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Stricker coasts to two-shot win in John Deere Classic

CHICAGO (Reuters) - Steve Stricker fell off his record-setting pace on Sunday but a final-round 70 was still good enough for a two-shot victory and a successful defense of his John Deere Classic title.

World number four Stricker, whose 54-hole total of 25-under-par 188 set a U.S. PGA Tour record, finished on 26-under 258 at the par-71 TPC Deere Run course in Silvis, Illinois.

Fellow-American Paul Goydos, who fired a 59, only the fourth ever registered on the U.S. Tour, to Stricker's 60 in the opening round, shot 66 to finish second on 260.

Goydos got a special consolation prize. As the top player among the top-five finishers not already eligible, he received an exemption into the field for the British Open at St. Andrews.

American Jeff Maggert (70) was third on 264, one stroke better than compatriot Shaun Micheel, who closed with 67.

Australian Matt Jones was another shot adrift after finishing with a 70.

The victory was Stricker's ninth career win on the U.S. Tour and his second this season following his triumph at the Northern Trust Open.

(Writing by Larry Fine in Oakmont, Pennsylvania, Editing by John Mehaffey)

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