Adam Hadwin put forth a heroic effort at the Web.com Tour Championship in a last-ditch bid to earn his PGA Tour card, only to come up painfully short.
Going into the event at TPC Craig Ranch in Dallas, Hadwin sat 48th on the Web.com Tour money list. The top 25 would earn their PGA Tour cards for next season, which left Hadwin little margin for error – he needed to finish in a tie for second at season finale, at the very least.
It was a bit of a Hail Mary, to be sure, but the 24-year-old golfer from Abbotsford came up with a series of sterling rounds. He carded rounds of 69, 69 and 68 to put himself in the mix, then put together a brilliant six-under 65 on Sunday.
As he headed to the scorer’s tent after birdying the 18th hole, Hadwin was tied for second with Americans Morgan Hoffmann and James Hahn at 13 under par. He was projected to finish 25th on the money list, just inside the bubble, if there was no other movement at the top of the leaderboard,
But Hahn was still on the course.
With Hadwin looking on nervously, Hahn pounded his drive on the par-five 18th down the middle of the fairway. He badly sliced his approach shot, though, and it landed on the wrong side of the cart path to the right of the green.
TV cameras captured a momentary smile on Hadwin’s face, but Hahn recovered in spectacular fashion, finessing his third shot to within three feet of the hole. He rolled in the short birdie putt to finish in solo second place, trimming roughly $16,000 off of Hadwin’s paycheque and knocking him out of the top 25. Jim Herman nabbed the last PGA Tour card.
“I’ve said quite a few times that I have a flair for the dramatic,” Hadwin told The News in a phone interview on Monday morning. “I think this would qualify.”
After completing his round, Hadwin was “a little in shock” to discover he was within the projected top 25. But he was well aware that Hahn stood a reasonable chance of birdying 18, having just done so himself.
“I think I just convinced myself I was going to get knocked out (of the top 25),” Hadwin said. “Obviously I was hoping for the other one.
“He (Hahn) is a great competitor and a great guy. He even apologized to me after, but I told him not to.
“I did the best I could. I’ll have more chances.”
Hadwin collected $58,000 for his third-place finish, and ended up 30th on the money list at $168,713.
His PGA Tour dream isn’t dead, merely deferred. By virtue of his top-40 money list finish, he advances directly to the final stage of PGA Tour Q-School. That event runs Nov. 28-Dec. 3 at PGA West in La Quinta, Calif.
“It’s lots of time to relax, let the body recharge,” Hadwin noted.
• In PGA qualifying action, Abbotsford’s Nick Taylor cruised through the first stage of Q-School at San Juan Oaks Club in Hollister, Calif. He shot 67-71-70-65 to finish in third place at 15 under par, well inside the 10-under cut line. The top 19 golfers from the first-stage site moved on to the second stage.
Fellow Abbotsford golfer James Lepp finished at four-under (73-72-67-72), and did not advance.