BETHESDA, Md. -- Congressional reopened its gates Sunday to thousands of spectators who got what they expected in the AT&T National -- another win by Tiger Woods.

Only this win didn't follow a typical script.

Caught in a tense duel with Bo Van Pelt on another sweltering day, it looked as though Woods blinked first until Van Pelt matched him with mistakes of his own. Woods closed with a 2-under-par 69 and won by two shots when Van Pelt finished with his third straight bogey and had to settle for a 71.

Woods won for the third time this year, the most of anyone on the PGA Tour, and it was the 74th win of his career. That moved him past Jack Nicklaus alone into second place on the tour list, eight short of the record set by Sam Snead.

Not bad for a guy who only five months ago walked off the course at Doral with another injury to his left Achilles tendon.

"I remember there was a time when people were saying I could never win again," Woods said.

He finished at 8-under 276 and moved to the top of the PGA Tour money list and the FedEx Cup standings for the first time since September 2009.

He effectively clinched the win with a 9-iron down the hill toward the peninsula green on the 18th, a shot so pure that Woods started walking and twirled the club moments after he made contact.

So ended a wild week in Washington -- record heat Friday, followed by a wind storm that toppled dozens of trees at Congressional and forced the tournament to keep spectators out Saturday. They were back in force for the final round, and they were treated to some pretty good theater.

"What an incredible week," said Woods, the host of the AT&T National and a winner for the second straight time it has come to Congressional. "Everybody, thank you for being patient with us. Yesterday was a silent day. I think everyone saved up for today. What an atmosphere to play in front of."

Brendon de Jonge of Zimbabwe, who had a one-shot lead going into the final round, didn't make birdie and closed with a 77.

Woods remains at No. 4 in the world, though this win at least gives him a mathematical chance to get back to No. 1 at the final two majors of the year. The ranking is based on points over two years. If it were a vote, Van Pelt knows how he would cast his ballot.

"I think he's the only guy to win three tournaments on tour this year, is that correct?" he said. "On three different golf courses. And he was leading the U.S. Open after two days. So I'd say that he's playing the best golf in the world right now."

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