Hoffmann's 'dream' playoff run takes him to East Lake

Tue Sep 9, 2014 2:52pm EDT
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By Mark Lamport-Stokes

ATLANTA (Reuters) - Little-known American Morgan Hoffmann is still pinching himself over a "dream come true", having qualified for this week's Tour Championship finale at East Lake Golf Club in stunningly unique fashion.

In just his second season on the PGA Tour, Hoffmann became the first player ever to book his place in the elite field of 30 for the fourth and final FedExCup playoff event after being outside the 'cutline' in the previous three.

The 25-year-old appeared to have virtually no chance of advancing after opening with successive scores of two-over-par 72 at last week's BMW Championship but soared up the leaderboard into third place after shooting 62 and 63 over the weekend.

"It's a dream come true," Hoffman told reporters at East Lake on Tuesday while preparing for Thursday's opening round at the season-ending event. "From the beginning of the season, it was my major goal, to get to the finals in Atlanta.

"It's a true honor to be here, and especially coming from 124th (in the FedExCup standings), just sneaking in the playoffs. I've put a lot of hard work in it this year. It's finally paid off."

Hoffman squeezed into the playoff opener, The Barclays, ranked 124th among the 125 players who qualified and advanced from the next two events, the Deutsche Bank Championship and the BMW, after starting each of them outside the FedExCup cut line.

"Coming into (last) week, I know I had to finish either first or second, maybe third," he said of the challenge that had faced him at Cherry Hills outside Denver.

"The first two days I played great, and I just had a couple of weird shots and some unlucky things happened. Shooting two over, two over obviously isn't the best play, but I had a positive attitude going into the weekend.   Continued...

Sep 7, 2014; Cherry Hills Village, CO, USA; Morgan Hoffman awaits to tee off from the 2nd hole during the final round of the BMW Championship at Cherry Hills Country Club. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports