Sep 4, 2013
Peterborough, Ontario, Canada – San Jose State alumni Mark Hubbard won his first PGA TOUR Canada title on Sunday, September 1, shooting a final round 5-under par 66 for a two-stroke win at The Wildfire Invitational. Hubbard’s 264 total score is the lowest winning score on PGA TOUR Canada this year.
“This comes as no surprise, Mark has always had the heart of a champion,” said San José State men’s golf coach John Kennaday. “he’s has worked very hard and is a very talented golfer. All of Sparta is thrilled for his success and can’t wait to see what the future has for him.”
The 24-year old, native of Denver, Colo., made a clutch 15-footer for birdie at the par-5 16th to get to 20-under par and give himself a three-stroke advantage at the time, then recorded par the final two holes to secure the victory.
With the win, Hubbard moves to fifth on the on the tour’s Order of Merit, in position to earn one of the five Web.com Tour cards available at the end of the season.
“I had to be in the moment and really had to focus on each shot, so the whole thing hasn’t really kicked in yet,” Hubbard said to the media after the victory. “The putt on 16 was one of the best I’ve ever hit.”
Starting the day with a one shot lead over Hughes, Hubbard went out in 3-under par on the front nine, building a lead over Hughes, Stough and several other contenders that he would not relinquish. He had several key up-and-downs, including a brilliant flop shot at the par-3 15th, to key his victory.
“I had two or three up-and-downs that were some of the best of my life,” said Hubbard. “That one on 15 was probably the shot of my life. I put a lot of work in the last two weeks and it’s nice to see it pay off.”
With two events to go, Hubbard is in position to make the next step on the path to the PGA TOUR next year on the Web.com Tour. But he said blocking any thoughts about the ramifications of a win was a major factor in his win.
“Between playing down in Latioamérica, up here and in Q-School, guys have three chances to get to the Web.com Tour,” said Hubbard. “But you can’t really think about stuff when you’re playing, you just have to go out and play, and that’s what I feel like I did the best this week.”
The Wildfire Invitational Final Leaderboard
Peterborough, Ontario, Canada
1. Mark Hubbard – 264 (-20)
T-2. Mackenzie Hughes – 266 (-18)
T-2. Kyle Stough – 266 (-18)
4. Jorge Fernandez-Valdes – 267 (-17)
5. Nick Taylor – 268 (-16)
PGA TOUR Canada Order of Merit Standings
(two events remaining in the 2013 season)
1. Riley Wheeldon - $39,937.50
2. Wil Collins - $39,708.04
3. Joe Panzeri - $37,355.23
4. Hugo Leon - $37,167.00
5. Mark Hubbard - $35,451.29