Monday, December 11, 2017

Lee McCoy wins Tour Q School

with 28-under-par 260, Ben Taylor T16 finish

Lee McCoy had three rounds of 65 or better in the final stage of Tour Q-School, and that was just enough to earn him a win.
A final-round of7-under 65 Sunday at Whirlwind Golf Club’s Cattail lay-out boosted McCoy from a share of the lead at 21 under to a two-shot victory at 28 under.
Thanks to a hot putter, McCoy went his final 66 holes of the tournament bogey-free and posted just one bogey overall in the 72 holes at Chandler, Arizona.
McCoy, 23, was forced to withdraw from the second stage of Q-School in 2016 after being injured in a car accident. A year later he entered final stage already owning a Mackenzie Tour win but guaranteed only conditional Tour status. With this win, the former Georgia All-American now is fully exempt for the 2018 Tour season.
“Not having that added pressure of making the reshuffles and not knowing whether or not I’m going to be playing in the coming weeks, it’s huge,” McCoy said. “It definitely adds a level of comfort.”
While McCoy was the only player to secure fully exempt status, several others also earned 2018 Tour cards Sunday at Whirlwind’s Devil’s Claw and Cattail lay-outs (competitors played each course twice over the four-round event).
A finish between second and 10th (and ties) at final stage earned a player exempt status on the Tour for the first 12 events of 2018, while finishers 11-45 (and ties) are exempt for the first eight events. The remainder of the final stage field was granted conditional status for 2018.
England's BenTaylor finished strongly to gain T16 position with scores of 75, 69, 64 and 63 for an aggregate of 271
Sung-Jae Im, who has mainly competed on South Korean and Japanese circuits the last two years, dropped from the share of the lead but finished in solo second at 26 under after closing in 5-under 67 at the Cattail. The 19-year-old has rocketed from No. 522 to No. 155 in the Official World Golf Ranking in 2017.
Curtis Luck, the 2016 U.S. Amateur champion, also closed in 67 at the Cattail to tie for third at 22 under alongside Mark Blakefield. Kent Bulle tied for fifth at 20 under with Brian Richey.
Alex Kang, older brother of LPGA major winner Danielle Kang, closed in 66 at the Cattail to tie for seventh at 19 under. Mark Hubbard (final-round 67 at the Cattail) and Bio Kim (closing 9-under 63 at Devil’s Claw) also tied for seventh at 19 under.
Maverick McNealy, the 2015 winner of the Haskins Award presented by Stifel, tied for 10th at 18 under. The ex-Stanford standout turned pro earlier this autumn.
Sam Burns, a Haskins contender at LSU for much of the 2016-17 college season, turned pro in September and also came away with a tie for 10th at 18 under.
 Ryan Yip, Garrett Osborn, Connor Arendell and Max Marsico were the other T-10 finishers, rounding out the guys earning the 12 starts of exempt status.
Other notables to earn cards included: Long-hitting former Texas A and M phenom Cameron Champ (T-16, 17 under), first-round leader and 36-hole co-leader Jose Toledo (T-16, 17 under), the top-ranked 2016-17 college golfer Wyndham Clark (T-23, 16 under) and 2012 U.S. Amateur runner-up Michael Weaver (T-42, 14 under).
Former Arizona State star Max Rottluff closed in 10-under 62 at Devil’s Claw to jump 60 spots to a tie for 23rd at 16 under and secure a card. Matt Ryan (no, not the Atlanta Falcons quarterback) posted a final-round 11-under 61 at Devil’s Claw to rocket 67 spots to a tie for 30th at 15 under and to a 2018 card.
Jimmy Stanger, an All-American for Virginia in 2016-17, opened in 80 and still nearly earned more than conditional status. (All finishers outside of the top 45 and ties earned at least conditional status.) He followed with rounds of 62, 69 and 64 but that only pushed him to 13 under, one shot short of that top 45 and ties threshold.
Other notables who failed to earn more than conditional status at Q-School final stage included: Robby Shelton (T-65, 12 under), Max McGreevy (T-73, 11 under), Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano (T-80, 10 under), Rico Hoey (T-85, 9 under), Max Homa (T-85, 9 under), John Oda (T-85, 9 under), Jordan Niebrugge (T-99, 7 under), Gunn Yang (T-108, 6 under), top-ranked amateur Joaquin Niemann (T-108, 6 under despite a final-round 64), Cameron Davis (T-113, 5 under) and Sean Crocker (T-126, 3 under).
par 288 (4x72)
260 Lee McCoy (USA) 65 67 63 65
262 Sung-Jae Im (S Korea) 68 67 60 67
266 Mark Blakefield (USA) 69 65 66 68, Curtis Luck (USA) 67 64 68 67.

271 Ben Taylor (England) 75 69 64 64 (T16)





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