Patrick Cantlay hasn’t reached No.1 in the world just yet, although many felt he had that potential coming out of college. Today at the 2020 Zozo Championship, however, he tracked down two players who have reached the top spot in Jon Rahm and Justin Thomas (and the current Nos. 2 and 3-ranked players in the world) by firing arguably the best round of his PGA Tour career to win for the third time on the big tour by one shot.
Cantlay made a career-high nine birdies during a final-round 65, allowing him to finish at 23-under par at Sherwood Country Club in Thousand Oaks, California – the alternate site for the tournament after it was moved from Japan as part of the schedule re-shuffle. Five of Cantlay’s iron or wedge shots that led to birdie were inside 10 feet, but it was a 17-footer for birdie on the par-4 14th followed by a 10-foot birdie putt on the par-3 15th after his tee shot nearly hopped into the cup that were the difference makers.
Not that you could pinpoint one single part of Cantlay’s game as being the reason for his win. Cantlay won the Zozo by performing well in virtually every aspect of the game. He ranked 19th in strokes gained/off-the-tee; sixth in strokes gained/approach-the-green; eighth in strokes gained/around-the-green and second in strokes gained/tee-to-green and eighth in strokes gained/around the green. He was T-18 in driving accuracy, fifth in driving distance at 331.2 yards and fourth in greens in regulation. He also was first in scrambling.
Cantlay’s bag consists of some clubs he’s had for a while, including his Titleist 718 AP2 irons and Scotty Cameron by Titleist GSS blade putter. Still, the clubs provided Cantlay with enough confidence and comfort to start the tournament by going bogey-free for the first 61 holes, then producing clutch shots down the stretch when needed.
Kind of like a player who has their sights on the No.1 spot on the world ranking some time soon.
What Patrick Cantlay had in the bag at the Zozo Championship:
Ball: Titleist Pro V1x
Driver: Titleist TS3 (Mitsubishi Diamana ZF60 TX), 10.5 degrees
3-wood: Titleist 915F, 15 degrees
Hybrid: Titleist 816H2, 21 degrees
Irons (4-9): Titleist 718 AP2; (PW): Titleist Vokey SM7
Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 (52, 57 degrees); Titleist Vokey SM8 (61 degrees)
Putter: Scotty Cameron by Titleist GSS