The day started with 104 golfers at Pinnacle Peak Country Club, all vying for one of three spots in the 2024 WM Phoenix Open.
The tee sheet was full of names golf fans would recognize: Ryan Palmer, Wesley Bryan, DJ Trahan, James Hahn, Martin Trainer. There even a few golfers from PGA Tour Champions – Esteban Toledo, Billy Mayfair – who wanted a crack at it.
By the afternoon there 13 withdrawals on one end of the leaderboard and some 64s at the top. Only the top three advance but late in the day, Jim Knous posted the fourth 7-under 64, forcing a 4-for-3 playoff. He was joined in the sudden death by Nicolo Galletti, Jacob Bridgeman and two-time PGA Tour winner Patton Kizzire.
The Southwest Section PGA even fired up a live stream for the playoff.
On the second playoff hole, in the waning daylight, Galletti made birdie while Kizzire and Knous made par. For Galletti, who hails from Phoenix and was Jon Rahm’s rommate at Arizona State, it’ll be his first PGA Tour start.
@NicoloGalletti earns his first @PGATOUR start after advancing thru the 4 for 3 playoff in the @WMPhoenixOpen General Qualifier. Final results – @acaseofthegolf1 pic.twitter.com/SvIRmhison
— Southwest PGA (@SWSectionPGA) February 6, 2024
Bridgeman was facing a bogey putt but it didn’t matter, as he was the odd man out.
Sami Valimaki played in the qualifier but found out after his round he was in the WM Phoenix Open field as an alternate after Patrick Rodgers withdrew.
The Phoenix Open starts Thursday with 132 players.