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GREENSBORO, N.C. – Billy Horschel rode a cooperative putter all week at the Wyndham Championship, finishing second among the field in strokes gained: putting. It’s one of the strengths of his game, and it was the primary reason why his name was plastered on the leaderboard all weekend long at Sedgefield Country Club.
But needing to convert one more time to keep his hopes for victory alive, Horschel misfired.
Consecutive rounds of 5-under 65 over the weekend proved not to be enough to keep pace with a red-hot Jim Herman, as Horschel’s total of 20 under par came up one shot short. He had an opportunity for birdie on the 72nd hole, a 9-foot putt that came on a similar line to that of playing partner Doc Redman. But while Redman’s putt behaved one way, Horschel’s went another and left him to stomach a runner-up finish after leading for much of the afternoon.
Billy Horschel needed a birdie on 18 to force a playoff against @GoHermie.
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) August 16, 2020
“That was tough. Doc gave me a fairly good read,” Horschel said. “I hit it the way I wanted, I felt like I started on my line and about halfway to the hole I thought I made it, and it just snapped off. It was disappointing because I had two good looks the last couple holes and just wasn’t able to convert.”
Horschel started the day three shots off the lead, but he stormed in front by playing his first eight holes in 5 under. He still led by a shot with three to play, but his bogey on the par-3 16th combined with a birdie from Herman one hole ahead proved to be the difference.
Wyndham runner-up Horschel: ‘Just wasn’t able to convert’
Horschel was looking for his first individual win since the 2017 AT&T Byron Nelson, but he still sees positive signs in a close call that moved him to No. 25 heading into the playoffs.
“There’s a lot of confidence to take from this,” Horschel said. “When you have a lead with three left to play, a one-shot lead and you’ve got three fairly makeable birdie holes, you’re thinking I knew I needed to make at least one, maybe two, to get it done. Just wasn’t able to happen today.”