Spring's Patrick Reed commits to Shell Houston Open


HOUSTON – Patrick Reed of Spring, No. 9 in the World Golf Rankings, has committed to play the Shell Houston Open

Reed, 25, boasts four PGA Tour victories.

Last year, Reed finished 17th at the Shell Houston Open and he energized the already excited patrons on the par-3 16th hole in 2015 by making an ace in the third-round.

Tournament director Steve Timms also announced that an additional four former Shell Houston Open champions are joining Reed the week of March 28-April 3 at the Golf Club of Houston Tournament Course.

Enhancing the international field at the 25th anniversary of Shell Oil Company’s title sponsorship are a trio of Australian past Shell Houston Open winners Matt Jones (2014), Robert Allenby (2000) and Stuart Appleby (1999, 2006). Appleby is making a return after back surgery last year that broke his string of consecutive starts at 13. D. A. Points (2013) is the other past champion on the commitment list.

Former Houston resident and Memorial high school graduate  Cory Whitsett, who turned professional in June of 2014, has been awarded a sponsor exemption to tee it up at the Shell Houston Open.

Whitsett, who grew up in Houston playing golf at Lakeside Country Club, was a four-time All-American at Alabama where he led the Crimson Tide to back-to-back NCAA team titles in 2013 and 2014. Englishman Lee Westwood (No. 54) and Austrian Bernrd Wiesberger (No. 39) were previously awarded sponsor exemptions.

World No. 1 Jordan Spieth announced to the media at the Singapore Open that the Shell Houston Open was on his schedule. Media reports also indicate that Phil Mickelson will be making his ninth straight Shell Houston Open start. Tournament officials are awaiting their official commitments.

The Shell Houston Open is once again slotted the week before the Masters. Players have until March 25 to commit. They may also withdraw on or before that date with no penalty.