Hughes wins Price Cutter Charity Championship with final-hole birdie
August 14, 2016
By Royce Thompson, PGATOUR.COM
- August 14, 2016
- Mackenzie Hughes moved from 88th to 14th on the Web.com Tour money list with his win at Highland Springs CC. (Hunter Martin/Getty Images)
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Canadian Mackenzie Hughes outlasted the field Sunday afternoon in Springfield to earn his first Web.com Tour victory at the Price Cutter Charity Championship presented by Dr Pepper. The 25-year-old Hughes birdied the 72nd hole, fired a final-round, 6-under-par 66 and posted 24-under-par 264 to finish one clear of Richy Werenski (66).
“This is the hardest day of my life,” said Hughes, who earned $121,500 for his effort at Highland Springs Country Club. “I’m so proud of the way I hung in there. I had to dig so deep. The thoughts were going crazy in my head.”
“Trying to quiet that down was the greatest challenge I’ve had in my life.” continued Hughes. “I kid you not, there were so many times I thought about the outcome and what it could mean to my family and everything like that. I had to bring myself back so many times. I just wanted to get across the line and it feels so good.”
Hughes moves from No. 88 to No. 14 on the money list, virtually assured of securing one of the 25 PGA TOUR cards awarded at the conclusion of the WinCo Foods Portland Open presented by Kraft Heinz in two weeks.
“That’s silly talk right there,” said Hughes, who was in danger of heading back to the Web.com Tour Qualifying Tournament before his victory in Springfield. “PGA TOUR? Let’s go. It’s exciting.”
Hughes knows what it takes to win. He took home the trophy at the Cape Breton Celtic Classic in 2013 on Mackenzie Tour – PGA TOUR Canada. The Hamilton, Ontario native also finished No. 1 on the Order of Merit and earned Freedom 55 Financial Canadian Player of the Year honors that year.
Werenski did his best to force overtime. He eagled the final hole and posted 23-under, which tied Hughes for the lead. Hughes opted to lay up on the par-5 and was left with 108 yards for his third. He stuffed his approach to within a foot of the hole to answer Werenski’s effort.
“That is the moment of my career so far,” Hughes said. “There were some moments where I needed to hit a shot and I needed to make a putt.”
Before his victory on Sunday, Hughes’ plans were to try and regain his Tour card through Q-School in December. The former Kent State University standout is also getting married to his fiancée Jenna Shaw on October 22.
Before his maiden Tour win, he wasn’t sure when the two would be able to go on their honeymoon this fall.
“When I think about what it means and everything that comes with this win, it just blows my mind,” Hughes said.
* Sunday weather: Partly cloudy. High: 92, Low: 72, Winds: S-SE 4-8 mph.
* The Price Cutter Charity Championship is the 19th of 21 Regular Season events on the Web.com Tour. The first 25 of 50 available PGA TOUR cards for 2016-17 will be determined when the Regular Season concludes at the WinCo Foods Portland Open presented by Kraft Heinz on Aug. 28.
The top 75 money leaders after Portland qualify for the Web.com Tour Finals and are guaranteed fully-exempt status on Tour in 2016 if they do not secure a PGA TOUR card. The second set of 25 cards will be awarded based on money earned in the four-event Finals. PGA TOUR members who do not qualify for the FedExCup Playoffs (Nos. 126-200) are eligible to join the Web.com Tour's top 75 in the Finals which begin September 8-11 and end October 6-9.
* Mackenzie Hughes notches win No. 23 for Canadian-born players. He becomes the 15th Canadian to win on Tour and second this season (Brad Fritsch – Servientrega Championship presented by Efecty).
* Hughes becomes the fourth international-born champion in tournament history (1998 – Anthony Painter, 2013 – Cameron Percy and 2015 – Dawie van der Walt).
* Hughes collects a check for $121,500 and moves from No. 88 to No. 14 on the money list.
* Hughes wins at age 25 years, 8 months and 22 days.
* Hughes’ victory comes in his 40th career Tour appearance.
* In 19 starts, Hughes has made 10 cuts and recorded two top-10s (T5 – LECOM Health Challenge; 1 – Price Cutter Charity Championship).
* Hughes becomes the seventh 54-hole leader/co-leader to win this season on Tour.
* Hughes’ 8-under 64 in the third round was a new career-low round on Tour.
* Players in their 20s have accounted for 13 victories this year (Sebastian Munoz, Wesley Bryan (3), Seamus Power, Trey Mullinax, Richy Werenski, Dominic Bozzelli, Max Homa, Ollie Schniederjans, Rick Lamb, Stephan Jaeger, Mackenzie Hughes).
* In 2013, Hughes made nine starts on the Mackenzie Tour, recorded four top-10s, including a victory at the Cape Breton Classic, and won the Order of Merit.
* The gap between Hughes’ first Mackenzie Tour victory and his maiden win on Tour was 2 years, 11 months and 6 days.
* As an amateur, Hughes won the 2011 and 2012 Canadian Amateur Championship. He also captured three victories while playing at Kent State and represented Canada in the World Team Amateur in 2012, contested in Antalya, Turkey (T6).
* Richy Werenski has recorded four top-10s this season and regains the No. 2 spot on the money list (T2 – Club Colombia Championship presented by Claro, T2 – El Bosque Mexico Championship presented by INNOVA, 1 – BMW Charity Pro-Am presented by SYNNEX Corporation, 2 – Price Cutter Charity Championship).
* Players around the top-25 money list bubble and where they stand:
Rank entering week Player Score Position 21 Jonathan Randolph -16 T12 22 Stephan Jaeger -7 T62 23 Matt Atkins CUT 24 Grayson Murray -15 T17 25 Bhavik Patel -13 T25 26 Zack Sucher -12 T29 27 Andrew Putnam CUT 28 Josh Teater -10 T44 29 James Driscoll -4 T71 30 Ryan Blaum -14 T22
Bogey Free Rounds:
R1 – Brad Elder (62), Martin Flores (65), Ryan Brehm (66), Sam Ryder (67), Jin Park (67), Kevin Tway (67), Keith Mitchell (67), Mark Anderson (68), Ryan Spears (68), Kent Bulle (68), Richy Werenski (68), Cody Gribble (69), Xander Schauffele (69).
R2 – Josh Teater (64), Kevin Tway (65), Brandon Hagy (65), Chris Baker (65), Bryden Macpherson (65), Chris Wilson (66), Matt Davidson (66), Jhared Hack (66), Ryan Blaum (67), Trevor Simsby (67), Jonathan Randolph (67), Drew Weaver (67), Blake Adams (68), Brad Elder (68), Jeff Gove (68), Aaron Watkins (68), Peter Tomasulo (68), Andrew Yun (68).
R3 – Steve Allan (63), Mackenzie Hughes (64), Ben Kohles (64), Jin Park (66), Jhared Hack (66), Albin Choi (66), Hunter Hamrick (66), Kevin Tway (68), Aaron Watkins (68), Jimmy Gunn (69), B.J. Staten (71).
R4 – Jimmy Gunn (65), Blake Adams (66), Mackenzie Hughes (66), Nate Lashley (66), Jonathan Randolph (67), Kevin Tway (67), Kyoung-Hoon Lee (68).
Front (36) Back (36) Total (72) R1 35.059 35.394 70.432 R2 35.163 34.536 69.999 R3 34.779 34.675 69.455 R4 35.143 35.351 70.494 Total 35.031 34.989 70.020