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From start to finish, J.T. Poston was the clear class of the field at the 2022 John Deere Classic as he notched his second victory on the PGA Tour on Sunday. Becoming the third player in tournament history to successfully go wire-to-wire, Poston was able to carry last week’s momentum from TPC River Highlands to TPC Deere Run.
Finishing runner-up at the Travelers Championship, Poston opened his John Deere Classic in ideal fashion to the tune of 9-under 62. Never looking back, the 29-year-old went on to sign for rounds of 65-67-69 to finish at 21 under and three strokes clear of his nearest pursuers Christiaan Bezuidenhout and Emiliano Grillo.
Despite possessing a three-stroke lead coming into the final round and winning by said margin, there were a few hairy moments in his opening nine. After firing out of the gates with three consecutive birdies, Poston began to take on water when he made back-to-back bogeys on the fifth and sixth holes.
It was a testy par save on the par-3 seventh which steadied the ship as he would go on to make nine consecutive pars, forcing other players to attack pins, while he coasted along. Poston added another birdie on the par-5 17th for safe measure and extended his lead back to where he began the day.
Poston was cool, calm and collected, never blinking in the face of adversity. Seeing his lead shrink to as little as one stroke on the inward nine, he remained steadfast and as reward for his hard work will be featured on the PGA Tour for years to come. Not only will he gain entry into tournaments such as the Masters and Players Championship, but also the 150th Open in just two weeks’ time. Ranked 112th in the FedEx Cup just 14 days ago, Poston now finds himself 22nd in the season-long race and among the titans of the game. Grade: A+
Here is the breakdown for the rest of the leaderboard at the 2022 John Deere Classic
T2. Emiliano Grillo (-18): It has been a difficult season for the Argentinian as he has missed 12 cuts in 23 starts. However, when looked at more intently, Grillo has now made six of his last seven cuts and sprinkled in a few quality showings at the RBC Canadian Open and Memorial Tournament. He was able to cut Poston’s lead to a stroke on the back nine yet his inexplicable bogey on the short par-4 14th will be seen as the cause of his shortcomings. As a consolation prize, Grillo moves up 62 spots in the FedEx Cup Standings to No. 85 and punched his ticket to the 150th Open at St. Andrews. Grade: A
T4. Chris Gotterup (-17): The Haskins Award winner was fantastic in his John Deere Classic debut. Getting into the tournament via sponsors exemption, Gotterup wrote a letter to the tournament committee and was granted his request. This result puts him into the Korn Ferry Tour Finals and nearly did the same for the Open Championship as the top-three finishers inside the top 10 booked their trips to St. Andrews. While Jordan Spieth and Bryson DeChambeau kick started their careers with victories at TPC Deere Run, Gotterup has done the same albeit without the hardware to show for it.
“Yeah, just more validation that I do belong out here,” Gotterup said. “And honestly, I didn’t have my greatest stuff this week. Hit it amazing, but just putted pretty poorly until coming down the stretch. So, yeah, you pick up things along the way. Yeah, I draw on my experiences like Puerto Rico, and the last couple.” Grade: A
T6. Denny McCarthy (-16): It felt like the perfect storm for McCarthy coming into the week, but in the end it was not meant to be. A member of the penultimate group on Sunday, the University of Virginia product went in the wrong direction early in his round and will likely be kicking himself for doing so. Despite the recent disappointment, McCarthy is still in the midst of the best season of his career and rebounded nicely off a missed cut at the Travelers Championship. He often describes himself as a “grinder” so while he has shown capable of competing in these birdie-fests, his top-10 finishes at the Memorial Tournament and U.S. Open may suggest his first win coming at a more difficult golf course. Grade: B+
T16. Sahith Theegala (-12): He nearly missed the cut but showed some resolve after opening his John Deere Classic with a 3-over 74. Carding consecutive rounds of 65 and culminating his week with a 68, Theegala climbed his way inside the top 20 by tournament’s end. With this effort, the Rookie of the Year candidate has now made 11 straight cuts on his own with his last weekend omission coming at the Players Championship in March. While he can occasionally be volatile, these peaks and valleys have a way of smoothing out over the course of a tournament. Twice a podium finisher in 2022, including a runner up at the Travelers Championship, it is only a matter of time that Theegala notches his first victory on the PGA Tour. Grade: B
Rick Gehman, Greg DuCharme and Kyle Porter recap the John Deere Classic and discuss the biggest takeaways from LIV Golf Portland. Follow & listen to The First Cut on Apple Podcasts and Spotify.
A win for more than just @JT_ThePostman ❤️
The emotions came flooding when speaking about his support system. pic.twitter.com/JBhnMhItR0
A win on July 4th weekend 🇺🇸@JT_ThePostman will celebrate in style 🍺 pic.twitter.com/e0tceMnZQz
🎙 @JT_ThePostMan meets with the media following his 2nd TOUR victory @JDClassic https://t.co/Fj54k7vRuQ
The Postman delivers on Sunday 🏆 pic.twitter.com/7UTcixMNjF
Very well said. 👏 pic.twitter.com/kNPSgFe0nh
J.T. POSTON GOES WIRE-TO-WIRE AT THE JOHN DEERE CLASSIC 🏆 pic.twitter.com/3A3M2qkGdd
All the excitement from @JT_ThePostman‘s fiancé Kelly 🤗 pic.twitter.com/0sqVKJsSsM
Just the 3rd wire-to-wire winner in the history of the @JDClassic 👏 pic.twitter.com/8SDT8PnOw7
A very special winning moment shared with his fiancé Kelly 🥰
Congratulations to @JT_ThePostman! @JDCLASSIC pic.twitter.com/pxDcivXg0I
John Deere Classic winner J.T. Poston, Christiaan Bezuidenhout and Emiliano Grillo (both T2) earn spots in The Open Championship via the Open Qualifying Series. https://t.co/4Cbreo7Of8
The first wire-to-wire winner @JDClassic since 1992 🏆@JT_ThePostman earns his second TOUR win in impressive fashion. pic.twitter.com/2Wf0KWzYon
JT Poston: second wire-to-wire winner on @PGATOUR this season (Joaquin Niemann at Genesis Invitational)
Big up-and-down for birdie from @JT_ThePostman
He opens up a 3-shot lead heading to 18. pic.twitter.com/zqfhzUcyxm
That should do it folks. I’m going out on a limp and calling J.T. Poston your 2022 John Deere Classic winner. See you in Scotland!
Birdie at 17 🐦@GrilloEmiliano gets within 2 with a hole to play. pic.twitter.com/nLAYWEyMxq
Down to the wire at the @JDCLASSIC 😎
Watch now on CBS and @paramountplus 📺 pic.twitter.com/As1h5Gn4ts
Strong Sunday from @CBezGolf
He finishes in solo 2nd and 2 back. pic.twitter.com/EzIOVLYLys
Strong Sunday from @CBezGolf
He finishes in solo 2nd and 2 back, pic.twitter.com/NJ0DbLHyTj
In the fairway on No. 18 at 18 under, the South African will look to add one more on his closing hole. Currently Poston’s nearest pursuer, if unable to, the leader should stroll to victory.
“If I were fortunate enough to receive an exemption, I would make you and the tournament proud.”
And that, he did. 🙌@Amanda_Balionis talks with @ChrisGotterup about the letter he wrote prior to playing in the @JDCLASSIC this week. pic.twitter.com/VNXerUBP3r
What a week from @ChrisGotterup 👏
The sponsor exemption and 2022 @TheHaskinsAward winner sits T2 in his 4th TOUR start. pic.twitter.com/jQ8qU22yoW
Oh man, can’t be doing that at this stage of the tournament. Grillo makes bogey after driving his tee shot into the greenside bunker of the par-4 14th and drops three behind Poston who will now have an opportunity to extend his lead to four on the 14th.
The sarcastic fist pump 💀@JDCLASSIC | @GrilloEmiliano pic.twitter.com/ko9yTpEBCg
Zecheng Dou wins @AscendantGolf!
He’s heading back to the @PGATOUR. #TOURBound pic.twitter.com/X7PxtPeO8H
This photo is amazing 😂 pic.twitter.com/6dXdMQriFf
From 67 feet. 🔄
An unfazed @JT_ThePostman stays at a 2-shot lead. pic.twitter.com/n63nkJ7qPn
Do you think this putt would’ve dropped if the pin was out? 🤔 pic.twitter.com/10YJaWRjMP
Dropping a shot on the par-3 12th, Grillo is now at 18 under and two strokes behind Poston. He will need to take advantage of the scoring opportunities ahead of him if he is to challenge the lead and potentially snag this thing.
J.T. Poston has made the turn with a two-shot lead at the John Deere Classic.
1. Poston -20 (-190)
2. Grillo -18 (+220)
T3. Tarren -17 (+1600)
T3. Gligic -17 (+2700)
(Odds to win @FDSportsbook) pic.twitter.com/3Zx3qlSAhx
Golf 🤦♂️ pic.twitter.com/3TKaWxNYzj
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