Grudge match: Peterson earns U.S. Open spot

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SPRINGFIELD, Ohio – As last year’s NCAA champion, John Peterson thought he deserved a spot on the United States Walker Cup team. When he didn’t receive one, well, he wasn’t too happy with the USGA.

The player and the organization will be reunited at next week’s U.S. Open, as Peterson shot 64-68 to earn one of two qualifying spots at the Springfield sectional.

“I hope I see all of the committee members,” Peterson said with a smile. “I’ll shake their hands, tell them I’m glad to see them. And hopefully just do as good as I can. I mean, I don’t really have anything to say to them, but I’m a pro now and I can accept checks, so hopefully I’ll play well enough to get one.”

With Nationwide Tour pro Brice Garnett already in the clubhouse as medalist, Peterson needed a par on his final hole of the day to secure the other spot. He made birdie instead.

“I had a bad tee shot,” he said. “I had 170 yards to the flag, a little uphill lie, ball was sitting down in the rough. I grabbed 7-iron, just said, ‘I’m going to hit it as hard as I can and I did that.’ Wound up about 6 feet to birdie the last hole and make it.”