Former Dellwood assistant pro qualifies for PGA

Derek Holmes is shown beaming after sinking a closing 30-foot putt at the PGA qualifying tournament, on a film clip posted by the PGA Pro Championship website.

Dellwood Country Club members and staff will have someone in particular to root for when the PGA tournament takes place later this month.

“Our former assistant golf pro, Derek Holmes, qualified to play in the PGA Championship,” proudly announced Dennis Countryman, Dellwood general manager, last week. “A bit of a Cinderella story.”

Holmes, 32, who served at Dellwood from 2016 to 2020, tied for eighth place in the PGA Professional Championship, a PGA qualifier, at Port St. Lucie, Florida, ending April 28.

Capped by his 30-foot putt on the final hole that was highlighted by the tournament’s website, Holmes shot 72-71-71-73 — 287, six under par, at the Wanamaker Course at PGA Golf Club. The top 20 qualify.

Holmes earned a berth in the PGA tournament, the second of four majors, slated for May 20-23 at Kiawah Island Golf Resort’s Ocean Court in South Carolina.

“I’m excited to play against the best players in the world,” Holmes said. “Behind the birth of my son and my wedding, this will be a top highlight, and most certainly top golfing highlight. I always knew I had the game to qualify, and it was just (a matter of) putting it together for four good rounds.”

Holmes lives in Cottage Grove and works as Retail Store Manager at PXG Minneapolis, which makes custom built golf clubs, at Southdale Mall in Edina. An Anoka native, he qualified for the state high school tournaments in 2004 and 2005, and played collegiately at University of Wisconsin-Stout;

His time at Dellwood was “fantastic, like being family,” he said. “The relationships I built with several members have carried over into my new job as they now have become customers of PXG.”

Clayton Johnson, Dellwood club pro, said, “Derek has always been a very good player. He is a very good driver and hits his irons solid. We will be following him back here at Dellwood.”

Once before in 2016, Holmes  tried to qualify for the PGA and missed the cut. “I’ve generally attempted to qualify for the U.S. Open but haven’t made it out of the locals,” he said. This time, however, almost everything clicked.

“I hit my irons exceptionally well all week,” Holmes reflected. “I believe I hit 53 of 72 greens for the week. My eagle on hole 7 in the final round was a big confidence boost. The highlight of the tournament was making the putt on the final hole. The putt was a 30-footer.”

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.