CALGARY — By the time Jeff Maggert birdied the ninth hole on Sunday, he knew he had put himself in great position to win the Shaw Charity Classic.
Maggert's fifth birdie in six holes at Canyon Meadows Golf and Country Club vaulted him past Colin Montgomerie and into a lead he refused to relinquish.
"I feel a little fortunate obviously," said Maggert who shot a 6-under 64 to beat Montgomerie by four shots to win his third Champions Tour event of the season. "I stuck to my game plan on the front nine. I wanted to make as many birdies as I can. Colin had a little hiccup there on the ninth green and all of a sudden I'm walking off the ninth hole with a nice, big lead, which was unexpected.
"With Colin making a double bogey and me making a birdie, there was just kind of a big shift in momentum."
Heading into the final round, Maggert trailed Montgomerie and Miguel Angel Jimenez by two strokes, but he quickly erased that deficit on the front nine.
Maggert birdied two more holes on the back nine and then carded his lone bogey of the day on the 15th hole before finishing with three straight pars to end the tournament at 16-under 194 to take home the winner's share of U.S.$352,500.
"I tried to just focus in on the same game plan on the back nine, be aggressive and try and make some more birdies and just keep distancing myself from the rest of the field," said the 51-year-old golfer from Sea Pines, South Carolina, who earlier won a pair of majors — the Regions Tradition in May and the U.S. Senior Open Championship in June.
"Golf's a game about taking care of your business and not worrying about who's there right around you," he added.
Montgomerie shot an even-par round of 70 on Sunday to finish alone in second place at 12 under.
"I was fighting all the time and doubled the ninth, which was crazy," Montgomerie said. "I felt a bit dizzy and a bit weird all day actually. I don't know why I would feel that way. I didn't play well at all, but I managed to summon up some sort of energy to get it up and down at 16, 17 and 18."
Jimenez fell all the way down into a tie for 12th spot at 8 under after carding a 4-over 74 just a day after tying the course record of 61.
Scott Dunlap and Mark O'Meara finished in a tie for third place at 11 under after shooting rounds of 64 and 66 respectively.
Playing in his adopted hometown of Calgary, Stephen Ames finished as the top Canadian in a tie for fifth spot with Tommy Armour III, Peter Senior, Michael Allen and defending champion Fred Couples.
"It's been a boost," said Ames of shooting rounds of 65, 68 and 67. "I've been playing well for the last month, so I'm quite happy with the way I've been playing. The win will come eventually. I've just got to be patient and let it happen."
Rod Spittle, of Niagara Falls, Ont., shot a 5-under round of 65 on Sunday to move into a seven-way tie for 12th spot at 8 under.
Rick Gibson shot 69 to finish in a tie for 59th place at 1 over, while fellow Victoria resident carded a great round of 4-under 66 to climb up into a tie for 66th spot at 3 over.
Calgary's Darryl James finished well back at 11 over in a tie for last place with Jim Gallagher Jr.