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Ernie won his second tournament in consecutive weeks at the American Family Insurance Championship in Wisconsin last weekend, following victory at the Principal Charity Classic. It is Ernie’s 78th professional career win and his fifth on the Champions Tour. Ernie is 33-under par for his last six competitive rounds, with a stroke average of 66.5. He moves into third place on the 2024 Charles Schwab Cup standings.

The tournament ended in dramatic fashion, with Ernie winning on the 1st hole of a sudden-death playoff, after tournament host Steve Stricker missed a three-foot par putt. 

“What can I say?” commented Ernie. “I’m just shocked right now. I really feel for Steve. He’s a great guy. But you know, conditions were tough. On those short putts, a gust of wind can just throw you off a bit. It can happen to the best of us.”

On a windswept final day at University Ridge Golf Course, Ernie had fallen somewhat out of contention on the front nine. “I didn’t make anything. I was so defensive. The wind was blowing me all over. I said to myself, start making solid contact; stop trying to guide it in there.”

It did the trick. Ernie made three straight birdies on the back nine and by the 14th hole was tied with Stricker. The duo traded pars at 15 and birdies at 16, before closing pars on the final two holes brought them into a playoff that ended so unexpectedly and abruptly. 

Ernie reflected shortly afterwards on winning back-to-back.

“You’ve got to just play proper golf and you’ve got to make some putts at the end of the day. I feel a lot better with my putting. Playing with Steve, you can sometimes feel like you don’t putt very well [laughs]. But I know I’m putting well at the moment. I’m striking it good. I’m just hanging in there and trying to take my chances where they come.

“As I said last week, I’m really enjoying my golf. I love the competition still; it’s what drives me. I just want to keep working hard, keep competing and keep getting better. There’s a lot to look forward to this summer.”

Ernie next tees it up in DICK’S Open at En-Joie GC, Endicott, New York from June 21-23.