Zalatoris impresses at Corales Puntacana Resort & Club Championship



It doesn’t matter where Will Zalatoris is playing, because solid results seem to follow.

And now he’s inching closer to special temporary membership on the PGA TOUR.

Zalatoris, who is tops on the Korn Ferry Tour Points List, shot a bogey-free 65 Sunday at the Corales Puntacana Resort & Club Championship to finish T8.

With the top-10 result, the former Walker Cup team member will earn a spot in next week’s Sanderson Farms Championship. He got into the event in the Domincan Republic after an impressive T6 at the U.S. Open.

Zalatoris is in the midst of a record-setting season on the Korn Ferry Tour but admitted he was “drained” this week after finishing inside the top-10 at Winged Foot.

Although his first three rounds were solid, if unspectacular (70-71-70) he turned it on Sunday.

“The number I had in my mind was 8-under today. Obviously just one short, but either way, good playing,” said Zalatoris, who punctuated his round with a birdie on the difficult closer at Corales Golf Course and had only 25 putts Sunday.

“Yesterday I actually really rolled it great, I hit it to 20, 25 feet all day, just didn’t make anything. Today, just happened to make a couple and I kind of was just throwing it to 20, 30 feet on every par 4 and today I get a couple in there about 10 feet and I end up making them.”

Zalatoris said the big difference for him Sunday versus earlier in the week is that he felt like his back was against the wall. He had to perform. But being in that position, he said, helps bring out the best in his game.

“I think really good preparation was last year before I had status. Just every week, top-25 to get in the next week or eventually at some point, to get my card,” said Zalatoris of his 2019. “That was good training, and obviously being in contention a lot this year on the Korn Ferry Tour absolutely has helped.”

With no Korn Ferry Tour graduates this year, Zalatoris could still play his way onto the PGA TOUR.

Zalatoris earned 105 non-member FedExCup points for his result at the U.S. Open. Another top-10 this week at Corales gets him even closer to earning special temporary membership. He could also win three times on the Korn Ferry Tour (he has one victory this season) or win a PGA TOUR event.

By earning his way into Puntacana – and next week into the Sanderson Farms Championship – he’s able to save the seven sponsor exemptions that non-members are allowed to accept. He said he’s accepted one into the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open in Las Vegas Oct. 8-11.

“I just fought like crazy,” Zalatoris said of his solid Sunday. “Hopefully, we’ll keep on running.”