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Bryce is back.

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BRYCE IS BACK: Bryce Molder seems to be working through his swing change of a year ago and is back on track. The Conway product put together a solid season on the Nationwide Tour, then had a strong finish in the Nationwide Tour Championship, to finish in the Top 25 moneywinners on the tour.

His 23rd-placing overall earned him PGA Tour status for next season.

Molder shot a third-round 64 at TPC Craig Ranch in McKinney, Texas, the site of the Nationwide championship event, and that put him in position to win. Bogeys on Nos. 16 and 17 on Sunday left him in a tie for third. But the finish helped him jump from No. 32 on the money List. No player had ever made so high a jump on the Nationwide Tour at the end to earn his PGA Tour card.

Though a birdie on the Last hole Sunday might have earned him a playoff spot, and he came just inches short, Molder wanted to make sure he made the necessary par that pushed him into the final Top 25. Had he made a double-bogey or worse on the par-5 Last hole, Molder would not have gotten his PGA card back.

"This is what we work for. I gave myself a chance on the back nine Saturday and took advantage of it today," Molder was quoted after the tourney as saying. "My hands were still shaking on the final putt."

Molder made nearly $235,000 on the Nationwide Tour this year. He had to work his way back to the PGA Tour after having conditional status there in 2007. His $257,593 he earned in 2007 wasn't enough to stay on the Tour. Molder and swing guru Peter Kostis also went their own way in 2007, and Molder began working with different instructors and implementing a draw for more distance.

Molder's highest finish on the PGA Tour was third in the 2001 Reno-Tahoe Open, his first tournament as a professional after an exemplary career at Georgia Tech, where he earned ALL-America honors four times and was three-time Atlantic Coast Conference player of the year. He was a two-time Jack Nicklaus Award winner as the NCAA player of the year.
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Title Annotation:GOLF: Courses, Notes
Publication:Arkansas Business
Date:Dec 1, 2008
Words:372
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