Hoge Sets Course Record and Smalley Records Hole-in-One at The Players Championship
Tom Hoge made history at TPC Sawgrass on Saturday, setting a new course record at The Players Stadium Course with a 10-under 62 in the third round of The Players Championship. Hoge shot 6-over 78 in the first round and looked to be out of contention, but rallied with a 68 in the second round to make the cut. He then took full advantage of his opportunity, rolling in a 15-footer for birdie at No. 11, two-putting for birdie on the drivable par-4 12th, and capping his first nine with birdies at Nos. 15, 16 and 18. On his second nine, Hoge had three consecutive birdies on holes 2-4 and finished on back-to-back birdies.
Hoge achieved a score of 62, surpassing the previous course record of 63 held by nine different players. He was surprised he was in a position to play the weekend rounds of the tournament after opening the tournament with a round of 78. He admitted to booking a flight to head home after the first round, not knowing if he would make the cut.
At the same time, Alex Smalley added his name to the list of those who made holes-in-one on the par-3 17th at TPC Sawgrass with one of his own in the final round of the 2023 Players Championship. Smalley carded a double-bogey 7 on the par-5 16th hole and ended with a bogey at the 18th. At his first Players Championship, he scored 74. The shot came at an ideal time for Smalley as he was three over par for the tournament. It was the first time at the Players Championship there has been more than one ace recorded and American Smalley is only the 13th player in the tournament’s history to achieve the feat on 17.
Hoge and Smalley’s impressive performances demonstrate the potential of the current crop of PGA Tour talent. Hoge’s 10-under-par 62 and Smalley’s hole-in-one were two of the many highlights of the tournament and will no doubt be remembered for years to come.
0. “2023 Players Championship: Tom Hoge shoots scintillating 62 to set course record at TPC Sawgrass” msnNOW, 11 Mar. 2023, https://www.msn.com/en-us/sports/golf/2023-players-championship-tom-hoge-shoots-scintillating-62-to-set-course-record-at-tpc-sawgrass/ar-AA18vNJt?li=BB15ms5q
1. “Tom Hoge cancels flights, breaks course record, wants a cheeseburger” Golf Channel, 11 Mar. 2023, https://www.golfchannel.com/news/tom-hoge-cancels-flights-breaks-course-record-wants-cheeseburger
2. “Fargo's Tom Hoge shoots 62 at The Players to break course record” INFORUM, 11 Mar. 2023, https://www.inforum.com/sports/pro/fargos-tom-hoge-shoots-62-at-the-players-to-break-course-record
3. “Tom Hoge sets course record at Players after dangling on cut line” ClutchPoints, 11 Mar. 2023, https://clutchpoints.com/players-championship-news-tom-hoge-sets-course-record-at-players-championship-after-dangling-on-cut-line
4. “ANOTHER ACE AT 17! PGA Tour pro Alex Smalley makes hole-in-one at The Players” Golfmagic.com, 12 Mar. 2023, https://www.golfmagic.com/pga-tour/another-ace-17-pga-tour-pro-alex-smalley-makes-hole-one-players
5. “Alex Smalley joins elite group with latest hole-in-one at TPC Sawgrass” Jersey Evening Post, 12 Mar. 2023, https://jerseyeveningpost.com/uksport/2023/03/12/alex-smalley-joins-elite-group-with-latest-hole-in-one-at-tpc-sawgrass/
6. “Lucky 13th at No. 17: Alex Smalley makes the third hole-in-one at the Island Green” The Florida Times-Union, 12 Mar. 2023, https://www.jacksonville.com/story/sports/golf/pga-tour/2023/03/12/lucky-13th-at-no-17-alex-smalley-jars-the-third-hole-in-one-this-week/69999465007/