PARAMUS, N.J. — Matt Kuchar's fortunes took quite a turn Sunday, and so did his golf ball.

Kuchar beat Martin Laird in a playoff at The Barclays with a shot out of the rough that rolled toward the back of the 18th green, then caught enough of the slope to turn back toward the hole and stop 30 inches away for a birdie.

It was a stunning conclusion to the first FedEx Cup playoff event.

Kuchar closed with a 5-under 66, and it didn't look as though it would be enough. Laird had a one-shot lead and needed two putts from just inside 25 feet for the victory, when he ran his putt 7 feet past the hole. He missed the par putt, setting up the playoff.

The timing could not have been better for Kuchar.

His first victory of the year came two weeks after he made his first Ryder Cup team, and the win can only give him a shot of confidence. Kuchar moved to No. 1 in the FedEx Cup standings by winning the first playoff event, giving him a good shot at the $10 million prize. And his third career win is likely to move him to a career-best No. 10 in the world ranking.

Tiger Woods continues to make progress, which, in this case, means he gets to keep going.

Woods, who started these playoffs at No. 112 in the standings, closed with a 4-under 67 to easily make the top 100 who advance to the second round next week at the Deutsche Bank Championship. Woods tied for 12th, his best finish since June, and moved up to No. 65.

Laird, who recovered from a shaky start, looked just as shaky at the end, especially with his putter.

He was tied for Kuchar when he had a 20-foot eagle putt on the par-5 17th, only to roll it nearly 8 feet beyond the hole. He made that birdie putt to take the lead, then repeated his mistake on the final hole in regulation.

This time, the comeback putt never had a chance. Neither did Laird in the playoff after Kuchar's shot stopped so close to the cup. Laird hit out of the rough to about 50 feet and made par.

The only consolation for Laird was being safe through next month in the playoffs. He was at No. 95, hopeful of advancing to the second round, and his runner-up finish puts him at No. 3 and virtually guarantees he'll be among the top 30 at the Tour Championship who compete for the $10 million prize.

Steve Stricker closed with a 66 to tie for third with Kevin Streelman, whose parents grew up in this neighborhood and whose grandparents are buried in a cemetery next to the seventh hole. Two years ago at Ridgewood, Streelman narrowly missed a playoff. He also was on the bubble, starting at No. 102, and moved up to No. 18.

Rory Sabbatini had the low round of the day at 64 and tied for fifth.

UIHLEIN CLAIMS AMATEUR TITLE: At University Place, Wash., Peter Uihlein, the top-ranked amateur player in the world, defeated David Chung 4 and 2 to win the 110th U.S. Amateur championship. Uihlein was leading by two following the first 18 holes on Sunday morning. He finished off Chung on the 34th hole when Chung's tee shot on the drivable par-4 16th hole went into the deep, fescue grass. Ranked No. 1 in the world by the Royal & Ancient, Uihlein has been considered one of the top young players in the world for many years but had yet to capture a major championship until now. The victory, coming on Uihlein's 21st birthday, was also his first over Chung in a match-play setting. Chung was 2-0 against Uihlein until Sunday.

WIE WINS IN WINNIPEG: At Winnipeg, Manitoba: Michelle Wie won the CN Canadian Women's Open for her second career victory on the LPGA Tour. Wie shot a 2-under 70 on Sunday to move to 12 under for the tournament at the St. Charles Country Club. Jiyai Shin of South Korea shot a 1-over 73 and tied for second with Kristy McPherson of South Carolina (66), defending champion Suzann Pettersen of Norway (69) and Jee Lee Young from South Korea (69). Wie was tied with Shin for the lead entering the final round. Wie earned $337,500 for winning the LPGA's only stop in Canada.