Taylor Pendrith is the Canadian player of the year with seven top-10 finishes. (Photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Taylor Pendrith wins Canadian player of the year honours on Mackenzie Tour

Taylor Pendrith’s season on the Mackenzie Tour didn’t end the way he was hoping for, but he can still build off of it.

Pendrith, from Richmond Hill, Ont., went into the Canada Life Championship in London, Ont., second on the Mackenzie Tour’s order of merit. If Pendrith could catch France’s Paul Barjon for the top spot on the money earners’ list, he’d have a full exemption on next season’s Korn Ferry Tour, a step away from the PGA Tour.

Unfortunately for Pendrith, he tied for 11th at 10-under par overall after he stumbled in the third round with a 2-over 72. Barjon finished $2,746 ahead of Pendrith on the order of merit, meaning the Canadian earned a conditional card on the Korn Ferry Tour next season instead of a full card.

Pendrith still earned Canadian player of the year honours on the Mackenzie Tour after winning the 1932byBateman Open in Edmonton and the Mackenzie Investments Open in Montreal. He had seven top-10 finishes.

“I learned how to win, that’s for sure,” said Pendrith. “This week I felt really comfortable out there trying to win the golf tournament. Didn’t go my way in the end, but I learned how to compete and be comfortable in those situations, which I think will really help going forward.

“If I get in contention on the Korn Ferry Tour I’ll know what to expect, know the feelings, know the nerves.”

American Patrick Fishburn shot a 6-under 64 on Sunday to win the Canada Life Championship with a 21-under overall score, three strokes better than countryman David Pastore. The 55-player tournament had no cuts and featured the third-tier tour’s best players.

Pendrith thinks that competitive atmosphere helped with his mental toughness.

“This week there was a ton of pressure everywhere for multiple reasons. My pressure was finishing No. 1 overall on the money list,” said Pendrith. ”Other guys, finishing top 25, top 10, top five, so there’s a lot of emotions and a lot pressure going on. This week really puts you in that position where you’ve got to try and ignore all of that and just play golf.”

Pendrith plans to play in the Korn Ferry Tour’s Q-School in a month. That time off is fortunate for Pendrith, who played through ongoing pain in his shoulder. He’s going to take the next week off to rest and attend a wedding before getting back in the swing of things.

“I’ll be back in Canada the following week and I’ll go get it checked out,” said Pendrith. “I’ve had two cortisone shots in it so that’s a temporary solution. I need to get together with some people and just make sure everything’s O.K. and we’ll go from there, figure out a plan with physio or maybe it just needs some time to heal.”

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