Tomasulo's New Approach

August 11, 2010

TravisMathew_Tomasulo_NewApproach

He spent 2009 on the PGA TOUR, but struggled there. Earlier this season, he was at a crossroads. It was something he didn't like, so he plowed ahead, continued to work hard and the results soon followed.

"To be honest I didn't have very good status and I had some sponsor's exemptions that got me in a couple of tournaments, but I was kind of frustrated with how it was going," he said about starting the season in the category of a past champion. "But during the reshuffle I just decided to start playing golf and not worry about everything else."

That turned the tide for Tomasulo, a 28-year-old veteran of the Nationwide Tour who missed four of his first six cuts of the season.

Since missing the cut at the Rex Hospital Open in late May, Tomasulo has turned it on. It all came together for him in Canada earlier this month with a victory at the Ford Wayne Gretzky Classic when he won for the first time since 2005. All he did was fire a 61 on the last day for the victory.

That was his first victory since winning the Alberta Classic, which was also in Canada, in 2005.

The victory at the Ford Wayne Gretzky Classic helped him gain a foothold on the season and boosted his confidence level.

"More than the money and the jump up the list, it was nice to be in contention again and to perform like that under pressure was a big thing for me," said Tomasulo. "I was in contention in Mexico earlier but then when I got into contention again in Canada -- I took advantage of it."

The Nationwide Tour moves this week Omaha, Nebraska for the Cox Classic Presented by Lexus of Omaha, and Tomasulo comes in with nearly $200,000 this season, good enough for eighth place on the money list. He is in good shape to stay in the 'THE 25' by the end of the season and get a spot on the PGA TOUR for 2011.

"For me, when I play comfortable and relaxed, the results are so much better," Tomasulo said. "I want to try and get it going so I'm working on staying more relaxed."

The relaxed approach is working.

He has a tie for 14th, a victory, a tie for fifth and a tie for 17th last week at the Nationwide Children's Hospital Invitational in his last four tournaments.

Tomasulo, a 2004 graduate from the University of California, said he learned plenty from his experience on the PGA TOUR last season. He finished a distant 199th on the FedEx Cup points race and made just $128,706 as he made just five cuts in 25 tournaments. He wound up with just one top 25 all season.One of the differences for Tomasulo compared to last year's play on the PGA TOUR is his ability to bounce back. Last weekend he shot a disappointing 74 on Saturday, but came back strong with a 66 in the final round to vault up the leaderboard.

"It's just about being patient," Tomasulo said about what he learned last year. "I was really down about last season toward the end and was about as down as I could be. But now I have a new feeling because at the end of last season I was down on myself and my game .... I don't want to have that feeling ever again."

It's difficult for Tomasulo to talk much about last season's learning experience on the PGA TOUR, and instead would rather look ahead.

"I'm better right now than I ever have been in my whole career," Tomasulo said. "I feel like every time I tee it up I can contend and it's never been like that for me."

Tomasulo lists one of his biggest thrills in golf as helping the University of California to the NCAA championship in his senior season in 2004. Like a lot of young pros just out of college he thought it would be different.

"I thought everything would maybe happen for me a little sooner," Tomasulo said. "I had some struggles and for some reason it took a little longer than I had planned. Then I struggled out on the PGA TOUR last year, but I learned a lot."

It wasn't that long ago when Tomasulo was dreading what was ahead, but now he can't wait to get to the next tournament.

"I feel like I'm in great position now after starting the year with terrible status," Tomasulo said. "Now, I just want to play in as many events and play as well as I can for the rest of the year. I was really stressed out last season when I didn't get off to a great start and it kind of snowballed.

"I'm finding that I'm a little easier on myself."

"More than the money and the jump up the list, it was nice to be in contention again and to perform like that under pressure was a big thing for me," said Tomasulo. "I was in contention in Mexico earlier but then when I got into contention again in Canada -- I took advantage of it."

The Nationwide Tour moves this week Omaha, Nebraska for the Cox Classic Presented by Lexus of Omaha, and Tomasulo comes in with nearly $200,000 this season, good enough for eighth place on the money list. He is in good shape to stay in the 'THE 25' by the end of the season and get a spot on the PGA TOUR for 2011.

"For me, when I play comfortable and relaxed, the results are so much better," Tomasulo said. "I want to try and get it going so I'm working on staying more relaxed."

The relaxed approach is working.

He has a tie for 14th, a victory, a tie for fifth and a tie for 17th last week at the Nationwide Children's Hospital Invitational in his last four tournaments.

Tomasulo, a 2004 graduate from the University of California, said he learned plenty from his experience on the PGA TOUR last season. He finished a distant 199th on the FedEx Cup points race and made just $128,706 as he made just five cuts in 25 tournaments. He wound up with just one top 25 all season.One of the differences for Tomasulo compared to last year's play on the PGA TOUR is his ability to bounce back. Last weekend he shot a disappointing 74 on Saturday, but came back strong with a 66 in the final round to vault up the leaderboard.

"It's just about being patient," Tomasulo said about what he learned last year. "I was really down about last season toward the end and was about as down as I could be. But now I have a new feeling because at the end of last season I was down on myself and my game .... I don't want to have that feeling ever again."

It's difficult for Tomasulo to talk much about last season's learning experience on the PGA TOUR, and instead would rather look ahead.

"I'm better right now than I ever have been in my whole career," Tomasulo said. "I feel like every time I tee it up I can contend and it's never been like that for me."

Tomasulo lists one of his biggest thrills in golf as helping the University of California to the NCAA championship in his senior season in 2004. Like a lot of young pros just out of college he thought it would be different.

"I thought everything would maybe happen for me a little sooner," Tomasulo said. "I had some struggles and for some reason it took a little longer than I had planned. Then I struggled out on the PGA TOUR last year, but I learned a lot."

It wasn't that long ago when Tomasulo was dreading what was ahead, but now he can't wait to get to the next tournament.

"I feel like I'm in great position now after starting the year with terrible status," Tomasulo said. "Now, I just want to play in as many events and play as well as I can for the rest of the year. I was really stressed out last season when I didn't get off to a great start and it kind of snowballed.

"I'm finding that I'm a little easier on myself."

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