Doeden Wins LocaliQ Series Tournament at Weston Hills
October 26, 2020
WESTON, Fla. -- Justin Doeden birdied five of the last 10 holes in the final round earlier this month to win the Classic at the Club at Weston Hills, a tournament that is part of the LocaliQ Series.
The 26-year-old former University of Minnesota star was four shots behind the 36-hole leader, A.J. Crouch, after a bogey at the 420-yard, par-4 eighth hole on the last day of the tournament (Oct. 9). And he had to make a 6-foot putt just to avoid making a double at No. 8. But he made a 20-foot birdie putt at the ninth (430, par 4), and that started him in the right direction on the way to a 5-under 67, which gave him a 54-hole total of 201 and a two-stroke victory.
First place in the tournament was worth $20,000. Doeden also earned an additional $2,500 for having the second-best record for the Florida events in the LocaliQ Series.
Andreas Halvorsen, 24, a former junior phenom from Norway who skipped college to try the then-Nationwide Tour (now Korn Ferry) Q-School in 2014, closed with a 66 and finished second, two strokes behind Doeden at 203.
Velten Meyer turned in the best score of the day, a 65, and that lifted him into a four-way tie for third place at 204. Crouch could manage only one birdie on the final day, at the fourth hole, and he was done in by a bogey at the 11th and a double at the par-4 13th (410). He ended up with a 74, which dropped him into an eight-way tie for seventh.
The LocaliQ Series is a circuit of American-based events running from August to November, sponsored by the PGA Tour. It was put together when it became clear that the Covid 19 pandemic would prevent satellite tours in Canada, China and Latin America from operating in 2020.
Doeden, who competed on the Mackenzie (Canadian) Tour in 2018 and '19, seemed to like the number 67 during his week at Weston Hills, because that's what he shot in each of the three rounds. But things didn't look all that promising, at least not as far as winning was concerned, after he bogeyed the eighth hole and slipped back to even par for the day. His birdie at the ninth pulled him to within three of Crouch, and also put him one ahead of Halvorsen, who started his round with four consecutive birdies, bogeyed the fifth, birdied the seventh and bogeyed the ninth.
Halvorsen added another birdie at the 10th, but Doeden edged back ahead of him -- and moved to within one of Crouch -- when he birdied the par-3 11th (180 yards). So it was Crouch still in the lead, at 13 under par, with Doeden one behind and minus 12, and Halvorsen another shot back at minus 11. But then Halvorsen eagled the 520-yard, par-5 12th hole, which propelled him past Doeden and into a tie for first, along with Crouch, both at 13 under. Doeden was now third at minus 12.
The situation changed dramatically once again, however, at the 410-yard, par-4 13th. Up ahead, Halvorsen had made a par. Then, as Crouch was in the process of making his disastrous double bogey, Doeden birdied the hole, which lifted him into a tie with Halvorsen at minus 13.
Doeden broke the tie with a 10-foot birdie putt at the 460-yard, par-4 16th. Halvorsen had finished his round before Doeden teed off at the 18th, a 585-yard par 5. Needing only a par to win, Doeden assured himself of finishing first by hitting a 100-yard wedge shot to within 5 feet of the cup, and the former two-time winner of the Krugel Invitational (at Mankato GC) capped off his victory by making the birdie putt and finishing at 15 under.
For the effort, Doeden earned 500 points and moved into fifth place in the 2020 LocaliQ standings, thereby assuring himself of a spot in the season-ending Series Championship, Nov. 17-20 at TPC Sugarloaf in Duluth, Ga. In addition, he moved up from No. 1589 in the Official World Golf Rankings to No. 861.
Classic at the Club at Weston Hills
Par 72, 7,069 yards
1. Justin Doeden 67-67-67--201
2. Andreas Halvosen 72-65-66--203
T3. Brian Calson 69-69-66--204
T3. M.J. McGuire 72-65-67--204
T3. Brendon Doyle 68-67-69--204
T7. Velten Meyer 68-72-65--205
T7. Piri Borja 69-69-67--205
T7. Jose Toledo 68-70-67--205
T7. Cole Miller 71-66-68--205
T7. Jason Thresher 72-65-68--205
T7. Scott Wolfes 70-66-69--205
T7. Myles Creighton 70-65-70--205
T7. A.J. Crouch 67-64-74--205