Tracker: U.S. Open sectional qualifying
Monday, June 2, 2014
It's called the "longest day in golf" – once again, the road to the U.S. Open comes down to 36-hole sectional qualifiers across the U.S. as some of golf's best seek a spot at Pinehurst.
From Daly City to Vero Beach, we'll follow the action in each field and post the 56 qualifiers as they are awarded – we'll also link from here to photo galleries and blogs being posted all day.
- With Tiger out, here are 5 players in the field worth watching.
- Read all our latest U.S. Open sectional qualifying coverage right here.
Keep up with the highlights right here – and scroll down for our recent coverage of all things U.S. Open!
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Update #36: Purchase, N.Y.
The college quiz kids had their chances, but the wily veterans shined in Westchester County today. The four golfers from the Purchase U.S. Open sectional qualifying event will be:
- Fran Quinn (Holden, Mass.) . . . -3
- Rob Oppenheim (Orlando, Fla.) . . . -3
- Jim Renner (Orlando, Fla.) . . . -2
- Matthew Dobyns (Lake Success, NY) . . . E
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Update #35: Memphis
More from Adam Schupak via Twitter: "Umbrellas popping in Memphis. Yes, we're getting some of the wet stuff just to make the "Longest Day in Golf" that much more of a test."
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Update #34: Roswell, Ga.
Another ticket is being punched, our Cassie Stein says via Twitter, from @GolfweekCassie:
"Recent @LSUMensGolf graduate Smylie Kaufman earns his spot in the #USOpen after rounds of 67-75 at Roswell sectional." Pro Henrik Norlander gets the other spot.
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Update #33: Purchase, N.Y.
Our David Dusek checks in from New York with a likely list of qualifiers via his Twitter account, @Golfweek_Dusek: "Quinn, Oppenheim (-3), Renner (-2) & Dobyns appear to be the guys who will qualify from Purchase. #USOpen #Golfweek pic.twitter.com/ErRZrOICek"
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Update #32: Columbus, Ohio
Our senior writer Jeff Rude checks in from Scioto: Three-time European Ryder Cup player Paul Casey, fresh off a tie for 13th at the Memorial, and 2008 U.S. Amateur champion Danny Lee tied for the lead at 7 under par during the second round of 36-hole U.S. Open Sectional Qualifying here. Each player moved to the top by going 3 under through seven holes on the more difficult Scioto Country Club course.
Lee is an intriguing story because he won his Amateur at Pinehurst No. 2, site of the June 12-15 U.S. Open. Lee has had mixed results since turing professional in 2009. In 18 starts this year on the PGA Tour, the Korean has missed 11 cuts and finished better than 31st once–second at the Puerto Rico Open.
Brendan Steele also is going low at Scioto, 4 under thru 8. He qualified for the U.S. Open in Columbus last year.
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Update #31: Vero Beach, Fla.
Barring a rash of birdies on some tough holes, Nicholas Lindheim has likely secured a U.S. Open spot by going 7 under for 36 holes, which has him second and four shots ahead of his nearest pursuer. Lindheim fired a 1-under 71 in the second round, doing most of his damage with an opening 66.
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Update #30: Creswell, Ore.
Our senior writer Jim Achenbach checks in with an observation: In most cases, sectional qualifiers for the U.S. Open offer a rare opportunity to walk down the fairway with the players. Generally there are few fans, and gallery ropes do not exist. What a joy it can be to walk in the fairway and have a prime view of every shot. The golf course clearly unfolds as the architect intended. The experience offers a perspective that makes golf a memorable spectator sport. When I followed the twosome of John Buffalo and Kevin Murphy at Emerald Valley Golf Club, I joined the only other person watching the group – Murphy's mother Josephine.
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Update #29: Daly City, Calif.
The two co-leaders from Round 1, Alex Cejka and Maverick McNealy, are off to hot starts at Olympic Club in the final round. Cejka, a four-time European Tour winner, is 3 under through five holes, while McNealy, a rising sophomore at Stanford, is 2 under through three holes. Cejka leads McNealy by a shot at 8 under overall.
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Update #28: Springfield, Ohio
Brian Stuard’s lead seems to be safe as he is 3 under through 13 holes in his second round for a 9-under total. He leads by five shots. The other two spots are still up for grabs. Amateur Will Grimmer has jumped into solo second at 4 under. Chris Thompson sits in the final spot in the 63-player field, but three players are one shot back.
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Update #27: Vero Beach, Fla.
The group of Daniel Berger (8 under and leader), Andres Echavarria (2 under and T-3) and M.J. Maguire (Even and T-9) are putting on a show. Meanwhile, 17-year-old Sam Horsfield is 3 under on his second round and T-5, just one spot out of the automatic four berths.
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Update #26: Purchase, N.Y.
When Fran Quinn was asked if he likes grits and pulled pork, he smiled and said, “Oh yeah, look at my waist line!” After shooting 69-69 today at Century and Old Oaks, he is in the clubhouse with the lead at 3 under, primed for a trip to Pinehurst.
Quinn, from Holden, Mass., birdied the 173-yard, par-3 16th hole at Old Oaks to move to 2 under, then hit a flop shot to within 3 feet with his third shot on the 558-yard, par-5 18th hole to set up his final birdie.
Rob Oppenheim, who was as low as 6 under today after shooting an opening round 64, has dropped into second at 2 under. Jim Renner and Matthew Dobyns are tied for third at 1 under.
As of 4:15 p.m. EDT, all of the contenders have less than seven holes to play.
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Update #25: Purchase, N.Y.
As of 3:35, only five players are under par today at the U.S. Open qualifying event taking place at Old Oaks Country Club and Century Country Club. With nine holes left to play at Century, Rob Oppenheim is at -4 and has a two-shot lead over Fran Quinn (-2).
James Renner, Alexandre Rocha and Matthew Dobyns are at 1 under.
No one at either Century or Old Oaks Country Club is lower than 2 under for his second 18 holes, so it appears that, realistically, there are only 10 players beside Oppenheim still in contention to earn one of the four qualifying spots in next week’s field in Pinehurst. That group includes Lee Janzen (E) and Cameron Wilson (+1).
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Update #24: Memphis
David Gossett is still trying to get into his first Web.com Tour event this season, but the 1999 U.S. Amateur champion is tied for fourth after the first round and 18 good holes from earning a spot in the U.S. Open field at Pinehurst.
Gossett, a Memphis native, fired a 5-under 66 on the North Course at Colonial Country Club. The once can’t-miss-kid who did is 35 years old now, married with three kids and living in Austin, Texas. He’s playing the Adams Golf Pro Tour Series after flunking out early in Q-School. As a former Tour winner (2001 John Deere Classic), he said he has a higher ranking to get into this week’s PGA Tour event in Memphis than the Web.com Tour stop in Cleveland. (“I’m like the 90th alternate,” he said.) Gossett has attempted to Monday qualify at five Tour events and four Web.com events, but has nothing to show for his effort. If he were to qualify for the U.S. Open, Gossett would be making his first appearance in the championship since 2000.
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Update #23: Vero Beach, Fla.
Thomas Stankowski holes out for eagle on the par-4 18th to move to even par. Meanwhile, playing competitor Nicholas Lindheim posts bogey to fall back into share of lead at 7 under.
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Update #22: Springfield, Ohio
Andrew Dorn, a recent graduate of Coastal Carolina, is 4 under through his first six holes in the second round of the Springfield qualifier. He is tied for second with Logan James and Will Grimmer. Grimmer is also on fire during his second round. He started Round 2 on the back nine and went out in 31. There are only three spots up for grabs at this site and there are 10 others within three shots of a spot.
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Update #21: Vero Beach, Fla.
Nicholas Lindheim and Daniel Berger are making Quail Valley their own personal playground thus far today, as Lindheim is 2 under on his second round and 8 under overall. Berger is just one shot back as the two Web.com Tour products are pulling away from the field. There are four spots available from Florida. Fifteen players are within three shots of the final spot, which is at 1 under. 17-year-old Sam Horsfield is one of those players, just one shot from that final berth.
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Update #20: Daly City, Calif.
Sam Saunders – no, not Arnie's grandson – is 5 under through 14 holes at Olympic Club. The New Mexico Lobos' rising senior leads by a shot.
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Update #19: Purchase, N.Y.
Based on the morning scores, it would be hard to imagine that any of the 79 remaining players in this U.S. Open qualifying event who shot more than 2 over for their first 18 holes still have a chance of earning one of the four golden tickets to Pinehurst that will be handed out here.
With everyone back on the course and playing their final round now, Rob Oppenheim leads at 6 under, four shots better than Fran Quinn, Jim Renner, Alexandre Rocha and Scott Harrington. Canadian Matthew McMahan, Michael McCoy and two-time U.S. Open winner Lee Janzen are close behind at 1-under.
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Update #18: Daly City, Calif.
Stanford's Maverick McNealy is tied for first early in Daly City. The rising sophomore, who just finished helping the Cardinal to the semifinals of match play at the NCAA Championship, is 3 under through eight holes at Lake Merced Golf Club.
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Update #17: Springfield, Ohio
Brian Stuard, who has missed his last three cuts on the PGA Tour, fired a first-round bogey-free 6-under 64 to take a two-shot lead at Springfield Country Club. There are still quite a few more players on the course from the morning 18. Andrew Stephens is in the clubhouse at 4 under, while Chris Thompson finishes up his first round, but is also 4 under. Stephens and Thompson are tied for second.
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Update #16: Memphis
Our Adam Schupak checks in with a few scores via his Twitter account, @GolfweekSchupak: "17-yr-old Am Austin Connelly shoots -1 on first 9. Playing with Duval (-2). … Peter Malnati and @Hud_swafford turn in -4. Tied with @davidtomsgolf for 2nd. Jeff Maggert leads at -6 … 21 golfers at -2 or better. 13 spots available in Memphis. … First in-round WD reported in Memphis: Spencer Levin has called it a day after 9."
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Update #15: Vero Beach, Fla.
Our Nick Masuda checks in from South Florida: Nicholas Lindheim made a very tough Quail Valley look easy in Round 1, firing a 6-under 66 to hold the clubhouse lead. Veteran Marco Dawson also gets in under par with a 71. Tyson Alexander, son of former U.S. Amateur champ Buddy Alexander, posts 7-over 79.
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Update #14: Purchase, N.Y.
Gavin Hall, who just finished his first season at the University of Texas, qualified for the 2013 U.S. Open at Merion last year by carding four birdies on his final four holes to rocket up the leaderboard at Sectional qualifying at Century Country Club. This year, his opening-round 70 (1 under) puts him in a four-way T-4 as of 11:45 a.m. Only four players will advance from this event to the U.S. Open in Pinehurst next week.
The lowest posted 18-hole score so far is a 2-under 69 at Century by Fran Quinn from Holden, Mass. Matt Dobyns, the winner of the 2012 PGA Professional National Championship, shot 70 at the same course. Lee Janzen, a two-time winner of the U.S. Open, recovered from two early bogeys to card an even-par 71 at Century.
Maxwell Scodro, who has been playing on the PGA Tour’s Latinoamerica Tour this season and was 4 under through nine holes, has yet to post his 18-hole score.
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Update #13: Daly City, Calif.
Among those near the top of the leaderboard early in Daly City, Calif., are a few college players who just wrapped up their freshman seasons. Arizona State's Nicolo Galletti is tied for first at 2 under. He's through four holes at Olympic Club's Ocean Course. Washington's Corey Pereira is 1 under through five holes at Lake Merced Golf Club. And Stanford's Maverick McNealy is also 1 under, through four holes at Lake Merced.
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Update #12: Vero Beach, Fla.
From our Nick Masuda: The first recorded rounds are starting to trickle in, with amateur Jeff Golden getting into the clubhouse with a 3-under 69. Meanwhile, Jack Maguire, trying to qualify with his brother M.J., posts an 8-over 80.
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Update #11: Springfield, Ohio
Brian Stuard and Andrew Stephens are leading the Springfield sectional. Stuard is 4 under through 14 holes, while Stephens birdied four of his last seven holes to pull even with Stuard. Both players sit at 4 under. Chris Thompson sits in second at 3 under through 11 holes. Notables: Blayne Barber is 1 under and Ohio State commit Will Grimmer is even par.
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Update #10: Purchase, N.Y.
Our David Dusek checks in: While it is hard to get a feel for how players are scoring and where everyone stands moment to moment at a U.S. Open Qualifier, it’s clear that birdies are going to be hard to come by in Westchester County. All 80 players have posted at least a nine-hole score and only nine were under par. Old Oaks Country Club, which was designed by A.W. Tillinghast, and the Century Country Club, which was originally designed by H.S. Colt and Charles Alison, are proving to be tough.
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Update #9: Vero Beach, Fla.
From our Nick Masuda in Vero Beach: Sitting here atop the par-3 16th, awaiting Nicholas Lindheim, who was 4 under on his front nine. Wind has wreaked some havoc today, with LSU's Curtis Thompson going 6 over on his first nine. Of the 37 players who have made the turn, only six are in red figures. Quail Valley has water in play often, which does not make for a friendly combination with stiff winds of 20 mph.
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Update #8: Memphis
Senior writer Adam Schupak has some potentially big news via Twitter: "Whoa, we might need a #59Watch for Jeff Maggert. -6 on his 1st 9 at Memphis."
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Update #7: Vero Beach, Fla.
New York doesn't have a monopoly on beautiful skies, though it's that time of the year when the Sunshine State doesn't always live up to its name – we'll see if Quail Hollow can escape the rain.
On the course, the USGA says that Nicholas Lindheim has the hot hand with a 4-under start.
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Update #6: Columbus, Ohio
The USGA reports via its Twitter account that some recognizable names have withdrawn from the sectional in Columbus: Vijay Singh, Ricky Barnes, Brett Wetterich, Kyle Stanley and Steve Marino.
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Update #5: Memphis
Field update from Tennessee, via our Adam Schupak: Andrew Svoboda, Richard Lee, & Gator Todd withdrew before their tee times in Memphis. Pope Spruiell, Corey Hale & Tyler Merkel got in to Memphis field as alternates.
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Update #4: Purchase, N.Y.
Our David Dusek checks in with an update on the scores and the conditions: Weather is not going to be an issue at the MET Golf Association's U.S. Open Sectional qualifying event today. After a gorgeous weekend in the New York area, it's another perfect day for golf with lots of sun and temperatures expected to reach 80 degrees. The clubhouse at Old Oaks Country Club looks major-worthy today. As of 10:00am, Chicago's Maxwell Scodro leads after shooting four under par on the back nine holes (his first nine) at the Country Club of Purchase. The biggest name at this site, two-time U.S. Open champion Lee Janzen, posted two over par for his first nine holes at Old Oaks. At the end of the day, four of the 80 players here will have earned a spot into next week's U.S. Open.
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Update #3: Memphis
From senior writer Adam Schupak: "This is why I love the U.S. Open. We’ve got 17-year-old Austin Connelly, an early commit to SMU and winner of the AJGA Under Armour-Hunter Mahan Championship, paired with 2001 British Open champion and former World No. 1 David Duval. Each has the same chance. How good is that?"
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Update #2: Memphis
Interesting observation from senior writer Adam Schupak:
Schupak also notes several recognizable names in this sectional's field, with Robby Shelton & Trey Mullinax from two-time national champion Alabama and Talor Gooch from runner-up Oklahoma State.
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Update #1: Vero Beach, Fla.
From Vero Beach: The wind is howling at Quail Valley, moving at about a 20 mph pace currently. The weather will be touch-and-go today, with the forecast calling for a 30 percent chance of rain, with a mix of thunderstorms also possible. The last group teed off at 8:45 a.m. here in Florida, with PGA Tour winner Brian Gay in that last group with Lee Williamson and Trey Valentine. Other players to watch for here are amateur Sam Horsfield, Freddie Jacobson, Daniel Berger and amateur Chase Koepka, younger brother of Brooks Koepka, who qualified last week in England.
– Nick Masuda
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Padraig Harrington’s string of U.S. Open appearances is over. The Irishman will miss America’s national championship for the first time since 1999.
Wen-Chong Liang fired rounds of 67-66 to win the U.S. Open Sectional Qualifier at the par-71 Nara International Golf Club in Japan.
2014 NCAA individual medalist Cameron Wilson and current Texas star Gavin Hall headline the U.S. Open Sectional Qualifier in Purchase, N.Y.
Georgia Tech's Ollie Schniederjans headlines the small field that will attempt to qualify for the U.S Open at the Ansley Golf Club in Roswell, Ga.
Sam Horsfield, Brian Gay, Chase Koepka and Curtis Thompson will headline the U.S. Open Sectional Qualifying field in Vero Beach, Fla.
Former UCLA All-American Patrick Cantlay headlines the U.S. Open Sectional Qualifying field in Rockville, Md.
Blayne Barber and Billy Mayfair highlight the field of 63 at the 2014 U.S. Open Sectional Qualifier in Springfield, Ohio.
The likes of K.J. Choi, Vijay Singh and Justin Thomas will take part in the U.S. Open Sectional Qualifier in Columbus, Ohio on Monday.
David Toms, Scottie Scheffler and Tim Clark will all play the U.S. Open Sectional Qualifier at Colonial Country Club in Memphis, Tenn.
Former Alabama All-American Cory Whitsett highlights the U.S. Open Sectional Qualifier at Lakeside Country Club in Houston.
Washington standout Cheng-Tsung Pan and former Alabama All-American Hunter Hamrick highlight the 2014 U.S. Open Sectional Qualifier in Creswell, Ore.
We take a closer look at the Daly City, Calif. sectional qualifier for the U.S. Open, with the likes of Jason Gore, Brandon Hagy and Rico Hoey playing in Northern California.