I first became aware of Canadian, Brad Fritsch, in the first round of the 2013 Sony Open when he popped up towards the top of the leaderboard. He’d just come off of the Web.com Tour — I didn’t know that at the time — he was Canadian and a new name. He pumped out a 67, a second round 70 and the last two rounds in the 60s good for a T36.
That was the Sony Open that Russell Henley won as a rookie and next week at the Humana, he mentioned Fritsch and having played with him on the Web.com Tour. So with a soft spot in my heart for Canadians — I was treated very well up there when I was Monday Qualifying and we have a lot of Canadians here at Desert Mountain — I started looking for him on the leaderboards.
That same year, he was paired with John Hurley, a Monday Qualifier I followed and wrote about that night and Luke Guthrie. I was impressed by all three of them. But with only one top 10 for the whole year, he finished at 129th in FedExCup points and didn’t have full status for 2014.
So he only got into 18 events in 2014. He had some better finishes with 3 top 10s, but he missed 9 cuts and withdrew once. He improved his winnings to $568,000, but that only got him to 151 in Cup points. He needed to finish 126-150 to at least maintain conditional status, so for all intents an purposes he lost his card.
So back to Q-School to secure another year of Web.com honing…which, it turns out, has been a very good thing for any number of players.
So that brings us up to date and I’ll let Kevin Prise writing at pgatour.com pick up the thread with his wonderful story of acceptance — “It’s disappointing, but you can’t let it define how you play going forward” — affirmation and redemption in, “Fritsch finally back in winner’s circle.”
I love these kinds of stories that point to our resiliency and determination.