Former University of Kansas golfer Ryan Vermeer won the PGA Professional Championship on Wednesday to qualify for six tour events over a 12-month period, including the PGA Championship, in which he competed last year.
Vermeer shot 70-70-70-73 for a 5-under 283, two strokes ahead of his closest competitors. The top 10 finishers qualify for golf's final major touranament of the 2018 calendar. Vermeer finished tied for ninth last season.
Vermeer, 37, got off to a shaky start Wednesday but followed his 40 on the front nine with 33 on the back side. By winning the event, Vermeer earned the prestigious Walter Hagen Cup, a crystal trophy that is 14-1/2 inches high, 12 inches wide and weighs 17-1/2 pounds.
The PGA Championship, in which Gary Woodland also will play, is Aug. 9-12 at Bellerive in St. Louis.
Vermeer, director of golf at Happy Hollow in Omaha, missed the cut at last year’s PGA Championship after shooting 82-79 at Quail Hollow in Charlotte.