U.S. Mid-Amateur Qualifying
August 9, 2012
OAKLAND – San Francisco’s Matt Cohn led the way with a two-under par 68 at Sequoyah CC for U.S. Mid-Amateur Qualifying. The 31-year-old made an impressive six birdies at the par-70 course, but that was coupled with a few mistakes, including a double-bogey and two bogeys. Cohn got out of the gate quick making birdies on his first two holes Nos. 10 and 11—starting off the 10th—and actually got to five-under par after a birdie on No. 3—his 12th hole. However, coming down the stretch Cohn made a bogey on the fifth and took a double-bogey on No. 8. It turned out not to matter as the San Francisco resident took medalist honors by one stroke.
Finishing in a tie for second and also qualifying for the event were Drew Olson of Berkley and Jeff Wilson of Fairfield. Olson got off to a rough start in his round—starting off the 10th—finding himself three-over par after the first five holes. However, the Berkley resident rallied and went on to make an eagle on No. 16 and a birdie on No. 18 to make the turn at even-par. A bogey on No. 1 put him back in the black, but birdies on Nos. 4 and 6 allowed him to post a red number. Wilson, a two-time medalist in the U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship, also started off the 10th tee and scored three birdies and a bogey on Sequoyah’s back nine to make the turn at two-under par. The 49-year-old would go on to make two birdies and three bogeys over his final nine holes to finish with his sub-70 score.
The final two players to qualify were Pleasant Hill’s Jeff Murphy and Nick Ushijima of Hillsborough, who had to beat out San Mateo’s Neil Summers in a sudden-death playoff after all three players came in with a score of even-par 70. Murphy looked as if he might be out of the running for one of the five qualifying spots, when he came into the final hole at two-over par, where he’d remained for the last five holes. But as luck would have it, the 25-year-old converted an eagle-3 on the par-5 18th hole, which got him to level-par, good enough to qualify for the playoff. Ushijima’s round was arguably the steadiest of any player in the field as the 48-year-old made 16 pars on the day to go along with one birdie and one bogey. Summers earned first alternate with his performance, while second alternate went to Tanner Makimoto, who finished with a one-over par 71.
The five players that qualified will advance to the championship, which takes place September 8-13 at Conway Farms GC in Lake Forest, Ill.