Merritt ready to roll at Boise Open

Merritt ready to roll at Boise Open »Play Video
As the web.com Tour season starts down the home stretch, former Boise State Bronco Troy Merritt has an additional goal for his performance at this week's Boise Open.

"I told my wife, If I stay in the top 60 I'll stay home next week and not go to Pittsburgh," Merritt said. Skipping the next tour stop means avoiding the long day of travel associated with it - and being able to see extended family visiting Boise next week for a wedding.

Merritt is ranked 60th on the web.com Tour money list coming into the Boise Open. He rebounded in Kansas City last week with a top-20 finish after three straight missed cuts.

"I didn't make very many putts the last few months, but started rolling the ball well in Kansas City again," he said.

Putting may take a back seat to approach shots at Hillcrest Country Club this week. Slower greens are expected due to the water needed simply to keep the grass alive in the July heat.

"More carry versus more roll," Merritt explained. He - and other players preparing for the tournament - expect a serious challenge to the all-time low score set in 2012 by Luke Guthrie (-22).

"Not quite sure if it's going to take 25 under, 15 under or 18 to win," Merritt said. "We'll see what the guys are doing after the first few days."

The Web.com Tour is now the main path to the PGA Tour. The top-25 money winners during the Web.com Tour season earn 2014 PGA Tour cards - but 25 other PGA Tour spots are up for grabs as well during what's known as 'The Final,' three one million dollar tournaments featuring the top 75 Web.com Tour players and No. 126-200 ranked PGA Tour players.

At just under $50,000 away from the 25th spot on the money list, Merritt thinks he's in striking distance with five weeks to go.

"I'm in a good spot, I just need to keep playing good golf and making the cuts."

Merritt is joined by six others with ties to Idaho in the 2013 Albertson's Boise Open. Eagle High graduate Ty Travis won a spot in the Monday qualifying tournament at Ridgecrest Golf Course.

The Tournament offered sponsor exemptions to Moscow native Chris Williams and Meridian's Canadian Open player Joe Panzeri.

Three Gem state club pros qualified to play last May: Quail Hollow's Jim Empey, Spurwing's Adam Martens and Idaho Falls Country Club assistant pro Sean Thomsen. Thomsen fills the qualifying spot vacated by Sun Valley Resort pro Doyle Corbett.