Tour pro’s club-snapping incident leads to WD at Valspar Championship

PGA Tour pro Justin Lower puts hand over face at 2024 Arnold Palmer Invitational

Justin lower pictured at the 2024 Arnold Palmer Invitational.

Brennan Asplen/Getty Images

Once the delayed second round finished up Saturday morning at the Valspar Championship, the players who made the cut were able to start their third rounds on time. But it was a Tour pro’s club-snapping incident during Round 1 that was still drawing attention at Innisbrook.

The player in question is 34-year-old Justin Lower. Other than one big bright spot in the form of a T3 at the Mexico Open in February, Lower’s performances have been lacking in 2024, putting him in 75th place in the FedEx Cup standings.

The story didn’t get better for the Akron, Ohio, native at the Valspar this week. He struggled during Thursday’s opening round, signing for a six-over 77 when it was all said and done.

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But the mood may have been even worse than you’d think in the scoring tent. That’s because of what happened on Lower’s final hole, the par-4 9th at the Copperhead Course.

Starting his closing hole at four over on the day, Lower needed something good to happen to give himself a chance for a run at the cut on Friday. But his drive flared left and ended up in a fairway bunker. From there, Lower hit his second into a front-right greenside bunker.

That’s went things went haywire. His third shot from the sand reportedly caught the lip of the bunker, and then his frustration boiled over.

As seen in a video shared by Golf Channel on X and since deleted, Lower stepped on his wedge as he was leaving the bunker and snapped it in two.

Eventually, Lower holed out for a double-bogey 6 to end his day. But it turns out it wasn’t just the end of his day.

Following the round, and with his chances of making the cut on Friday slim, Lower withdrew from the tournament altogether, as the Tour announced Friday morning.

In 37 starts last season, Lower made 19 cuts and missed 18. He collected 7 top-25 finishes, among them three top 10s, finishing 103rd in the FedEx Cup standings.

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