In the Winner's Circle with T.T. Crouch
June 27, 2018
By Adam Stanley, PGATOUR.COM
- With a win last week in Lethridge, T.T. Crouch earned full-time status on the Mackenzie Tour-PGA TOUR Canada. (Mike Harris/Mackenzie Tour)
T.T. Crouch’s abilities have never been doubted, only his schedule.
Crouch has limited Web.com Tour status this year and has only played in one event. The Mt. Vernon, Ohio native also lacked status on the Mackenzie Tour-PGA TOUR Canada going into last week’s Lethbridge Paradise Canyon Open.
Oh, how the tides have changed. Crouch now finds himself fifth on the Order of Merit, with a real shot at earning full status on the Web.com Tour for next year – where he will no longer need to worry about where he’s going to play next.
Crouch, who got into the event in Lethbridge with the last exempt spot via his Web.com Tour status on Saturday of tournament week, quickly jumped on a plane and found himself in Alberta for the first time 24-hours after receiving the call.
After rounds of 65-65-66-65, Crouch worked his way into a three-man playoff with Zach Wright and Chris Williams – the first time this season that extra holes were needed on the Mackenzie Tour.
The trio played the par-5 18th twice. Crouch birdied it both times, and after Williams made par and was eliminated on the first go-around, Wright couldn’t convert his birdie try on the second playoff hole and Crouch was a winner for the first time on the Mackenzie Tour.
Crouch spent a few minutes with PGATOUR.com chatting about his whirlwind schedule, why the golf course fit his eye and how important his support system has been over the last few months.
My friends and family were texting me and they were following me on Twitter and watching the scoreboards all week. The win is just now starting to sink in after a dramatic Sunday.
I was in the last group and I knew I was playing with the leader, three back. I knew if I didn’t beat him I wouldn’t win, obviously. From experience, I’ve found that trying to force things on the golf course has not worked out for me. I stayed patient, stuck to my game plan and took it from there.
I play a similar golf course back home where I grew up … hitting a lot of drivers and a lot of wedges with breaking short putts that have a lot of movement in them. There were a lot of things that suited my game. The pins were definitely tougher the last day and you had to roll some putts in. But the whole golf course worked out for my game.
It’s a relief. I don’t have great Web.com Tour status, so I’ve been stuck in no-man’s land the last three months doing Web.com Tour Monday Qualifiers and trying to get into the (Mackenzie Tour) events with my Web.com Tour status. I got in this week in the last spot on Saturday. I changed my flight from going to play a tournament in Florida to going to Calgary within 24 hours. After all that, it’s a relief to finally have somewhere to play.
A lot of people were saying, ‘well you need to do all the Web.com Tour and PGA TOUR Monday Qualifiers you can all year’, and other people said, ‘you just need to find a place to go play.’ There really wasn’t a right answer, but I think I found a good answer this week by coming up and playing.
I’m going to play full-time on the Mackenzie Tour for the rest of the year. At this point, it’s worth it. I was telling my caddie that it was the fourth week in and I knew I was way behind the 8-ball missing the first three events… so I knew I had to play well to gain a little bit of status. But getting a win skyrocketed my point-standings and now I’m going to play full-time.
This all happened so fast, I don’t know what the benefits are, I don’t know what I’ve gained yet. I’m going to go over everything soon, but heck it’s barely been any time at all. After the final round I felt good and slept on it, and now I’m getting a better understanding of what I really accomplished.
I never played any events in Canada growing up. The only event I came close to playing in Canada was the Porter Cup (an elite amateur tournament) near Niagara Falls, and you could kind of see Toronto’s skyline from one of the tee boxes.
I didn’t know what to expect coming up here, but it’s a lot like America. We did some sightseeing, went to Waterton (Lakes) National Park. It’s a beautiful country. I love it up here.
What I play for is my hometown, my family. I grew up in a small town on a small golf course my family owns and operates, since 1960. I’ve worked on that golf course my whole life. My granddad started it and my Dad’s taken over with my two aunts and my uncle. I’m just trying to follow in their footsteps and make everyone at home proud.