SUNRIVER, Oregon -- When Jamie Broce began the final round of the PGA Professional Championship four strokes off the lead with three former champions -- Rod Perry, Matt Dobyns and Mike Small -- ahead of him on the leaderboard, he knew he would need an exceptional final round, along with some help, to have any chance to win at Crosswater.
Early on, Broce had the exceptional kind of round going... and he was getting that help.
He reached 4 under and was within one of the lead for a time, but came undone with three bogeys in his final four holes to settle for a T5.
And, 4 under it turns out, would have been enough to get into a playoff.
The consolation was a trip to his second PGA Championship.
"It was fun to get in the mix starting the day four down," said the 40-year-old Broce, who lost the 2014 PPC in a playoff. "That's obviously up to the leader. If he's playing pretty well, it's going to make it pretty tough. The golf course was very demanding today. They had a couple of pins in tough spots, so if you're going to try and fly it in there and go flag-hunting you had to really be dialed in with the wind swirling in different directions. It was challenging. I took my swipe with a couple of wedges that I thought were good numbers and made bogeys coming down the stretch. I'm proud that I tried to do that. I could have easily just made pars and went on with it, but being one back of the lead at the time, figuring 5 under would be a great number, I made a couple of bogeys and then lost my head with a bogey on the last hole. It was fun. It was a lot of fun."
Broce conceded that he's been hitting his irons as good as ever lately. The issue this week, however, were missed putts.
"I hit it really good," he said. "I just struggled putting the last couple of days and it caught up to me. I got off to slow starts both days and then I calmed down and made a couple of birdies that really helped me right around the turn both days. It kept me in the ball game and I had some chances. I just needed to make a putt or two and didn't quite do it."
Any disappointment Broce had with his 2-over 74 on Wednesday quickly vanished and his attention turned to the positive -- he qualified for his second PGA Championship.
"I think having played at Valhalla in 2014 should help me quite a bit," he said. "I'll definitely be calmer this time around and game plan a little bit better, I think. I've got some weak spots in the game right now. Driving is one of them. That's normally a strength, but this week puts a lot of pressure on you to drive the ball straight."