Fidelity Sports Clients Notch Two Victories at Difficult Second Stage
Second Stage is widely regarded as the most difficult stage in the qualifying process, aka “Q-School”, en route to a Web.com Tour membership.Second stage was hosted across five sites spanning Florida, Alabama, Texas, and California during the first two weeks of November.
At any of these various qualifying sites, a fan finds a field filled with a smattering of professional golfers at varied points in their own careers. The offerings include recognizable names, even PGA Tour winners, coming off a tough year on the PGA Tour that found them outside the top 200 in Fed Ex Cup points….journeymen who have bounced between the Web.com and PGA Tour over the years only to end up back at the dreaded Second Stage. One can also find rising starts in the game, having just graduated college, advancers from the 1st stage of Q-School in October and those 20 somethings who have had a solid year on PGA Tour Canada or PGA Tour Latin America and earned the right to skip 1st stage.
For Fidelity Sports Group clients Lanto Griffin and Justin Hueber, Second Stage was a week to celebrate as they each won their respective qualifying site by multiple shots.
An All-American at Virginia Commonwealth, Lanto has primarily played developmental tours since graduating in 2010 including the eGolf Tour, and The Hooters/NGA Tour. Over the years Lanto has played a number of Web.com and PGA Tour events as well, and was a conditional Web.com Tour member in 2014. In 2015, Lanto played PGA Tour Latin America and found quick success, finishing 21st on the Money List in only seven starts which included a victory at the Roberto De Vicenzo Punta del Este Open Copa NEC, hosted in Uruguay.
Lanto has blistered the fields in 1st and 2nd stage combining his eight qualifying rounds for 31 under par! 70-69-65-67 in first stage (17 under par) at Grasslands Country Club in Lakeland, Florida followed by 68-69-69-64 in second stage at Plantation Preserve in Fort Lauderdale, Florida for a two shot victory at 14 under par.
Justin played Division II collegiate golf at University of Indianapolis where he won 17 times as a student athlete. 2016 will be his third time at final stage of Q-School having locked up conditional status at final stage in December of 2013 and 2015. 2015 was a break out year for Justin in his professional career, and also came on PGA Tour Latin America. In 2015, Justin won twice including the Mexico Open and the America’s Cup where he teamed with PGA Tour star Matt Kuchar in the two man team event. In 2016, Justin won again on PGA Tour Latin America at the season opening Colombian Open.
By way of his position inside the Top 20 on the 2016 Money List on PGA Tour Latin America, Justin earned an exemption to second stage. Competing at Southern Hills Plantation in Brooksville, Florida was a natural choice as he successfully navigated second stage there in 2013 with a chip in on his 72nd hole! To start the week, Justin double bogeyed his first hole of second stage. He would go on to play the next 71 holes 16-under par for a final total of 14-under par which was good enough for a three shot victory with rounds of 70-63-71-70.