Why this pro’s six-hole playoff win wasn’t the most dramatic thing that happened to him that week

It’s been more than five years since Patton Kizzire‘s last victory on the PGA Tour, but the 37-year-old has vivid memories of what it was like to win two PGA Tour tournaments in a two-month span between 2017 and 2018.

Prior to those two wins — which came in Kizzire’s third full PGA Tour season, and are the only ones on his resume thus far — Kizzire experienced several near-misses. In his very first tournament after earning his card, the 2015 Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, he finished T2, after firing a final-round 63. Two weeks later, he finished T4 at the Sanderson Farms Championship. The week before his breakthrough win at Mayakoba in 2017, Kizzire finished T4 at the Shriners. Just three tournaments later, he won the Sony Open after defeating James Hahn in a six-hole playoff.

Patton Kizzire watches his drive on the second hole during the final round of the Web.com Tour Rust-Oleum Championship at the Lakewood Country Club on June 14, 2015 in Westlake, Ohio.
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“As soon as I kind of knocked down that door, it’s easier to walk through it again,” Kizzire told hosts Colt Knost and Drew Stoltz on this week’s episode of Subpar.

But the playoff win may not have been the most particularly memorable part of that week in Hawaii for Kizzire, because that was the year of the false missile alert, which made international headlines.

A quick refresher: On Saturday morning during the 2018 Sony Open, a ballistic missile alert was mistakenly sent to Hawaiians, warning of an impending attack and urging citizens to seek shelter with the words, “This is not a drill.” It took more than 38 minutes for state officials to deem the message an error.

“People were, like, hiding in their bathrooms in their hotel,” Knost recalled.

“You had such two extremes,” Kizzire said. “I remember John Peterson — he’s classic, he’s a funny, wild character — but he has these young kids and he’s all worried about it and he’s really taking cover, putting mattresses over his bathtub. I text Duf [Jason Dufner], I was like, are you worried about this missile thing? He’s like, ah, I’m layin’ in bed, [President] Trump will save me. That was his text.”

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Knost joked that he considered grabbing a six-pack and sitting on the beach while Kizzire said he remembered seeing families in his hotel crying on the phone with their loved ones.

“Then once it all cleared up, I’m like, wow. I’m so glad to go to play golf today,” Kizzire said. “This seems like a bonus.”

For more from Kizzire, including the details of his life on the mini tours, check out the full interview below.

Golf.com Editor

As a four-year member of Columbia’s inaugural class of female varsity golfers, Jessica can out-birdie everyone on the masthead. She can out-hustle them in the office, too, where she’s primarily responsible for producing both print and online features, and overseeing major special projects, such as GOLF’s inaugural Style Is­sue, which debuted in February 2018. Her origi­nal interview series, “A Round With,” debuted in November of 2015, and appeared in both in the magazine and in video form on GOLF.com.