BOB WEST — Andrew Landry makes statement with record-tying 63 

Published 12:14 am Wednesday, July 5, 2023

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No, that wasn’t a typo in the score list from the second round of the Rocket Mortgage Classic last Friday in Detroit. Port Neches-Groves ex Andrew Landry did indeed shoot a course-record tying 9-under-par 63 in the second round.

Never mind that he faded on the weekend, Landry is taking the 63 as an indication that his long, arduous road back from serious shoulder problems and swing issues is slowly taking a turn in the right direction. How could you shoot 63 and not be encouraged?

“I just have to keep working through my process,” he said. “I spent too long beating myself down. I needed something to lift my spirits and confidence back up. That was a sign I am trending in the right direction.”

Landry made only 2 of 15 cuts a year ago. This year it’s 9 of 20, but he’s now reached the weekend three consecutive tournaments. It looked like he might do something exciting the week before last after opening with 67-68 at the Travelers. But rounds of 75-72 sent him sliding down the leaderboard.

“The consistency is not there yet but as you can see I am starting to piece together better stretches, better rounds,” he said. “I can feel things starting to fall into place. The 63 was a day when it all came together. It was an easy, conservative round where I was able to let the strengths of my game excel.”

Landry, like so other successful PGA players, is learning patience and perseverance are the most important clubs in the bag after going through a down period.

A couple of prime recent examples are Jordan Spieth and the Rocket Mortgage winner Rickie Fowler.

First thing they would tell Andrew is the key is to doggedly stick with the process. And that’s what he’s determined to do.

Initial move in the rebound came when Landry reunited with his swing coach at the University of Arkansas, Layne Savoie, the week before the Byron Nelson in Dallas. Since then, it’s been baby steps back to the future.

“I have been working hard on a lot of things to get my D&A back to where it used to be,” he explains. “I used to be a rotational player but over the years my body has slowed down. The key is to get the rotation better and it’s starting to happen.”

Barring an out-of-nowhere win, Landry is going to lose his playing card at the end of the season. However, he seems remarkably unconcerned.

“To be honest, I have not given it a lot of thought,” he said. “I will have playing options. Since I’ve played five full seasons on the PGA Tour, I can get an entire season on the Korn Ferry Tour with full status.

“Beyond that, I am in the past champion category on the PGA Tour. That gets you in 13 or 14 tournaments a year. As long as they have that category, I am pretty well set. So, I’m not really sweating it. My main concern is getting back to where I can win again.”

Next step on that journey is this week’s John Deere Classic. He’ll be playing four of the five tournaments available to him before the end of the 2023 season. He won’t be shocked if he makes a splash in one of them.

“You never know,” he reflects. “It can all just come together one week. I have no doubt God has a plan for me. We’ll see what happens. I have been known to pop up and do something nobody expected.”

CHIP SHOTS: Lamar ex MJ Daffue had a solid showing in the Rocket Mortgage, shooting rounds of 66-70-70-68 to tie 24th at 14-under 274. He pocketed $73,480 and moved up to 126 in Fed Ex Cup points.

Chris Stroud missed the cut after rounds of 70-72. Stroud, Daffue and Landry are all playing in the John Deere Classic.

In the Monday Senior 50 plus 2 ball at Babe Zaharias, the team of Cesar Chavez, Greg Cochran, Ron Mistrot and Roger Baumer won the front with minus 4. On the back, minus 3 won for the team of James Vercher, Art Turner, Terry Jones and Frank LeBlanc.

Closest to the pin winner were Danny Harrington (No. 2, 4-7), Rick Pritchett (No. 7, 10-6), Ron LaSalle (No. 12, 5-3) and Chavez (No. 15, 4-3) . . .

In the Saturday ball at Zaharias, the team of Brian Mirabella, Joe Gongora, Rufus Reyes and Tom Brown won the front with on minus 4. That score also won the back for the foursome of Randy Monk, Jones, Larry Johnson and Dwayne Benoit.

The Friday 2 ball at Zaharias saw the team of John Watson, Cap Hollier, Mark Osborne and Hank score a sweep, winning the front in minus 2 and the back in minus 4.

Closest to the pin winners were Jimmy Cady (No. 2, 8-10), Vercher (No. 7, 10-10), LaSalle (No. 12, 5-6) and Robert Stansbury (No. 15, 6-2) . . .

All points count was the format for the Wednesday Zaharias DogFight. Placing first with 26 points was the foursome of Tommy Bellow, Jones, Pritchett and Dale Carter. Tying for second with 24 points were teams captained by Keith Mullins and Danny Robbins.

Closest to the pin winners were Reyes (No. 2 6-2), Don MacNeil (No. 7, 1-3), Robbins (No. 12, 5-3) and Earl Richard (No. 15, 6-9) . . .

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