The final DAP Championship has been played at Canterbury Golf Club, as the Web.com Tour Finals will not return to Cleveland next year.
Over the last three years, it has been fun to watch players from arguably the second best pro golf tour on the planet compete in a critical event at season’s end on one of the world’s top-rated golf courses.
Justin Lower Shoots Final Round 67, Finishes T32
On Sunday, Fulton’s Justin Lower posted a solid round of 3-under par 67 to jump him up 15 places, finishing at T32 for the week. His 4-under par 276 total earned him $5,975.
Lower now sits at T53 on the 2018 Web.com Finals money list after two events, with two events remaining. To earn a PGA TOUR card for next season, he must finish in the top 25 — which will take about $40K. He will likely need a top-15 or better in each of the last two Finals events to reach that total.
The Web.com Tour takes a week off before traveling to Boise, Idaho for the Albertsons Boise Open presented by Kraft Nabisco Sep 13-16. The season concludes the following week in Atlantic Beach, Florida for the Web.com Tour Championship Sep 20-23.
Kramer Hickok earns first victory at Web.com Tour’s DAP Championship presented by NewBrick
by Preston Smith, PGATOUR.COM
BEACHWOOD, Ohio – After leading each of the previous three rounds, Kramer Hickok closed out his first victory at the DAP Championship presented by NewBrick with a closing 2-under 68 finishing three strokes clear of the field at 14-under 266. With the win, Hickok becomes the first player to go wire-to-wire in 2018 on the Web.com Tour.
After a shaky start with two consecutive bogeys to begin his round, Hickok birdied Nos. 6, 8 and 9 to make the turn at 1-under on the day. The 26-year-old followed it up with another birdie on No. 10, his fourth day in a row to birdie the par-4, 358-yard hole.
“Wire-to-wire has been one of my goals,” Hickok said. “Not only to win but to face that pressure being on top of the leaderboard every single day and know that you can play to your best ability is one of the things that I wanted to come to in my practice and the mental work that I do. It’s been a long way coming. Earlier in the year, I kind of fell back when I had the lead and felt a little uncomfortable. I still did today, but it’s nice to be able to put up a good round.”
Hickok added another birdie on No. 12 to reach 15-under before a late bogey on No. 17 added some drama down the stretch. Ultimately, a par on No. 18 made him the Web.com Tour’s 20th first-time winner of the year and ninth rookie winner.
The University of Texas alum compiled impressive accuracy numbers throughout the week. Hickok ranked second in driving accuracy hitting 46 of 56 fairways. He also added 57 out of 72 greens in regulation to rank T3 through the week. Hickok, who lived with 11-time PGA TOUR champion Jordan Spieth for the past couple of years, alluded to his former teammate’s competitiveness as a driving factor.
“In 2015, he had a year like Tiger Woods,” Hickok said. “He won five times and two majors and I’m seeing what he’s doing first hand. I’m comparing myself to him and saying, ‘this is what he does to reach the highest level and I’m going to do that and twice as much.’ If I can do that, I can catch up to what these other guys are doing and I just tried to outwork him. I was learning from what he was doing. He’s getting the most out of every hour and I started to develop my practice that way. Being in that house with him for two to three years, I don’t think I’d be holding this trophy if I wasn’t.”
While Sunday marked a first Web.com Tour victory, Hickok is no stranger to winning. He earned the Order of Merit title on the Mackenzie Tour – PGA TOUR Canada in 2017 after claiming two wins and three runner-up finishes. His successful season allowed him to gain fully exempt status on the Web.com Tour this season.
“The Mackenzie Tour was huge; I wouldn’t be here holding the trophy without the Mackenzie Tour,” Hickok said. “For me, I learned so much. I learned how to compete, I learned how to travel, I learned when to work out, when to rest and just learned how to become a professional golfer. Most importantly, I learned how to win and I was looking back on those rounds when I won and it certainly helped me today.”
A week after earning the top finish of any member of The 25 at the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Championship, Hickok continued his ascent up the combined money list. The win moves him to $373,635 on the season, good for second on the combined money list behind Sungjae Im. Hickok was 23rd on the list as recently as two weeks ago.
Six players secure PGA TOUR cards for 2018-19 season
A pair of former PGA TOUR champions, Hunter Mahan and Matt Jones, earned their return to the TOUR with T2 finishes at 11-under 269. Mahan made the turn at 3-under to threaten the lead early before a bogey on No. 18 sealed his fate. Jones began his round with a bang, holing out for eagle at the par-4 first.
Seth Reeves, a 27-year-old Georgia Tech alum, eagled the par-5 ninth for the second straight day to jump into contention and ultimately earn his first PGA TOUR card after a top-10 finish last week. Former Yellow Jacket teammate Anders Albertson, a member of The 25, was on hand see him get his card.
“I just wanted to make sure I signed my scorecard,” Reeves joked. “It feels good, and honestly, it hasn’t really set in yet. I knew at least 3-under would be good enough, and then I came out here to warm up and this guy named Anders Albertson was finishing up his 8-under round. I wanted to go beat Anders so that was my motivation.”
Stephan Jaeger (T4) also earned his return to the PGA TOUR, joined by returnees Max Homa (T6) and Denny McCarthy (T9). In all, six players earned entrance to the PGA TOUR.
* ABOUT KRAMER HICKOK:
BIRTHDATE: April 14, 1992
BIRTHPLACE: Austin, Texas
RESIDENCE: Dallas, Texas
EDUCATION: University of Texas (2015, Geography)
TURNED PROFESSIONAL: 2015
* Kramer Hickok became the first wire-to-wire winner of the 2018 Web.com Tour season.
* Since the tournament’s inception in 2016, every 54-hole leader/co-leader has gone on to win on Sunday. Hickok is the ninth third-round leader/co-leader to win on the Web.com Tour this season.
* Hickok set a new 72-hole record at the DAP Championship presented by NewBrick with a 14-under 266.
* Four PGA TOUR cards were locked up last week at the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Championship and six additional cards were secured at the second Finals event through The Finals 25 Money List (Denny McCarthy, Matt Jones, Hunter Mahan, Seth Reeves, Stephan Jaeger and Max Homa).
* Anders Albertson became the third player this week to tie the course record at 7-under 63, joining Kramer Hickok and Sangmoon Bae. Bobby Wyatt originally set the mark during the first round in 2016.
* After the conclusion of play, three international players finished inside the top 10 on the leaderboard. Thus far in 2018, the Web.com Tour has had winners from nine different countries claim titles in the first 25 events: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Canada, England, Germany, Mexico, South Korea and the United States.
* Canterbury Golf Club 2018 scoring average: 69.935