Brendan Steele could post only a 5-over-70-75 — 145 to miss the cut by nine strokes in last week’s Wyndham Championship in Greensboro, North Carolina.
After scoring an even-par 70 in the first round, the 36-year-old Idyllwild native opened the second round with five straight over-par holes, including two doubles, which led to a devastating opening 42. He settled down with 13 straight holes of par or better and shot 33 on his back nine, but that was not enough to save him.
The Wyndham Championship marks the end of Steele’s 2019 PGA Tour season, since he did not qualify for the three-tournament, post-season playoffs, which begin this week.
Steele’s season’s stats show that he bested the field’s average in the categories off-the-tee and tee-to-green, but lost ground to the field in approaches, around-the-green play, and especially, putting. This season he was 34th on the tour in driving distance at 302.7 yards, while placing 24th in driving accuracy at 68.50%. He was 17th in hitting greens in regulation at 69.81%, but he placed only 199th in putting, needing an average of 30.10 putts per round.
This ninth season was Steele’s least successful on the PGA Tour. In 21 tournaments, he was cut nine times. He posted only two top-20s, his best being a T14 in The CJ Cup at Nine Bridges in Korea last October. His $499,739 in official prize money was the least he has won on the big tour, marking only the second time he has earned prize money of less than $1 million. He finished 169th on this year’s FedExCup list and is listed as the 234th best golfer in the world in the current Official World Golf Standing.
Steele has one more year of exemption on the PGA Tour, earned for his win at the Safeway Open in Napa in October 2017. Next year will be an all-out effort year for him. We’re eager to see him start the new 2019-2020 PGA Tour season next month.