May 18, 2016
NorCal to Be Well Represented Again at U.S. Amateur Four-Balls
At last year’s inaugural U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championship the Olympic Club, Northern California was represented by among others heavy hitters Maverick McNealy and Bryson DeChambeau.
Starting this weekend, there’ll be another strong NorCal contingent in the field as the second U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championship gets underway at Winged Foot in New York.
Coming off a memorable 2015 season that saw three players with NorCal ties win national titles—DeChambeau (U.S. Amateur), Hannah O’Sullivan (U.S. Women’s Amateur), Karen Garcia (U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur–there’s no reason to think that it can’t happen again.
Here’s a quick look at those who will be hoping to bring another big USGA prize back home.
- Danny Paniccia and Mike Stieler: The two longtime friends and former co-workers at Riverbend Golf Club in Fresno won back-to-back NCGA Four-Ball Championship titles in 2013-2014. The two are pressure tested. In both of their NCGA Four-Ball victories, they’d win by a shot.
- Matt Cohn and Nick Moore: Cohn of San Francisco, is coming off of his first NCGA win at the NCGA Public Links Championship. Moore, of Monterey, is the defending NCGA Player of the Year. The two can get things going. In the final round of the recent NCGA Four-Ball Championship, they’d card a championship record-tying 10-under 62 to finish in second place.
- Bobby Bucey and Trevor Viboch: Bucey and Viboch, who met through a mutual friend at Oakhurst CC, are coming off a historic win at the NCGA Four-Ball Championship. The duo won with a record score of 21-under 195. The key was a record-tying championship record 10-under 62 in the second round. In the final round, they’d shoot 64 to run away with a five stroke victory.
- Jason Anthony and Randy Haag: Anthony and Haag, who both play out of the Olympic Club, earned their spot by firing a medalist-earning 9-under 62 in a qualifier at Poppy Hills. Anthony was runner-up for NCGA Player of the Year in 2014. Haag is a record six-time NCGA Player of the Year. Haag, one of the greatest amateurs in NorCal history, recently won the NCGA Senior Four-Ball Championship playing with defending U.S. Senior Amateur champion Chip Lutz.
- Tim Mickelson and Jake Yount: For the second year in a row, Mickelson and Yount played their way in via a qualifier at Poppy Hills. Mickelson, the younger brother of Phil Mickelson, recruited Yount to the University of San Diego where he earned 2008 West Coast Conference Player of the Year honors. Yount won the 2012 NCGA Amateur Match Play Championship. Last year at Olympic Club, the two reached the Round of 16.
U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball Championship
At the inaugural 2015 U.S. Women’s Amateur Four-Ball Championship, former Junior Tour of Northern California member Hannah O’Sullivan and partner Robynn Ree finished as runner-ups.
This year’s championship at Streamstrong Resort in Florida will see a few more JTNC players take their shots.
- Xinying Wang and Katherine Zhu: Wang recently competed in a qualifier for the ANA Championship. Zhu was in the running for the title at the JTNC Spring Series IV Championship. Wang would end up finishing second in the same event.
- Yoonhee Kim and Yealimi Noh: With eight victories apiece, both Kim and Noh are tied for third on the all-time JTNC career win list. Kim had a fantastic 2015 on the JTNC, tying the record for most victories in a calendar year (six). Noh won the California Junior Girls’ State Championship in 2014.