By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM
PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. -- Scott Langley already has won at Pebble Beach. Only, it was in the pro-junior division of The First Tee Open in 2006.
The PGA TOUR rookie, who tied for 16th at the 2010 U.S. Open on the same storied links, returns this week to make his second start at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am (he missed the cut in 2012). Langley says competing in The First Tee Open as a teenager was an eye-opening ride.
"That was such an amazing experience, ... coming here for the first time and capturing the beauty of the place and being able to play and compete and be alongside professional golfers inside the ropes," he said. "... Then to come back for the U.S. Open in 2010 and play well as an amateur, just I love this place. There is something about it. I don't know. Maybe I read the greens well. Maybe it just suits my game. I don't know.
"Just when I come here I'm very much a peace and I love it."
Langley earned his spot in 2005 and '06 after going through a multi-tiered selection process. The First Tee hopefuls gathered in Manhattan, Kansas and were evaluated based on their golf skills, a series of interviews and essays they wrote. He was a member of the chapter in St. Louis and is the first First Tee alumn to earn his PGA TOUR card.
Langley, who tied for 17th at q-school to earn those playing privileges, knows he has a job to do this week, though. He still marvels at the beauty of the place but he isn't as distracted by the spectacular vistas.
"I can just kind of get down to playing golf now, which is good," Langley said.
His rookie campaign has started off wih a bang as Langley opened with a 62 and tied for third at the Sony Open in Hawaii. Contending all four days turned out to be more draining than he expected, though, and he missed his next two cuts.
"I'm learning," Langley said candidly. "Sony was awesome. Wouldn't have it any other way. think it maybe took a little bit out of me that I'll learn to grow from in the future and manage my energy a little bit better. But I'm a rookie. I mean, it's a long year. It's a learning process for sure.
"We're just getting into it. We haven't even left the west coast yet."
And the best part? He's at Pebble Beach this week.