Meet 2011 U.S. Mid-Amateur Quarterfinalists


By David Shefter
September 20, 2011

Tony Behrstock, 44, Los Angeles, Calif. 

Advanced to the quarterfinals with a 2-and-1 win over Aaron Hickman…Competing in second U.S. Mid-Amateur and fourth USGA championship, but first time he’s made match play…Got into match-play draw via 20-for-3 playoff on Monday, making a birdie on the third playoff hole to get No. 62 seed…Competed in 2009 Mid-Amateur with brother, Joey…Played one year at San Diego State before transferring to Division II Cal State Northridge, where one of his teammates was 1996 U.S. Amateur Public Links champion and 2010 U.S. Mid-Amateur runner-up Tim Hogarth…Married with three children, Hogan, Riley and Quinn…Works as a title insurance salesman…Lowest competitive score is a 66 shot at his home club, Hillcrest C.C. in Los Angeles, where he is a 14-time club champion…Lists playing Augusta National in 2000 with his father as biggest golf thrill…Born Dec. 7, 1966 in Los Angeles.

Kenny Cook, 31, Noblesville, Ind. 

Advanced to quarterfinals with a 2-and-1 win over Matt Smith…Competing in second U.S. Mid-Amateur (lost in second round in 2008)…Competed in two U.S. Amateurs (2003 and 2009)…Lost in first round of 2003 U.S. Amateur…Wife, Lisa, qualified for 2011 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur, but missed the match-play cut…Graduated Ball State in 2003…Works as an accountant…A reinstated amateur (2005)…Lowest competitive round a 61 shot at Anderson (Ind.) Country Club…Won 2010 and 2011 Olympia Fields National Four-Ball at Olympia Fields (Ill.) Country Club, site of the 2003 U.S. Open…Enjoys attending sporting events, including Indianapolis Colts football games, USAC auto races and World of Outlaw racing…Wife also attended Ball State...Born March 1, 1980 in Union City, Ind.

John Engler, 32, Augusta, Ga. 

Advanced to the quarterfinals with a 5-and-4 victory over Michael McCoy…Competing in second U.S. Mid-Amateur after regaining his amateur status in 2010…Advanced to the round of 32 in 2010, losing to eventual champion Nathan Smith…Qualified for 2011 U.S. Amateur (missed match-play cut)…Played in two U.S. Junior Amateurs and two other U.S. Amateurs before turning pro…Former All-American at Clemson University…Played professionally on the Nationwide and PGA tours…Involved in a horrific automobile accident in 2003 returning from a hunting trip in rural Georgia…Accident left two other people dead and Engler with severe leg and ankle injuries…Doctors feared he would never play golf again…Tour life became too much physically for Engler to continue…Says he can only compete in one tournament a month…Plays golf left-handed…Involved in construction and real estate…Married to Jessica Engler…Nicknamed “Fungo.”…Enjoys hunting…Born Dec. 2, 1978 in Augusta, Ga.

Randal Lewis, 54, Alma, Mich. 

Advanced to the quarterfinals with a 1-up win over 2010 U.S. Mid-Amateur semifinalist Scott Harvey…Competing in his eight U.S. Mid-Amateur…Runner-up to John “Spider” Miller in 1996 at Hartford Golf Club…Semifinalist in 1999…Also competed in eight U.S. Amateurs, one U.S. Amateur Public Links and one U.S. Senior Open…A reinstated amateur (1982)…Lowest competitive score is a 62 shot on the South Course at Detroit Golf Club…Won 1992 Michigan Amateur at Oakland Hills, site of the 1996 U.S. Open and 2002 U.S. Amateur…Also won 1999 Michigan Amateur…Won 1998 Michigan Mid-Amateur…Golf Association of Michigan Player of the Decade for 1990s…Inducted into Michigan Golf Hall of Fame in 2009…Financial advisor for Raymond James & Associates…Graduated Central Michigan in 1980. Married with two sons, Chris and Nick…Says wife Melanie was his biggest influence in game…Born May 8, 1957 in Alma, Mich.

Michael McCaffrey, 41, League City, Texas 

Advanced to the quarterfinals with a 7-and-6 win over Anthony Barrera…Playing in first USGA event…Earned stroke-play medalist honors by shooting 8-under 136, which included a 68 at The Houstonian Golf & C.C. and another 68 at Shadow Hawk Golf Club…His 64 in sectional qualifying was the lowest score among any of the Mid-Amateur sectional sites…Lowest competitive score is a 62 shot in Madison, Miss. … Won the 2011 Texas Golf Association South Region Mid-Amateur…Advanced to the round of 16 at the Texas State Mid-Amateur Match Play…Finished third at the 2011 Texas State Amateur…A reinstated amateur…Got his amateur status back in February 2011…Attended both Southern Methodist University (1988 and 1989) and the University of North Texas, where he graduated in December of 1992…Played 10-12 events on the Buy.com Tour (now Nationwide Tour), but spent most of his time on Adams and Hooters tours…Account executive with MaximGroup…Married to wife Kelly and has four children: Cori (17), Cade (7), Christin (5), Carter (4)…Enjoys hunting and fishing, along with coaching son’s youth baseball team…Born Jan. 7, 1970 in Temple, Texas.

Michael Muehr, 39, Potomac Falls, Va. 

Advanced to the quarterfinals with a 3-and-2 win over Kris Mikkelsen…Competing in second U.S. Mid-Amateur (lost in second round in 2009 at The Kiawah Island Club)…Played in three U.S. Opens (missed cut in all three)…Lost in first round of 1989 U.S. Junior Amateur…Qualified for three U.S. Amateurs, the last in 2007…Reinstated amateur…Competed on PGA Tour and led 2001 Nissan Open at Riviera C.C. in Pacific Palisades, Calif., with eight holes to play, but finished T-13…Finished 121 st on PGA Tour money list in 2001…Played PGA Tour from 2001-03…Lowest competitive round is a 63 shot in third round of 2001 Nissan Open at Riviera C.C…Since regaining amateur status, has won 2007 Crump Cup and 2007 and 2009 Mid-Atlantic Amateur titles…Involved with the Capital City Charity Pro-Am that has raised more than $800,000 for cancer research…Tournament involves current PGA Tour players J.J. Henry, Brett Quigley (1987 U.S. Junior Amateur champion) and Joe Ogilvie…Played collegiately at Duke University (graduated in 1994)…Currently a financial advisor for Merrill Lynch…Married with three children, Mason, Morgan and Michael…Born Dec. 18, 1971 in Livingston, N.J.

Nathan Smith, 33, Pittsburgh, Pa. 

Advanced to the quarterfinals with a 2-and-1 win over Anthony Barrera…Shooting to become the first player to win four U.S. Mid-Amateur titles…Also won this championship in 2003, 2009 and 2010…His 2003 final against Bryan Norton ended after 8½ holes when Norton retired after tearing a calf muscle, but was 5 down in the match…Beat Tim Spitz in 2009 final and Tim Hogarth in last year’s final…Two-time USA Walker Cup participant…Helped USA to win at Merion Golf Club in 2009 and went 0-2-1 in recent Match at Royal Aberdeen Golf Club in Scotland, where the USA lost 14-12…Member of 2010 USA Copa de las Americas Team…Winner of 2011 Sunnehanna Amateur…Three-time winner of the Pennsylvania State Amateur (2002 at Oakmont C.C., 2007 and 2009)…First golfer to win the Pennsylvania Tournament of Champions, Pennsylvania Amateur and Pennsylvania Mid-Amateur in the same year (2007)…Recipient of 2007 William C. Fownes Jr. Award for Pennsylvania State Player of the Year…Runner-up at 2002 North and South Amateur at Pinehurst No. 2…Works as an investment advisor…Former Division III All-American at Allegheny College…Married to Dr. Nicole Bianco-Smith…Dad Larry, a retired school teacher, has caddied for him in all three previous Mid-Amateur wins…Born Aug. 6, 1978.

Michael Stamberger, 39, Plainfield, N.J. 

Advanced to the quarterfinals by defeating 60-year-old Paul Simson, the 2010 USGA Senior Amateur champion, 2 and 1…Qualified for the Mid-Amateur just five days before the start of the competition as New Jersey sectional was postponed three times due to weather…Competing in sixth U.S. Mid-Amateur…Advanced to the quarterfinals in 2008 at Milwaukee Country Club…Attended Old Dominion University and graduated in 1995…A reinstated amateur (1998)…Lowest competitive round is 65 shot in New Jersey Amateur and New York City Amateur…Won 2003 Metropolitan Golf Association Amateur…Won 2008 New Jersey State Golf Association Mid-Amateur…Runner-up at 2001 New Jersey Amateur and 2005 IKE Championship…Brother-in-law is stack and tilt instructor Mike Bennett…Managing director for institutional sales for BTIG…Has four children: Ainsley (10), Haley (8), Kylie (6) and Jack (2)…Born Jan. 22, 1972 in New Brunswick, N.J.

  

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