DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — For the second time in less than a year, Tom Pernice Jr. hit a crucial shot on the 17th hole on his way to a victory.
This time, Pernice needed one more big shot to secure the win.
Pernice birdied the second hole of a sudden-death playoff with Doug Garwood on Sunday to win the Champions Tour's Principal Charity Classic.
"I was calm all day. I played it with the right edge and I stroked it and it went right in the hole," Pernice said.
Pernice won for the third time on the 50-and-over tour, closing with a 3-under 69 to match Garwood at 12-under 204 at Wakonda Club.
Garwood, making only his fourth start of the season, birdied the final two holes of regulation for a 71.
They played the par-4 18th hole twice in the playoff. Pernice won with a putt from roughly 8 feet after they opened the playoff with matching pars.
Pernice's performance was reminiscent of the 3M Championship last August in Minnesota, when he made a 45-foot putt on No. 17 to win.
He chipped in from roughly 30 feet out to take the lead on Sunday, though Garwood matched that birdie and later forced a playoff.
"I really hit the ball good all week and really kept the ball in play in the fairway when I needed to and holed some key shots at key times," Pernice said.
Bill Glasson, Jay Haas, Mark Calcavecchia and Michael Allen finished a shot back. Glasson shot 64, Haas 67, Calcavecchia 70, and Allen 71.
Garwood opened the final round with a one-shot lead but needing to win to earn a full Champions Tour card for the next 12 months. A birdie putt from the fringe on the first hole seemed to portend well for his prospects.