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Former Wildcat wins Oklahoma Open

By Jelani Yancey

Former K-State golfer Matt Van Cleave captured his first professional win, as he defeated Chris Thompson of Lawrence to claim the 2012 Oklahoma Open on Sunday at the Oak Tree Country Club in Edmond, Okla. 

Trailing by three strokes with three holes to play, Van Cleave, who entered the final day of the event down six strokes, saw second-round leaders Zach Fischer, Charlie Holland and Shawn Jasper struggle down the homestretch, leaving Thompson and Van Cleave atop the leaderboard with one hole to play. 

On the final hole of regulation, Van Cleave made par, leaving Thompson with the opportunity to win the event on a 18-foot birdie putt. But Thompson missed, sending the duo into a playoff, tied at 8-under par 202. Van Cleave was able to force the playoff with a final-round score of 3-under par 67.

After pushing the first two playoff holes, Thompson started off the third hole with two misplayed shots, leaving the door open for Van Cleave, who tapped in short putt for par to capture the tournament crown.

Van Cleave lettered at K-State from 2003-05.

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