Scottie Scheffler wins to claim second Korn Ferry Tour title
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Dallas native Scottie Scheffler won the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Championship after posting a final-round 4-under 67 to claim the title at 12-under 272. A trio of players including Brendon Todd, Beau Hossler and Ben Taylor finished two strokes back at 10-under 274. Defending champion Robert Streb and third round co-leader Brandon Hagy finished tied for fifth at 9-under 275.
After notching a string of birdies at the fourth, fifth and sixth holes at the Ohio State University Golf Club’s Scarlet Course, Scheffler dropped his only shot of the day with a bogey at No. 7. Hagy, playing in the final group immediately behind Scheffler, holed out for eagle at No. 7 to jump two shots ahead of Scheffler at the time. A flawless inward nine with birdies at Nos. 12 and 16, combined with Hagy and others failing to mount a challenge, secured the second victory of the season for Scheffler.
“This definitely does a lot for my confidence,” Scheffler said. “It’s nice to get another win, it's a lot of fun. So, I'm looking forward to the next couple weeks and then getting the (PGA TOUR) season started here in about a month.”
Scheffler led the Korn Ferry Tour in birdies during a stellar rookie season, earning his first professional victory at the Evans Scholars Invitational in May. He closed the Regular Season at No. 3 in The 25 to earn his PGA TOUR card for 2019-20. During a standout career at the University of Texas, Scheffler qualified for the U.S. Open in 2016 and 2017, earning low-am honors in the latter.
“My goal at the beginning of the year was to hopefully get the No. 1 spot and it's nice to be in position to lock that up,” Scheffler said.
Scheffler, now with two victories and a PGA TOUR card secured, was reminded of where he was just nine months ago, grinding it out at the Korn Ferry Qualifying Tournament.
“I had to get up and down on my last two holes at Q‑School to just get starts at the beginning of the year,” Scheffler recalled. “Two very tough up‑and‑downs. I was able to do that. And it's weird looking back how like how small the margins are out here.”
One-time PGA TOUR winner Todd hit 15 of 18 greens in regulation for the second day in a row while mixing six birdies with two bogeys for a 4-under 67 and was happy with his share of second to guarantee a return to the TOUR.
“Today I felt great,” Todd said. “I felt really in control. I made a couple of errors on the back nine I wish I could have back, but overall, I really flushed it.”
Todd had struggled with his game for several years before seeing notable improvement this year, making the cut in seven of 11 PGA TOUR starts. Before those 11 starts in the 2018-19 PGA TOUR season, the only cut he’d made in his 20 previous starts was a tie for 70th at the 2017 AT&T Byron Nelson, the tournament he won in 2014 for his lone PGA TOUR title.
Hossler, who bogeyed No. 17 to drop out of a share of the lead at the time, is headed back to the PGA TOUR with improved status after posting four sub-70 rounds at the Scarlet Course. This season he made 16 cuts in 27 starts in his sophomore year, finishing No. 145 in the FedExCup. The former University of Texas standout returned to the Korn Ferry Tour for the first time since 2017, where he recorded five top-25s in 14 starts.
England’s Ben Taylor wrapped up a PGA TOUR card with his share of a runner-up finish in Columbus. Taylor, a former LSU star who has appeared in just three PGA TOUR events, made the cut in 12 of 19 Korn Ferry Tour events he contested during the Regular Season. The Arsenal football team supporter joined Hossler as the only two players with four rounds in the 60s this week.
With a 5-under 66, defending champion Streb finished tied for fifth with Hagy. Streb was one of just two players (Cameron Percy, 68) to fire a bogey-free final round. Hagy, who closed with an even-par 71, was the only player to finish inside the top-10 without shooting under-par in the final round.
Four players who spent the 2018-19 season on the PGA TOUR – each from different countries – finished tied for seventh at 8-under 276; Curtis Luck (Australia), Tom Hoge (United States), Justin Harding (South Africa) and Anirban Lahiri (India).
Norway’s Viktor Hovland finished tied for 11th with two other players at 7-under 277.
Third-round co-leader José de Jesús Rodríguez stumbled with a 6-over 77 to finish in a tie for 32nd.
* Sunday’s weather: Partly cloudy, with a high of 92. Wind S/SW at 7-14 mph, gusting to 20 mph.
* This week's purse is $1,000,000, with $180,000 going to the champion, Scottie Scheffler. He also receives 1,000 Korn Ferry Tour Points.
* With the victory, Scheffler becomes the fourth player to win twice this season joining Robby Shelton (Nashville Golf Open Benefitting the Snedeker Foundation & Knoxville Open), Xinjun Zhang (Dormie Network Classic at Briggs Ranch & Lincoln Land Championship presented by LRS) and Kristoffer Ventura (Utah Championship presented by Zions Bank & Pinnacle Bank Championship presented by Chevrolet).
* Scheffler finished the week fourth in putts per green in regulation with 100 putts on 57 greens.
* Brendon Todd (T2/-10), Beau Hossler (T2/-10), Ben Taylor (T2/-10), Robert Streb (T5/-9) and Brandon Hagy (T5/-9) all surpassed the 200-point threshold estimated to secure players a 2019-20 PGA TOUR card at the conclusion of the Korn Ferry Tour Finals.
* José de Jesús Rodríguez, who co-led through three rounds with Hagy, finished the week T32 at 3-under.
* Robert Streb, who won in Columbus last season, had the low round of the day with a 5-under 66 on Sunday.
* Bo Hoag, a standout for the Ohio State Buckeyes before turning professional who won his first Korn Ferry Tour title and PGA TOUR card at last week’s event in Portland, finished T64 at 3-over.
* Kevin Chappell finished the week T62 at even-par. In 2008, Chappell made his professional debut in Columbus, finishing T40 that week. Chappell, who has been recovering from microdiscectomy surgery, last competed at the PGA TOUR’s 2018 Mayakoba Golf Classic.
* First round co-leaders Viktor Hovland and Cameron Percy both finished T11 at 7-under.
* Kevin Dougherty, who led after 36 holes, finished the week T62 at 2-over.
* It is estimated that players with 200 or more Korn Ferry Tour Points at the conclusion of the Korn Ferry Tour Finals will secure a 2019-20 PGA TOUR card.
* The par-4 11th hole (473 yards) ranked as the toughest hole on the course Sunday with a scoring average of 4.280.
* The par-5 fourth hole (575 yards) ranked as the easiest hole on Sunday. The hole played to an average of 4.507 and yielded four eagles and 39 birdies.
*Ohio State University Golf Club – Scarlet Course Scoring Average:
Front Back Total Cumulative
R1 36.232 35.580 71.812
R2 35.933 35.642 71.575 71.693
R3 35.413 35.173 70.587 71.342
R4 35.320 35.467 70.787 71.190