August 10, 2013, Calgary, AB (ISN) – Meridian, Idaho’s Joe Panzeri shot a final round 70 to win the ATB Financial Classic presented by TELUS Friday, his second career PGA TOUR Canada win. Panzeri finished 17-under par total for a two stroke victory and moved into third place on the PGA TOUR Canada Order of Merit.
The win comes over two years after his first PGA TOUR Canada win at the 2011 Dakota Dunes Open, and a year after Panzeri was unable to convert a 54-hole lead at the 2012 ATB Financial Classic presented by TELUS.
Final Leaderboard – ATB Financial Classic presented by TELUS
(Bold denotes Canadian)
1. Joe Panzeri – 70 (-17)
T-2. Kevin Tucker – 68 (-15)
T-2. Kyle Stough – 68 (-15)
T-2. Chris Epperson – 69 (-15)
T-5. Tony Finau – 64 (-14)
T-5. Beon Yeong Lee – 66 (-14)
“I enjoyed my first win, but this feels a little sweeter to get inside the top five with a little more incentive at the end of the year,” said the 27-year old, who earned $27,000 for the win. “This year I was trying to soak it in a little bit more and enjoy it. I enjoyed it a lot more coming down the stretch. I feel like I handled the pressure at the end pretty well.”
Panzeri began the day with a three-stroke advantage over Michael Gligic and Chris Epperson, but found himself tied for the lead after bogeys on 11 and 12 dropped him to 14-under par. An eagle on the par-5 13th hole and a closing birdie at the last, however, were enough to give him a two stroke victory over Kevin Tucker, Kyle Stough and Epperson.
“It was a good thing that putt hit the middle of the hole because I don’t think I would have won otherwise,” said Panzeri of his 25-foot eagle putt at 13. “It was moving. Nontheless, it went in and that gave me some momentum to finish strong.”
After pars on 14, 15, 16 and 17, Panzeri came to the 18th with a one stroke lead over Tucker and Stough, both of whom birdied the 428-yard 18th to post the clubhouse lead at 15-under. But after a hybrid to the middle of the fairway and a 154-yard approach to six feet, Panzeri rolled in the birdie putt for the win.
“I thought par was going to win it and birdie was that much sweeter to make that putt,” said Panzeri. “I was enjoying the moment.”
Epperson made a birdie of his own at the last to tie for second with Stough and Tucker, all of whom notched career-best finishes. Beon-Yeong Lee was tied for fifth after a 66 to finish as low Canadian, alongside Tony Finau who matched Panzeri’s course record with an 8-under 64 in the final round.
Panzeri jumps inside The Five with win
With his victory at the ATB Financial Classic presented by TELUS, Joe Panzeri moved from 40th up to third on the Order of Merit, in position to earn one of the five Web.com Tour cards available at season’s end. Here are The Five standings through this week:
1. Riley Wheeldon – $39,937.50
2. Wil Collins – $36,493.75
3. Joe Panzeri – $31,15523
4. Stephen Gangluff – $29,353.81
5. Carlos Sainz, Jr. – $28,845.75
Lee earns Freedom 55 Financial Canadian Player of the Week Honours
With a final round 66 and 14-under par total, Montreal, Quebec’s Beon-Yeong Lee earned Freedom 55 Financial Canadian Player of the Week honours, earning a $1,500 cash prize. Each week, the low Canadian on the leaderboard will win the award, with the top Canadian on the Order of Merit at season’s end being named Freedom 55 Financial Canadian Player of the Year and earning at $10,000 prize.
– Overcast, 18 degree Celsius, wind 17 km/h
– Panzeri becomes the first player on PGA TOUR Canada this season to convert a 54-hole lead into a win, and the first to win without shooting a final round in the 60s
– Panzeri’s two-stroke win ties the largest margin of victory on Tour this season, matching Stephen Gangluff at the Times Colonist Island Savings Open
– Abbotsford, BC’s Nick taylor notched his Tour-best fourth top-10 of the season, finishing in a tie for 7th. However, Taylor fell to sixth on the Order of Merit and is outside The Five for the first time all season
– Defending champion Michael Gligic got within one stroke of the lead after the first hole, making birdie to Panzeri’s bogey, but fell out of contention with a triple and three bogeys on the back nine to finish tied for 21st