The PGA TOUR headed north for the RBC Canadian Open, and the competition for one of golf’s oldest titles was fierce from Round 1.
Scott Piercy surged to the top of the leaderboard early with a blistering 62, but his course record-tying effort did not get him much separation from the field. In all, 94 players shot 70 or better in the first round. Piercy didn't win wire-to-wire -- he had to birdie four holes early Sunday to regain the lead -- but he ended up winning by a stroke for his second PGA TOUR win in 11 months.
It wasn't always that easy. Piercy didn't really get hot until three weeks ago, when he tied for 12th at The Greenbrier Classic with four rounds in the 60s. He nearly won won the John Deere Classic, tying for third, and then made 20 birdies (and two eagles) at the RBC Canadian Open. The victory in Canada put him in the field for the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational for the first time.
In short, Piercy was patient underneath the fire. Patience is a very real ingredient to good play and consistently good performances. In Piercy’s case, continuing in his rich vein of form was mainly a question of him exhibiting that patience, keeping his mind in the present and keeping his expectations low.
Too often, when a golfer is playing well (or poorly for that matter) his mind will tend to wander into the future. That is a dangerous place to be, because the mindset can lend itself to a results-driven mindset. In other words, an approach that lacks the requisite focus on the process required to play well.
Like Piercy, it pays to remain patient at all times; especially if your game is rounding into form. Hit shots on their individual merit and approach the game with a balanced and poised mindset. Don’t sweat the bad shots or the funky bounces and realize that -- as Piercy labeled it -- you play an "imperfect game."
Mark Immelman, the brother of PGA TOUR professional Trevor Immelman, is a well-respected golf instructor and head coach of the Columbus State University (Ga.) golf team. For more information about Mark and his instruction, visit his web site, markimmelman.com or follow him on Twitter @mark_immelman or “Like” Mark Immelman Golf Instruction on Facebook. He also has a golf instruction e-book called “Consistently Straight Shots – The Simple Solution” available on iTunes/iBooks.
Got a question for Scott Piercy? Send us your questions for Direct Connect — PGATOUR.COM’s video franchise that gets you closer to a PGA TOUR pro each week — and host John Swantek might use it when he chats with the winner of the RBC Canadian Open.
Piercy is in the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational for the first time after his win at Hamilton Golf and C.C. last week.
If you’ve been wanting to ask Piercy a question, now is your opportunity. Just fill out the form below.
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Direct Connect video is posted each Wednesday afternoon on PGATOUR.COM, so please check back then for the Piercy interview.
Check out the top five shots of the week from the RBC Canadian Open and Nationwide Children's Hospitals Invitational with highlights from J.B. Holmes, Kevin Kisner, Ben Kohles, Bo Van Pelt, and Scott Piercy.
Scott Piercy planned to defend his title at next week’s Reno-Tahoe Open.
Then he won the RBC Canadian Open on Sunday. By doing so, Piercy earned a spot in the field for next week’s World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational ( click here for full field ).
“I have to apologize to Reno,” Piercy said. “The tournament director there has been a good friend of mine and I've worked closely with her. I know she's excited for me, and she'd want me to be in Ohio, too, if I could. So I'm just excited.”
It will be Piercy’s first World Golf Championships event.
Scott Piercy shot a final-round 67 to win the RBC Canadian Open by a stroke on Sunday.
It’s the second victory of his career and moves Piercy to 13th in the FedExCup standings.
Share your congratulations here and we’ll pass it along to Piercy.
Scott Piercy has birdied each of his last four holes to take the lead by himself at the RBC Canadian Open.
As good as he has started, though, he has company.
William McGirt is just a shot back after playing his first five holes in 2 under.
Overnight leader Robert Garrigus is only two off the lead, while Scott Stallings is two more strokes back.
Since missing the cut at the U.S. Open and AT&T National, Scott Piercy has reeled off 10 straight rounds in the 60s, including a 62 and a 67 the first two days of the RBC Canadian Open.
During that 10-round stretch, Piercy is a combined 39 under (he tied for 12th at The Greenbrier Classic, was third at the John Deere Classic and has a share of the lead going into today’s third round).
Piercy’s best streak of sub-70 rounds prior to his current run came in 2009, when he played the last two rounds of the Bob Hope Classic and the first three rounds of the Waste Management Phoenix Open in the 60s. With 10 rounds under his belt in this event, Piercy has yet to post a score worse than par -- his even-par 72 he shot in the final round in 2009 his worst performance.
As for William McGirt, with whom Piercy shares the lead with, he earned a spot in the field this week thanks to a tie for fifth at last week’s True South Classic in Mississippi.
That was his best finish in 56 previous starts on the PGA TOUR.
After enjoying four under-par rounds at Annandale Golf Club in Madison last week, McGirt added his fifth and sixth consecutive under-par rounds with his 63-66 start at Hamilton Golf and Country Club.
The two will play in the final group of the day at 12:38 p.m. ET, along with Robert Garrigus, who is a shot back. How do you think they will fare? Discuss below.
A day after setting a course record, Scott Piercy had to temper expectations.
“You shoot 62 and think, oh, I've got it,” he said. “You expect to shoot another 62, which is -- to shoot 62, you've got to have things going for you. You've got to be making the putts. You've got to get the right bounces. I think you've got to be realistic with your expectations.”
Friday, Piercy had to settle for a 67, which was still good enough to give him a share of the early clubhouse lead with William McGirt at 11 under.
“When I shot 62, my expectation was to hit fairways and greens, and it just happened,” Piercy continued. “Knowing that it's generally tough to follow up a course record, I just wanted to hit a bunch of greens, a bunch of fairways, and let it happen again.”
He did just that, hitting 79 percent of his fairways and 72 percent of his greens on the way to four birdies and just one bogey.
Now Piercy will try to continue that trend.
This year, he’s finished in the top 25 10 times -- his best finish was a third at the John Deere Classic. In his last two starts, Piercy has finished in the top 12.
Despite the 62 earlier in the week, though, Piercy knows that’s more the exception than the norm at Hamilton G&CC, which played as the third-most difficult course on the PGA TOUR the last time the tournament was played there.
“I like to be aggressive and shoot at things,” Piercy said. “Because the greens are so severe in spots, you want to be below the hole, putting up into them. Here it's more playing for pars and hoping that the birdies fall.”