A Sunday at the Waste Management Phoenix Open with amateur golfer Matthew Wolff
By John Mendoza, Cronkite News | Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2019
SCOTTSDALE – The first thing amateur golfer Matthew Wolff did after learning he had a spot in the Waste Management Phoenix Open was call his mom.
“Chance (Cozby) called me and offered me a spot,” Wolff said, referring to the tournament chairman. “I was pretty fortunate for that to happen.”
Wolff, an Oklahoma State sophomore, received one of five sponsor exemptions available to the Thunderbirds for the Phoenix Open, allowing him to make his PGA Tour debut.
“It was awesome. The experience was unreal. I learned a lot.” Wolff said about his crazy week in Scottsdale.
Wolff, who turned heads with his unorthodox swing, played a practice round Tuesday with the eventual winner of the 2019 Phoenix Open, Rickie Fowler, who also golfed for Oklahoma State. Fowler gave the amateur some advice, not only about the TPC Scottsdale but about getting accustomed to life on the tour.
Wolff had his own crowd of friends, family and OSU Cowboys fans following him around throughout the weekend. Even his caddie, George Gankas, a popular internet golf instructor, got his fair share of love from the crowds.
Wolff made the cut and would finish the weekend at a respectable 3-under with rounds of 67-70-72-72. That finish was good enough for a share of 50th place.
Wolff hopes to qualifying for the U.S. Open as an amateur. If he does, his goal would be to then turn pro.
CORRECTION: A previous version of this story incorrectly spelled amateur golfer Matthew Wolff’s name in the headline and some photo captions. The story has been updated.
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