PGA Tour Canada’s second season in 2014 was highlighted by strong competition and significant growth, with the schedule increasing from nine to 12 events throughout Canada, along with a major increase in charitable contributions.
Competitive highlights ranged from Order of Merit winner Joel Dahmen’s record-setting season, Brady Schnell’s stellar round of 59 and Canadian Ryan Williams capturing the season-ending TOUR Championship of Canada presented by Freedom 55 Financial.
Achievements off the course included a significant 72 percent increase in charitable contributions by PGA Tour Canada events. Media exposure for PGA Tour Canada grew as well, with a 27 percent increase in television ratings for the Tour’s weekly television show and a 305 percent increase in social media engagement.
Some of the key highlights from the past season are listed below.
WHO EARNED WEB.COM TOUR STATUS:
|$80,992||Won two of first three events at PC Financial Open and Syncrude Boreal Open pres. by AECON… Surpassed 2013 Order of Merit winner Mackenzie Hughes’ 2013 winnings in just three events… Finished second in scoring average at 69.09, first in birdies per round at 4.64 and tied for the most top-10 finishes with 4… Was diagnosed with testicular cancer in 2011 and made a full recovery…|
(Grand Rapids, MI)
|$60,119||Won the SIGA Dakota Dunes Open pres. by SaskTel and lost in a playoff at the Cape Breton Celtic Classic pres. by PC Financial… Finished in the top-25 8 times in 12 starts and tied the TOUR lead with 4 top-10s… Has previous success on the Web.com Tour, finishing T2 at the 2012 TPC Stonebrae Championship…|
(Rio Rancho, NM)
|$59,436||Burst on to the scene as a rookie with top-3 finishes in 3 of his first 5 starts, including a win at The Players Cup… Was one of four players to make 11 of 12 cuts on the season… New Mexico State grad won his first professional start at 2011 New Mexico Open…|
|$56,222||Won the ATB Financial Classic with a record-setting 27-under total for his second career PGA TOUR Canada win… Finished fourth in scoring average at 69.26… First in scoring average before cut at 68.32… Made 10 of 11 cuts… Two-time First Team All-American at The University of Washington… Brother of Golf Channel analyst Paige Mackenzie…|
|$43,367||Became the first player without a win to finish in The Five… Finished second by a stroke to Wes Homan at the Staal Foundation Open pres. by Tbaytel… Was one of four players to make 11 cuts and posted eight top-25 finishes… Was named an All-American in his final season at the University of Central Florida and rose as high as No. 3 in the World Amateur Golf Rankings…|
In addition to The Five, players 6-10 on the Order of Merit earned exemptions into the final stage of Web.com Tour Q-School: No. 6 Ryan Williams (Vancouver, BC), No. 7 Nate McCoy (Wes Des Moines, IA), No. 8 Josh Persons (Fargo, ND), No. 9 Wes Homan (Cincinnati, OH), No. 10 Mark Silvers (Savannah, GA).
CHARITABLE CONTRIBUTIONS INCREASE BY 72%
Charitable donations by PGA Tour Canada events increased dramatically this season, rising to a total of $353,500 in 2014. As with every PGA Tour event, the goal of every tournament on PGA Tour Canada is to make an impact in the community and make charity the leading money winner each week.
- Toughest Courses: 1 – Pine Ridge GC (+1.775 average over par)
2 – Whitewater GC (+0.419)
3 – The Lakes GC (+0.211)
- Toughest Holes: 1 – Pine Ridge GC / Par-3 9th (3.522)
2 – Hylands GC / Par-4 2nd (4.471)
3 – Loyalist G&CC / Par-3 11th (3.380)
MEMORABLE SHOTS FROM THE 2014 SEASON:
Schnell joins the 59 Club – Milford, IA’s Brady Schnell joined golf’s most exclusive club, holing a 122-yard approach on the final hole to shoot a 13-under 59 at Sirocco Golf Club at the ATB Financial Classic. Schnell finished birdie-birdie-eagle.
Dahmen’s bunker blast – Order of Merit winner Joel Dahmen’s first win at the PC Financial Open was partially thanks to a 232-yard second shot from a fairway bunker at the par-5 72nd hole, which found the green and led to a birdie and a one-shot win.
Homan makes birdie for the win – Cincinnati, Ohio’s Wes Homan earned his first PGA Tour Canada win with a dramatic birdie on the 72nd hole at the Staal Foundation Open pres. by Tbaytel, holing a 10-footer for birdie to win by one over England’s Greg Eason.
Machtaler’s birdie bomb gives him win – Summerland, BC’s Greg Machtaler capped off a 9-under 62 in the final round of the Forces & Families Open in style, holing a 70-foot birdie putt on the 72nd hole that was eventually the difference in a one-shot win.
Double eagles land in ’14 – After zero double eagles were recorded during PGA Tour Canada’s inaugural season, three were recorded in 2014. Logan, UT’s Devin Daniels made the first with a 3-hybrid from 242 yards at the Bayview Place Island Savings Open pres. by Times Colonist on the par-5 12th at Uplands Golf Club. Los Angeles, CA’s Bryan Bergna’s 210-yard 6-iron netted him an Albatross on the par-5 3rd at Whitewater Golf Club for the Staal Foundation Open pres. by Tbaytel, and Stephane Dubois of Brantford, ON holed a 7-iron from 182 yards on the par-5 8th at Hylands Golf Club during the Forces & Families Open.
There were also eight holes-in-one during the 2014 season. Two events, the ATB Financial Classic and The Wildfire Invitational presented by PC Financial, saw multiple holes-in-one during tournament week.
TOP 60 RETAIN EXEMPT STATUS:
The top 60 on the 2014 Order of Merit retain exempt status for the 2015 season. Below is a breakdown of the top 60 by country and age.
United States – 38
Canada – 17
England – 2
Argentina – 1
Australia – 1
Sweden – 1
18-24 – 16
25-30 – 35
31-36 – 8
37+ – 1