Wayment wins at Dayton qualifier

DAYTON - Six-under turned out to be the magic number. And when all was said and done on Friday, there were 24 happy players who made the cut during the first stage PGA Qualifier at Dayton Valley Golf Club.

Brett Wayment of Logan, Utah, was again a picture of consistency as he shot 4-under par 68 for the third straight day and finished as the No. 1 qualifier out of a field of 77 players bidding to earn exempt PGA Tour cards for the 2002 season. He finished at 17-under 271

It turned out to be the lowest scoring PGA Qualifier in seven years at Dayton Valley. Twenty-four players shot 6-under par 282 or better to make the cut. Last year, even par 288 was good enough to advance. This time, 40 players broke par and 34 finished at 3-under or better.

Six sites will be used for the second stage qualifying - three on Nov. 4-9: Stonebridge Country Club in McKinney, Texas, Black Horse Course in Seaside, Calif., and Kingwood/Deerwood Golf Club in Kingwood, Texas; and three more on Nov. 11-16: Hombre Golf Club in Panama City, Fla., Orange County National in Orlando, Fla., and Oak Valley Golf Club in Beaumont, Calif. The finals will be held at Bear Lakes Country Club in West Palm Beach, Fla., during the week of Nov. 26-Dec. 3.

The 32-year-old Wayment, who formerly played at Utah State University and now plays out of Logan Country Club, had good reason to be pleased with his performance.

"I came in not feeling real good about my golf game," said Wayment, playing in the Dayton Valley Qualifier for the sixth straight year. "I've been kind of working on some swing changes. I toyed with the idea of changing them before Q-school and decided to just go ahead and do it and see if I could play through it because they were changes for the better. It kind of hurt my confidence a little bit not knowing what's going on, but I was able to get through this week.

"Fortunately, I've played here enough and knew where not to hit it and what to do to get me through.

"Fortunately, I've played here enough and knew where not to hit it and what to do to get me through.

"I putted excellent, the golf course is in great shape and the weather was perfect and that kind of helps you out with scoring."

Wayment made the turn at 1-under 35, birdied No. 11 and then knocked down a long putt on 13 for a big birdie.

"I hit a great shot in there. I hit the green and it went off to the back edge, and I ended up making about a 50-footer for birdie," he said. "That helped me settle down."

Wayment was solid with his putting throughout 72 holes.

"I putted really well and that helped me," he said. "I didn't have many three-putts at all. From what I remember, the only one was on the first day, which was huge. The way this golf course is, it's easy to three-putt because you can get yourself in some really funny positions on the greens."

That will do wonders to help confidence.

"Definitely, especially with a golf course like this and the field that's here, so hopefully we can take that to second stage," said Wayment, who will make his second stage trip to Stonebridge in McKinney, Texas.

He finished two shots ahead of three players at 273: Steve Sear of Washoe Valley, Mike Louden of Henderson and Jeremy Champoux of Scottsdale, Ariz.

Sear, who shot a course record-tying 63 in Tuesday's first round, set a game plan to play safe and qualify for the second stage. His goal was to break par for the front 9 - and he shot 1-under.

"I was very conservative," said Sear, who will go to Black Horse in Monterey, Calif., for his second stage. "I was hitting 2-iron off every tee, just making sure I kept it in play. I shot 1-under and basically put it on cruise."

Friday's best score was 67, carded by three players who all made the final cut: David Hearn of Holstein, Canada; Tom Kalinowksi of Scottsdale, Ariz.; and Champoux.

It was a clutch performance for Hearn, who moved up to become one of the eight players to shoot 282 and make the cut. Kalinowski, back at Dayton after a couple of years on the BUY.COM Tour, shot 67 in each of the last two rounds to make the cut at 280. For Champoux, the 67 matched his second-day score as he finished in the three-way tie for the runner-up spot.

Two other Nevada players are advancing: Michael Kirk of North Las Vegas finished in a tie for seventh at 11-under 277 and Billy Harvey of Las Vegas finished ninth at 278.

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