Q-School: Breaking down course difficulty

Harris English
Harris English ( Getty Images )

Thursday, December 1, 2011

LA QUINTA, Calif. – The high winds that hit Southern California on Thursday made PGA West play difficult for the PGA Tour hopefuls there for Q-School.

Two courses are in use this week, PGA West's Nicklaus Tournament and TPC Stadium courses. The Nicklaus Tournament course played to a 69.75 scoring average in Wednesday's first round, compared to 73.0 on Thursday. That's an increase of 3.25 strokes.

The TPC Stadium course, the more difficult of the two layouts, played to a 71.58 scoring average in the first round. The average score there was 74.54 on Thursday, an increase of 2.96 strokes.

Matt Jones and Alex Coe, a La Quinta resident, were the low scorers Thursday on the Stadium Course. They shot 68. Coe's 68 moved him up 96 spots on the leaderboard, from T-126 to T-30. Only one other player broke 70 there Thursday. Troy Merritt shot 69.

There were seven scores in the 80s on Thursday at the Stadium Course: Jimmy Lytle (80), Nate Smith (82), Cliff Kresge (82), Johnny DelPrete (82), Matt McQuillan (81), Wade Ballard (83) and Brenden Pappas (86). Pappas withdrew after the round.

Harris English and Brad Fritsch both shot 67 Thursday at the Nicklaus Tournament course, the low rounds of the day. English's round moved him into second place. He's at 9-under 135, one stroke behind leader Will Claxton. Fritsch moved from T-107 to T-15. Only two players shot in the 80s on Thursday at the Nicklaus Tournament course: Tim Petrovic (80) and Matt Harmon (80).

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