Golf

Blue Valley North grad Higgs earns PGA Tour card, eyes even loftier goals ahead

Hometown favorite Harry Higgs tees off on the 17th hole during the KC Golf Classic in May at Blue Hills Country Club .
Hometown favorite Harry Higgs tees off on the 17th hole during the KC Golf Classic in May at Blue Hills Country Club . Special to The Star

Harry Higgs has enjoyed a lot of success in his golf career, but nothing matches up to what he achieved this summer.

Higgs earned the right to play at the highest level in pro golf, finishing fifth in the standings on the Korn Ferry Tour and earning his PGA Tour card for next season.

“It really means everything,” Higgs told The Star from Columbus, Ohio. “It was the only thing I ever wanted to do. It’s the only thing I have ever worked for....

“It was cool to see how much it meant to other people that I got to this point. Their level of excitement — along with mine — is pretty cool.”

Higgs, 27, played in high school at Blue Valley North and in college at SMU. He had a breakout season this year on the Korn Ferry Tour (formerly Web.com Tour), finishing in the top 25 in 11 events. He gained his first victory on the Tour on July 28 at the Price Cutter Charity Championship in Springfield.

“It was a great year,” Higgs said. “I had a couple of chances to win throughout the year. To cap it off with a win was nice.”

Higgs said he hopes to use the victory in front of family and friends as a springboard to success on the PGA Tour.

Higgs was one of two players with Kansas ties to qualify for the PGA Tour. Michael Gellerman, a three-time Kansas state champion at Sterling High School about 60 miles from Wichita, finished 21st in the standings to get his card as well.

“We were rivals growing up playing junior golf,” Higgs said. “He beat me a lot. He beat me more than I beat him.”

Higgs finished in a tie for second when Gellerman won the KC Golf Classic in May.

“We’ve become better friends now than we have ever been” Gellerman said. “We stay together on the road a pretty decent amount. It’s been pretty cool to share some success. He’s had a phenomenal year.”

Higgs and Gellerman often stay together often at tournaments, and Higgs said they approach golf and life in a similar way.

“When we are away from the course, we want to get away from the course and relax and recharge,” Higgs said.

Higgs said hitting driver is one of the strong parts of his game, and he has benefited from improved iron play. He said he does a better job of hitting irons in correct spots.

Now that he has made the PGA Tour, Higgs said he would like to get his first win at that level, earn rookie of the year, qualify for the Masters and perhaps even secure a spot on the United States team for next year’s Ryder Cup.

Aim high, right? It’s worked for Higgs so far.

“I set big, generic goals that are hard to reach so that you are never satisfied,” he said.

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