Seamus Power has earned himself a well-earned break after the excitement of putting himself into contention in recent weeks.
Power has played 14 rounds in five weeks, including last week’s 36-holes of U.S. Open qualifying in Atlanta, with efforts of T54th at the Wells Fargo Championship, a share of ninth at the Byron Nelson and now a top-20 finish at the Palmetto Championship.
Indeed, as Power found his way onto the I-95 for the drive north to his Charlotte residence, the Irishman could feel pleased having made the cut in his past five PGA Tour events. The only other occasion the Waterford golfer could boast such a run was in his rookie 2016/17 season when he made six cuts in succession from the Sanderson Farms in October 2016 to the Career Builder in late January, 2017.
Power wrapped-up his Palmetto Championship on a slightly lower note than his prior three rounds with a closing even par 71 for a share of 19th at six-under par. As Power had done for the past two rounds in South Carolina, there was some brilliance and on day four that was posting three birdies in succession from the third hole at the stunning Congaree Country Club.
The Irishman holed at 20-footer for birdie at the par-4 third hole and then 10-footers at both the par-5 fourth and at the par-3 fifth for birdies. Though he undid his good work with a bogey on 14 and then making a mess at the par-4 16th in getting a flyer with his second shot and then taking four shots from around 80-feet in putting out for a double-bogey ‘6’. Two closing pars saw Power to head to the scorer’s hut with rounds of 70, 66 and a pair of 71s.
“It was a fun week but a little bit of a frustrating finish there,” Power said, though there was plenty of consolation, not least a cheque worth $86,505. “I didn’t do a whole lot wrong and just kind of got — just hit a couple of bad spots.
“I played really nicely there, and around the turn I just missed on 10, 11, 12, like I rolled along the edge on all three. I guess that kind of lost my momentum. A bit of a sloppy bogey on 14 and kind of a bit of a mess on 16, just kind of hit it over the green where it wasn’t quite on the course as well as you want, hit it in a spot where I really shouldn’t have and ended up making a double.
“I had good looks on 17 and 18, and they just kind of missed. It was just one of those frustrating days. Overall, it was a fun week. Always nice playing a new golf course, very cool kind of layout, very enjoyable. All in all, can’t complain.”
It was projected Power would jump eight places to 163rd in the FedEx Cup standings. Power has this week’s U.S. Open off while a top-10 in South Carolina would have qualified him for next fortnight’s Travelers Championship in Cromwell, Connecticut.
“I’m not in the U.S. Open. I won’t be in Travelers now. I’m going to probably do a Monday qualifier for Travelers, look at the Korn Ferry schedule, and hopefully get a little run going this summer on the PGA Tour,” he said.
As for the winning of the tournament, South African sensation Garrick Higgo claimed a remarkable and most unlikely PGA Tour title on Sunday. The 22-year old had posted a three-under 68 for an early clubhouse lead at 11-under par but with Chesson Hadley 13-under and with three holes to play, the advantage was still very much with the American.
Winning is never easy on tour, however, and Hadley hasn’t tasted success in seven years. That wait will now continue after the 33-year old bogeyed his closing three holes, missing a par putt at the last to force a playoff with Higgo who is now officially a PGA Tour member through to 2023 having also qualified for next year’s Masters.
“I’m just proud of the way I hung in there,” he said. “It was tough all the way from the start. Definitely didn’t have my A game in terms of off the tee, but I like that sometimes. I like not having to play perfect golf. I enjoy scrambling and making a couple putts, which I did, which was awesome.”
- Full scoring HERE