Most weeks when a Tour player walks off the 72nd hole with a three shot lead, he or she is headed straight for a trophy presentation. This week at the final stage of PGA Tour Qualifying School, Troy Merritt is headed for 36 more holes of golf.
Merritt, a Titleist Brand Ambassador, and 159 other players will play both the Links and Lakes courses at Bear Lakes CC one more time in hopes of being awarded one of 25 memberships to the 2010 PGA Tour. Merritt is one of two players to have posted his four rounds in the 60's in this tournament, marked by high winds and weather delays.
The wind, which had been blowing out of the north, looks to be turning east for Sunday's and Monday's rounds. If the forecast holds true, it should make for some movement on the leaderboard and an exciting finish on Monday afternoon. "The courses were designed for the prevailing east wind. When you combine that change with softer greens from the rain and high humidity, I think we’ll see some players putting up some really good scores," said Matt Messer, Director of Instruction at Bear Lakes.
The 24-year-old Merritt is no stranger to the winner's circle. By the time he graduated from Boise State in 2008, Troy had racked up 21 individual collegiate wins. He followed his amateur career with a victory in his rookie season on the Nationwide Tour. The $117,000 Merritt took home from winning a playoff at the 2009 Mexico Open is more than twice the winner's check at Q-school, but come Monday afternoon Troy Merritt may have a different perspective on which one is more valuable.
Titleist Brand Ambassador Troy Merritt in action earlier this season on the Nationwide Tour.