In the final round of the Neediest Kids Championship, David Lingmerth began the day at 4-under-par and said he figured he needed to get to 10-under to challenge. Scoring in single-digits under par rarely produces a victory on the Tour. But as it turned out at wet, chilly TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm, his 8-under-par score was good enough.

All week, players talked of how much different a challenge Avenel presented than the typical Tour event, where it’s usually bombs away. This week, players had to respect the healthy fescue rough.

“You’ve really got to golf your ball here,” said Lingmerth, who added he knew it was going to be a “grind here all week.”

The average winning score in the first 23 Tour events this year was 16-under. Six tournaments have been won with scores better than 20-under. Only one tournament was captured with a worse score relative to par. Edward Loar won the Panama Claro Championship shooting 4-under.

Moving the Neediest Kids to Avenel made a major difference in scoring. Last year at the University of Maryland Golf Course, Steve Wheatcroft shot 29-under. His 255 was the lowest score in the 22-year history of the Tour.

When the tournament was played at Woodmore Country Club in Mitchellville, winners Paul Claxton (2007), Jeff Klauk (2008), and Mathias Gronberg (2009) finished 18-under, 12-under, and 19-under respectively. In 2010, the first year at University of Maryland, Tommy Gainey won with a 17-under score.

David Lingmerth emerged at TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm, one of the toughest courses this year on the Tour. / Photo by Kevin Dunleavy