LAS VEGAS – Former Oklahoma State star Peter Uihlein ran away with his second career Korn Ferry Tour victory on Sunday with a final-round 3-under 69 to win the MGM Resorts Championship at Paiute. Uihlein outpaced David Lipsky and Jamie Lovemark by four strokes at Paiute Golf Resort’s Sun Mountain course.
“Very difficult, the wind was relentless,” said Uihlein. “But I got off to a dream start…To get off to that good of a start on the front nine, and I would say the first six are probably the more challenging holes out here, so getting off to a good start was big for me. I couldn’t cruise because it was still really difficult, but I was able to be more conservative.”
It was a strong tournament for other players with Oklahoma ties as well. Taylor Moore of Edmond finished fourth at 10-under. Max McGreevy of Edmond tied for 17th at 7-under. Josh Creel of Edmond tied for 28th at 5-under. Former Cowboy and first-round leader Kevin Dougherty and Oklahoma City University alum Tyrone Van Aswegen tied for 39th at 3-under. Former Oklahoma Sooner Grant Hirschman tied for 52nd at even-par and Rhein Gibson of Edmond tied for 69th.
Entering the day with a one-stroke lead, Uihlein carded a 4-under 32 in windy conditions on the front nine to distance himself from the competition. The Oklahoma State alum held a lead of four to six strokes throughout the back nine.
“I had a par drip in on No. 14,” said Uihlein of the moment he started to believe it was his day. “It just really dripped in the front, it had no business going in. I think when I got to 16 tee, I felt like those last three holes weren’t going to be as difficult. I guess the 17th was still difficult, but 16 and 18 weren’t overly demanding so I felt like I was in good position.”
The 31-year-old narrowly missed winning a month ago on the Korn Ferry Tour at the Chitimacha Louisiana Open presented by MISTRAS. He was tied for the lead with two to go before bogeying the 17th hole on Sunday to fall one stroke shy of champion Roberto Diaz. He has split time between the Korn Ferry Tour and PGA TOUR during the 2020-21 season.
“I’ve been trying to get a lot shallower,” noted Uihlein. “That’s been first and foremost, whether it’s been setup, ball position, anything. It’s been a process…I did some little things in the offseason, installed a simulator in my house, and now if I’m home and want to hit balls at 9 at night or 7 in the morning, I can keep the minor things in check.”
Uihlein’s win comes more than three and a half years since his first title at the 2017 Nationwide Children’s Hospital Championship. That event came in his first start on the Korn Ferry Tour as a professional (he competed twice as an amateur in 2010-11) and earned him his PGA TOUR card for the 2017-18 season.
“I was playing really, really well, playing in Europe,” reflected Uihlein of his first win. “I think I had a really good summer leading into it. I was oozing with some confidence. This one was totally different. I hadn’t played that well over the last couple of years. But since I restarted at Pebble I’ve been playing a lot better and trending in the right direction. Ohio State was a course that I would play really well at, and then historically I don’t play very well in desert golf. So this is a nice change of pace for me to have some success on this type of golf course.”
Uihlein managed to keep his playing partner, Jamie Lovemark, at arm’s distance, while holding off a late charge by David Lipsky. Lipsky, a Las Vegas resident, owned the round of the day with a 7-under 65 to rise from T23 to T2. The finish advances Lipsky from eighth to fourth in the Korn Ferry Tour points standings and likely secures him his first PGA TOUR card this fall.