A.J. McInerney was riding high just five days ago, a T-10 finish in his hometown PGA Tour event, the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, giving him a boost of confidence as the survivor of the tragic Las Vegas shooting at the Route 91 Harvest festival chose Q school headed into second stage of Web.com Tour Qualifying school this week at TPC Craig Ranch.
But McInerney couldn’t keep the momentum going, shooting rounds of 71-75-70-73 to finish T-47 and fall six strokes short of advancing to the final stage. After finishing 97th on the Web.com Tour money list in 2017, he now will have to rely on sponsor’s exemptions and Monday qualifiers to compete on the PGA or Web.com Tours in the coming year.
Following his performance in Las Vegas, McInerney faced the tricky decision of whether to play in Texas as planned or use the spot that the top-10 at the Shriners earned him into this week’s PGA Tour event in Mexico. The 23-year-old UNLV grad, figuring it was the better path to locking up a tour card of any kind was the Q school route.
“I don’t know. I think that’s the best decision,” McInerney said. “But if I don’t play well in Mayakoba, then I don’t have anything next year. I’m going to second stage to at least have a job next year.”