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Talk about massive heartbreak. Justin Thomas entered the final tournament of the PGA Tour season, the Wyndham Championship, needing a big week to get into the FedEx Cup playoffs.
Thomas began the week in 79th place, nine spots out of the Top 70 — the number of players admitted into next week’s FedEx St. Jude Championship.
The week didn’t start great, as Thomas shot an even-par 70 on Thursday. But he bounced back with a five-under 65 on Friday to make the cut. He followed with a 66 on Saturday putting him in a tie for 21st place.
He remained outside the Top 70 cut, but a big Sunday could have changed everything. Thomas was just OK for most the final round. He had a clean front nine, but made just one birdie for a one-under 34 going out.
Needing a big finish, Thomas continued to just cruise long. None of his putts seemed to drop, a theme of the season.
But then he reached the par-5 15th hole where Charley Hoffman made an albatross just shortly before Thomas got there.
Thomas didn’t make an albatross, but he did hit his second shot to just inside 16 feet.
He needed to finally make a big putt. And he did.
That eagle moved Thomas inside the projected Top 70 FedEx Cup standings.
Justin Thomas had an up-and-down week at the PGA Tour’s final regular season event prior to the FedEx Cup Playoffs
But on the next hole, Thomas hit the green on the par-3, but his ball rolled all the way off and down into the rough.
He couldn’t get up-and-down, and made bogey.
So Thomas headed to 18, and his projection moved to 71st, on the outside looking in. A birdie would almost assure him a spot in the playoffs. A bogey would almost assure him missing the FedEx Cup playoffs. Par and he would need some help.
It started very poorly, as Thomas hooked his tee shot into the pine straw on the 18th hole.
He hit a miraculous recovery to give himself a chance.
He left the ball just short of the green. Knowing that he desperately needed a birdie, Thomas did everything he could to chip the ball into the hole.
And he did everything right. Except the ball just didn’t drop. In fact, it looked like the pin rejected the ball.
Thomas dropped to the ground in disbelief. It was quite a moment.
Thomas obviously tapped that in to make par. He still has a chance to make the FedEx Cup playoffs, but as stated, he needs help.
And right after Thomas finished his round, officials blew the weather horn, beginning a delay. Now, all Justin Thomas can do is sit around and wait.
UPDATE: Justin Thomas officially finished 71st in the FedEx Cup standings and missed the playoffs. His PGA Tour season is over. It’s the first time he’s missed the playoffs in his career.
Follow Dan Zaksheske on X – formerly known as Twitter: @RealDanZak