Teaming Up

Denver native Mark Hubbard and partner Ryan Brehm fall just short of playoff at Zurich Classic; it’s Hubbard’s 2nd-best showing of his PGA Tour career

By Gary Baines – 4/28/2024

Mark Hubbard tied the second-best showing of his PGA Tour career on Sunday, but you would have never known it by his immediate reaction when the Denver native and his partner, Ryan Brehm, saw their chances to win the Zurich Classic of New Orleans go by the wayside.

Understandably, considering they finished a stroke out of a playoff, there was more than a little disappointment, which showed on Hubbard’s face next to the 18th green. There may have also been some “what ifs” playing out in his mind. 

The Colorado Academy graduate is normally a pretty proficient putter, but in Sunday’s final round he missed at least four tries in the 10- to 15-foot range — any one of which could have made a big difference. After all, Hubbard has yet to record a PGA Tour victory. And Brehm has managed just one. 

Still, Hubbard and Brehm were in the hunt until the 18th green. A birdie would have put them in a playoff, and Hubbard hit a good drive and Brehm roped a second shot over the green on the par-5. Hubbard’s chip in the alternate-shot format utilized on Sunday hung up on the back fringe, and Brehm’s birdie try from about 15 feet just skirted by the right edge of the hole.

So Hubbard and Brehm ended up a stroke behind their Sunday playing partners — Rory McIlroy and Shane Lowry — as well as Martin Trainer and Chad Ramey, who played off for the title. McIlroy and Lowry prevailed, with McIlroy picking up his 25th career victory on the PGA Tour.

Hubbard thus placed third — marking the third top-3 of his PGA Tour career. He finished second in the 2019 Houston Open and third in the 2022 Barbasol Championship. 

“Super pumped for a great week,” Hubbard said. “It was a lot of fun. This event is awesome, and man, it was fun watching (Brehm) play today. He played so good. Obviously we’re bummed to fall one short, but like we’ve both said to each other multiple times, we’d have taken this at the beginning of the week.”

Hubbard reacts as Brehm’s birdie try on 18 just misses on Sunday.

In the only team event on the PGA Tour schedule — one where a best-ball format was used on Thursday and Saturday and alternate shot on Friday and Sunday — Hubbard and Brehm went 61-70-64-69 for a 24-under-par total. They each earned $343,762.

For the scores from the Zurich Classic, CLICK HERE.

About the Writer: Gary Baines has covered golf in Colorado continuously since 1983. He was a sports writer at the Daily Camera newspaper in Boulder, then the sports editor there, and has written regularly for since 2009. The University of Colorado Evans Scholar alum was inducted into the Colorado Golf Hall of Fame in 2022. He owns and operates