Featured Golf News
Storylines for the U.S. Open Sectional Qualifying June 6th
As usual, the golfers seeking to participate in one of sport's only everyone-is-eligible championships - the U.S. Open - is rife with characters, unique circumstances and intriguing storylines. That's no different for the 2011 U.S. Open - the "American Golf Championship," which will be held June 16-19 at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Md.
This year the governing body of the U.S. Open, the United States Golf Association, accepted over 8,300 entries seeking to qualify for this year's championship. That number includes entries from all of the 65 golfers who are currently fully exempt into the field. The entries include golfers from all 50 states, the District of Columbia and 66 foreign countries, including 752 applicants with foreign addresses.
U.S. Open Sectional Qualifying takes place June 6th at courses throughout the U.S. The following are listings of the qualifying sites, how many players will be seeking a finite number of spots at each site, and some individual entrants and their interesting stories. All these storylines are courtesy of the USGA.
Links to groupings and scoring websites are included. For the latest news about the 111th U.S. Open visit www.USOPEN.com and www.usga.org.
Glendale, Calif. (Oakmont Country Club) - 94 players for four spots
• Charlie Beljan of Mesa, Ariz., won the 2002 U.S. Junior Amateur Championship at Atlanta Athletic Club in Duluth, Ga. He has played in two U.S. Opens, most recently in 2009, and three U.S. Amateurs.
• Andrew Bieber of Shaker Heights, Ohio, is one of the youngest competitors in sectional qualifying at 16 years, 6 months and 23 days. He qualified for the U.S. Junior Amateur in 2009 and 2010.
• Greg Bruckner of Manhattan Beach, Calif., played in the 1995 U.S. Open at Shinnecock Hills Golf Club in Southampton, N.Y., where he finished 56th. The 51-year-old also has qualified for two U.S. Amateurs (1984 and 1985).
• John Chin of Temecula, Calif., was the runner-up in the 2008 U.S. Amateur Public Links. The California-Irvine left-hander was also selected for the 2010 U.S. Palmer Cup team.
• Kevin Dehuff of Coto de Caza, Calif., is a senior at Santa Margarita Catholic High School who played in the 2009 U.S. Junior Amateur. Both of his older brothers played golf at the University of Southern California.
• Dillon Dougherty of Woodland, Calif., was the 2005 U.S. Amateur runner-up to Edoardo Molinari at Merion Golf Club in Ardmore, Pa. The former Northwestern University Wildcat also played in the 2006 U.S. Open at Winged Foot and two U.S. Junior Amateurs.
• Jim Empey of Boise, Idaho, played in the 1992 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach, won by Tom Kite. He is the former coach of the University of Southern California men's golf team and is now a PGA teaching professional at Quail Hollow Golf Club in Boise.
• Beau Hossler of Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif., is one of the youngest players with a chance to qualify for the U.S. Open at age 16 years, 2 months and 21 days. Two years ago, he qualified for the 2009 U.S. Amateur at 14.
• Steven Irwin of Arvada, Colo., is the son of three-time U.S. Open champion and two-time U.S. Senior Open champion Hale Irwin. Irwin played in the 1992 U.S. Junior Amateur and the 2005 U.S. Mid-Amateur.
• Bob May of Las Vegas, Nev., was a member of the 1991 USA Walker Cup Team that won in Dublin, Ireland. He has played in numerous USGA championships. May is best known for taking Tiger Woods to a thrilling playoff in the 2000 PGA Championship at Valhalla C.C. in Louisville, Ky., which Woods eventually won.
• Eric Meeks of Las Vegas, Nev., won the 1988 U.S. Amateur at the Cascades Course at The Homestead in Hot Springs, Va. He was also a member of the 1989 USA Walker Cup Team that lost to Great Britain and Ireland and has qualified for two U.S. Opens.
• Harry Rudolph III of La Jolla, Calif., was once one of the most promising young players in golf and made it to the quarterfinals of the 1987 U.S. Junior Amateur. He led the University of Arizona to a NCAA Division I National Championship in 1992 and often competed against his high school cross-town rival, Phil Mickelson, who played for Arizona State. Rudolph's first attempt at a pro career never got off the ground, however, and he gave up his dream in 1999. In 2009, Rudolph regained his amateur status and qualified for match play at the 2009 U.S. Mid-Amateur and 2010 U.S. Amateur. He has since returned to the professional ranks.
Vero Beach, Fla. (Quail Valley Golf Club)
56 players for three spots
• Tyson Alexander of Gainesville, Fla., is the son of University of Florida golf coach Stewart "Buddy" Alexander, who won the 1986 U.S. Amateur at Shoal Creek. He joined Tim Herron as a third-generation U.S. Open qualifier in 2009 at Bethpage State Park. The University of Florida standout also has qualified for four U.S. Amateurs.
• Gary Koch of Tampa, Fla., has played in 17 U.S. Opens and has two top-25 finishes. Koch won six tournaments as a professional and is now a broadcaster for NBC Sports. Koch also won the 1970 U.S. Junior Amateur and played on two USA Walker Cup Teams (1973 and 1975).
• David Ladd of Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., is a PGA professional who hasn't played on any golf tour in three years. The 48-year-old almost advanced to sectional qualifying in 1996, but he bogeyed the first playoff hole at local qualifying after being struck above the eye by a golf ball near the end of his regulation round.
• Jon McLean of Weston, Fla., played in three U.S. Amateurs from 2005-07 as well as a U.S. Junior Amateur and a U.S. Amateur Public Links. He is the son of Jim McLean, who was named the 1994 PGA National Teacher of the Year. Some of his former students include Hal Sutton, Tom Kite, Sergio Garcia, Bernhard Langer, Ben Crenshaw and Gary Player.
• Kevin Phelan of Ireland had a remarkable 2010 amateur campaign, qualifying for the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach, advancing to the semifinals of the 2010 U.S. Amateur Public Links and playing in the U.S. Amateur. To qualify for the 2010 U.S. Open, Phelan birdied the final hole to advance from the local stage, then holed out for eagle on his 36th hole at sectional qualifying.
• Sam Saunders of Orlando, Fla., is the grandson of golf legend Arnold Palmer. He has played in three U.S. Amateur Championships and one U.S. Junior Amateur.
• Sawyer Shaw of West Palm Beach, Fla., is a high school freshman who finished second at his local qualifier at Bear Lakes C.C. in West Palm Beach. The 15-year-old won back-to-back tournaments on the Florida Junior Tour in April and added another victory at the Under Armor/Vicky Hurst Championship in Port St. Lucie, Fla., in May.
• Tommy Stankowski of Fort Myers, Fla., is the older brother of PGA Tour player Paul Stankowski. He last played the U.S. Open in 1992 at Pebble Beach.
Ball Ground, Ga. (Hawks Ridge G.C.)
47 players for three spots
Scoring: http://www.ghintpp.com/gsga/TPPOnlineGolfer/default.aspx (Must select 2011 USGA qualifiers from the drop down box)
• Russell Henley of Macon, Ga., graduated from the University of Georgia in May and recently became the second amateur to win a Nationwide Tour event (Daniel Summerhays was the first in 2009) when he captured the Stadion Classic held at the University of Georgia's golf course. He tied for low amateur at the 2010 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach with Scott Langley (T-16).
• Michael Johnson of Hoover, Ala., is a high school senior who has committed to play golf for Auburn University. Johnson's older brother, Bradley, was a standout player in high school and the runner-up in the 2005 U.S. Junior Amateur before he was killed in a car accident in March of 2006. Johnson marks his ball with his brother's initials and wears a wristband in his honor. Michael also qualified for the 2009 U.S. Junior Amateur.
• Ben Portie of Westminster, Colo., is the assistant coach for the University of Colorado golf team. From 2000-02, Portie played in two U.S. Amateurs, two U.S. Amateur Public Links and the 2002 U.S. Open at Bethpage State Park in Farmingdale, N.Y.
• Henrik Simonsen of Ooltewah, Tenn., is a PGA professional at The Honors Course in Ooltewah, which has hosted the 1991 U.S. Amateur and the 2005 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship and will host the 2011 USGA Senior Women's Amateur Championship in September. Tiger Woods won the 1996 NCAA Men's Division I Championship at The Honors Course and the event returned there in 2010, when Scott Langley won.
St. Charles, Ill. (St. Charles C.C.)
58 players for three spots
St. Charles (St. Charles C.C.)
• Brad Benjamin of Rockford, Ill., won the 2009 U.S. Amateur Public Links at Jamie Austin OU Golf Club in Norman, Okla.
• John Carlson of Blaine, Minn., is the associate head coach of the University of Minnesota golf team. In 2001, Carlson advanced to the third round of match play in the U.S. Amateur, played in the U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship and was a member of the victorious Minnesota team at the USGA Men's State Team Championship.
• Brandon Crick of McCook, Neb., was a semifinalist in the 2009 U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship and advanced to match play in the same championship in 2008. The former Nebraska Cornhusker won the 2007 and 2009 Nebraska Men's Amateur and was named the 2009 Nebraska Amateur Golfer of the Year. Crick's teammate at Nebraska, Andrew Wyatt, was the only other qualifier from the Omaha, Neb. local qualifier and will join Crick at St. Charles Country Club for sectional qualifying.
• Scott Langley of Manchester, Mo., won the 2010 NCAA Division I individual title. The left-hander also qualified for the 2010 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach, where he tied for low amateur with Russell Henley in 16th place, and he represented the USA at the 2010 World Amateur Team Championship in Argentina.
• Tom Pernice of Scottsdale, Ariz., has played in 10 U.S. Opens, most recently in 2007. Pernice has two career PGA Tour victories. • Curtis Yonke of Overland Park, Kan., played in the 2008 U.S. Junior Amateur. He is the grandson of former PGA Tour player Jim Colbert. Colbert played in 16 U.S. Opens and finished third at the 1971 U.S. Open, which was won by Lee Trevino. Colbert also was the runner-up at the 1992 U.S. Senior Open.
Rockville, Md. (Woodmont Country Club)
112 players for 10 spots
• Christopher Baloga of Baltimore, Md., is the head golf coach at Loyola University in Maryland. Baloga played in the 2010 U.S. Amateur.
• Guy Boros of Pompano Beach, Fla., has played in two U.S. Opens, most recently in 1998. He has three wins on the Nationwide Tour and one career PGA Tour win - the 1996 Greater Vancouver Open. Boros is the son of Hall of Famer Julius Boros, who won 18 times on the PGA Tour, including the 1952 and 1963 U.S. Opens. Boros is also the oldest winner of a major championship; he was 48 when he won the 1968 PGA Championship.
• Bubba Dickerson of Fernandina Beach, Fla., won the 2001 U.S. Amateur Championship at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta, Ga., over Robert Hamilton. He also played in two other U.S. Amateurs and won an NCAA Division I men's team title with the University of Florida in 2001. Dickerson played on the PGA Tour in 2006 and 2007, and has been a regular member of the Nationwide Tour since then.
• Brad Faxon of Barrington, R.I., has played in 20 U.S. Opens, most recently in 2004. He has eight PGA Tour wins and is 41st on the Tour's career money list.
• Fred Funk of Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., won the 2009 U.S. Senior Open at Crooked Stick in Carmel, Ind. He has appeared in 21 U.S. Opens and has eight PGA Tour victories, including the 2005 Players Championship.
• Jason Gore of Valencia, Calif., was tied for second place after three rounds of the 2005 U.S. Open at Pinehurst No. 2, but shot a final-round 84. Gore has played in three other U.S. Opens (1998, 2008 and 2010) and was a member of the victorious 1997 USA Walker Cup Team. He also led Pepperdine to the 1997 NCAA title.
• Billy Hurley III of Annapolis, Md., graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 2004 and served his country for five years, including a stint in the Persian Gulf protecting Iraqi oil platforms. Before his active duty, Hurley played in two U.S. Amateurs and was a member of the victorious 2005 USA Walker Cup Team. Hurley advanced to the final stage of PGA Tour Qualifying School in 2010.
• John Lyberger of Gaithersburg, Md., is the director of golf at Congressional Country Club, the site of this year's U.S. Open.
• Phillip Mollica of Greenville, S.C., was a quarterfinalist in the 2009 U.S. Amateur. The former Clemson University player competed in two other U.S. Amateurs, and his former teammates Ben Martin, Kyle Stanley and David May have also advanced to sectional qualifying.
• Ryan Murphy of Austin, Texas, is the assistant coach of the University of Texas men's golf team. He played in the 1993 U.S. Amateur.
• Corey Nagy of Charlotte, N.C., was a semifinalist in the 2007 U.S. Amateur Public Links and a quarterfinalist in the 2008 U.S. Amateur Public Links. The UNC-Charlotte 49er has also played in two U.S. Amateurs , three U.S. Junior Amateurs and an additional U.S. Amateur Public Links. In 2010, Nagy was selected for the U.S. Palmer Cup team, which beat Europe in Ireland.
• Kyle Reifers of Atlanta, Ga., played on the 2005 USA Walker Cup Team that beat Great Britain and Ireland at Chicago Golf Club in Wheaton, Ill. The former Wake Forest Demon Deacon played in two U.S. Amateurs and two U.S. Junior Amateurs.
• Curtis Thompson of Coral Springs, Fla., is the younger brother of Nicholas Thompson, who played on the PGA Tour from 2008-10 and currently plays on the Nationwide Tour. Nicholas Thompson was the first alternate at the Weston, Fla., local qualifier. Alexis Thompson, the 2008 U.S. Girls' Junior Champion and a member of the victorious 2010 USA Curtis Cup Team, is Curtis' younger sister.
• Kirk Triplett of Scottsdale, Ariz., has three career PGA Tour victories and has played in 16 U.S. Opens, most recently in 2007.
• Ty Tryon of Orlando, Fla., became the youngest player to earn a PGA Tour card through the PGA Tour's Qualifying School in 2001 at the age of 17. He made the cut at last year's U.S. Open.
• Drew Weaver of Sea Island, Ga., played on the victorious 2009 USA Walker Cup Team. He won the 2007 British Amateur, becoming the first American to win since Jay Sigel in 1979. The Virginia Tech graduate also played in the U.S. Open at Bethpage State Park that year and finished 40th.
Summit, N.J. (Canoe Brook C.C.)
83 players for four spots
• Gregory Bisconti of South Salem, N.Y., was the low PGA professional at the 2009 PGA Championship at Hazeltine National G.C. in Chaska, Minn. Bisconti is the club pro at The St. Andrew's Golf Club in Hastings-on-Hudson, N.Y., one of the five founding USGA member clubs.
• Tarik Can of Manhasset, N.Y., was a semifinalist in the 2002 U.S. Junior Amateur. He also advanced to match play in the 2006 U.S. Amateur and U.S. Amateur Public Links. Can is the former caddie for Paula Creamer, the reigning U.S. Women's Open champion.
• Jim Liu of Smithtown, N.Y., became the youngest player to win the U.S. Junior Amateur in 2010, breaking Tiger Woods' record by winning at the age of 14.
• Nathaniel McCoy of West Des Moines, Iowa, is the son of famed Iowa amateur golfer Mike McCoy, who was named Iowa amateur of the year six times and has competed in numerous USGA championships.
• Jim McGovern of Oradell, N.J., is a former PGA Tour player who won the 1993 Shell Houston Open. He has played in nine U.S. Opens, most recently in 2001. McGovern is now the head professional at White Beeches Golf & Country Club in Haworth, N.J.
• Michael Muehr of Potomac Falls, Va., is the founder of Golf Pros Beating Cancer, a charitable foundation in Virginia, who was diagnosed with melanoma in 2003. He underwent successful treatment and surgery. Muehr has played in three U.S. Amateurs, one U.S. Mid-Amateur and the 2002 U.S. Open. He was also a member of the PGA Tour from 2001-03, but he retired after failing to keep his Tour card. Muehr is a member at Congressional Country Club, the site of this year's U.S. Open.
• Chris Nallen of Tucson, Ariz., made it to the semifinals of the 2004 U.S. Amateur and was selected for the 2003 USA Walker Cup Team. Nallen has played in two U.S. Opens, most recently in 2006. • James Renner of Plainville, Mass., made his debut as a regular PGA Tour player this year and has played in numerous USGA events. In 2005, Renner lost to Michelle Wie in the round of 16 at the U.S. Amateur Public Links.
• Bob Rittberger of Garden City, N.Y., is the head professional at Garden City (N.Y.) Golf Club. He won the 2010 Met Open at Bethpage Black, the site of the 2002 and 2009 U.S. Opens. Rittberger narrowly missed advancing to the U.S. Open in 2007 when his approach shot on the 36th hole of sectional qualifying hit the flagstick and ricocheted into the rough, leading to a double bogey when he needed a par to advance.
• Jim Roy of Syracuse, N.Y., is a 51-year-old Champions Tour Player who has played in six U.S. Amateurs. Roy turned pro in 1982, but regained his amateur status shortly thereafter. Recently, Roy again turned pro to compete on the Champions Tour.
Columbus, Ohio (Brookside Country Club/The Lakes Country Club)
120 players for 16 spots
• Byeong-Hun "Ben" An of Alameda, Calif., became the youngest winner of the U.S. Amateur when he defeated Ben Martin in the 2009 final at the age of 17. An was born in South Korea, but moved to the United States to pursue golf. He currently plays for the University of California-Berkeley.
• Billy Andrade of Atlanta, Ga., has four career PGA Tour victories. His best U.S. Open finish was sixth in 1992 at Pebble Beach. Andrade was a member of the victorious 1987 USA Walker Cup Team. • Stuart Appleby of Windermere, Fla., has nine career PGA Tour victories and has played in 14 U.S. Opens. The Australian finished 36th at the 1997 U.S. Open held at Congressional. His best finish is a tie for 10th in 1998 at The Olympic Club.
• Ricky Barnes of Phoenix, Ariz., won the 2002 U.S. Amateur by defeating Hunter Mahan at Oakland Hills Country Club in Birmingham, Mich. Barnes finished tied for second in the 2009 U.S. Open at Bethpage Black, which was won by Lucas Glover. Barnes also represented the USA at the 2002 World Amateur Team Championship.
• Keegan Bradley of Scottsdale, Ariz., won his first PGA Tour event at the 2011 Byron Nelson Championship on May 29. Bradley is the nephew of LPGA Hall of Famer Pat Bradley, who was the first woman to win all four majors, including the 1981 U.S. Women's Open.
• Joseph Bramlett of Saratoga, Calif., is a rookie on the PGA Tour who, along with Tiger Woods, is one of two players on the Tour with African-American heritage. The former Stanford standout has played in four U.S. Amateurs, two U.S. Junior Amateurs and a USGA Men's State Team Championship. He qualified for the 2010 U.S. Open as an amateur.
• Wyndham Clark of Greenwood Village, Colo., is a 17-year-old high school junior. Clark advanced to the third round of match play at the 2009 U.S. Junior Amateur Championship.
• Ben Curtis of Cleveland, Ohio, won the 2003 British Open at Royal St. George's. The central-Ohio native has two other PGA Tour victories and has appeared in six U.S. Opens, with his best finish coming last year at Pebble Beach, where he tied for 14th. He represented the USA at the 2000 World Amateur Team Championship.
• David Duval of Cherry Hills Village, Colo., won the 2001 British Open and became the No. 1 player in the world rankings. Duval has 12 other wins on the PGA Tour. Duval tied for second (with Ricky Barnes) at the 2009 U.S. Open at Bethpage State Park.
• Derek Fathauer of Jenson Beach, Fla., played in the 2008 U.S. Open at Torrey Pines, where he made the cut and finished in 69th place. Fathauer has also played in four U.S. Amateur Public Links Championships and four U.S. Amateurs. He advanced to the quarterfinals in both the 2007 and 2008 U.S. Amateurs.
• Nick Gilliam of Gainesville, Fla., won the individual NCAA Championship in 2001 and led the Florida Gators to the national team championship the same year. He played in the 2005 U.S. Open, missing the cut.
• Hunter Haas of Southlake, Texas, won the 1999 U.S. Amateur Public Links and played on the 1999 USA Walker Cup Team that lost to Great Britain and Ireland in Nairn, Scotland. Haas was also a semifinalist in the 1999 U.S. Amateur.
• Kevin Hall of Cincinnati, Ohio, has been deaf since age 2 from complications of meningitis. Hall played at Ohio State University and won the Big Ten individual championship by 11 strokes in 2004. He has played in one U.S. Amateur, U.S. Amateur Public Links and U.S. Junior Amateur.
• Brian Harman of St. Simons Island, Ga., won the 2003 U.S. Junior Amateur at Columbia Country Club in Chevy Chase, Md. The left-handed Harman has also played in six U.S. Amateurs and two Walker Cups (2005 and 2009).
• Buddy Harston of Nashville, Tenn., is the head coach of the men's and women's golf teams at Lipscomb University. He played in the U.S. Senior Open in 2003 and 2006. • J.B. Holmes of Purcellville, Va., has two career PGA Tour victories and four U.S. Open appearances. He also was a member of the victorious 2005 USA Walker Cup Team.
• Charles Howell of Windermere, Fla., won the 2000 NCAA Division I men's golf individual championship with Oklahoma State University. He was the runner-up in the 1996 U.S. Junior Amateur and has two career PGA Tour victories.
• Ryuji Imada of Tampa, Fla., was runner-up in the 1997 U.S. Amateur Public Links. Originally from Japan, Imada moved to the United States in high school to pursue golf. Imada is now a regular PGA Tour player and has one career victory as well as six U.S. Open appearances - his best finish is a tie for 12th in 2006 at Winged Foot.
• Steve Jones of Chandler, Ariz., won the 1996 U.S. Open at Oakland Hills Country Club in Birmingham, Mich., and has seven other career PGA Tour victories. Jones has played in 12 U.S. Opens and just joined the Champions Tour.
• Colt Knost of Dallas, Texas, won the U.S. Amateur and the U.S. Amateur Public Links in 2007, joining Ryan Moore as the only golfers to win both of those titles in the same year. He was also on the 2007 USA Walker Cup Team that beat Great Britain and Ireland at Royal County Down Golf Club in Northern Ireland.
• Spencer Levin of Roseville, Calif., was the low amateur in the 2004 U.S. Open at Shinnecock Hills. He also represented the USA at the 2004 World Amateur Team Championship.
• Rocco Mediate of Greensburg, Pa., has six career PGA Tour victories and 15 U.S. Open appearances. In 2008 at Torrey Pines, Mediate and Tiger Woods played a memorable 19-hole playoff, where Woods eventually prevailed.
• Sean O'Hair of West Chester, Pa., has three PGA Tour wins. He has played in four U.S. Opens and finished tied for 12th last year at Pebble Beach.
• Jose Maria Olazabal of Spain won the Masters in 1994 and 1999. He has 31 worldwide professional wins and has appeared in the U.S. Open 17 times, with his best finishes a pair of ties for 8th place, in 1990 and 1991. Olazabal will captain the European Ryder Cup Team in 2012.
• Anthony Paolucci of Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., was the runner-up in the 2007 U.S. Junior Amateur. At the time, he was only the third 14-year-old in history to make it to the final. Paolucci also appeared in two other U.S. Junior Amateurs and two U.S. Amateurs.
• D.A. Points of Thiensville, Wis., won the 2011 AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am over Hunter Mahan. Points has played in one previous U.S. Open.
• Brett Quigley of Jupiter, Fla., won the 1987 U.S. Junior Amateur and is a regular on the PGA Tour. His uncle, Dana Quigley, is an 11-time winner on the Champions Tour.
• Chez Reavie of Scottsdale, Ariz., won the 2001 U.S. Amateur Public Links and is on the PGA Tour.
• Vijay Singh of Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., is a Hall of Famer with 58 professional wins, including three majors. The Fijian has the longest active streak of majors played at 67, which dates to the 1994 British Open. Singh's best U.S. Open finish came in 1999, when he finished third at Pinehurst.
• Nathan Smith of Pittsburgh, Pa., is a three-time U.S. Mid-Amateur champion (2003, 2009 and 2010). He was also a member of the winning USA Walker Cup Team in 2009.
• D.J. Trahan of Purcellville, Va., won the 2000 U.S. Amateur Public Links while attending Clemson University. He tied for fourth at the 2008 U.S. Open at Torrey Pines and has two career PGA Tour victories.
• Kevin Tway of Edmond, Okla., is the son of former PGA Tour player Bob Tway, who won the 1986 PGA Championship. The younger Tway won the 2005 U.S. Junior Amateur and qualified for the 2008 U.S. Open. He was also a finalist for this year's Ben Hogan Award.
• PGA Tour rookie Jhonattan Vegas of Spring, Texas, won the 2011 Bob Hope Classic in a playoff. The Venezuelan was a semifinalist in the 2007 U.S. Amateur.
• Mike Weir of Sandy, Utah, won the 2003 Masters and has seven other PGA Tour wins. The Canadian left-hander has played in 11 U.S. Opens and has four top-10 finishes.
• Gary Woodland of Dallas, Texas, is a rookie on the PGA Tour who won the Transitions Championship in March. Known as one of the longest hitters on tour, Woodland also lost the Bob Hope Classic this year in a playoff to Jhonattan Vegas.
Springfield, Ohio (Springfield Country Club)
34 players for two spots
• Chris Devlin, of Northern Ireland, played for the University of Alabama-Birmingham and helped recruit fellow Northern Irishman Graeme McDowell, the 2010 U.S. Open champion, to the university, where they were teammates.
• Chris Smith of Peru, Ind., has played in five U.S. Opens, with his most recent appearance in 2004. Smith made the PGA Tour in 1995 and won the 2002 Buick Classic.
Memphis, Tenn. (Tunica National)
78 players for 10 spots
• Rich Beem of Austin, Texas, won the 2002 PGA Championship at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minn. He has two other PGA Tour victories and has played in seven U.S. Opens.
• Zac Blair of Ogden, Utah, played in the 2007 U.S. Junior Amateur and advanced to the second round of match play. Blair won the 2009 Utah State Amateur, following in his father's footsteps. Zac's father, Jimmy, won that championship in 1973 and has played in several U.S. Senior Opens.
• Chris DiMarco of Longwood, Fla., has three PGA Tour victories and has finished second in every major except the U.S. Open. The former Florida Gator lost the 2005 Masters in a playoff with Tiger Woods. DiMarco's last U.S. Open appearance was in 2007.
• Chris Erwin of Spring Hill, Tenn., shot a 13-under 59 at the ADI Classic on the Hooters Tour in 2010.
• Tommy Gainey of Columbia, S.C., is also known as "Two Gloves" because of his unorthodox use of golf gloves on both his right and left hands. Gainey was on Golf Channel's "The Big Break: USA vs. Europe" and is the first Big Break alumnus to earn a PGA Tour card.
• Sergio Garcia of Spain has won seven times on the PGA Tour and eight times on the European Tour. He has played in 47 consecutive majors, dating to the 1999 British Open at Carnoustie. Garcia's best U.S. Open finish was a tie for third in 2005 at Pinehurst.
• Hunter Hamrick of Montgomery, Ala., has played in four U.S. Junior Amateur Championships and was the youngest player in the field at the 2004 U.S. Junior Amateur at age 13. He was also the youngest player in the field at the 2005 U.S. Amateur at age 15.
• Billy Horschel of Jacksonville Beach, Fla., is a PGA Tour pro who has played in four U.S. Amateurs as well as the 2006 U.S. Open. Horschel was a member of the victorious 2007 USA Walker Cup Team. He shot 60 in stroke-play at the 2006 U.S. Amateur, the lowest round in USGA history.
• Lee Janzen of Orlando, Fla., is a two-time U.S. Open champion with wins in 1993 at Baltusrol Golf Club in Springfield, N.J., and 1998 at The Olympic Club in San Francisco. Janzen has 19 U.S. Open appearances and owns eight PGA Tour wins, including the 1995 Players Championship. His most recent U.S. Open was in 2008 at Torrey Pines.
• Korean-born Lion Kim of Ann Arbor, Mich., won the 2010 U.S. Amateur Public Links at Bryan Park Golf and Conference Center in Greensboro, N.C. The Michigan Wolverine played in the Masters earlier this year and missed the cut.
• Edward Loar of Dallas, Texas, has played in three U.S. Junior Amateur Championships and two U.S. Amateurs. The left-hander was a member of the 1999 USA Walker Cup Team that lost to Great Britain and Ireland in Nairn, Scotland.
• Ben Martin of Greenwood, S.C., was the runner-up in the 2009 U.S. Amateur. The former Clemson Tiger has played in two U.S. Opens and a Masters. In 2010, Martin earned his PGA Tour card through PGA Tour Qualifying School. Martin's former teammate at Clemson, Kyle Stanley, is also a rookie on the PGA Tour and is playing in the Columbus, Ohio, sectional qualifier.
• Billy Mayfair of Scottsdale, Ariz., has played in 14 U.S. Opens and has three top-10 finishes, in 1999, 2002 and 2003. Mayfair has a stellar amateur record that includes victories in the 1986 U.S. Amateur Public Links and the 1987 U.S. Amateur. The five-time PGA Tour winner also played on the victorious 1987 USA Walker Cup Team.
• Jonathan Moore of Champions Gate, Fla., was on the victorious 2007 USA Walker Cup Team with current PGA Tour players Dustin Johnson and Rickie Fowler. Moore eagled the final hole to secure the winning point for the Americans at Royal County Down.
• Jeff Quinney of Scottsdale, Ariz., won the 2000 U.S. Amateur at Baltusrol Golf Club in Springfield, N.J., and was a member of the 2001 USA Walker Cup Team. Quinney finished 29th in the 2008 U.S. Open at Torrey Pines.
• Paul Stankowski of Flower Mound, Texas, has two career PGA Tour victories. In 1996, he became the only player in history to win Nationwide Tour and PGA Tour events on back-to-back weeks. Stankowski's brother, Tommy, is playing in the Vero Beach, Fla., qualifier.
• Brendan Steele of Irvine, Calif., became the third rookie to win on the PGA Tour this year when he captured the Valero Texas Open in April. He won the final event of the 2010 Nationwide Tour season, moving him from 30th to sixth on the money list and earning him a 2011 PGA Tour card.
• Michael Thompson, of Birmingham, Ala., was runner-up to Colt Knost in the 2007 U.S. Amateur. Thompson played in the 2008 Masters and the 2008 U.S. Open at Torrey Pines, where he was the low amateur, finishing in 29th place. He was named the 2010 Hooters Tour Player of the Year and finished 16th at PGA Tour Qualifying School to earn his 2011 PGA Tour card.
• Scott Verplank of Edmond, Okla., won the 1984 U.S. Amateur and played on the victorious 1985 USA Walker Cup Team that beat Great Britain and Ireland at Pine Valley (N.J.) Golf Club. Verplank has five career PGA Tour victories and has appeared in 17 U.S. Opens, with his best finish a tie for seventh in 2007.
• Boo Weekley of St. Simons Island, Ga., has two career wins on the PGA Tour and was a member of the victorious 2008 U.S. Ryder Cup team. Weekley has played in three U.S. Opens.
Dallas, Texas (Dallas Athletic Club, Blue Course)
71 players for four spots
• Todd Hamilton of Westlake, Texas, won the 2004 British Open at Royal Troon Golf Club in Scotland. He also won the Honda Classic in 2004 and was named the PGA Tour Rookie of the Year at the age of 38.
• Tom Kite of Austin, Texas, won the 1992 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach and has played in the championship 33 times. The Hall of Famer owns 38 worldwide professional wins and represented the USA in the 1970 World Amateur Team Championship.
• Justin Leonard of Dallas, Texas, won the 1997 British Open at Royal Troon Golf Club in Scotland. He also won the 1992 U.S. Amateur at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio. Leonard has played in 16 U.S. Opens and was also selected to the 1993 USA Walker Cup Team.
• Cody Paladino of Kensington, Conn., was the runner-up in the 2007 U.S. Amateur Public Links to Colt Knost. The former Baylor Bear played in two other U.S. Amateur Public Links, two Junior Amateurs and one U.S. Amateur. His older brother, Brent, qualified for the Summit, N.J., sectional.
• Jordan Spieth, 17, of Dallas, Texas, won the 2009 U.S. Junior Amateur at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J. Spieth, a recent high school graduate, has made two cuts on the PGA Tour, at the last two Byron Nelson Championships.
• Madalitso Muthiya, of Zambia, was the first black African and Zambian to play in the U.S. Open when he qualified for the 2006 championship at Winged Foot. He also played in two U.S. Amateurs and a U.S. Amateur Public Links.
• Tyler Weworski of Carlsbad, Calif., advanced to the match-play competition in the 2006 U.S. Junior Amateur. Weworski plays collegiately for Texas Tech and he is the son of past U.S. Women's Mid-Amateur champion, Corey Weworski.
• Cory Whitsett of Houston, Texas, won the 2007 U.S. Junior Amateur at Boone Valley Golf Club in Augusta, Mo. Whitsett became just the fourth left-handed player to win a USGA championship and the fifth 15-year-old to win the title.
Bremerton, Wash. (Gold Mountain Golf Club, Olympic Course)
48 players for four spots
• Notah Begay III of Dallas, Texas, has four career PGA Tour victories. He was a member of the 1995 USA Walker Cup Team and is a former teammate of Tiger Woods at Stanford. Begay has played in three U.S. Opens.
• Sebastian Crampton of Pacific Grove, Calif., is the youngest player in sectional qualifying. He will be 15 years and 16 days old when he competes on June 6. If he qualifies, he will be the youngest player to play in the U.S. Open, surpassing Tadd Fujikawa, who was 15 years, 5 months and 7 days old when he qualified in 2006 at Winged Foot.
• Clay Ogden of Farmington, Utah, won the 2005 U.S. Amateur Public Links at Shaker Run Golf Club in Lebanon, Ohio. The former Brigham Young star also played in two other U.S. Amateur Public Links Championships and two U.S. Amateurs.
• Brock Mackenzie of Yakima, Wash., was a member of the 2003 USA Walker Cup Team, and posted a 3-0 record. His sister, Paige, played in the 2006 Curtis Cup and is an LPGA Tour player. The former University of Washington All-American qualified for the 2004 U.S. Open at Shinnecock Hills.
• Corey Prugh of Spokane, Wash., played in three U.S. Amateurs between 2000-03. He is a PGA club professional at Manito Golf & Country Club in Spokane. Prugh's brother, Alex, is a PGA Tour member who will be trying to qualify for the U.S. Open at the Columbus, Ohio, sectional. Prugh's sister played golf at Montana State University and his father, also a PGA club professional, played at the University of Oregon. His mom, Susan, is a member of the U.S. Girls' Junior Championship Committee.
The above report is a 2011 copyrighted publication of the United States Golf Association.
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