Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. – Canadian Adam Svensson started the second round of the Web.com Tour Qualifying Tournament with four consecutive birdies on the par-72 Fazio Course at PGA National Resort & Spa en route to a 7-under-par 65. The 21-year-old from Surrey, Vancouver, British Columbia’s 14-under 129 total is good for a commanding five-stroke lead over former No. 1 in the World Amateur Golf Ranking Ollie Schniederjans (68).
In a tie for third, six back, are PGA TOUR Latinoamérica alum Justin Hueber (69) and Australian Alistair Presnell (68).
Another six players are knotted at 7-under 136 and tied for fifth.
Svensson opened with a 64 on the tougher Champions Course on Thursday and successfully carried that momentum into Friday. After three consecutive birdies to the start the second round, the Mackenzie Tour – PGA TOUR Canada alum blocked his tee shot right on the par-5, 4th hole behind a group of trees. After a successful layup, Svensson flushed his third, a 9-iron from 142 yards, to 15 feet behind the hole and drained the tricky downhill putt for birdie.
“I was hitting it pretty well,” said Svensson, who found every green in regulation on the front nine. “Every shot was close to the pin and I just kept it going.”
This past season, Svensson had an opportunity to earn a PGA TOUR card through the Web.com Tour with a victory at the Regular Season finale. This past fall at the WinCo Foods Portland Open presented Kraft Heinz the former two-time All-American at Barry University had a one-shot lead over Dicky Pride heading into the weekend and carded 74-71 to fall back into a tie for 13th place.
The tournament did not end the way Svensson had hoped but he was able to take away some positives from the experience.
“I think the Oregon event helped me out a lot,” said Svensson. “I learned a lot from it and I think it was a good thing what happened to me there.”
With two rounds left before a champion is crowned, Svensson knows he must finish strong the final two days to accomplish his goal for the week.
“It’s huge to have full status and get into every event,” said Svensson, who made seven starts on Tour this past season. “It’s good to pick your own schedule, but I’m having fun and looking forward to the weekend.”
Players will be repaired for the third and final rounds according to scores. The leaders will play the Fazio Course in the third round and the Champion Course in the final round.
The Web.com Tour Qualifying Tournament is a four-day, 72-hole competition that ends onSunday Dec. 13. The tournament is being contested at the PGA National Resort & Spa’s Champion Course (CC) and Fazio Course (FC). The Champion Course has played host to The Honda Classic on the PGA TOUR since 2007. The Fazio Course plays to a par-72, while the Champion Course plays to a par-71.
There were nearly 1,000 entries for the tournament, which included previous Pre-Qualifying, First and Second stages that began in August.
A total of 155 players began play on Thursday morning.
Players in this event are competing for positions on 2016 Web.com Tour priority ranking, which will be used to form tournament fields. The medalist (or co-medalists) will be guaranteed fully-exempt status next year. Players #2- 10 (and ties) will be subject to the third reshuffle next year and players #11-45 (and ties) will be subject to the second reshuffle.
This week’s medalist will earn $25,000. Players #2-10 (and ties) will earn $15,000 each. Players #11-45 (and ties) will earn $10,000 each.
After making birdie on the final three holes of his first round on the Champion Course, Svensson, 21, began his second round on the Fazio Course with four consecutive birdies to string together seven birdies in a row over two days.
One key to Svensson’s success this week has been his play from off the tee. Through two rounds, he is T1 in Driving Accuracy (25 of 28).
Svensson’s 36-hole total of 129 (-14) is the lowest of his professional career. His previous low 36-hole total of 130 (-14) came at the WinCo Foods Portland Open presented by Kraft Heinz on the Web.com Tour.
The last time Svensson competed at PGA National Resort & Spa, he was a member of the Barry University golf team and led the Buccaneers to a 19-stroke win in the three-day event. Svensson used a second-round 64 to win the individual title by three strokes.
Schniederjans, 22, recovered from a double-bogey on the par-4 second with three birdies to move into solo second and cut Svensson’s lead to five.
The former No. 1 in the World Amateur Golf Ranking has fond memories of the Champion Course at PGA National dating back to his junior days. At the 2009 Polo Golf Junior Classic, one of the premier events hosted by the American Junior Golf Association, Schniederjans won a close match for his first AJGA title, defeating Cory Whitsett, 1-up. Schniederjans calls it his fondest victory as a junior golfer.
Schniederjans has played seven times on the PGA TOUR since turning pro last July including the first three tournaments of the 2015-16 TOUR season. The 22-year-old from Dallas has advanced to the weekend in all three TOUR events this fall with his best finish, a T38, coming at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open.
As a junior and senior at Georgia Tech, Schniederjans was a first-team All-American and was also named ACC Player of the Year both years.
Justin Hueber, 28, is originally from Fayetteville, Ark., and played collegiately at the University of Indianapolis, collecting 11 individual titles over four years and three All-American honors.
He spent the 2015 season on PGA TOUR Latinoamerica, where he finished No. 10 on the Order of Merit to earn an exemption into the final stage of the Web.com Tour Qualifying Tournament. His season consisted of three top 10s and six top 25s, including his first win as a professional at the 57th Abierto Mexicano where he finished birdie-birdie-eagle-par to win by one stroke.
Hueber teamed up with Matt Kuchar at the unofficial Bridgestone America’s Golf Cup, filling in for Kuchar’s injured partner, Tiger Woods. It turned out to be a successful exchange as the duo carded scores of 67-60-63-60 to win by four strokes in Mexico City.
At 18 years old, Charles Wang is the youngest player in the field at the final stage of the Web.com Tour Qualifying Tournament. Wang is one of nine players to advance to the finals after beginning his journey at the Pre-Qualifying stage.
With a 3-under 68 in the second round, Wang is tied for 40th, meaning he would be fully exempt for the Web.com Tour in 2016 through the second reshuffle if the tournament ended today.
The Lakewood Ranch, Fla., resident spent one year as a member of the Northwestern University men’s golf team for the 2014-15 season after skipping a grade in high school and enrolling in Northwestern as a 17-year-old. Wang elected to turn pro in the spring of 2015.
Scoring Averages for the week:
The Champion Front (36) Back (35) Total (71)
R1 34.975 35.999 70.974
R2 35.701 36.442 72.143
The Fazio Front (36) Back (36) Total (72)
R1 35.389 35.324 70.623
R2 35.321 35.731 71.052