Ricky Fowler’s week ended on Friday, and with him, probably, the same for another disappointing season.
It looks like for the second year in a row, Fowler will not qualify for the FedEx Cup playoffs. That, having easily made it to the post-season PGA Tour in the first 11 seasons of his career.
Fowler entered the final round of the regular season, the Wyndham Championship, in 123rd place in the FedEx Cup standings, just within the top 125th threshold on the eligibility list. But a second round 69 that included a late high wasn’t enough to make the cut in Greensboro, and he is now expected to finish 127th. That means he’ll need a lot of help over the weekend. Much.
Playing the nine quarterbacks at Sedgefield Country Club for the first time on Friday, Fowler put himself in a tight spot with three straight Ghosts on holes 11 through 13. But he bounced back by fours and was flawless the rest of the way.
However, two of those birds came after the eagle’s inner appearance lost 15 feet. Fowler needed a birdie on the last hole to have any chance of playing the weekend, Fowler missed from 23 feet.
But it’s not all bad news for the 33-year-old.
Even if Fowler doesn’t finish 125th, he’s still fully exempt next season for his fifth and final PGA Tour title at the 2019 Waste Management Phoenix Open (COVID added an extra year to his two-year exemption). And after that, there’s still $40 million in career path earnings. And even millions more in off-track profits. Oh, and also the fact that he has (perspective alert!) a beautiful family now:
Yes, it will be fine. Anyway, here’s the rest of our takeaway from Friday’s second round at the Wyndham Championship.
Thomas the Tank Engine is heading towards potential history
Joohyung Kim, AKA Tom, for his love of showing children as they grow up, shows the kind of tenacity that would make this fictional title character proud. On Thursday, Kim beat the specter of a four-way opening (yeah, that is quadrilateral bogey) to shoot 67 at three under par – becoming the third player to score below par after such a poor start. And now he has a chance to make more history.
Kim started with a draw on Friday and continued into the low round match of the day at Sedgefield Country Club with a score of 64 to take a share of the 36-hole lead. As you can imagine, the player who will win a PGA Tour event after opening with a quartet is even rarer:
“If you were to tell me after the first hole yesterday where I will be in two days, I would definitely have picked it up, very happy,” Kim said.
Of course, Kim cares more once he wins his first PGA Tour title. The talented 20-year-old South Korean has already won twice on the Asian Tour. And he actually managed to win fans over this week with his positive attitude.
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“I mean, all I did was laugh, I didn’t really take it – it’s just one bad hole,” Kim said. “I said to myself, ‘You know what, I have a lot of holes to return if I play well in the next 35 holes, and that’s exactly what I did. I played better than I thought I would, so a bonus.'”
Take notes, kids. Watching this guy is a better learning experience than watching the other Thomas the Tank Engine.
blast from The past (champion)
Remember Ryan Moore? He won this event 13 years ago. Yet one of the most popular amateur careers in modern golf history. Then he earned a US deduction point in the 2016 Ryder Cup. Well, he’s back. At least for two rounds.
The 39-year-old has fallen to No. 411 in the official world golf rankings, having struggled with a back injury for the past two years while missing several cuts from his 16th debut this season. His best result in 2022? A T-24 at John Deere Classic. But Moore followed the first-round 65 with Friday’s 66 to move to the under-nine and in a first-time tie with Kim and Brandon Wu.
“I did it last year at John Deere out of sort of out of nowhere, something kind of similar, a place where I’m comfortable and I feel comfortable and it’s a good track for me, it works for me,” Moore said. “But yeah, this week has been kind of nice. I have a friend who is filling that bag of cans this week. I’ve been through a lot with this a little bit. You know, we just had fun up there and enjoying ourselves and I’m just shooting some better shots.”
Those better shots put him in a position to take a huge leap in the FedEx Cup standings. Entering Week 183, Moore is now expected to move to 68th. If things continue like this, he has a pretty good idea of why.
“I mean, there are some courses — I don’t do them for long, and there just have to be less and less golf courses that I feel like I have a chance as they continue to evolve and change over the years,” Moore said. “So this is still more like a golf course for bullet makers, hitting the blind tee a lot and shorter, tighter corners.”
Bubble boy has a great day
Kudos to Max McGreevy for playing so well when he needed it most. The PGA Tour rookie had missed three straight cuts this week, but found himself in the top 20 heading into the weekend after Friday’s 67th.
However, he knows there is still work to be done to maintain his card.
“Yes, my fiancée has probably taken my phone away from me for the past couple of days,” said McGreevey, who is expected to go from 126 to 122. This week’s PGA Tour, Twitter and all that stuff. Honestly, I’ll look at it a bit, but at the same time I can only play my game, and I can’t care what other people are doing. If I play like I did today for the next couple of days, I know I’ll be in great shape.”
Weather delay causes a wave of WDs
The second round match was suspended at 5:36 p.m. local time due to the dangerous weather in the area. And Zach Johnson, who was 18th, wasn’t happy:
But Johnson stuck, unlike some others. When play was resumed after about 90 minutes, the pitch was noticeably smaller.
That’s because defending champion Kevin Kesner, 2011 Web Champion Simpson and Brandon Hagee decided not to return to finish their second rounds. The three were off the cutting line well, leaving Kessner and Simpson with only one hole punch. Hagee had four holes left, but he would have needed a miracle to make the cut.
Anyway, none of this really mattered – unless you bet your Kisner-Simpson-Davis Love III pairing!
Yikes. Hope it doesn’t spoil anyone’s weekend!
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