Brett Coletta continued his promising start to the Web.Com Tour season today, notching a career-best share of third at the Savannah Golf Classic.
Coletta, 22, briefly led during the final round, but a flat back nine enabled American Dan McCarthy to edge clear and win by two strokes at 14 under at The Landings Club in Georgia.
Capping another solid day for the Aussies on the secondary tour, both Cameron Percy and Jamie Arnold rattled home for top-10 finishes.
But it was Melburnian Coletta who had his first legitimate shot at victory on tour, following a share of 11th in the Bahamas and 12th in Panama earlier in his campaign.
The Q-school graduate began the day just one stroke from the lead and surged through the pack with four birdies in five holes from the third.
He threw in bogeys on the second and ninth to offset another birdie on the first, but still turned in a share of the lead.
But as eventful as his front nine had been, Coletta spent most of the closing nine on the par train and his only blemish – a bogey on the par-four 11th – was enough to end his charge.
Still, his season’s money balance climbed to $US54,925 and, more importantly, he rose to 22nd on the race to be inside the top 25 who will, at season’s end, be promoted to the US PGA Tour.
His finish also all but assured him of a full slate of tournaments on this year’s Web.Com Tour having begun with only partial status in January.
Fellow Victorian Percy had an entertaining round, turning in two under with an eagle, three birdies and three bogeys on his front nine.
But three more birdies and no scorecard blemishes on the back nine ensured the veteran would finish sixth alone, just one shot adrift of Coletta.
Remarkably, Percy has finished no worse than 35th in six starts on the Web.Com Tour this season and has risen to eighth on the season points list as a result.
Sydneysider Arnold was breathtaking in a final-round 65, turning in 31, making eagle on the 11th and the another birdie on the 12th before a bogey on the 17th gave him a share of ninth at 10 under.
That result moved him from 56th to 38th on the points list.
Another New South Welshman, Rhein Gibson fired his third straight 71 to finish at five under and in a share of 42nd that left him 23rd on the points list.
Brett Drewitt missed the cut.
Meanwhile, in the Dominican Republic, Aaron Baddeley closed with a 71 in the US PGA Tour’s Corales Puntacana Championship to finish in a share of seventh behind champion Graeme McDowell, of Northern Ireland.
Baddeley’s great form has him 61st on the FedEx Cup points list and effectively safe already in the bid to regain his card with a top 125 finish by year’s end.
First-round leader Matt Jones finished in a share of 18th at 11 under, good enough to move to 111th on the FedEx standings.
Perth’s Curtis Luck closed with a 69 to share 52nd place, while Brisbane’s John Senden finished in a share of 67th.