Albany golf pro Broadaway finishes tied for 43rd at Honda Classic in Florida, gains invaluable confidence in PGA Tour debut

Photo by Danny Aller

Photo by Danny Aller

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. -- He started the day tied for 30th with a legitimate shot at the Top 10. But Albany golf pro Josh Broadaway ended the final round Sunday tied for 43rd at the Honda Classic -- his first-ever PGA Tour event -- with a story to tell and one heck of a moral victory.

"If you had asked me when I teed off at 8:30 a.m. on Thursday if I would be happy with a tie for 43rd in my first PGA event? I'd say heck yeah," said Broadaway, a six-year Nationwide Tour veteran who got into this week's tournament by besting a field of 120 golfers in a Monday qualifier. "A friend of mine reminded me after I came off the course what I had just done, just to make it in the tournament with a shot to play with these guys. You always feel like you have the game to go out there to play and succeed -- and when you finally get a chance, you do pretty well -- so it's a pretty good feeling."

Broadaway made the biggest leap of any golfer in the field between Rounds 2 and 3, moving up 36 spots from a tie for 66th to a tie for 30th heading into the final round. But a 3-over Sunday dropped him 13 spots as he took home $17,356.50 in his first try on the world's toughest professional golf tour.

"The other thing I take away from this is that I played just OK -- and still finished tied for 43rd. It wasn't like I went out there this weekend and just played amazing, or out of my mind; hitting every shot, making every putt, only to finish 43rd," said Broadaway, who was en route back home Sunday to prepare for his 9th annual Crosshanded Classic Benefit Tournament on March 18 at Stonebridge. "I played pretty average and it just lets me know if I can make a few less mistakes, I can hang with these guys. To be in the Top 30 going into the final day and have a shot was (a goal accomplished) in itself."

Broadaway, who has yet to debut on the Nationwide Tour this season, now heads back to golf's low-tier circuit. He will open his 2011 season in San Francisco in three weeks, then play at the South Georgia Classic at Kinderlou Forest in Valdosta the week after that.