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Kragthorpe: Ex-BYU golfer Daniel Summerhays advances in FedEx Cup

Published August 26, 2013 9:52 am

Golf • Two golfers with two agendas continue to refine, improve game.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Sunday was a good day to be a professional golfer from Farmington.

Zach Johnson, a Davis Park Golf Course assistant pro, won the Siegfried & Jensen Utah Open at Oakridge Country Club and Daniel Summerhays, a former Davis High School golfer, tied for 15th place in The Barclays in New Jersey.

Johnson earned $21,750; Summerhays banked $132,000. The money is nice, but what those performances do for their golf careers is just as important.

Summerhays, especially, profited from his play because he gets to keep going in the FedEx Cup playoffs. He took advantage of the opportunity to move up in the standings with point values increased in the playoffs, going from 75th to 52nd. He already was in the 100-player field for this week's Deutsche Bank Championship near Boston, and now he's almost assured of making the 70-player list for the BMW Championship near Chicago next week.

What's more, he's maintaining hopes of qualifying for the Tour Championship in Atlanta, with only 30 players eligible.

Summerhays turned his season around in July in a three-tournament stretch when he earned nearly $600,000 while just missing a couple of chances to win — including a playoff defeat in the Sanderson Farms Championship in Mississippi. He's now topped $1.1 million for the year, with an opportunity to add to that total in September.

Like the PGA Tour star with the same name, Farmington's Zach Johnson once pursued that level of golf, falling short in the qualifying process. But he's settling into a nice mix of working and playing, on his way to becoming a PGA member and competing in regional events.

And considering that Johnson would have had to finish in the top 50 in New Jersey to make as much money as he did Sunday at Oakridge, the Utah Open check looks pretty good. One of the things I like about the Utah Open field is most of these golfers actually need the money they earn, yet the trophy means as much to the winner as the check.

kkragthorpe@sltrib.com

Twitter: @tribkurt