Playa Del Carmen, Mexico – In what was the most important day of Patton Kizzire’s career as a professional, he faced a 12 footer for bogey on the first hole of a marathon 36 hole day (due to weather) at the OHL Classic . When the 31 year old Sea Island resident drained the putt, he let out a sigh of relief and began to roll – shooting rounds of 66-67 to capture his first PGA Tour victory. “To make that putt and kind of calm down and find my stride and start making birdies and get out front, you know that felt really good,” Kizzire said after the long day.
Kizzire’s opening round 62 on the par 71 layout at Mayakoba’s El Chameleon course set up the journeyman to be in position to hold off fan favorite Rickie Fowler. Kizzire had been trending up, after a tie for 10th at Sanderson Farms Championship and a tie for 4th at the Shriners. His longtime caddie Joe Etter said, “The thing that led to this is he made the cut on the number at Sanderson Farms, it’s just been snowballing since.”
The Alabama native finished at 19 under par, one stroke ahead of Fowler who was optimistic about his season moving forward, despite finishing 2nd. “Great start to the season, Fowler said. “Felt like I could have had a couple (of putts) go there before the turn.”