Will Zalatoris reveals he lost family member at start of Genesis Invitational: ‘She was with me all week’

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Will Zalatoris revealed Sunday he competed in the Genesis Invitational with a heavy heart as he finished three strokes behind Hideki Matsuyama.

The 27-year-old said he didn’t say anything about what he was carrying on his shoulders along with the pressures of trying to win the second tournament of his PGA Tour career.

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Will Zalatoris on 14

Will Zalatoris acknowledges the crowd after making a hole-in-one on the 14th hole during the second round of the Genesis Invitational at Riviera Country Club Friday, Feb. 16, 2024, in the Pacific Palisades area of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Ryan Kang)

“I lost a family member on Thursday, and she was – so she was with me all week,” he told reporters, via the Tour’s website. “You know, was pretty special on Friday to make the hole-in-one after – sorry. Pretty special to make the hole-in-one on Friday after I found out on Thursday. She was with me all week.”

Zalatoris added he would go to be with his family after talking to the media.

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Will Zalatoris wings

Will Zalatoris hits from the sixth tee during the final round of the Genesis Invitational, Sunday, Feb. 18, 2024. (AP Photo/Ryan Sun)

“My family can’t be here no matter what would have happened, but very proud of how I played. Just shows you life’s short and appreciate the moments, how lucky I am to be out here,” he added.

Zalatoris was tied for second place in the tournament with Luke List.

The San Francisco native has one PGA Tour win in his career – coming at the FedEx St. Jude Championship in 2022. He won with a bogey on the third playoff hole against Sepp Straka.

Will Zalatoris waves to the gallery

Will Zalatoris waves to the gallery on the 18th green during the third round of the Genesis Invitational, Saturday, Feb. 17, 2024. (AP Photo/Ryan Sun)

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So far this season, Zalatoris has played in four events and finished in the top 15 twice. Excluding this past weekend’s performance, he was tied for 13th at the Farmers Insurance Open on Jan. 27.

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