Gutgsell Wins PGA TOUR Qualifier; To Make Debut
MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Former LSU golfer Austin Gutgsell will make his PGA Tour debut this weekend at the FedEx St. Jude Classic being held at TPC Southwind in Memphis, Tenn., after firing a 6-under par 66 to win Monday’s tournament qualifier held at the East Course at Windyke Country Club.
Former LSU All-American and 2011 NCAA champion John Peterson will join Gutgsell in the field while also claiming one of the four qualifying spots in the 83-man qualifier with his 5-under par 67.
The four-day, 72-hole FedEx St. Jude Classic is set to begin Thursday at the par-72 TPC Southwind and it features a $5.6 million purse with the champion taking home $1,008,000.
Gutgsell, who wrapped up his collegiate career this spring, opened Monday’s qualifier with an eagle at the par-five first hole and never looked back while firing a winning score of 6-under 66 at the East Course at Windyke Country Club. He dropped to 5-under par for the day with birdies at the par-four fourth, par-three eighth and par-four 14th holes, before carding his only bogey for the round on the par-three 16th hole. But he followed with back-to-back birdies on the par-five 17th and par-four 18th holes for his score of 66.
Gutgsell enjoyed his best season as an LSU Tiger in 2011-12 as he posted a career-low scoring average of 73.0 in nine tournament starts on the campaign. His season was highlighted by a second career win for the LSU National Invitational held March 31-April 1 at the University Club in Baton Rouge.
Peterson is slated to make his fourth PGA Tour start of the 2012 season at the FedEx St. Jude Classic with his round of 5-under 67 to tie for second place overall in Monday’s qualifier.
He enjoyed a bogey-free round at the East Course at Windyke Country Club, beginning with back-to-back birdies at the par-five first and par-four second holes before adding a trio of birdies at the par-four fifth, par-five 10th and par-four 13th holes to also claim one of the four qualifying spots with his 67.
Peterson made the cut in each of his first two PGA Tour starts of the season while taking home $20,586 in earnings at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am and the Mayakoba Golf Classic. He also earned his sponsor’s exemption for the Zurich Classic of New Orleans in his last appearance on April 27-28. He was just one shot back of the cutline at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans.