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Tom Kite Wins SBC Senior Classic

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SANTA CLARITA, Calif. (AP) _ Tom Kite parred the second hole of a playoff with Tom Watson to win the SBC Senior Classic on Sunday.

Watson had eagle on the 18th hole to complete a round of 1-under 71. Kite, who opened the final round two strokes behind Watson, birdied the 18th for a 3-under 69, forging a tie with Watson at 4-under 212.

After each golfer had a par on the first playoff hole, Watson missed the fairway with his drive on the second hole of the playoff, the par-4 10th. He left his approach short of the green and chipped to within 8 feet.

Kite hit the green in regulation and missed a 10-foot birdie putt. After Watson missed a 6-foot par putt, Kite tapped in for the victory.

The victory, worth $217,500, was Kite's fifth on the senior tour.

``Personally, it is a great thrill to go head to head with Tom Watson,'' said Kite, who won the MasterCard Championship in January. ``He's such a great player and champion and you know you are in for a battle all the way.''

Gil Morgan shot a 2-under par 70 to share third place with first round leader Tom Purtzer (69). Morgan and Purtzer finished at 3-under 213.

Bob Gilder shot a 2-under 70 and finished fifth. George Archer and Gary McCord finished in a tie for sixth at 2-over 218.

Watson holed a 41-yard chip for an eagle on the 18th hole to move to 4 under.

``You don't expect those things to happen,'' Watson said. ``As the ball got near to the hole, I knew it had a chance to go in.''

Kite hit his second shot to the fringe on No. 18 and two-putted for a birdie, forcing a playoff.

Watson missed a birdie putt from 5 feet on the first playoff hole.

``My caddie told me it was straight, but I have the last say,'' Watson said. ``I should have listened to my caddy.''

Kite birdied the first hole and moved into a tie for the lead when Watson had a bogey on No. 4.

Kite birdied No. 9 and 12 before a double bogey on No. 13.

``I just lost my concentration,'' Kite said. ``I pushed my tee shot into the rough. It was practically a shank.''

Kite made a 12-foot birdie putt at the 16th and made a 15-foot par-saving putt on No. 17.

Morgan and Purtzer watched Watson and Kite finish at the 18th, anticipating a possible playoff. Morgan eagled the 18th to move into a tie for the lead.

``I hit a 3-wood right on the button,'' Morgan said. ``It was 275 yards to the hole and it went straight as an arrow. It was an exciting finish.''

Morgan rolled in a 5-foot putt for eagle on the final hole. Moments later, Purtzer birdied the 18th and moved into a tie with Morgan.

``I figured if I made birdie I'd be in good shape and probably in a playoff,'' Purtzer said.

Qualifier Doug Johnson seized the lead after consecutive birdies at the third and fourth holes, but faded from contention. He had six bogeys over the final 13 holes and finished at 219.

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