UCLA freshman Patrick Cantlay created quite a stir at the Travelers Championship in Cromwell, Conn. last week, blistering the TPC River Highlands with a course-record 60 on Friday.
He shot a 67 earlier that same day (the tournament was interrupted by heavy rains on Thursday), and his 13-under-par score of 127 gave him the 36-hole lead. Observers were buzzing with the prospect of an amateur winning a PGA Tour event for the first time since Phil Mickelson won the 1991 Northern Telecom Open in 1991.
The weekend brought Cantlay back to earth, however, as he shot rounds of 72 and 70 to finish in a tie for 24th place at 11 under par. Fredrik Jacobson of Sweden won the event with a 20-under score of 65-66-63-66 – 260.
“It just didn’t go as planned,” Cantlay said of his final two rounds. “I was very comfortable out there and very composed, and proud of myself for hanging in there.”
It was certainly an impressive showing for Cantlay, 19, who the week before emerged as the low amateur at the U.S. Open. In his record round, he had eight birdies and an eagle.
What did he learn from his experience at the Travelers?
“Just that my game’s good enough and it’s a lot of fun,” he said, adding, “I just learned some things about the golf course and maybe learned what it’s like to be in the lead and be in contention. And I think the more you can to that, the better of you’ll be.”
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