This week on the PGA Tour

by Dan M | Posted on Friday, June 24th, 2016

PGA.Fowler

Quicken Loans National
June 23 – June 26, 2016
Congressional Country Club
Bethesda, Maryland
Purse – $6,900,000
Winners share: $1,242,000
Defending Champ – Troy Merritt

• COURSE: Congressional Country Club (Blue), 7,569 yards, par 71.
Established in 1924, the club has served as a meeting place for
Washington’s movers and shakers from the very beginning. Founding
members included two former U.S. presidents, sitting officeholder
Warren Harding and successor Calvin Coolidge. Congressional was the
site where Ken Venturi staggered through stifling heat to win the 1964
U.S. Open, the first of three Opens held there along with the 1976 PGA
Championship. The club also hosted six Kemper Opens, getting back on
the PGA TOUR’s regular schedule when the Quicken Loans National joined
the docket in 2007.
• FEDEXCUP: Winner receives 500 pts.
• CHARITY: The Tiger Woods Foundation, with proceeds earmarked for two
Tiger Woods Learning Center campuses in D.C., along with 25 Tiger
Woods Scholars who come from the D.C. area.
• FIELD WATCH: World No. 5 Rickie Fowler, runner-up to Troy Merritt a
year ago, and Patrick Reed give the Congressional field two of the top
dozen players in the Official World Golf Ranking … The lineup includes
10 PGA TOUR winners from this season, including recent winners James
Hahn (Wells Fargo Championship) and Charley Hoffman (Valero Texas
Open). … Ernie Els also returns to the site of his 1997 U.S. Open
triumph, along with fellow Hall of Famer Vijay Singh. … Spain’s Jon
Rahm, No. 1 in the world amateur rankings, will make his professional
debut at Congressional. So will Jordan Niebrugge, low amateur at last
year’s Open Championship.
• 72-HOLE RECORD: 266, Troy Merritt (2015 at Robert Trent Jones GC).
Congressional record: 267, Tiger Woods (2009).
• 18-HOLE RECORD: 61, Troy Merritt (3rd round, 2015 at Robert Trent
Jones GC). Congressional record: 62, Anthony Kim (1st round, 2009),
Hunter Mahan (4th round, 2009).
• LAST YEAR: Merritt put his name in the tournament record book on the
way to his first PGA TOUR victory, holding off Rickie Fowler by a
stroke at Robert Trent Jones Golf Club. Merritt came to RTJ having
missed his previous five cuts, but thrived once he got to the weekend.
A Saturday 61 set a new 18-hole scoring mark, and his closing birdie a
day later lowered the event’s 72-hole best. Merritt posted a
4-under-par 67 in the final round, which also matched the day’s best.
Fowler also birdied his final hole to finish off a wild 69 that
featured seven birdies and five bogeys, leaving him second ahead of
David Lingmerth. Woods birdied five of his first 10 Sunday holes to
move to the edge of contention, but three bogeys in a four-hole span
killed his chances.
• STORYLINES: Reed, who owns seven top-15 finishes since the start of
2016, tries again to end a victory drought dating back to the 2015
Hyundai Tournament of Champions. He was runner-up in his title
defense, as well as at the Valero Texas Open. … Former NCAA and U.S.
Amateur champion Bryson DeChambeau tees it up for the seventh time as
a pro, seeing his time grow short to earn a PGA TOUR card via
exemptions. … Wes Bryan, twice a winner on the Web.com Tour this year,
will make his second PGA TOUR start in a three-week span. He played
all four days in Memphis, finishing tied for 58th. … Woods, twice a
winner at Congressional, again is restricted to host duties as he
takes his time in recovery from last fall’s back surgery. It marks the
fourth time since the event’s start in 2007 that injuries have kept
him from teeing it up.
• SHORT CHIPS: After going later on the calendar than its accustomed
slot last year, the National shifts into June for 2016 as part of the
TOUR’s schedule shuffle to clear room for the Olympic tournament in
August. … Merritt became the fifth winner in the past seven editions
to convert at least a share of the 54-hole lead. The others: Bill Haas
(2013), Nick Watney (2011), Justin Rose (2010) and Woods (2009). … The
week again features the “We Salute Our Heroes” tribute wall, where
fans can leave personal messages of thanks for those who serve in the
nation’s military.
• TELEVISION: Thursday-Friday, 3:30-6:30 p.m. ET (Golf Channel).
Saturday, 1-2:30 p.m. (GC), 3-6 p.m. (CBS). Sunday, 1-2:30 p.m. (GC),
3-6:30 p.m. (CBS).

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