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Mason Andersen wins 117th Visa Argentina Open presented by Macro, earns exemption for The Open Championship

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Daily Wrap Up


    Written by Staff @KornFerryTour

    BUENOS AIRES, Argentina – The Korn Ferry Tour crowned yet another first-time winner, its fifth in a row to start the 2024 season, as Mason Andersen defeated two-time winner Kris Ventura on the second hole of a sudden-death playoff at the 117th Visa Argentina Open presented by Macro. Through the Visa Argentina Open’s partnership with The R&A, Andersen’s victory also earned him an exemption for the 2024 Open Championship at Royal Troon.

    An emotional Andersen pumped his fists in the air after the winning putt, on his way to accept the trophy, and upon conclusion of an emotional winner’s speech. The significance of the victory hit Andersen in waves, and the emotion poured out of him as he embraced his father just off Olivos Golf Club’s 18th green.

    “Winning is just so hard in golf,” Andersen said. “You never win, you never win, and you come close a bunch of times, but winning’s just so hard. To do it with my dad here and my girlfriend here… yeah, pretty emotional.”

    Mason Andersen celebrates after winning the 117th Visa Argentina Open presented by Macro. (Getty Images)

    Mason Andersen celebrates after winning the 117th Visa Argentina Open presented by Macro. (Getty Images)

    Andersen, a native of Mesa, Arizona, who played collegiately at Arizona State University, began the final round six strokes off the lead and made two bogeys in the first five holes Sunday.

    Much like the first three rounds, Andersen’s putter was ice cold. Until, as Andersen said, “They all went in at the same time.”

    Andersen closed the front nine with three consecutive birdies, followed by a streak of five consecutive birdies from Nos. 11-15, and another birdie at the par-5 18th to cap a dazzling 7-under 63 – which was the low round of the day by three strokes.

    “I hope it’s enough,” Andersen said as he left the scoring area with the clubhouse lead at 17-under 263, which broke the 72-hole tournament scoring record previously established by Miguel Fernandez, who totaled 264 at Hurlingham Club en route to victory at the 1988 Visa Argentina Open presented by Macro.

    “I want to win,” Andersen said in a brief interview shortly thereafter. “Fifth, or sixth, or seventh doesn’t feel that good anymore. I want to win a tournament.”

    Andersen and his small circle of family and friends secured a table in the club’s restaurant for the long await ahead. On a television across the room, Andersen watched anxiously as Ventura bounced between 16- and 17-under par on the livestream.

    “All I need is a chance,” Andersen repeated to himself.

    After about 90 minutes, Andersen stood up and headed for the driving range. The time for preparation arrived, regardless if the opportunity he craved would actually come.

    Ventura bounced back from a bogey at the bogey at the par-4 14th with a birdie at the par-4 16th, getting himself to 17-under par and yet again pulling even with Andersen. After a par at No. 17, all that stood between Ventura and his third career win was a birdie at the par-5 18th, the easiest hole of the week in relation to par.

    Ventura hit the green in two and had more than 30 feet left for eagle, but he ran his first putt about 4 feet past the hole. As Andersen prepared on the range, Ventura lipped out what would have been a tournament-winning birdie putt.

    Andersen’s opportunity arrived.

    The first playoff hole – No. 18 – was a stalemate, as Andersen and Ventura both made two-putt birdies. The two played the 18th again, and both stumbled after quality drives. Andersen lost his approach right and into the crowd, but caught a fortunate bounce off a large scoreboard and watched from afar as his ball settled in the greenside rough. Ventura left his approach in the front greenside bunker.

    For their third shots, Andersen played a perfect open-faced chip and left himself 3 feet for birdie, while Ventura blasted his bunker shot over the green. Ventura saved par after two chip shots (he made the second), but Andersen made his short birdie putt and closed out his first win.

    As Andersen celebrated, he thought back to his time at Arizona State.

    “I lost interest in it for a while,” Andersen said. “If it weren’t for (Head Coach) Matt Thurmond and (former Associate Head Coach) Armen Kirakossian, I would not be playing golf right now. (Volunteer Assistant Coach) Howard Twitty as well. Those three guys were able to change my attitude, change the way I approach the game, just complete overhaul of what I was doing off the course… that sent me to where I am right now. Twitty sat me down and said, ‘If you keep acting the way you’re acting, you’ll never make it.’ This is a guy who’s won PGA TOUR events, so really thankful he was honest with me. Had the same conversations with Thurms.

    “I just woke up one day and was able to turn it around.”

    Mason Andersen celebrates after winning the 117th Visa Argentina Open presented by Macro. (Getty Images)

    Mason Andersen celebrates after winning the 117th Visa Argentina Open presented by Macro. (Getty Images)

    Mason Andersen celebrates after winning the 117th Visa Argentina Open presented by Macro. (Getty Images)

    Mason Andersen celebrates after winning the 117th Visa Argentina Open presented by Macro. (Getty Images)

    Andersen closed out a five-season college career (2017-22) with two victories and a 2022 All-America Third Team selection. In his first attempt at Q-School, Andersen was one of eight players who advanced through every stage – including Pre-Qualifying – of the Korn Ferry Tour Qualifying Tournament (which has since become PGA TOUR Q-School presented by Korn Ferry).

    Andersen played all 26 events of the 2023 season, and back-to-back finishes of T2 and T18 in the 24th and 25th events gave him an outside chance at a PGA TOUR card.

    Through three rounds of the season-ending Korn Ferry Tour Championship presented by United Leasing & Finance, it looked as though Andersen would be off to the TOUR. Andersen held the outright lead after the first round, co-led after the second, and stood T4 with 18 holes remaining. A 1-over 73 in the final round, including back-to-back bogeys on the 71st and 72nd holes, dropped him to a T10 finish and ultimately left him four strokes short of a TOUR card.

    Mason Andersen sinks putt for birdie at Korn Ferry Tour Champ

    “That one still kind of stings,” Andersen said. “I had my entire family there. It was too good to be true. I just wasn’t ready. I wasn’t ready.”

    This past offseason, Andersen focused on “the little things” with his sports psychologist and swing coach, believing it would be the finest of details which would ultimately take him to the winner’s circle and the PGA TOUR.

    Although Andersen accomplished one of those goals Sunday, he gave himself a whole other checklist of details to refine ahead of The Open Championship this July.

    “I’m excited,” said Andersen, whose lone PGA TOUR start to date was a missed cut at the 2017 U.S. Open. “It’s a different type of golf than I’m used to. I don’t play links golf. I’ve barely experienced it, so we’re going to have to gear up and get ready for that.”

    Final-round notes

    • For only the third time in the last nine seasons, the first five events of the Korn Ferry Tour season were won by first-time winners (2022 – first eight events; 2018 – first seven events)
    • Mason Andersen (P1/-17) overtakes 19-year-old Aldrich Potgieter for the No. 1 spot on the 2024 Korn Ferry Tour Points List through five events of the 26-event season
    • Kris Ventura (P2/-17) posts his highest finish in a Korn Ferry Tour event since a pair of victories in 2019 (won the Utah Championship presented by Zions Bank, and Pinnacle Bank Championship), when he earned a promotion to the PGA TOUR at season’s end
    • Brian Campbell (T3/-16) closes with an eagle at the par-5 18th to post a second consecutive top-three finish (P2/Astara Golf Championship presented by Mastercard); his last top-three finishes prior to this season were recorded in 2019 (T3/2019 BMW Charity Pro-Am presented by TD SYNNEX; T3/2019 Club Car Championship at The Landings Golf & Athletic Club)
    • Open qualifier Dalton Ward (T3/-16) earns a spot in next week’s Astara Chile Classic presented by Scotiabank; he needs to earn 91.32 points (i.e. – a 3-way T6 finish or higher) to become eligible for Special Temporary Membership for the remainder of the 2024 Korn Ferry Tour season
      • Ward’s highest finish in 25 career starts on the Korn Ferry Tour prior to this week was T17/2023 HomeTown Lenders Championship
    • Thailand’s KK Limbhasut (T5/-15) records a career-high finish; he had not finished higher than T10 (2020 Korn Ferry Challenge at TPC Sawgrass, 2020 Memorial Health Championship presented by LRS) in his previous 47 career starts on Tour
    • Conditional member Brendon Jelley (T5/-15), making his first start of the 2024 season, records his first career top-10 in what is his 20th career start on the Korn Ferry Tour; he tallied three top-25s in 19 starts as a rookie last season, with his highest finish being solo 15th/2023 Magnit Championship
    • Canada’s Wil Bateman (T5/-15) posts a third consecutive top-25, as well as his second top-five finish of the season (T2/The Panama Championship)
    • First-time member Van Holmgren (T5/-15), who held the outright 54-hole lead, posts a top-five finish in his second career start on Tour (MC/2024 Astara Golf Championship presented by Mastercard)
    • Cole Hammer (T10/-13), who finished No. 5 in the 2022 PGA TOUR University Ranking, records his second top-10 of the season; he entered the season with one top-10 in 20 career starts on Tour
    • Chile’s Cristobal Del Solar (T10/-13), who shot a 13-under 57 at last month’s Astara Golf Championship presented by Mastercard for the lowest 18-hole score ever recorded in a PGA TOUR-sanctioned event, posts his first top-10 in his fifth career start at the Visa Argentina Open presented by Macro
      • Del Solar posted four top-10s in 25 starts as a Korn Ferry Tour rookie last season; he has three top-10s in his first five starts of 2024
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