The clubs Hudson Swafford used to win the 2022 American Express
After Saturday's third round of The American Express, Hudson Swafford was asked his strategy heading into Sunday's final round.
“[Caddie Kyle Bradley] and I just talked about just giving ourselves as many looks as possible, whether it's 30 feet or 10 feet,” Swafford said. "[I’ve] been rolling it great, so just try to get on the green as fast as possible. … [The course] is a little visually intimidating, so the fat side of the green's not always terrible out here. And that's kind of going to be my game plan and just don't have to come out and try to birdie every hole early. Just kind of plod along.”
As it turned out, that strategy still led to plenty of birdies early and a pretty good number of them late as well—along with a timely eagle at the par-5 16th. In all, Swafford made nine birdies and the eagle en route to a final-round 64, winning the event for the second time (he also won in 2017 when it was known as the CareerBuilder Challenge).
All but two of Swafford’s birdies on Sunday came from putts inside 13 feet with one notable exception—a 45-foot bomb on the par-4 10th that sparked a run of three straight and four in five holes. A 19-footer for birdie at the par-3 17th sealed things.
Among a number of key shots was Swafford's second from 198 yards at the par-5 16th, which stopped just eight feet from the hole and set up his eagle. The shot was struck with a PXG 0311 ST 7-iron. The ST stands for “Super Tour” as the clubs are a solid-body blade style designed for elite players. Swafford ranked fourth in strokes gained/approach-the-green with the irons, picking up more than four shots on the field.
On the greens, Swafford not only ranked second in strokes gained/putting (gaining five-plus strokes on the field), but he produced a field-leading 28 birdies with a Scotty Cameron by Titleist Phantom X 7.5 tour prototype mallet.
Not bad for a guy just trying to plod along.
What Hudson Swafford had in the bag at The American Express
Ball: Titleist Pro V1
Driver: TaylorMade Stealth Plus (Project X HZRDUS), 9 degrees
3-wood: Ping i25, 14 degrees
5-wood: Ping i25, 18 degrees
Irons (4-9): PXG 0311 ST; (PW): PXG 0311 Sugar Daddy
Wedges: PXG 0311 Sugar Daddy (50 degrees); PXG 0311 Sugar Daddy II (56 degrees); Titleist Vokey WedgeWorks prototype (60 degrees)
Putter: Scotty Cameron by Titleist Phantom X 7.5 tour prototype