Dylan Wu wins 32nd PCCC

Dylan Wu’s last top-10 came 364 days ago at the 2020 Price Cutter Charity Championship presented by Dr Pepper. He entered the week having slipped to 31st in the Korn Ferry Tour points standings with just three regular-season events remaining.

But on Sunday, not even a two-and-a-half-hour rain delay could slow him down as he cruised to his first victory at the 2021 Price Cutter Charity Championship presented by Dr Pepper.

With the win, Wu leaps to 14th in the points standings and secures his standing among the top-25 players at the end of the regular season, resulting in his first PGA TOUR card.

“Yeah, I don’t think it’s hit me yet, but just super happy,” said Wu after his win. “The last two years, I mean, playing 40 events out here, I felt like I played well enough last year to get a card but COVID kind of – there’s a lot worse things in life with COVID affecting a lot of people and luckily I was still able to play professional golf, but not getting a PGA TOUR card last year was really – it kind of hurt.”

Overall, Wu is a fan of cities named Springfield. Two years ago, Wu got a call as he was headed to a Forme Tour event and learned that he had gotten into the Korn Ferry Tour tournament that week in Springfield, Illinois. He went on to breakthrough with a runner-up finish that week, his first made cut on Tour, and earn strong status for the remainder of the year.

Fast forward two years and Wu has made his mark at another Springfield, this time in Missouri at Highland Springs Country Club.

“I mean, something about Springfields are great,” laughed Wu, who turned 25 years old on Tuesday. “Luckily there’s a lot of them, probably the most named city in the country…I mean, including this week, the last two years I probably had my best results at [this tournament]. My last top 10 was here a year ago. Coming into this week, I’m like, wow, that’s been a long time since I had a top 10.”

Entering the day tied for the lead, Wu birdied three of his first four holes out of the gate to build the advantage. He tacked on two more at Nos. 7 and 8 to turn in 5-under 31. At one point Wu held a five-stroke lead, though that dropped to two late as last week’s champion Taylor Moore made a late charge. A weather delay halted play for more than two and a half hours from 1:45 p.m. to 4:18 p.m. as the final group was on the 10th fairway. After coming back out, he added two more birdies at the 11th and 16th holes down the stretch for the two-stroke win.

“I just hung out with a few buddies,” said Wu of his time spent during the rain delay. “One of the guys was Max McGreevy, who won this last year. We were talking inside. A lot of my buddies were just saying the round’s probably going to get canceled, and I don’t want to hear this because I have a five shot lead right now, I don’t want to go into a playoff or something like that.”

The win came a month after switching caddies to his younger brother, Jeremy Wu, at the Live and Work in Maine Open. Since the switch, the Northwestern University alum has finished top-25 in three out of four events, including this victory.

“He’s been great; for me, having him on the bag just gave me a little more confidence in my own ability to call my own shots and play my own game,” said Wu, a former hockey star in high school. “He’s kind of just there for support and to keep it chill and keep it fun while I’m playing just because golf is really stressful, playing these tournaments is really stressful, but he keeps it calm.”

Moore came up just short in his bid to become the 13th player in Korn Ferry Tour history to win back-to-back events. After a 27-under total at last week’s Memorial Health Championship presented by LRS, Moore has now gone 52-under over his past two tournaments. Taylor Dickson’s finish of third ties his career-best mark.

Next week the Korn Ferry Tour is off before heading to the Utah Championship presented by Zions Bank from August 5-8.

Final-Round Notes

  • Sunday’s weather: Partly cloudy giving way to afternoon thunderstorms with a high of 91 degrees and wind in variable directions from 5-10 miles per hour; the final round was delayed for two hours and 33 minutes from 1:45 p.m. to 4:18 p.m.
  • The Price Cutter Charity Championship presented by Dr Pepper was the 18th event of 2021 and the 41st (of 43) of the 2020-21 combined regular season; Wu moves to 14th in the points standings with a win while Moore advances to fourth
  • The winning 72-hole total of 27-under 261 ties the tournament record, originally set by Doug LaBelle II (2006)
  • Wu competed in his first major earlier this year, the 2021 U.S. Open, where he finished T31
  • Defending champion Max McGreevy finished T19, and by doing so, surpassed the Korn Ferry Tour’s threshold of 1,650 points guaranteeing that he will finish inside the top-25 in the regular season and earn his first PGA TOUR card
  • Another past tournament champion, Dawie van der Walt (2015), finished T32
  • Alex Kang (-22, T4) was the only player without a bogey (or worse) through the first three rounds before his streak ended after 61 holes at the par-5 eighth hole on Sunday
  • By finishing in the top-25, Monday qualifier Hayden Springer (-20, T6) gained entry into the next Korn Ferry Tour event, the Utah Championship presented by Zions Bank
  • Taylor Moore’s Sunday 62 was the low round of the week, two shots shy of the 18-hole tournament record (Tyler Williamson/R4/2004)
  • The Price Cutter Charity Championship presented by Dr Pepper is one of four events from the Korn Ferry Tour’s inaugural 1990 season that still remain today with each tournament contested at Highland Springs Country Club
  • This week’s purse was $600,000 with $108,000 going to the champion, Dylan Wu; Wu also receives 500 Korn Ferry Tour points
  • The combined 2020-21 Korn Ferry Tour schedule will conclude with 25 PGA TOUR cards awarded in August at the 2021 Pinnacle Bank Championship presented by Aetna, with an additional 25 cards awarded at the conclusion of the 2021 Korn Ferry Tour Finals

Championship Sunday all set: Last group at 11:10 AM

Dylan Wu matched the low round of the week with a 9-under 63 on moving day to draw even with 36-hole leader Alex Kang at 20-under 196 through three rounds at the Price Cutter Charity Championship presented by Dr Pepper.

Wu and Kang earned a two-stroke lead over Nicholas Thompson and Austin Smotherman as temperatures rose into the 90s with a heat index nearing triple digits at Highland Springs Country Club.

“My body was cramping up out there,” said Kang matter-of-factly. “Maybe I’ll go see a physio. I think the key is to stay cool, drink a lot of water. I drank a bottle per hole, but I don’t think it was enough. I’m sure some guys were drinking more.”

Entering the round tied for the lead, Kang rattled off three straight birdies to kick off his round and
finished with a bogey-free 65. The Las Vegas resident birdied all four par-5s on Saturday and remains the only player without a bogey (or worse) through 54 holes this week.

Kang is the older brother of LGPA Tour star Danielle Kang who is preparing to head to Tokyo to
represent Team USA in the Olympics. Alex Kang mentioned he talks to her every day, but they tend to let each other focus on their own games.

“She just said everyone peaks at a different time, so just stay patient and your time will come,” said Alex Kang of one piece of advice Danielle had given him.

While Kang is seeking a win to get within reach of a potential Korn Ferry Tour Finals berth, Wu is
attempting to breakthrough and earn his first PGA TOUR card. The 25-year-old Northwestern University alum entered the week 31st in the Korn Ferry Tour points standings and would lock up a spot in The 25 with a victory.

“I’ve just been close the last few weeks…It’s been a grind with the two-year season,” said Wu. “But for me, outside the top-25, I’m just trying to stay patient. This is the end of the season. This is the grind time and this is what we’re playing for.”

Wu has enjoyed a successful season with five top-10s, but his last top-10 came a year ago at this
tournament (T9). He did credit a recent resurgence to his experience at the U.S. Open last month where he made the cut and finished T31.

“Of course playing in the U.S. Open gave me a lot of confidence,” said Wu. “The weird thing was I was way more nervous today than I was at the U.S. Open the entire week which was surprising…My game plan [this week] was just to hit a lot of smart shots and give myself a lot of opportunities and I was able to do that.”

Wu has taken on his younger brother, Jeremy, as caddie over the last month as he strives to earn his PGA TOUR card. Jeremy Wu played golf collegiately at Valparaiso University.

Nicholas Thompson, the younger brother of LPGA Tour star Lexi Thompson, will join Kang and Wu in the final group. Austin Smotherman, a former collegiate teammate of Bryson DeChambeau and 2019 Price Cutter Charity Championship winner Harry Higgs, joins Thompson at T3 and will compete in the penultimate grouping.

The final round will run from 6:50 a.m. to 11:15 in threesomes off of the first tee on Sunday at Highland Springs Country Club.

Third-Round Notes
• Saturday’s weather: Partly cloudy with a high of 92 degrees and wind SW at 5-12 mph
• The Price Cutter Charity Championship presented by Dr Pepper is the 18th event of 2021 and
the 41st (of 43) of the 2020-21 combined regular season; Wu projects to move to 14th in the
points standings with a win while Kang would move inside the top-80; 22 of 40 third-round
leaders/co-leaders have gone on to win this season
• Defending champion Max McGreevy carded a 2-under 70 and sits T17 after the third round as
he looks to become the first player in the Korn Ferry Tour’s 32-year history to successfully
defend his title; five players have finished runner-up as they attempt to defend their title (most
recent: Lanto Griffin/2018 Simmons Bank Open for the Snedeker Foundation)
• Notable players on the bubble of the top 25 players in the regular season points standings with
three events remaining include Roberto Diaz (T6), Austin Smotherman (T3) and Dylan Wu (T1);
Diaz entered the week 23rd, Smotherman is 26th and Wu is 31st
• With a two-way T3 or better, Seth Reeves (-17, 5th) would pass the threshold of 1,650 points
that the Korn Ferry Tour is currently using as its fail-safe number to guarantee a finish inside the
top-25 at the conclusion and earn a PGA TOUR card
• Dalton Ward (-13, T17) made his first career cut on the Korn Ferry Tour this week
• Past tournament champion Dawie van der Walt (2015) sits T17
• The Price Cutter Charity Championship presented by Dr Pepper is one of four events from the
Korn Ferry Tour’s inaugural 1990 season that still remain today with each tournament contested
at Highland Springs Country Club
• This week’s purse is $600,000 with $108,000 going to the champion; the champion will also
receive 500 Korn Ferry Tour point