Golf Channel Reporter Steve Burkowski is in Cherry Hills Village, Colorado this week for the U.S. Amateur which is being played at Cherry Hills Country Club. 17 players will be in a playoff on Wednesday morning to determine the final 14 spots in Match Play. It will be a random draw to determine who will play with who in the five groups that will start on the 10th hole. As a result of the playoff, match play scheduling for the first round has been altered a bit.
There are a number of interesting stories among the match play qualifiers. Not all of the players are young collegiate stars. Some players have day jobs outside of tournament golf while others are in their 40’s and 50’s and competing alongside young stars.
Jack Nicklaus, who finished runner-up as an amateur in the 1960 U.S. Open to Arnold Palmer, was at Cherry Hills along with his wife Barbara to watch son Gary try to qualify for Match Play. While Gary made a strong effort to qualify for match play, he ultimately ended up a couple of shots short of the cut.
Bobby Wyatt, who plays for the University of Alabama, was the medalist in qualifying for match play and shot rounds of 64-68 to earn that position. He has the ability to go low as seen by his round of 57 in a tournament a few years ago. Ryan Moore in 2004 is the last medalist to win the U.S. Amateur and Wyatt is joined in match play by a number of notable amateurs including Jordan Spieth and University of Alabama teammate Justin Thomas.
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