This story was updated May 13, 2018, at 11:59 p.m. with more information.
Chattanooga resident and PGA Tour rookie Stephan Jaeger didn't receive an invitation to The Players Championship this past weekend, so he decided to crash another party.
Jaeger, a Baylor School and University of Tennessee at Chattanooga graduate, ventured back to the Web.com Tour and won the Knoxville Open, shooting a second consecutive 7-under-par 64 at Fox Den Country Club on Sunday to finish at 16-under 258.
Jaeger defeated South Korea's Sungjae Im by three strokes.
"I stayed at home this week, and it was almost like an off week for me," Jaeger said by phone early Sunday evening. "I decided to play it sort of at the last minute, because I knew I wasn't going to get into The Players, and I just wanted to kind of keep grinding away and possibly get some momentum for the next couple of weeks on the PGA Tour.
"It obviously worked out. I would have taken a top-10 or a top-five (finish), but we'll take the win as well."
Jaeger earned $99,000 for Sunday's triumph to go along with the $208,120 he has earned during his first several months on the PGA Tour, which is where he returns this week with the AT&T Byron Nelson Classic in Dallas.
After making the 36-hole cut by a stroke Friday, Jaeger was tied for eighth and three strokes behind co-leaders Will Claxton and Daniel Summerhays at the 54-hole mark.
"I actually played pretty well the first two rounds as well," Jaeger said. "I didn't make any putts the second day until a 35-footer on the 18th and started to figure things out. I putted really well the last two days, and I also hit a lot of greens.
"It was kind of gnarly around some of those greens because it hasn't grown in yet, so you had to hit a lot of greens."facebook
The German-born Jaeger, 28, now has four Web.com victories in his career.
His first occurred at the Ellie Mae Classic in July 2016, when he opened with a record-setting 58 and finished with rounds of 65, 64 and 63 to post a 30-under 250. Jaeger won two Web.com events last year, the BMW Charity Pro-Am in May and the Rust-Oleum Tournament in June, with those wins catapulting him to a No. 7 final ranking in last season's Web.com standings.
The Knoxville Open was the first Web.com tournament Jaeger has entered this season, earning the opportunity via his past champions status.
Only 12 golfers have more career wins on the Web.com Tour than Jaeger. Jason Gore heads that list with seven.
Contact David Paschall at email@example.com or 423-757-6524.