ATHENS, Ga. – Brendon Todd earned his second career Web.com Tour title Sunday when steady rain forced the cancellation of the final round of the Stadion Classic and the tournament reverted back to the 54-hole standings.
Todd’s 2-under 69 on Saturday moved him to 8-under 205, one stroke better than playing partner Tim Wilkinson and two in front of Nick Rousey.
Brazil’s Alex Rocha holed out his second shot for an eagle at the par-4 18th Saturday to finish at 5 under and in fourth place.
The University of Georgia Golf Course was deemed unplayable by tournament officials after more than 2 ½ inches of rain fell in the Athens area in a 24-hour period.
“I was ready to play today,” said Todd, who hadn’t yet arrived at the course when he was notified of the decision. “With all the rain we had and the water on the course, it didn’t seem feasible that we would play. This is sweet. I don’t really care how I win.”
Todd, a 2007 Georgia grad and former All-American, becomes the third consecutive Bulldog to win on the UGA course. He joins Russell Henley (2011) and Hudson Swafford (2012) as tournament champions.
“I think it has something to do with being comfortable out here,” said Todd, who helped the Bulldogs to the NCAA title in 2005. “You still have to hit all the shots but sometimes the shots are just more comfortable. I’m excited because I wanted to put my name on that list. It just makes it more special to get it done out here.”
Saturday’s third round was played in cold and rain, and Todd had a feeling that Sunday’s round was in jeopardy if the rain persisted.
“I tried to treat it like a one-day shootout,” he said of his strategy on Saturday. “I knew there wouldn’t be anything bad that could come from leading after today (Saturday).”
Todd’s winning putt turned out to be an 18-foot birdie on the par-5 17th. Wilkinson had a chance to tie with a 12-footer but missed.
Todd opened the door on the 488-yard 18th hole when he three-putted for bogey, missing a 6-footer for par. But Wilkinson failed to get up-and-down for par, missing his own putt from about 5 feet to tie.
“Missing that par putt was a bummer,” Todd said. “Tim had pretty much made every putt all day and I figured he’d make both of those putts. I figured I’d still be tied for the lead.”
The decision to cancel the final round came mid-morning, with light rain still falling in northeast Georgia.
“This was not a difficult decision,” said Web.com Tour Tournament Director Jim Duncan. “The course is completely unplayable. When you get a long, soaking rain like this on the clay, it basically becomes mush. There is not a tee on the golf course right now that’s playable, anywhere.”
Maintenance crews were doing their best to get the course ready but the rain proved too difficult to overcome.
“There are probably six to eight fairways that are really bad and there would be no relief,” said Duncan. “The guys would have to play it out of the water or drop it on a cart path.”
Duncan added that extending the tournament into Monday was not an option.
“The Web.com Tour regulations make it pretty clear what you can and what you can’t do,” he said. “We can’t purposely go into Monday on this Tour. You have to be able to start the round and finish it today.”
--Todd earned his second career title in his 70th career start. He also won the 2008 Utah Championship. He picked up a check for $108,000 and increased his season total to $143,528, and moved from No. 37 to No. 4 on the money list.
--Todd’s statistics for the week: 28 of 42 fairways (tied for 24th); 38 of 54 greens (tied for 13th); 82 putts (sixth).
--Todd becomes the second from Georgia’s 2005 NCAA Championship team to win on Tour this year. Kevin Kisner won the Chile Classic in early March.
--Runner-up Wilkinson matched his career-best finish. The only other time he finished second came at the 2005 Oregon Classic, which was also cut short to 54 holes because of rain on the final day. Wilkinson tied for second that week, three behind winner Jeff Gove.
--Rocha’s solo fourth place this week gives him three top-5 finishes this season. He tied for fourth at the Colombia Championship and tied for fifth at last week’s South Georgia Classic. Rocha, 35, jumped four spots on the list to No. 15.
--Michael Putnam’s tie for fifth gives him four top-10s in his last five starts. Putnam tied for sixth at the Chitimacha Louisiana Open, tied for 10th at the Brasil Classic and tied for second at last week’s South Georgia Classic. He moved up one spot on the money list to No. 9.
--Edward Loar tied for 18th this week and increased his lead on the money list. Loar’s season total is now $199,583, well in front of No. 2 Benjamin Alvarado’s total of $150,100. Alvarado missed the cut this week.