Sony Open in Hawai’i: Final Day Results and Photos
By: Paul Brecht
WAIALAE — As the old adage goes, big time players make big time plays in big time moments.
The 17th hole was a big time moment for South Korean golfer Si Woo Kim on Sunday. Realistically, the entire day was.
Coming into his Sunday tee-time, Kim trailed American golfer (and 54-hole leader) Hayden Buckley by three strokes for the top spot at the competition. Despite having a hot performance through 16 holes, the 27-year old golfer trailed Buckley still as he attempted his birdie shot on the 17th hole.
With cheers coming from the 16th hole due to Buckley’s birdie putt to give him back the lead, Kim decided to be a little more aggressive with perhaps the whole tournament on the line.
Kim stepped up to the par-3 17th hole for his second shot and chipped it in from 28-feet out to give himself the advantage he needed to win his fourth PGA Tour title. He finished the tournament shooting 18-under par.
Buckley put on quite the performance during his time in Hawai’i as well, shooting 17-under en route to a second place finish. The runner-up result is a career-best for Buckley in PGA Tour events, whose previous best finish was a share of fourth place in the 2021 Sanderson Farms Championship.
Fellow American golfer Chris Kirk, who held a share of the lead after day one of the tournament, finished shooting 15-under par on his way to a third-place finish.
Last year’s champion Hideki Matsuyama ended the tournament tied for a share of 48th place after shooting 1-over par on the final day. The Japanese golfer, who reportedly was dealing with a neck injury coming into the event, ended up being knotted up with five other golfers when all was said and done.
Of the golfers with Hawai’i ties, Punahou graduate Parker McLachlin turned in the top performance shooting 2-over par. Kamehameha graduate and former UH men’s golf player Blaze Akana (a) competed in the Sony Open in Hawai’i as well, along with Moanalua alum Brent Grant and Michael Castillo, head golf professional at Kapalua Plantation Course on Maui . None of the four made the cut following the second round of play.