Keep­ing his eye on the game, off leader­board

SPEC­TA­TOR GOLF

The Hamilton Spectator - - SPORTS - Garry McKay Garry McKay is a vet­eran, award-win­ning golf jour­nal­ist and ex-sports­writer with The Spec. Gar­rym­ckay@rogers.com

It was some­thing that Michael Gligic had never tried in a tour­na­ment be­fore.

Pay­ing ab­so­lutely no at­ten­tion to the leader­boards worked so well for him last week — that, and a new hot put­ter — that he will be us­ing both again at this week’s Web.com event, the Le­com Health Chal­lenge at the Peek’N Peak Re­sort in Find­ley Lake, N.Y., not far from Erie, Penn.

The Burling­ton na­tive fired rounds of 68-70-67-70 for a 275 to­tal that left him tied for eighth, just three shots off the lead at the Web.com’s Nashville Golf Open.

Although Gligic has sta­tus on the Web.com this year, he’s so far down the rank­ings that he’s hardly played in any events. He was given a spon­sor’s ex­emp­tion last week and made the most of it.

Gligic said he re­cently had a chat with Dan McCarthy, last year’s run­away Or­der of Merit win­ner in Canada.

“He told me that last year in Canada he never looked at the leader­boards. He just played,” said Gligic.

“He was never look­ing at how many shots be­hind or ahead he was.”

Gligic re­al­ized that he was con­stantly look­ing at the leader­boards, par­tic­u­larly on Fri­days.

“I was look­ing at the cut­line in­stead of where the leader was,” he said. And that leads to bad habits.

“I’d be five un­der and the cut­line would be two-un­der, and I’d think, ‘OK, I’ve got three shots to play with.’ You’re play­ing to not make mis­takes that way.”

By not wor­ry­ing about miss­ing the cut, Gligic had his best Web.com fin­ish of the year and was within two or three shots of the lead most of the week­end.

He also gives some credit to a new Odyssey put­ter he put in his bag.

Be­cause he hasn’t played much on the Web.com Tour this year, Gligic has a lot of catch­ing up to do if he hopes to ac­com­plish his goal of earn­ing one of the 25 PGA Tour cards that will be handed out at the end of the year.

By fin­ish­ing in the top-25 at Nashville, he’s au­to­mat­i­cally in this week’s tour­na­ment at Peek’N Peak where’s count­ing on an­other good fin­ish to get him into the field in Utah the fol­low­ing week.

After Utah, the Tour does a reshuf­fle and Gligic is con­fi­dent that he will move up enough to get into the re­main­ing events this sea­son.

He knows it will be a grind play­ing in the fi­nal six or seven events but he fig­ures that’s what it will take to get into the top 25 or the top 75 who make the Web.com Tour play­offs. WHOLE-IN-ONE: Greg Kar­for on the 125-yard 17th hole at Wil­low Val­ley with a pitch­ing wedge.

SUBMITTED PHOTO

Michael Gligic fired rounds of 68-70-67-70 for a 275 to­tal that left him tied for eighth, just three shots off the lead, at the Web.com’s Nashville Golf Open.

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