PGA Tour: who is Will Gordon and how is he in contention?

Will Gordon is in contention at the Travelers Championship. How is he doing this on the PGA Tour?

When fans and players looked at the leaderboard in Friday’s Travelers Championship, this week’s stop on the PGA Tour, they saw an unfamiliar name at the top, at least until late in the day – Will Gordon.

So, who is this Will Gordon fellow? And how in the world is he in the lead at a tournament that features a number of the world’s best golfers?

Gordon is 23 years old and plays on the PGA Tour’s MacKenzie Tour in Canada. He graduated from Vanderbilt University in 2019, where he was twice named All-SEC and led his team to the SEC title in 2017. He also made it to the quarterfinals of the 2018 U.S. Amateur.

In his only other PGA Tour appearance this year, Gordon had a top 10 finish at the RSM Classic. Now, he finds himself in contention at the TPC River Highlands, facing a much tougher field.

Gordon shot a 4-under par round on Thursday to get the event started. On Friday, it was a totally different kind of round for Gordon

He started his round on the back nine and got things going early. He birdied the 10th and 11th holes to get to 2-under on the day. However, he bogeyed the 12th hole to slip back to 1-under.

Unfazed, he came right back with birdies on numbers 13 and 14 to move to 3-under par. A par on 15 followed, then birdies on numbers 16 and 17 to move to 5-under par. He would par the 18th for a 5-under par 30 on his first nine.

He stayed hot with birdies on number one and number to, getting to 7-under par on the day. He cooled a bit after that, with five consecutive pars, staying at 7-under par.

Gordon recorded his final birdie of the day on the eighth hole. He parred the ninth to shoot a 3-under par 32 on the front side, and an 8-under par 62 on the day.

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Gordon will be among the final players to start his round on Saturday and it will be interesting to see how he handles the pressure of such a situation. This will be the first time he has been on such a big stage in his young career and it’s always hard to predict how a young player will respond when put in that particular situation.

No matter how it turns out, Gordon has made a name for himself this week. Anything he does beyond this will just be icing on the cake.

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