Charles Schwab Challenge

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The Loop

Mississippi mud doesn't dampen Tour hopes for Fowler, Lovemark

October 30, 2009

MADISON, Miss. -- The potential cancelation of the rain-plagued Viking Classic is dampening the spirits of those Tour players fighting for the top 125 on the money list and full exempt status next year, but Jamie Lovemark might start rooting for a Mudville strikeout.

Lovemark tied for second last week at the Open after he and Rickie Fowler lost in a playoff to Troy Matteson, but instead of entering the Viking Classic (for which he was exempt by finishing in the top 10), Lovemark opted for the first stage of the PGA Tour National Qualifying Tournament in Pinehurst, N.C. Lovemark is currently in third place through three rounds of the 72-hole First Stage event at Pinewild CC.

But it looks like Lovemark, the Southern Cal All-American, might get to use that top-10 after all. According to tournament director Slugger White, the top-10 exemption carries over to the season-ending Children's Miracle Network Classic Nov. 9-15 at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando if the Viking Classic is canceled. Fowler, who entered the Viking, also would be eligible to play at Disney if there is no golf this week at Annandale GC.

Fowler's $553,700 in earnings in two events would put him 135th on the PGA Tour money list if the season ended today while Lovemark would finish 147th with $453,872 after making two of four cuts this year.

-- *Dave Shedloski