Ben Martin soars to fourth on Tour money list, closing in on PGA Tour

Clemson graduate, Greenwood native has six top-15 finishes in his last eight starts

Ben Martin (PGA Tour photo)

Ben Martin (PGA Tour photo)

It took 73 holes and an extra night in Evansville, but 2009 Clemson grad Ben Martin recorded his first Tour win on Monday at the rain-impacted United Leasing Championship.

Martin made a routine par on the first hole of a sudden-death playoff, while Joe Affrunti, Ash Hall and Billy Hurley III struggled on the par-4 18th at Victoria National Golf Club, making bogey or worse.

Martin hit his drive in the fairway and a 15-foot putt for birdie, while two of his playoff competitors hit their drives in water and the other into the rough.

The runners-up were also seeking their first Tour win.

A final-round 67 on Sunday allowed Martin to make up five shots on Hurley, who led Affrunti by two at the start of the day. The latter two golfers were tied for the lead before both succumbing to double bogeys on the 71st hole.

Evansville was Martin’s 40th Tour start. His best previous finishes were a third at last year’s Winn-Dixie Jacksonville Open at TPC Sawgrass Dye’s Valley course and a T4 last week in the Rex Hospital Open.

Martin has six top 15s in his last eight starts. He is now fourth on the money list, up from 21st last week. Having been runner-up at the 2010 PGA TOUR Qualifying Tournament, Martin is zeroing in on a return to the tour in 2014. He earned $108,000 for his victory, more than doubling his earnings from the rest of the season. He trails only Michael Putnam, Edward Loar and Chesson Hadley on the money list.

The United Leasing Classic was the 14th of 21 regular-season Tour events. The schedule takes a break this week before resuming July 11-14 with the Utah Championship.

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Comments » 1

rsb8931#286014 writes:

Maybe Ben can get on out there. Our boys had a real bad day at the Greenbrier today. Sad, realty sad!

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