Pat Perez claims Bob Hope trophy

Jan. 25, 2009 at 9:09 PM

LA QUINTA, Calif., Jan. 25 (UPI) -- Pat Perez shot a 3-under-par 69 and won the 50th Bob Hope Classic Sunday in La Quinta, Calif., his first victory on the PGA Tour.

Perez closed his round with an eagle on the final hole, finishing the five-round event at 33-under 327, three shots ahead of John Merrick, who had a 67.

Steve Stricker, who had led after the fourth round, fell to a 5-over 77 and tied for third place with Mike Weir (67), the 2003 champion, at 28-under 332. Stricker's round included triple and quadruple bogeys.

Perez led Merrick by one stroke before hitting his second shot to within 2 feet and rolling in the putt for the eagle on the 18th.

"It's just awesome," Perez said, describing his win.

Stephen Ames (63), Bo Van Pelt (67), Webb Simpson (69) and Tim Clark (69) shared fifth place at 333.

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