Two local qualifiers for the 2016 U.S. Open were held in Georgia recently, with 10 players with Georgia ties advancing to sectional qualifying.
Ten sectional qualifiers will be played June 6 to fill out the field for this year’s U.S. Open, which will be played June 16-19 at Oakmont CC outside Pittsburgh. One of the sectional qualifiers will be played at Ansley Golf Club’s Settindown Creek in Roswell.
The two Georgia qualifiers were played at Planterra Ridge in Peachtree City and Jennings Mill outside Athens.
Sharing medalist honors at Planterra Ridge was Kennesaw State golfer Chris Guglielmo of Cumming, Georgia Tech golfer Jacob Joiner of Albany and tour player Mitch Krywulycz, who played on Augusta State’s national championship teams in 2010 and ’11.
Georgia Tech signee Luke Schniederjans of Alpharetta tied for fourth at 67, and North Carolina State signee Benjamin Shipp of Duluth and South Carolina golfer Ryan Stachler of Alpharetta got the final two spots at 68.
Georgia Tech golfer Vince Whaley shot 69 and is first alternate. Also shooting 69 was 2015 Georgia Open champion Davin White of Locust Grove, West Georgia golfer Barrett Waters of Dallas, Florida State golfer Jonathan Keppler of Marietta, UGA signee Spencer Ralston of Gainesville, Georgia College golfer Harrison Stewart of Roswell, and pro Jacob Tilton of Evans.
Bryan Fox, a recent teammate of Stewart at Roswell HS and Georgia College, was the medalist at Jennings Mill, the former site of a Web.com tournament. Fox shot 2-under 70 and was the only player to break par. Ten players shot 73, requiring a playoff for six qualifying spots and two alternates.
Among the qualifiers was former Georgia Tech golfer James White of Acworth, a recent winner of a mini-tour event at Kinderlou Forest in Valdosta (also a former Web.com Tour site), UGA golfer Jamie Lopez Rivarola and Alpharetta junior golfer Ryoto Furuya. The two alternates are Marietta pro Jonathan Cox and former Georgia Tech golfer Seth Reeves of Suwanee, like White a mini-tour pro.
Fox, who is playing with White and Reeves on the Swing Thought tour, was 1-over par on his round after 12 holes before making birdie on the fourth hole at Jennings Mill, an eagle on the par-5 fifth and a birdie at the seventh before a closing bogey on the par-5 ninth.
Results of Georgians in qualifiers outside the state:
At Limestone Springs in Oneonta, Ala., former Kennesaw State golfer Matt Nagy of Buena Vista tied for second with a 67. Evans mini-tour player Chip Deason shot 68 and won a 3-for-1 playoff for the final spot.
Barent Greyling of Evans tied for first in Jupiter, Fla., with a 71. Macon’s Travis Steed shot 69 to tie for fourth and survived a 3-for-2 playoff. Savannah’s Drew Aimone shot 70 and is second alternate. Dalton Reese of Warrenton tied for fourth at Carolina CC in Spartanburg, S.C., and is first alternate, with Georgia Tech golfer James Clark of Columbus also shooting 68 for second alternate. In Memphis, Roswell’s Shea Sylvester, who plays collegiately in Tennessee, shot 70 and won a 2-for-1 playoff to advance.
Former Alpharetta resident Derek Chang, who played at Augusta State, tied for second in Dallas with a 72, and ex-Georgia Tech golfer and Web.com Tour member Matt Weibring was co-medalist in Amarillo with a 66. Bo Andrews, a recent Georgia Tech golfer, advanced from a 3-for-2 playoff in Butler, Pa. and Athens’ Kyle Mueller, who plays his college golf at Michigan, tied for second in Medina, Ohio.
In Cincinnati, Dacula’s Emerson Newsome, a member of the U. of Cincinnati golf team, and former Cherokee T&CC pro Dave Bahr both qualified after shooting 71 to tie for fourth. Veteran Savannah tour player Tim O’Neal shot 67 in Jacksonville and tied for second to advance to sectionals. Augusta’s Lee Knox, a two-time Georgia Amateur champion, is first alternate after shooting 70 to get into a 7-for-1 playoff.
Augusta’s Chase Parker was medalist at Secession GC in Beaufort, S.C., with a 66. Bradley Smith of Marietta, who has returned to playing professionally after working as an instructor at Eagle’s Landing, tied for fifth in Knoxville with a 68 and is second alternate.