GREENSBORO — William McGirt’s timing could hardly be better.
The Fairmont native, fresh off a top-10 finish at the Wyndham Classic, says he has more confidence now — days before the start of the FedEx Cup playoffs — than at any point during this season on the PGA Tour.
“I feel like my game is coming around in time to make a playoff push,” McGirt told The Robesonian shortly after finishing tied for eighth at the Wyndham and picking up a $148,400 check and 78 FedEx Cup points. “I have been working on some things with my golf swing and I feel like I am starting to understand what I am doing with it. I probably have more confidence right now than I have had all season, which is a great thing to have going into the playoffs.”
That was apparent on Sunday at the Wyndham as McGirt shot his second 6-under-par 64 at Sedgefield Country Club to finish at 13 under par for the tournament. McGirt, who had rounds of 64, 68 and 71, shot a front-nine 30 that included an eagle 3 on No. 5 and was putting for an eagle and a tie for the lead on No. 15 before settling for a birdie and closing with three straight pars.
His chance for victory took a blow on Saturday when he was 2 under par before making three bogeys over the final seven holes.
“I still have to find a way to put four rounds together,” he said Sunday. “I played well yesterday but both Friday and Saturday I felt like I was playing defense on the greens. It seemed like every putt was downhill, down grain, and breaking hard. I told myself today I didn’t care if I had six feet coming back, to stay aggressive.”
McGirt has now won $951,018 on the season and moved up 10 spots to 81st on the FedEx Cup list, putting himself in good position for a deep run in the four-tournament playoffs. The top 100 on the FedEx Cup list after this week’s The Barclays advance to the Deutsche Bank Championship, and the top 70 after that tournament move on to the BMW Championship.
“It has been a weird year with where I have played well,” said McGirt, who haz now made the FedEx Cup playoffs in all four seasons he has been on the PGA Tour. “All three of my top-10’s have come at courses I have historically never played well. I guess that is golf.”
During the PGA Tour’s wrap-around season, which began in October 2013, McGirt made 16 cuts in 26 starts, had seven top-25 finishes and three in the top 10. He has now won about $3.58 million during his career.
Camilo Villegas ended a four-year winless streak at the Wyndham, shooting a final-round 63 to finish at 17 under par, a single shot ahead of Bill Haas and Freddie Jacobson. He won the $954,000 first place check.
Villegas, who was the 12th ranked player in the world when he made the 2010 Honda Classic his third victory, entered Wyndham ranked No. 254. He is now 37th on the FedEx Cup standings.