The graduate of Cal Poly San Luis Obispo had decided his PGA Tour prospects would improve on the East Coast.
After assisting on a redesign at the White Horse Golf Club in Kingston, he and his wife jumped in the car and, in five days, were sleeping on the floor in their Charlotte apartment.
"The bed we ordered from Macy's didn't come in for three days," he said.
Although Pierce shook off wet conditions, intermittent showers and slow greens to tame Edgewood's lengthy layout, his talent isn't new to the golf world, even if it is to the East.
He twice played in the U.S. Junior Amateur (2005, '06). In 2005, Pierce was eliminated in stroke play with a 14-over at Longmeadow Country Club in Massachusetts. In 2006, Pierce shot 10-over at Rancho Santa Fe Golf Club in California - about five hours from his home. That year, current PGA Tour player Rickie Fowler finished T2 in a field that included Kevin Tway, the son of eight-time PGA Tour champion Bob Tway.
In 2009, he missed match play at the U.S. Public Links after shooting 5-over in two rounds. Once again he was linked to Fowler, who made the round of 16 in match play before losing.
Undeterred, Pierce has battled neck stiffness - he had to pull out of a U.S. Open sectional last year because of it - and on Wednesday a 47-player field that proved to be among the most talented to compete at Edgewood in its six years of hosting a local qualifier.
The rest of his busiest year includes a spot in the Greenbrier Classic Monday qualifier on July 1 at Glade Springs' Cobb Course, another course he has never seen.
If Wednesday's performance at Edgewood is any indication, Pierce is looking at a good year.
"The plan is to progress every year and hopefully get a break," he said.
Contact Assistant Sports Editor Rich Stevens at richstev...@dailymail.com or 304-348-4837.