Roll along cowboy


FARMINGDALE, N.Y. ' There will be no 'Kat in the Hat' at this year's U.S. Open. Japan's Shingo Katayama, he of the famous cowboy lid and chin strap, withdrew from the championship today citing back problems. Katayama's misfortune is 19-year-old amateur David Erdy's good fortune. Erdy, who just completed his freshman season at Indiana, will take the place of Katayama and will tee off Thursday at 8:28 a.m. with Lee Westwood and Zach Johnson. Erdy earned the first-alternate spot in a playoff at the Dayton, Ohio, sectional at NCR CC, shooting rounds of 67-70. It will be his first U.S. Open appearance.
Katayama is coming off a top-10 finish at the Masters, where he fired a 68 on Sunday (the low round among those players not competing in the three-man playoff) to finish fourth. Katayama made a name for himself at the 2001 PGA Championship at Atlanta Athletic Club, grabbing a share of the lead heading into the weekend, before finishing in a tie for fourth.