Power Rankings: Utah Championship presented by Utah Sports Commissiontext sizeJuly 09, 2013
By Jeff Shain, PGATOUR.COM
The stretch run of the Web.com Tour regular season gets underway with this week’s Utah Championship, the first of seven consecutive stops that will finalize 25 PGA TOUR cards and fill 75 slots in the new Finals series that follows.
Doug LaBelle II overcame a five-shot deficit on the final day to capture last year’s edition, derailing Michael Putnam’s bid to become the event’s first multiple winner. The victory took LaBelle from 92nd on the money list to 14th, on the way to a PGA TOUR promotion at year’s end.
Putnam had sought a trophy to bookend with his 2010 victory, settling instead for his second runner-up finish in five visits. His career earnings of $174,651 in Utah top the event’s all-time list.
Willow Creek Country Club, in suburban Salt Lake City, has been the venue for each of the tournament’s 15 years. It ranked as the 10th-easiest layout on last year’s Web.com Tour schedule, with 190 rounds in the 60s. LaBelle was one of four players who broke 70 all four days.
Power Rankings for this week’s Utah Championship:
Power Rankings: Utah Championship Rank Player Comment Michael PUTNAM Of Putnam’s 20 career rounds at Willow Creek, 13 have been in the 60s – and just two have failed to break par. A win not only would atone for last year’s missed chance, but in all likelihood lock up this year’s Web.com Tour money title. Danny LEE The former U.S. Amateur champion still seeks his first win of 2013 but stands No. 8 in earnings on the strength of six top-15 finishes, including two in his past three starts. Lee tied for ninth in his only visit to Willow Creek two years ago. Ben MARTIN The tour’s newest winner comes to Utah on a run that has seen him finish outside the top 15 just twice in his past eight starts. Last week’s open date also offered him time to return fresh after winning a four-man Monday playoff. Camilo BENEDETTI The Colombian vet has placed among the top 15 in each of the past three editions, including a tie for ninth last year. Perhaps Utah can be the spot for a jump-start Benedetti needs to get into the mix from 44th on the money list. Kevin TWAY The son of Champions Tour pro Bob Tway has three top-12 finishes in just eight starts, with two coming last month. He tied for ninth last time out at the United Leasing Championship, coming two weeks after a tie for 11th in Wichita.