May 25, 2018
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Speirs starts strong then struggles to 73 in PGA Tour qualifier

Michael C. York | BDN
Michael C. York | BDN
Jesse Speirs watches his tee shot on the 10th hole during the first round of the GBO at Bangor Municipal Golf Course on Thursday, July 19, 2012.
By Dave Barber, BDN Staff

McKINNEY, Texas — Bangor native Jesse Speirs had another tale of two nines Thursday during the third round of PGA Tour second-stage qualifying at TPC Craig Ranch.

Speirs, who now lives in Memphis, Tenn., posted a 1-over-par 73 and sits at even-par 216 for his first three rounds, tied for 50th. He plays his final round at this stage on Friday.

The top 20 and ties will advance to the final qualifier set for PGA West in La Quinta, Calif., Nov. 28 through Dec. 3.

The top 25 and ties at the final stage will get their PGA Tour cards, while the next number of players closest to 50 will get their (formerly Nationwide) Tour cards. This will be the last year of this qualifying format. Next year, qualifiers will get only Tour cards and have to play their way onto the PGA Tour.

Speirs, who started on No. 10, birdied Nos. 12, 14, 15 and 18 to make the turn at 4-under 32, but he bogeyed his first three holes on the front nine and added two more on the Nos. 6 and 7 to shoot 41.

Speirs was only one of three Maine natives participating in Thursday’s threesome, according to Andy Lano II of Flower Mound, Texas.

Lano is caddying for Speirs during his qualifying attempt, and Winslow native Jeff Willett is the caddie for J.J. Killeen of Fort Worth, Texas. Killeen and the third member of the group, Jun Lee of Vienna, Va., also shot 73s. Killeen is at 215, and Lee is tied with Speirs at 216.

Matt Jones of Scottsdale, Ariz., jumped to the top of the leaderboard by firing a day’s-best 64 for a 199 total. Scott Gutschewski of Prosper, Texas, is second at 200 after posting a 67.

There are 21 golfers at 8 under par or better after three rounds.

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