The world’s best amateurs are descending on Pinehurst Resort and Country Club this week for the 119th U.S. Amateur.
Any amateur player is eligible for entry so long as their Handicap Index does not exceed 2.4. A total of 7,191 entries were accepted for this year’s event, with 67 players fully exempt into amateur golf’s most prestigious championship. The remaining 245 places in the 312-player field were filled via 36-hole sectional qualifiers conducted at 93 sites from July 1-24.
With stroke play set to begin Monday on both Pinehurst No. 2 and No. 4, we’ve got you covered with everything you need to know about the week’s events.
The 2019 U.S. Amateur is the third to take place at Pinehurst, and the 10th USGA championship. Pinehurst No. 2 first hosted the U.S. Amateur in 1962, with Labron Harris defeating Downing Gray. No. 2 most-recently hosted the U.S. Amateur in 2008, when Danny Lee earned a 5-and-4 victory over Drew Kittleson.
For the first time in history, the 36-hole final match will take place over two courses: Pinehurst No. 2 and No. 4. Both courses will host one round of stroke play. The first five rounds of match play – through the semifinals – will be held on No. 2.
“We are thrilled that competitors will have the opportunity to play the 2019 U.S. Amateur on No. 2, one of the most revered tests in the game, and No. 4, which will present players with a new set of challenges,” said John Bodenhamer, USGA senior managing director, Championships. “Pinehurst is one of the world’s leading championship venues and we are very excited to watch the entire event unfold over these two wonderful courses.”
U.S. Amateur schedule
- Monday, Aug. 12: Round 1, 18 holes, stroke play.
- Tuesday, Aug. 13: Round 2, 18 holes, stroke play.
- Wednesday, Aug. 14: Round of 64, match play. A playoff for the final spots in match play will start at 8 a.m. (if necessary), with matches starting at 10 a.m. The low 64 scorers from stroke play qualify for match play.
- Thursday, Aug. 15: Round of 32 and Round of 16, match play.
- Friday, Aug. 16: Quarterfinals, match play.
- Saturday, Aug. 17: Semifinals, match play.
- Sunday, Aug. 18: Championship Match, 36 holes, match play. Play starts on Course No. 4 at 9 a.m. Continuation of championship match on Course No. 2 starts at 2 p.m.
Inside the field
The field consists of 312 players from 27 different countries. The United States leads the way with 246 competitors, followed by: Canada (9), Australia (5), England (5) and Spain.
The oldest competitor this year is Sean Knapp at 57 years old. On the flop side, the youngest are Jay Brooks and Zachary Ong, both 14.
Here are some notable names to watch for:
- Akshay Bhatia: The 17-year-old North Carolina native was the runner-up in the 2018 U.S. Junior Amateur and advanced to match play in the last year’s U.S. Amateur at Pebble Beach. He made his PGA Tour debut at the 2019 Valspar Championship and tied for 42nd in his first Korn Ferry Tour event. At 12 years old, Bhatia aced the 17th hole at Pinehurst No. 2.
- Devon Bling: The UCLA junior was the runner-up to Viktor Hovland in the final of the 2018 U.S. Amateur. He competed in this year’s U.S. Open, as well as the Masters, where he made the cut and finished 55th.
- Parker Coody, Pierceson Coody: The 19-year-old twin Texans are sophomores for the Longhorns, who finished second at the 2019 NCAA Championship. The Brothers Coody are grandsons of 1971 Masters champion Charles Coody, and caddied for their grandfather in the Masters Par 3 Tournament when they were 6 years old. They are the only set of brothers in this year’s field.
- Mike McCoy, Nathaniel McCoy: Mike and Nathaniel are the U.S. Amateur’s first father-son duo since Philip and James Pleat in 2012. The McCoys are the fifth father-son combination to play in the same U.S. Amateur, joining Dick and Dixie Chapman (1958), Paul and Brett Quigley (1988) and David and Michael Derminio (2001) and the Pleats.
- Brad Dalke: The 2019 Oklahoma graduate was the runner-up in the 2016 U.S. Amateur and played in the 2017 Masters. Dalke lead the Sooners to win the 2017 NCAA Championship by claiming the deciding match against Oregon. His father Bill was a starting linebacker on Oklahoma’s 1975 national championship football team and his mother, Kay Pryor, played on the first Oklahoma women’s golf team.
- Chandler Eaton: The Alpharetta, Ga., native qualified for his first U.S. Open in June and was one of four amateurs to make the cut, finishing T-58 at Pebble Beach.
- Jason Enloe: The 46-year-old is entering his sixth season as the head men’s golf coach at Southern Methodist University. Last summer, Enloe lost his beloved wife, Katie, to leukemia. His Mustangs, the lowest seed at the 2019 NCAA Championship, then went on a postseason joyride, making it all the way to match play. Two of his current players – McClure “Mac” Meissner and Ollie Osborne – are also in the field.
- Jeromino Esteve: The 38-year-old Windermere, Fla., native earned the only spot out of the qualifier in his native Puerto Rico.
- Alex Fitzpatrick: Does the name sound familiar? The 19-year-old Englishman and Wake Forest sophomore is the younger brother of professional golfer Matthew Fitzpatrick. Alex was on Matthew’s bag when he won the 2013 U.S. Amateur at The Country Club in Brookline, Mass.
- Ben Greve: Now an insurance agent, Greve was a member of Minnesota’s 2002 NCAA Championship team and is married to Lindsay Whalen, a four-time WNBA champion with the Minnesota Lynx and a two-time Olympic gold medalist.
- Will Grimmer: The 22-year-old has some experience at Pinehurst. The recent Ohio State graduate qualified for the 2014 U.S. Open at Pinehurst and was the youngest player in the field at 17 years old. He also recorded the only 59 in Pinehurst history on No. 1 during the 2013 North & South Junior Amateur.
- Cole Hammer: A stroke play co-medalist at last year’s U.S. Amateur and match play semifinalist, Hammer is a sophomore at the University of Texas, 2018 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball champion and currently ranked No. 1 in the World Amateur Golf Rankings.
- Bo Jin: The 17-year-old from the People’s Republic of China was the runner-up in the 2019 U.S. Junior Amateur at Inverness Club in Toledo, Ohio.
- Preston Summerhays: Winner of the 2019 U.S. Junior Amateur, Summerhays’ father Boyd is a former PGA Tour player and current swing coach. Earlier this year, Preston played in the Korn Ferry Tour’s Utah Championship.
- John Pak: Pak won four of his 11 events as a sophomore last season at Florida State, including the ACC Championship.
- Garrett Rank: One of golf’s most interesting stories, Rank, a 31-year-old Canadian, has been a full-time NHL official since the 2016-17 season. He won the 117th Western Amateur earlier this month, becoming the first Canadian to do so in 42 years. At 23, Rank defeated cancer.
- Jovan Rebula: The 22-year-old South African is the nephew of four-time major champion Ernie Els and won last year’s Amateur Championship at Royal Aberdeen Golf Club.
- Isaiah Salinda: Salinda was a semifinalist in last year’s U.S. Amateur, losing to eventual runner-up Devon Bling. Salinda graduated from Stanford after helping lead the Cardinal to the national title with a perfect 3-0 match play record, including a victory over Cole Hammer in the championship match.
- Luke Schneiderjans: The only thing that sticks out more than the name Schneiderjans in golf is Luke and his older brother Ollie’s refusal to wear a hat while playing. Luke is a rising senior at Georgia Tech where Ollie also played golf and his other brother, Ben, played baseball.
- Brandon Wu: Another member of Stanford’s 2019 NCAA Championship team, Wu played in both the U.S. Open and The Open Championship this year.
2020: Bandon Dunes Golf Resort, Bandon, Ore./Aug. 10-16
2021: Oakmont Country Club, Oakmont, Pa./Aug. 9-15
2022: Ridgewood Country Club, Paramus, N.J./Aug. 15-21
2023: Cherry Hills Country Club, Cherry Hills Village, Colo./Aug. 14-20
2024: Hazeltine National Golf Club, Chaska, Minn./Aug. 12-18
2025: The Olympic Club, San Francisco, Calif./Aug. 11-17
2026: Merion Golf Club, Ardmore, Pa./Aug. 10-16