LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Fairmont native William McGirt shot a final-round 72 on Sunday in the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Classic, and although it was not good enough to attain his pre-tournament goal of a top-70 finish on the PGA Tour, McGirt is well-positioned to set his own playing schedule during the 2013 season.
McGirt finished the year’s final tournament at 5-under-par 283 after rounds of 71, 71, 69 and 72 to finish in a tie for 50th and pocket $11,248.66. That pushed his earnings for the year to $1,228,947, good enough for 74th on the money list.
McGirt began the tournament 70th on the money list, and was trying to hold onto that position or improve it in order to qualify for all of the PGA Tour’s invitationals next year. But his finish this year gives him what is basically known as “full status” on the tour in 2013, with a spot in all the events except the majors, World Golf Championships and the invitationals.
“I played well at Disney, just not quite good enough,” McGirt told The Robesonian this morning. “Had a lot of other guys play well and pass me.”
McGirt said he was already in three invitationals for next year, the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am, the RBC Heritage and the Crowne Plaza, and that he felt he could play his way into the Arnold Palmer Invitational and Jack Nicklaus’ The Memorial.
He was headed to Pebble Beach this morning for a pro-am.
“Relaxing golf week, then no more golf for me this year,” he said.
For the season, McGirt played in 30 PGA Tour events, made the cut in 18, and enjoyed six top 25 finishes, three top 10 finishes and a second place. McGirt ensured his status for next year with a fifth place finish in the True South Classic, which was followed by a second place finish in the Canadian Open, a tournament he led with just a few holes to play. He then qualified for the FedEx Cup playoffs and secured his third top 10 of the year at The Barclays.
McGirt, who is now ranked 186th in the world, has $1.761 million in his two full seasons on the tour. His scoring average of 70.77 ranked him 57th best on the tour this year..
He will now play in some pro-am events before his wife Sarah will give birth to their first child, a boy, at the end of this year or early next year.
Charlie Beljan, who had suffered a panic attack on Friday and was advised by doctors to withdraw from the tournament, won the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Classic with a final round 3-under-par 69 to finish at 16 under par for the tournament and 2 strokes ahead of Matt Every and Robert Garrigus.
Beljan won $846,000, enough to vault him to 63rd on the money list and ensure full playing rights for the 2013 season.