WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, W.Va. — Just when it appeared that Lanto Griffin might be headed south on the leaderboard in Sunday’s final round of the PGA Tour’s wraparound season opener, the Blacksburg pro righted the ship and a finished a fabulous week at the office.
Tied for 16th heading into the day, Griffin rebounded from a double bogey-6 on the second hole by making six birdies with only one bogey to post a 3-under-par 67 that allowed him to finish 13th in the $7.5 million event.
“Obviously, I didn’t win but getting off to a good start like this is going to give me a lot more opportunities ... a really good springboard,” said Griffin, who had at least 60 followers in his gallery.
“Two years ago when I had my Tour card, I missed four of the first five cuts and I really didn’t do anything until February,” Griffin said.
“To have a little cushion with the FedEx Cup points and all that going forward, it’s going to take a lot of pressure off me, and I’m going to take a lot of confidence from this week.”
He should. Staying tough between the ears, Griffin refused to fade when he hit a stretch in which he went 30 holes without a birdie in the first two rounds.
“I made five bogeys and a double all week, and that’s so unheard of for me,” Griffin said.
“Saturday could have been 74 or 75 easy,” he said of his third-round 70.
“It’s probably the best mental week of my life on the course. I wasn’t swinging that great, but I started swinging better as the tournament went on, which is what every player wants. It was awesome.”
Griffin won $159,375 for his strong week.
The next stop on the PGA Tour schedule is this week in Mississippi.
“I’m exhausted,” he said. “I will be sleeping a lot in Mississippi, I know that.”