Tied atop the individual leaderboard Tuesday at the Southern Highlands Collegiate, UNLV sophomore Jack Trent seemed to have the cards stacked against him in Las Vegas.
Trent had never won a college tournament and his playoff opponent was Texas stud freshman Cole Hammer, who had just birdied his final three holes and shot 8-under 64 to draw even with Trent at 10 under. To make his odds worse, Trent plugged his drive in a fairway bunker at the first playoff hole, the par-5 18th at Southern Highlands Golf Club, and soon after double-crossed his third shot in the trees. He ended up with bogey.
Hammer, meanwhile, had 15 feet for his birdie, and then about 2 feet for his par. An exemption into the 2019 Shriners Hospitals for Children Open was all but Hammer's.
But then the unthinkable happened. Hammer missed.
"I thought I was going to lose it there, but he missed his putt and I felt rejuvenated," Trent said.
After both players traded pars on No. 18 again, Trent ended the playoff after three holes by making an 8-footer for birdie.
"To be able to play in the Shriners event is a wonderful opportunity for him," UNLV coach Dwaine Knight said. "All of our guys have the dream to play on the PGA Tour and now he has a spot."
The team portion of Southern Highlands ended in wild fashion, as well. Oklahoma junior Quade Cummins made a 30-footer for birdie to give the Sooners a one-shot victory over Texas.