Paul Casey-Don Colleran team up to win pro-am competition at AT&T Pebble Beach
PEBBLE BEACH — Three lone golfers played together early Monday morning at Pebble Beach Golf Links. Don Colleran, the amateur, intimately watched Phil Mickelson and Paul Casey, the professionals, add to the game’s unique lore on the Monterey Peninsula.
Colleran, the executive vice president of FedEx, contributed, too. He combined with Casey to tally rounds of 62-63-62 and 66 to win the pro-am division by two shots at 34-under-par 253.
“Yeah, that was good,” said Colleran, a 13-handicapper. “It was an amazing week. I was so out of my element. Paul’s wonderful. He made me relax. He’s an amazing golfer, but he’s even a better person.”
Wyndham Clark, a PGA Tour rookie, and musician Joe Don Rooney, finished second after a final-round 62.
Journeyman pro Josh Teater and Ryan Smith finished third at 257 following a closing 66. Smith, a software executive in Orem, Utah, received the Jack Lemmon Award. It’s given to the amateur who assists his pro partner the most.
Casey and Colleran, friends off the course, finished eighth in the pro-am last year. Casey tied for eighth individually, seven shots behind winner Ted Potter Jr.
“You know, I was trying to win the regular tournament as well,” said Casey, whose birdie on the 18th gave him sole possession of second place, three shots behind Mickelson. “I knew my position with Phil so I didn’t need the rest of the leaderboard.
“But this (the pro-am division) was a big goal. Don and I played great last year and we got beat by Larry (Fitzgerald) and Kevin Streelman. We wanted revenge. We got it. To be playing alongside a great friend like this way out of his comfort zone, he did brilliantly all week.”
As night arrived Sunday, Colleran made a key putt on the 16th hole. He didn’t do so well to start Monday’s final two holes, miss-hitting his opening shot.
Asked if he was “a bit nervous” being in the spotlight with his playing partner and Mickelson, Colleran said: “A little bit? You mean when I hit it into the bushes?”
Still, Colleran was overjoyed.
“You can’t explain it, what it’s like to be inside the ropes and watch two world-class athletes go at it, and hit beautiful shot after beautiful shot,” he said. “So I’m humbled to be here. It was a great, great week. I’m ready to go back to work and work sounds good now.”
- Kira Kazantsev, who won the Miss America beauty title in 2015, was invited to play in the tournament last Monday. She made the best of it.
Kazantsev, 27, a 16-handicapper who lives in San Francisco, was the only woman among 10 entrants who made the pro-am cut. Ryan Armour, her pro partner, didn’t make the cut, meaning the debuting amateur carried the team.
Armour, who three seasons ago won his first PGA Tour title, finished at 2-over par. With Kazantsev, the twosome finished tied for 18th in the pro-am at 22 under 265.
- Mickelson, who will turn age 49 one day after the U.S. Open in June, won his first AT&T title at Pebble Beach 21 years ago on a Monday. David Duval, Jim Furyk, Jerry Kelly, Davis Love III and Kenny Perry also played in the 1998 and 2019 editions.
- Michael Thompson and Mickelson, who both shot 66 in the fourth round, were the only players without a bogey during the final 18 holes. There were 23 bogey-free rounds in the tournament.
- The opening round at Monterey Peninsula Country Club (Shore Course) produced the lowest daily average among the pro field, 68.904. The third round at Pebble Beach had the highest average round of the tournament, 73.212.