Andrew Filbert makes big gains at PPC thanks to 1-under 71

Andrew Filbert
Montana Pritchard/PGA of America
Making his debut in the PGA Professional Championship, 30-year-old Andrew Filbert is in great position to chase a top-20 finish in Wednesday's final round.
By T.J. Auclair
PGA.com
Connect with T.J.

Published: Tuesday, June 20, 2017 | 7:29 p.m.

SUNRIVER, Oregon -- It's been an interesting week for Andrew Filbert out at the PGA Professional Championship.

The 30-year-old PGA Assistant Professional from Bonita National Golf & Country Club in Naples, Fla., was ecstatic to be teeing it up in his first PPC.

However, this week has been a battle -- and that's not even truly counting the golf.

Filbert has been fighting through the norovirus and when he's not on the course, he's been laid up in bed.

RELATED: PPC leaderboard | Photos | PGA professional teaches son invaluable lesson

Despite feeling a lot less than his best, the 2017 Fort Lauderdale Open champion was able to grind out a 1-under 71 at Crosswater on Tuesday playing in the most difficult of conditions this week with gusting winds.

Filbert was able to make up some serious ground on the field with the third-round 71, jumping 28 spots and into a tie for 37th at 2 over at the time that he finished.

"It was a really good round today," he said. "I missed a few putts that I wish I could have back, but overall, it was a good ball-striking round."

The experience of the PPC -- illness aside -- has meant a lot to Filbert.

"It's everything I wanted it to be," he said. "It's a blast. It's a lot of golf. It's a lot of golf for sure. I'm used to playing two-day events, or even one day. With this being four days, it's a grind. I've got blisters everywhere, but it's a lot of fun though."

Filbert said that it will be difficult not to think about the possibilities that lie ahead on Wednesday in the final round -- specifically, a top-20 finish which would earn him a spot in the field at the PGA Championship in August.

"It's a little hard not to think ahead," he said. "You're always thinking about what's on the line out here. But you've still got to go out and make the putts. To play in a major would be a dream. It's the dream."  

T.J. Auclair is a Senior Interactive Producer for PGA.com and has covered professional golf since 1998, traveling to over 60 major championships. You can follow him on Twitter, @tjauclair.