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Jeff Kolpack, Published May 20 2009

David Schultz earns spot in PGA Tour event

A golf season littered with disappointment for David Schultz was washed away in one round. The Fargo South graduate will play in his first PGA Tour event this week.

He’s entered in the Byron Nelson Championship in Irving, Texas, by virtue of a Monday qualifier. Schultz was one of two survivors in a seven-man playoff at the TPC Four Seasons Resort course. He made a birdie on the first extra hole to earn his first ticket to a tour event.

“I knocked in the putt and just kind of dropped my head,” Schultz said. “Finally, something good happened this year.”

Last week, he missed the cut in the Nationwide Tour’s BMW Charity Pro-Am in South Carolina by one shot.

“So he jumped on a plane on Sunday, came out on Monday and showed what kind of character he has,” said Moorhead Country Club professional Larry Murphy, who talked with Schultz on Tuesday.

Schultz was 6-under after 13 holes in the one-day mini-tournament for four spots. He finished with a 68, carding a 32 on the front 9. He withstood a couple of bogeys on the back 9 with timely putting, draining a 6-footer on 16, a 7-footer on 17 and a 10-footer on 18.

“It was kind of a range of emotions,” Schultz said.

The first threesome in the playoff all made par. Schultz made a 12-foot putt in his foursome and on Tuesday, was busy looking ahead to Thursday’s 9 a.m. tee time with Scott Gutschewski and Brian Vranesh.

It means he’ll be in the same tournament as Phil Mickelson and Vijay Singh. Tiger Woods is not entered, but Schultz said he figures he knows about half of the field, players who formerly competed on the Nationwide Tour. Vranesh and Gutschewski are both Nationwide Tour alumni.

“That should help to not have an ‘awe’ factor,” Schultz said.

“This is big stuff,” Murphy said. “He has done all the right things. He belongs in a PGA tournament. This is another step in the right direction for Dave.”

Teeing it up

A look at how local professional golfers Dave Schultz, Josh Persons and Kane Hanson are doing:

Dave Schultz

Lately: Shot a 4-under 68 Monday to qualify for the Byron Nelson Championship, his first PGA Tour event. He tees off at 9 a.m. Thursday in Irving, Texas.

Up next: Next Nationwide Tour event is Rex Hospital Open in Raleigh, N.C.

Josh Persons

Lately: Missed the cut at the Gateway Desert Springs tournament at Raven Golf Club two weeks ago.

Up next: Playing in the Gateway Desert Springs tour in Presoctt, Ariz., today through Friday.

Kane Hanson

Lately: Last Gateway appearance was three weeks ago at the Desert Springs tournament in Vista Verde, Ariz., which he won, netting him $16,000. The win left him 10th on the Gateway money list at $41,679.42.

Up next: Playing in the Gateway Desert Springs tour in Prescott, Ariz., today through Friday.

Jeff Kolpack can be heard on the WDAY Golf Show, 10 a.m. to noon on WDAY-AM (970). He can be reached at (701) 241-5546.

Kolpack’s NDSU media blog can be found at www.areavoices.com/bisonmedia