Rookie Aaron Wise posted a bogey-free 65 on Sunday to win his maiden PGA Tour title at the weather-delayed AT&T Byron Nelson.
Aaron Wise followed up his T2 at the Wells Fargo Championship with an impressive display to claim his first PGA Tour title in just his 23rd start.
He began the final round tied with three-time Tour winner Marc Leishman, but by the close of play 21-year-old Wise had carded six birdies to finish three shots clear of the Australian.
“It’s a dream come true to win this one,” said Wise.
Wise was the first to gain an advantage on Sunday as Leishman three-putted the second, and the young American moved further ahead after holing a 10-footer for birdie at the fourth.
Leishman set up his third eagle of the week at Trinity Forest after driving the par-four fifth, and despite additional birdies at the eighth and ninth, Wise went on a birdie run of his own – carding five in the space of six holes to hold a two shot cushion at the turn.
A final birdie of the round came on the 10th for Wise before he parred his way in to post a final-round 65. Meanwhile, Leishman posted two bogeys and two birdies during a disappointing back nine to finish in solo 2nd.
“Just a ton of self-belief,” Wise said afterward. “It was always there, but to do it on this stage, to know I’ve done it, really helped me today. I felt oddly calm all day long and to play as good as I did, bogey free, was awesome.”
With the expeience of this win, Wise is hoping it will be a springboard for his career.
“It’s huge at a young age to be able to plan your schedule, to be able to get into all the big events, to get that experience,” Wise said. “You look at guys like Jordan, Rory, JT, how it’s just paid off for them when they’re 24, 25, kind of hitting their prime a little bit and get all that experience already. They’re able to win so many golf tournaments and I look at this as kind of helping me do that as well.
“I don’t think I’m anywhere near my prime, I hope, and for me to be able to get all this experience so early — it’s only going to help me down the road when I’m contending in a lot of golf tournaments.”
Branden Grace, Keith Mitchell and J.J Spaun shared third place at 19-under, while Ryan Blaum, Kevin Na and Jimmy Walker finished tied for sixth on 16-under-par.
Adam Scott, who needed a strong finish to move back inside the World’s top 60 in order to secure qualification to the US Open next month, finished in a tie for ninth at 15-under-par – moving him to World No.61.
Scott will now have to focus on making it inside the World’s top 60 by the next deadline on 11th June if he doesn’t want to miss his first major since 2001.
“I tried to make the most of really favorable conditions today, and I did a pretty good job of it. Just never really got a hot run going,” Scott said. “I feel like I struggled on the weekend reading the greens well enough to really get it going, but I think everyone but the leaders did that, too. They’re not the easiest greens to read.”
“I’ll play next week and hopefully play really well, and give myself a bit of cushion so I can take a week or so off and try to prepare the best I can for the U.S. Open.”
WITB: Aaron Wise
Driver: Callaway Rogue (10.5 degrees), Fujikura Pro Tour Spec 75 Shaft
3 Wood: Callaway Rogue (15 degrees), Fujikura Atmos Black 8X Shaft
Driving Iron: Callaway X-Forged Utility (2-iron), KBS Tour Prototype Hybrid shaft
Irons: Callaway Apex 16 (4-iron), Callaway Apex MB 18 (5-PW), True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 Tour Issue Shaft
Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 (50, 56, 60), True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 Tour Issue
Putter: Odyssey O-Works Red V-Line Fang CH
Golf Ball: Callaway Chrome Soft X