What a weekend. First off, thank you to everyone who came out to The Thoroughbred at the Aiken Golf Club. We had an incredible time with you all and can’t wait for our next season of events. As it turns out, though, the rest of the golf world didn’t stop just because we were all hanging out! Pretty inconsiderate, if you ask us.

Oh my Lanto

With its less-than-stellar field, this Houston Open was likely to be a life-changing week for someone on tour. That possibility came true on Sunday, as Lanto Griffin closed out his first career PGA Tour victory. The 31-year-old made a gutsy par on the 72nd hole to close out his win at the Golf Club of Houston. Houston Open Leaderboard

In a world where youth is taking over the PGA Tour, you don’t often see a journeyman break through in his 30s. The Houston Open was just Lanto Griffin’s 33rd start on the PGA Tour, and he had zero top-10 finishes to his name until this weekend. Griffin played in 26 events on the PGA Tour in 2018 but failed to gain any sort of traction. After a successful season on the Korn Ferry Tour in 2019, Griffin has started the 2019-20 season with a bang. He has finished T-18 or better in all five of the events this fall and has already amassed nearly $2 million in earnings. Also, he now has job security, invitations to major championships, and a memory he will never lose.

One back

While it was Lanto Griffin who walked away with the victory, Scott Harrington and Mark Hubbard were also chasing their first PGA Tour victories on Sunday. Both players came up one shot short of catching Griffin but still earned their best ever PGA Tour finishes. Hubbard already has three top 15s this fall, and Harrington has collected three top-25 results. Both are also in their 30s, seemingly breaking through as a pack with Lanto Griffin. Their strong starts to the season will set them up well as we head into 2020.

Leaderboard notes

  • Bud Cauley earned just his second top-10 finish of the calendar year with his T-9 in Houston. Cauley birdied five of his final seven holes on Sunday to shoot up the leaderboard. After a major car accident in the summer of 2018, it appears that Cauley is back to his old self.
  • A bunch of recent college players—Sepp Straka (T-4), Doc Redman (T-13), Beau Hossler (T-13), Maverick McNealy (T-17), and Brandon Wu (T-17)—garnered solid results at Houston. Cole Hammer, a current sophomore at Texas, made the cut and finished T-61.
  • Tour veteran Harris English continued his strong fall with a T-4 finish. English now has three top-six finishes in just four starts this year, setting himself up for a bounceback season after losing his card last year.

Austria rules

Things were looking bleak for Bernd Wiesberger as he made the turn on Saturday. But the 34-year-old Austrian proceeded to play his final 28 holes in 12 under par, winning the Italian Open by one shot over Chicago’s own Matthew Fitzpatrick. Wiesberger shot a bogey-free 66 on Sunday to close out the event, his third win of 2019. The victory will move him to 22nd in the Official World Golf Rankings, the highest position of his career. 

Kurt Kitayama (third), Beef Johnston (T-4), Matt Wallace (T-7), Shubhankar Sharma (T-7), and Rory Sabbatini (T-10) all finished inside the top 10 this weekend. Italian Open Leaderboard

Quick Hooks

Kevin Na opened up about what he maintains are false claims by his ex-fiancée in South Korea. The Shriners champion has evidently been going through a lot in his personal life. Full Story from Alan Shipnuck and Stephanie Song

Jerry Kelly shot a final-round 65 to win the SAS Championship on the PGA Tour Champions this weekend. Leaderboard

The Latest

Shotgun Start: Oh my Lanto, Rory’s Rowdy Roadies, and Jason Day’s acting career

A worse-for-the-wear episode begins with Andy recounting his weekend and the circumstances of his injury in South Carolina and Brendan calling for the firing of Freddie Crockpot. In golf matters, the two discuss Lanto Griffin’s win in Houston, Brandon Wu’s impressive debut, and the sparse attendance. On the Euro Tour, they crown Bernd Wiesberger the greatest Austrian golfer of all time and stumble into an amusing and surely outdated European Tour bio for Rory Sabbatini. On the Champions Tour, they play a clip of Lanny Wadkins openly calling for backboarding during the broadcast. A quick news roundup covers Rickie’s brand-free wedding, Michelle Wie’s comeback, and Kevin Na clearing up the confusion about fighting for his good name back in Korea. They wrap with the latest teases from the Rory and Carson show, which transitions to a discussion of the latest Skins Game promo, which transitions to the acting chops of the four participants, which somehow ends with Jason Day in a role on Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman. Listen on iTunes, Spotify, or Stitcher

Pro Shop

Sunday’s win was a long time coming for Lanto Griffin. You know what else is long? The sleeves on our B. Draddy crewneck t-shirts. Grab yours today!