Nov. 18, 2007
KINGSWOOD, Texas---Former Auburn All-SEC golfer Reid Edstrom fired a 10-under 62 with a round that included a double eagle, eagle and five birdies, including two on the final three holes, to advance on the cutline at 2-under par at the PGA Tour Second Qualifying Stage at the par-72, 7018-yard The Woodlands Sunday. His four round scores were 79-72-73-62-286.
Edstrom, who started the day 10 shots off the cutline and was so far behind, he started his round on the back nine. He birdied his second hole of the day, No. 11, then double eagled the par-5, 533-yard 13th hole with a 3-iron from 230 yards. After making a par on the par-3 14th, the Auburn resident eagled the par-5, 521-yard 15th by hitting a 5-wood from 240 yards to within 10 feet and made the putt. Edstrom then birdied the 17th and made par at No. 18 to make the turn at 7-under 29.
"After the third round, I went back to the hotel and was starting to think what I would be doing next year," said Edstrom, who finished sixth on the money list with $40,000 in earnings on the Tar Heel Tour
while he and his wife, Stephanie, have a 1-year old son, Rece. "I
just wanted to go out today and try to birdie every hole. When I was 6-under par through six holes and I was 2-over for the tournament with
15 holes to go, I knew I had a realistic chance from there. "
By the time Edstrom was in the fairway on his 72nd and final hole of the tournament, he felt he was safe at 1-under, but he asked the rules official what the cutline was going to be. The rules official gave him a funny look and was wondering why a guy who started on the back nine and finishing on the front nine was asking such a question. Finally, the rules official said it was 2-under.
Edstrom, who then needed birdie, was 122 yards out in the fairway on the ninth hole and put a pitching wedge to within 12 feet. He then drained the putt to secure a spot in the PGA Tour's Final Qualifying Stage Nov. 28-Dec. 3 in Orlando, Fla.
"It's hard to remember what all happened after the putt dropped," said Edstrom, whose brother was caddying for him. "My brother and I looked at each other, and we were both pumping our fists. I went to pick up the ball out of the cup real fast and just pumped my fist very hard. It was exciting and fun."
Edstrom's 62 was the lowest score of the four-day tournament by four strokes and had he missed that final putt, it still would have been the lowest by three strokes. However, he would then be headed back to the Tar Heel Tour or out of professional golf.
"The biggest thing is you miss that final putt and shoot 63, and you have the lowest round of the tournament by three strokes but you don't
advance," said Edstrom. "I still get chills thinking about what if that ball had hit something and went out."
Edstrom was 5-over par after his first nine holes of the first round on Thursday and already seven shots off what would be the final cut. He only made eight bogeys and one double bogey over the final 63 holes of the tournament.
"For me to never get through before and to do it in this fashion is
exciting," said Edstrom, who was a two-time All-SEC selection in his two years at Auburn from 1997-98. "Being 9-under going to the last hole wasn't a factor. I knew I had to make birdie to move on, and I knocked it in and canned it. It is a big relief that it is over and with it being my first time is exciting.
"I feel like I have a job now and won't be playing the mini-tour events. I'm going to be playing on the Nationwide Tour for sure and hopefully the PGA Tour."
Former Auburn All-American Lee Williams, who represented the U.S. at the 2003 and 2005 Walker Cups and 2004 World Amateur Team Championship, shot a final-round 67 but was one of seven players to miss the cut by a shot at the Hombre Golf Club in Panama City, Fla.