Two weeks after Mark Hubbard’s victory on the Web.com Tour, yet another local player is making plenty of noise on the pro circuit, but this time on the game’s most prestigious tour.
By Drew Kort
At the PGA TOUR’s Honda Classic in Palm Beach Gardens, Denver native and Valor Christian alumnus Wyndham Clark finished in a tie for seventh place, the highest finish of his career on the PGA TOUR. And he didn’t do it quietly.
After rounds of 69, 67 and 67, the 25-year-old PGA TOUR rookie was the tournament’s 54-hole leader at seven under par, thanks to some patented scrambling that helped him win numerous tournaments as an Oregon Duck—including the Pac-12 Championship at Boulder Country Club.
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Two birdies in his first four holes on Sunday extended his lead to two strokes, and he remained in the lead through 64 holes. With big names like Fowler, Koepka and Singh (yes, Vijay) nipping at his heels on one of the game’s most difficult stages, PGA National, Clark was not able to bring it home.
A two-over par final stretch–including a bogey on 18–dropped Clark four shots off the lead when play came to an end. What could have been his first victory in only 19 PGA TOUR starts became Keith Mitchell’s first in 40. Still, it marked the rookie’s ninth made cut in 11 starts this season, his second Top 10, his highest finish and biggest payday ($219,300). He jumped to 72 in the FedEx Cup standings with the high finish.
“This is what I love to do. I love to play golf, and I’m excited to keep going,” Clark told Colorado AvidGolfer. “To be in the final pairing of a PGA TOUR tournament was great experience for me. Obviously it wasn’t the outcome I wanted, but it’s only a matter of time before I can do it.”
With his short but impressive track record on golf’s grandest stage, it seems inevitable.
When asked how his Colorado upbringing has had an impact on his game and career, the 2010 CGA Amateur champion gave a straightforward answer.
“I couldn’t play year-round, so I didn’t burn out and was always eager to play. There was some stiff competition, so I learned to compete early.”
Get to know co-leader @Wyndham_Clark:
– Lives in Las Vegas
– Started playing golf when he was 3
– Made first ace when he was 6
– Close friends with @Panthers RB @run__cmc
– Wants to “Play Big” for his mom, who passed away in 2013 after battling breast cancer#LiveUnderPar pic.twitter.com/w39sc7aQrK
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) March 2, 2019
Wyndham is already well on his way to meeting, if not exceeding, the goals he has set for his first season on the TOUR.
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