PALM HARBOR, Fla. – Despite having no status on any major tour to begin the season, Jordan Spieth locked up special temporary status Sunday at the Tampa Bay Championship, making the 19-year-old eligible to receive unlimited sponsor exemptions this season.
He should have plenty of suitors.
A week after finishing second in Puerto Rico, Spieth had a chance to win at Innisbrook before back-to-back bogeys on the back nine derailed his momentum, and he eventually tied for seventh. At 19, he would have been the youngest PGA Tour winner in the modern era.
No worries. His closing flourish proved just as satisfying.
Needing $101,185 – or, viewed another way, a two-way tie for 14th or better – to secure temporary status, Spieth pitched in for birdie on 17 to move inside the magic number, then holed a clutch 7-foot par putt on the final hole to finish at 5-under 279, five shots behind winner Kevin Streelman.
Having played four tournaments in a row for the first time in his career – and finishing no worse than seventh on either the PGA or Web.com tours – Spieth will now have a week off before playing back-to-back events in Texas: the Shell Houston Open and Valero Texas Open. In four PGA Tour starts this season, he has earned $521,893.