Ortiz Wins 1st PGA Tour Event

AM800-SPORTS-GOLF-PGA TOUR-HOUSTON OPEN-ORTIZ JR-WINNER

Carlos Ortiz held off Dustin Johnson and Hideki Matsuyama by closing with a 5-under 65 to win the Houston Open, becoming the first Mexican to win on the PGA Tour in 42 years.

He earned every bit of it, caught in a tight battle on the back nine with the world's No. 1 player and Japan's biggest star.
Ortiz delivered the winner with a 6-iron to 8 feet on the par-5 16th. He had to settle for a two-putt birdie, and it held up when Johnson and Matsuyama narrowly missed birdie chances coming in.

Ortiz finished in style. Needing two putts to win, the 29-year-old holed a 20-foot birdie putt for a two-shot victory.

Mackenzie Hughes was the top Canadian, finishing six shots off the lead in a tie for seventh place.
Ortiz held back tears as he waited for his playing partners to putt. The victory sends him to the Masters next April.

He was there a year ago to watch his brother, Alvaro, who qualified by winning the Latin American Amateur.
 ``It feels awesome,'' said Ortiz, who grew up in Guadalajara and played at North Texas with Sebastian Munoz of Colombia, the most recent Latin American winner on tour. ``This is like my second home. There was a bunch of people cheering for me, Latinos and Texans. I'm thankful for all of them.''


with files from    (The Associated Press)