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PGA TOUR University On TOUR: Four alumni in top 10 at Bahamas Great Exuma Classic

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PGA TOUR University

Ross Steelman carded the low round of the tournament with a 9-under 63 in the final round of The Bahamas Great Exuma Classic. (Mike Mulholland/Getty Images)

Ross Steelman carded the low round of the tournament with a 9-under 63 in the final round of The Bahamas Great Exuma Classic. (Mike Mulholland/Getty Images)



    Written by Staff @PGATOUR

    Korn Ferry Tour

    Ross Steelman carded the lowest round of his professional career in the final round of the Korn Ferry Tour’s season opener, The Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals Emerald Bay. Steelman’s 9-under 63 was the low round of the tournament, and he nearly caught leader Jeremy Paul, who claimed his first Korn Ferry Tour title on Wednesday.

    Eight PGA TOUR University alumni started the 2024 Korn Ferry Tour season with a made cut, with three others joining Steelman (3rd) in the top 10: Noah Goodwin (T7), Fred Biondi (T7) and Quade Cummins (T7).

    Thirteen alumni will compete in the second event of the Tour’s International Swing, which runs from Sunday through Wednesday (Jan. 21-24).

    The Bahamas Great Abaco Classic at The Abaco Club will feature Sam Bennett, Ricky Castillo, Sam Choi, Trent Phillips, Patrick Welch, Jackson Suber, Logan McAllister, Cole Hammer and Trevor Werbylo, in addition to Steelman, Goodwin, Biondi and Cummins. McAllister will seek to replicate his stellar performance at Abaco last year, where he carded a final-round 68 to secure his first top-10 finish on the Korn Ferry Tour.

    PGA TOUR University Alumni – Korn Ferry Tour Points List

    Rank Player Points Events Best finish of season
    3 Ross Steelman 190 1 3rd, Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals
    T7 Fred Biondi 83 1 T7, Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals
    T7 Quade Cummins 83 1 T7, Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals
    T7 Noah Goodwin 83 1 T7, Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals
    T14 Jackson Suber 51 1 T14, Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals
    T42 Logan McAllister 14 1 T42, Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals
    T42 Trevor Werbylo 14 1 T42, Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals
    63 Cole Hammer 4 1 63rd, Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals
    - Ricky Castillo 0 1 MC, Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals
    - Patrick Welch 0 1 MC, Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals
    - Sam Choi 0 1 MC, Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals
    - Trent Phillips 0 1 MC, Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals

    PGA TOUR

    To start off the 2024 PGA TOUR season, Ludvig Åberg appeared at The Sentry, being the only PGA TOUR University alum in the field.Åberg placed T47 at The Sentry followed by a T30 finish at the Sony Open in Hawaii. Austin Eckroat shared the 36-hole lead at the Sony Open, only to card a 2-over 72 in the final round and finish T42. Second-year TOUR member Davis Thompson recovered from an opening-round 73, tallying 9-under in his next 54 holes to finish T57. After making it through the Monday Qualifier, PGA TOUR rookie Parker Coody carded three rounds at par or better and ultimately finished T74.

    Alabama sophomore Nick Dunlap will make his fourth PGA TOUR start this week, starting his spring semester off in La Quinta, California at The American Express. Most recently, Dunlap competed two months ago at the Butterfield Bermuda Championship, where he narrowly missed the cut by two strokes.

    In addition to Dunlap, there are 11 total alumni in the field: Eckroat, Parker Coody, Thompson, Pierceson Coody, Adrien Dumont de Chassart, Joe Highsmith, John Pak, Kevin Yu, Chris Gotterup, Mac Meissner and Jacob Bridgeman. Thompson will seek reprisal in his second appearance at The American Express, after being the 54-hole leader in 2023, only to fall by one stroke to Jon Rahm.

    PGA TOUR University Alumni – FedExCup Standings

    Rank Player Points Events Best finish of season
    51 Ludvig Åberg 35 2 T30, Sony Open in Hawaii
    T76 Austin Eckroat 11 1 T42, Sony Open in Hawaii
    T90 Davis Thompson 5 1 T57, Sony Open in Hawaii
    T103 Parker Coody 2 1 T74, Sony Open in Hawaii
    - Kevin Yu 0 1 MC, Sony Open in Hawaii
    - Pierceson Coody 0 1 MC, Sony Open in Hawaii
    - Jacob Bridgeman 0 1 MC, Sony Open in Hawaii
    - Joe Highsmith 0 1 MC, Sony Open in Hawaii
    - Adrien Dumont de Chassart 0 1 MC, Sony Open in Hawaii

    DP World Tour

    Michael Thorbjornsen, the current No. 1 player in the 2023 PGA TOUR University Ranking, has officially returned from injury following a near six-month hiatus from competition. The Stanford senior earned a sponsor exemption into this week’s DP World Tour’s Hero Dubai Desert Classic as the top player in the PGA TOUR University Ranking at the end of the Fall 2023 season. Thorbjornsen returns for his second year in pursuance of surpassing last year’s performance, where he held the co-lead after 36 holes and finished T20.

    Florida State’s Frederik Kjettrup, ranked No. 8 in PGA TOUR University and No. 15 in the World Amateur Golf Ranking, will join Thorbjornsen at Emirates Golf Club this week as another sponsor exemption. Kjettrup enjoyed his own success on the DP World Tour last summer after being the only amateur at Made in Himmerland to move onto the weekend, a feat that has only been accomplished once before in tournament history. The Denmark native’s best finish of the fall came at the Jackson T. Stephens Cup, where he finished T5 and helped the Seminoles claim the team title.

    Alex Fitzpatrick (Class of 2022) is also part of the field at the Hero Dubai Desert Classic. Fitzpatrick is ranked No. 44 in the Race to Dubai Ranking, with the top 10 earning PGA TOUR cards at the end of the season.

    Latin America Amateur Championship

    The ninth edition of the Latin America Amateur Championship will take place Thursday through Sunday (Jan. 18-21) at Santa María Golf Club in Panamá City, Panama. A field comprised of 108 amateur golfers is set to compete for the title and exemptions into the 2024 Masters and Open Championship. Entering as the highest-ranked player (No. 75 WAGR) in the field of the LAAC, UCLA junior Omar Morales will make his second LAAC appearance, coming fresh off a victorious Fall 2023 season with the Bruins.

    Not only did 2023 come with two collegiate titles, the El Macero Classic followed by the Golf Club of Georgia Collegiate Invitational, Morales also earned medalist honors at Hillcrest Country Club to qualify for the 123rd U.S. Open at Los Angeles Country Club.

    Aaron Jarvis (SMU) will look to write his name in the history books of the Latin America Amateur Championship, contending to be the first two-time winner of the event after claiming the 2022 title.

    Santiago De la Fuente (Houston)and Vincent Marzilio (Texas Tech)are two players familiar with one another beyond their PGA TOUR University affiliation. De la Fuente, ranked No. 44, and Marzilio, ranked No. 100 in this year’s Ranking, are frequent competitors of the Latin America Amateur Championship. Both players finished as runners-up in the 2022 LAAC, followed by a solo third-place finish for Marzilio in 2023.

    Notable names from past Latin America Amateur Championships include 2023 Champion Mateo Fernandez de Oliveira and 2022 runner-up Fred Biondi. Both players were Class of 2023 PGA TOUR University graduates, with Biondi moving on to the Korn Ferry Tour, and Fernandez de Oliveira competing primarily on PGA TOUR Canada.

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