Road To Highland: American Sam Fidone Wins In B.C.

Fidone claims first Mackenzie Tour Victory at Bayview Place DCBank Open

Victoria, British Columbia, Canada—After his third round, Sam Fidone mentioned he would likely be feeling some nerves on his stroll up to the first tee Sunday at the Bayview Place DCBank Open presented by Times Colonist.

Fidone appeared to make that stroll with all the confidence in the world, striping his first tee shot down the Uplands Golf Club fairway to begin his march toward a bogey-free 65 and commanding five-stroke victory.

Sam Fidone. Photo: PGA TOUR Canada.

Going into the day, the Lufkin, Texas, native had built a two-stroke lead over Blake Sattler due to three consecutive scores in the mid-60s. As the afternoon moved on, the nail drew closer to the coffin as Fidone’s lead slowly increased.

On the 11th green, the 25-year-old fist-pumped the entire 10 yards from where he stroked his putt to the hole, and as he picked up his ball from the bottom of the cup he essentially put down any hopes other players had of winning the tournament.

“The putt on 11 was kind of my ‘let’s go get them, you have the control and the dominance over everyone right now’ moment,” said Fidone. “I just continued to game plan the rest of the day, but that putt was really the catalyst to bring me in and make me feel really solid.”

The moment came after a near flawless front-nine that included three birdies and no bogeys. The rest of the back nine was much of the same, consistent golf that allowed him an easy tap-in on the last hole to solidify himself as a Mackenzie Tour winner.

“I definitely feel like I’m on the right trajectory,” said Fidone. “I feel like my game is trending, and my attitude towards my game is trending, in the right direction. I’m making more mature decisions every time I step up to the tee, and I think that’s the biggest part about winning at every level.”

Fidone spent the spring tightening up his game on the Adams Tour, winning the Options for Independence Houma Classic in April, with rounds of 70-67-69-65. Fidone’s only other start this year on the Adams Tour resulted in a second-place finish after losing in a playoff at the Business First Bank Classic, firing scores of 69-63-66-69.

While Fidone cashed his check for $36,000, the Children’s Health Foundation of Vancouver Island also won in a big way. With the help of volunteers, sponsors and donations made by the Victoria community, at the closing ceremony the tournament announced it had raised $180,000 for the foundation.

Next on tap for the Mackenzie Tour-PGA TOUR Canada is the third and final stop of the B.C. Golf Swing, a three-tournament stretch through Vancouver, Victoria and Kelowna. A field of 156 golfers will tee it up at Gallagher’s Canyon on June 14-17 to see who can join Fidone, and last week’s winner, Jordan Niebrugge, in the 2018 winner’s circle.

Key Information
•Sam Fidone is just the second ever player to win on both the Mackenzie Tour and the PGA TOUR Latinoamerica. Along with his win at Uplands Golf Club, Fidone won the 2016 Honduras Classic by one stroke with an eagle on his final hole. The only other golfer to accomplish this feat is Web.com Tour player Patrick Newcomb.
•In a tie for second heading into the final hole, Ohio’s Blake Sattler chipped in from 10 yards off the green to finish the event in sole possession of second place.
•Wes Heffernan claimed the Freedom 55 Financial Canadian Player of the Week Award after a sixth-place finish in Victoria. The Calgary, Alberta, native did so in dramatic fashion, jarring his shot from the fairway on the 15th for eagle and chipping in for birdie on the 18th to shoot 68.
•Corey Pereira rebounded from a third-round 75 with a 10-shot improvement Sunday, playing his first four holes on the back nine in 5-under par—with an eagle on the 12th. The 65 shot the University of Washington grad to a tie for 23rd, bettering his tie for 41st in Vancouver.
•After a missed cut at the Freedom 55 Financial Open, Dylan Wu made only three bogeys for the week in his second professional start, at the Bayview Place DCBank Open. The Northwestern product tied for fourth with a final-round 68.
•Max Greyserman had the round of the day in Victoria, making only two front-nine pars as he made the turn in 30 strokes. The Duke University graduate, who is the second alternate for next week’s U.S. Open, tied for 14th.
•Heading into the third week of the season, The Five consists of Sam Fidone, Jordan Nuebrugge, Zach Wright, Blake Sattler and Cody Blick.

Quotable

“Blake (Sattler) and I were walking down 18, like, ‘how are this many people out here today?’ It felt Tour like, we had at least 15 people behind us every tee ball and we had people lining the fairways every hole. As the day went on more and more people started to come out. It was a great, intense, but fun feeling and it definitely acclimates you to what you have to get used to on the big stage.” – Sam Fidone

“Warming up this morning I felt really confident and really strong. I talked to all my friends and family and girlfriend and felt really good going into the day. I knew my game plan was right and I just needed to commit to it.” – Sam Fidone

“I remember the first year I turned professional I won the money list on the winner’s series events on the Adam’s Tour, those are just two-day events. I didn’t win a tournament until my second or third year as a professional, and I think a little bit of a door opened when that happened.”– Sam Fidone

“You never know what can happen in this game, you get one bad bounce, one bad draw or hit one bad shot and you never know what’s going to happen. I played a little more conservative today and chose more conservative lines, I wasn’t really going at it, but I made sure I missed it in the right spot if I ended up missing it.”– Sam Fidone

“I got off to a slow start, but the way I battled on the last 10 to 12 holes was pretty good. I couldn’t get it in the hole, but I put it in spots where I had chances. To catch Sam today would have took something special. I’m glad he played well, he came out today and shot 65 and hats off to him.” – Blake Sattler

“I kind of did the same thing last week where I limped the first round but played the final three pretty good. Once I got it going the second day the putter started feeling a little better and I made a couple really long putts.” – Brad Miller

“It was different last week playing my first professional event. I didn’t play that bad, but putts just weren’t dropping. This week I just learned from that and thought about being patient and now, as a professional, it’s going to be a long journey and so this week my goal was to focus on every shot and play well the first two days and give myself a chance.” – Dylan Wu

“Golf has allowed me to travel the world and play something I have a huge passion for. When I mentioned I was struggling a bit, sometimes you forget how much it means to you and how much fun it can be if you just let it happen. The past few years I’ve tried to have as much fun as possible, and you see the scores when you do that. When you have fun, you play a lot better.”– Wes Heffernan

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