been able to produce the kind of form which saw him win back-to-back the CJ CUP Byron Nelson in 2021-22. He struck the ball beautifully during the weather-disrupted tournament and ranked 37th and 15th in Strokes Gained: Off the Tee and Approach to Green.

“My iron game was on point. I also hit great tee shots and my putting was good. Overall it was satisfying,” he said. “I’m looking forward to THE PLAYERS. From my early days, I always dreamt to have a great week in THE PLAYERS. It’s a great course and event. I’m going to try my best to give it everything I’ve got.”

Eckroat battled through his remaining 11 holes on Monday in 2-under for a 4-under final round to coast to victory over South Africa’s Erik Van Rooyen (63) and Min Woo Lee of Australia (67).

In what was his 50th career start on the PGA TOUR, the 25-year-old became the fourth first-time winner in nine events this season and rose to 17th in the FedExCup points list, thus qualifying for the Arnold Palmer Invitational through the Aon Next 10.

“Just super excited and been waiting for this moment my whole life, and I don’t really have a whole lot of words for it right now,” said the winner.



COMPLETED Final-Round Notes – Monday, March 4, 2024


Weather: Mostly cloudy. High of 81. Wind from the E at 8-15 mph.


Final Leaderboard

Pos. Player R1 R2 R3 R4 Total
1 Austin Eckroat 65 67 68 67 267 (-17)
T2 Erik van Rooyen 66 71 70 63 270 (-14)
T2 Min Woo Lee 67 70 66 67 270 (-14)
T4 Cameron Young 65 69 71 66 271 (-13)
T4 Jake Knapp 68 66 71 66 271 (-13)
T4 K.H. Lee 69 66 70 66 271 (-13)
T4 Shane Lowry 67 67 66 71 271 (-13)
T4 David Skinns 65 69 66 71 271 (-13)

- Advertisement -