Q School: Villegas on verge of losing tour exemption
By John Strege
LA QUINTA, Calif. -- The PGA Tour Qualifying Tournament, otherwise known as Q School, often generates more significant news for failures than successes, as might be the case in the final round on the Stadium and Nicklaus Tournament courses at PGA West Monday.
Camilo Villegas, once a rock star of sorts in golf, is on the outside looking in 11 holes into his final round on the Stadium Course. A three-time PGA Tour winner who once was No. 7 in the World Ranking, was tied for 39th. The top 25 plus ties at the end of play today will earn PGA Tour exemptions for 2013. Villegas stands at 13-under par. The cutoff number currently stands at 16-under par.
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Meanwhile, Patrick Cantlay, once the most heralded amateur in the world, won't earn his PGA Tour membership. Cantlay, 20, the college player of the year in 2011 while at UCLA, is tied for 116th and will have only conditional status on the Web.com Tour in 2013. Cantlay holds the PGA Tour record for lowest round by an amateur, a 60 in the Travelers Championship in 2011.
Other notable players who won't earn PGA Tour exemptions are Shaun Micheel, who won the PGA Championship in 2003, and Todd Hamilton, the winner of the British Open in 2004.
There is a six-way tie for the lead at 22-under par: Billy Horschel, Steve LeBrun, Derek Ernst, Kris Blanks, Ross Fisher, Jin Park and Dong-hwan Lee.
Erik Compton, twice a heart transplant recipient, is tied for eighth in his bid to retain his PGA Tour exemption.