WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – Maybe the beast that is Q-School, despite all the negative press it has received, has a soft side.
Last year, J.P. Hayes was the victim of one of those unfortunate “only at Q-School” stories. Now he’s getting redemption.
Hayes shot 63 Friday and is tied for the lead with former Boise State star Troy Merritt. Both players are at 12 under par; Hayes has completed his third round, while Merritt was on No. 17 when play was called due to inclement weather.
At second stage last year, Hayes mistakenly played a nonconforming ball (it was a Titleist prototype) for one hole in the first round. After realizing the error, he disqualified himself after the second round, eliminating any chance of regaining a PGA Tour card.
Hayes called the situation “a bad nightmare” last year. He played on Tour this year with past-champion’s status and sponsor exemptions.
“(Q-School) has been good to me. I’ve had success at this tournament, but last year was a little crazy,” Hayes said.