LOS CABOS, Mexico — Erik van Rooyen’s victory at the World Wide Technology Championship on Sunday took care of his concerns about keeping his job on the PGA Tour for not only next year but the one after that.
But for others, it’s getting late in the game to make a big splash and take care of business. One golfer who can rest easy over the final two weeks is Justin Lower, who has been a perennial bubble boy both on the Korn Ferry Tour and PGA Tour. But after a T-23 this week, Lower improved three spots to No. 107 in the standings.
“I thought about it a little bit. I did the math, I think I had a 75-point lead over the 125 spot, and I haven’t looked at projections at all this week,” he said. “It’s nice to just kind of relax a little bit, but it’s hard for me to relax out here.”
Asked what he will miss most about being on the bubble, he answered, “Absolutely nothing.”
Here’s who moved up and down the point standings south of the border.
The biggest movers were at the top of the leaderboard.
Erik Van Rooyen went from bubble boy at No. 125 to No 63 and could have a shot at “The Next 10” should he play the RSM Classic and have a good finish.
Camilo Villegas jumped 76 spots to No. 147 with his T-2 finish. His first top-10 finish since the 2021 Honda Classic earned him a spot in the Butterfield Bermuda Championship.
Austin Cook posted a 10-under 62 on Sunday, tying for the low round of the tournament, and finished T-10. Cook had missed nine of his last 12 cuts and registered his first top-10 finish of the season. He vaulted 24 spots in the FedEx Cup standings to No. 155.
Ryan Palmer finished T-5, his first top-10 finish since the AT&T Byron Nelson in May, and improved 20 spots in the standings to No. 136.
Matt Kuchar may not have won the tournament despite hitting every green in regulation, shooting a final-round 66 and holding a two-stroke leader with three holes to play, but he did climb 14 spots in the standings to No. 52 and that should be good enough to clinch a spot in the first two signature events at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am and the Genesis Championship.
“Top 50 is a big deal, I was definitely bummed to miss that, but glad to be in a couple of these events to start the year,” he said. “I think that’s a big advantage. If you can play in any of these, you feel like there’s so many extra points, so much extra money, you get kind of a nice little head start there.”
The other player to move inside the top 60 was Sam Ryder. His T-10 in Mexico marked his fifth top-10 finish for the season. He moved up four spots and on the right side of the fence at No. 59.
Mackenzie Hughes, who shot 63 on Saturday, inched closer to securing starts in the first two signature events. He moved up four spots to No. 53 in the FedEx Cup.
Two moving in means two others had to move out.
Luke List, who won the Sanderson Farms Championship last month, slipped two spots to No. 61 and Thomas Detry fell out, too, at No. 62. Stephan Jaeger is on the hot seat at No. 60.
Top 125 watch
Chesson Hadley headed off the 18th green and gave his trademark finger snap after shooting a final-round 63 to finish T-7 and climb from No. 122 to 104. That’s locked up his card for next season.
Doug Ghim jumped six spots to No. 117 and can sleep better about his chances to be fully exempt for next season with a T-15 finish.
Peter Malnati rallied to make the cut but ended up losing three spots and falling to No. 122.
C.T. Pan missed the cut and fell one spot in the standings. He’s now on the hot seat at No. 125. He’s in the field at the Bermuda Championship.
Work to do
A missed cut at the WWT Championship knocked Cody Gribble from No. 150 to 153. If he remains outside the top 150, he still will retain limited status via the past champion category.
Richy Werenski fell two places and now is on the wrong side of the 126-150 category. His T-45 dropped to No. 151 and the odd man out. He’s in the field this week at the Bermuda Championship.