Kevin Kisner believed the opportunity to participate in the Pebble Beach Invitational, a tournament that matches players from the PGA, Web.com, LPGA and Champions tours, would be the perfect vacation for his wife, Brittany, and himself after a long season that included stops from Chile to Utah.
The R and R worked , and the golf was good, too. Kisner won the event and said, “a nice Christmas bonus for my wife and myself.”
Kisner and success go hand-in-hand. He starred at South Aiken High, made All-America all four years at the University of Georgia, and has gotten off to a solid start on the 2013-14 PGA Tour. The Pebble Beach success will not count in the Tour statistics, but the $60,000 check is good.
“Anytime you win builds confidence,” he said. “In addition to that, I got to learn more about the golf courses for the (PGA Tour’s) AT&T Invitational, and anything you can learn about a course is a plus. It’s more important for those of us from the East Coast because we’re not used to putting those greens. Playing out there sets me up better for next year.”
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The Pebble Beach Invitational followed the AT&T pro-am format and equalized competition by using different tees for players from the various tours. After seeing six-stroke lead dwindle over the back nine, Kisner made a 15-foot downhill birdie putt on the finishing hole for a one-shot win over Chesson Hadley.
“You have to hang in there,” he said. “The important thing is to get in position to win.”
Kisner secured his 2013-14 PGA Tour card by finishing 13th in Web.com earnings. He guaranteed status to play the PGA fall tournaments by sharing third in the Web.com’s final four-event series. He made the cut in three of the four fall events, tieing for 20th in the McGladrey Classic, and heads into the new year 82nd in earnings and 64th in the FedEx Cup standings.
The season resumes in Hawaii in January. Kisner’s goal is making the FedEx playoffs that includes the top 125 players. Earning a spot in those postseason events would assure he played well during the year.
The Kisners have a home on Aiken’s famed Palmetto Golf Club course. Kevin hones his game there with long-time friend and fellow PGA Tour pro Scott Brown.
“Every day,” Kisner said of their Palmetto practice sessions. “It’s great for both of us. We’ve played together since we were 12 and know each other’s games, so we benefit from each other.”
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