Storylines For 2014 APL


By Michael Trostel, USGA
July 13, 2014

Youngest Player: Issei Tanabe, 15, of Japan

Oldest Player: William Arnold, 57, of Anchorage, Alaska

States Represented (43): Alaska, Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Nevada, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin, Wyoming

Most Represented by State: California (26), Florida (12), Texas (8), Illinois (8), Hawaii (7), Ohio (6), Arizona (6), Wisconsin (6)

Countries Represented (13): The Bahamas, Brazil, Canada, England, Germany, Japan, India, Malaysia, The People’s Republic of China, Philippines, Singapore, South Africa, United States

Playing in First APL: 105

Most Times Qualified for APL (5): Herbie Aikens, 32, of Kingston, Mass.; Thomas Halla, 46, of Colgate, Wis.; Garrett Rank, 26, of Canada; and Jon Veneziano, 43, of Mount Dora, Fla.

Playing in First USGA Championship: 72

Most Times Qualified for USGA Championships (34): Sean Knapp, 52, of Oakmont, Pa.

Average Age of Field: 22.3

Mid-Amateurs (25 and older) in Field: 23

Individual Tidbits on Players in the Field:

Herbie Aikens, 32, of Kingston, Mass., started his own electrical business more than a decade ago. His first project was to do a single electrical outlet was for $267. Now his company does more than $8 million in business annually and has 30 employees. An avid Celtics fan, he’s had floor seats for home games the last five years. This is his fourth consecutive year playing in the U.S. Amateur Public Links. He’s also one of the tallest players in the field at 6’6”.

William Arnold, 57, of Anchorage, Alaska, does not have any holes-in-one, but has made two double eagles. At age 57, he is playing in his first USGA championship and has four grandchildren.

Chelso Barrett, 19, of Surry, N.H., was the runner-up at the 2011 U.S. Junior Amateur. Barrett lost to Jordan Spieth, 6 and 5, at Gold Mountain G.C. (Olympic Course). Barrett’s family owns Bretwood Golf Course in Keene, N.H., where Barrett qualified for the 2014 APL. He is already playing in his 10th USGA championship at age 19.

Zachary Bouchou, 18, of Forest, VA., was the runner-up at the 2013 North and South Amateur at Pinehurst No. 2.

Zach Burry, 18, of Quincy, Ill., has an uncle, Doug Dunakey, who played on the PGA Tour. While Dunakey was on the Nike Tour, he shot a round of 59. When he was age 5, Burry played catch with Justin Leonard at the Advil Western Open in Chicago.

Andrew Collins, 30, of Cincinnati, Ohio, is part Cherokee Indian and once jumped off the side of a mountain in Germany to paraglide down to a field.

Kolton Crawford, 22, of Mansfield, Texas, holds the record at a local Texas restaurant for eating 52 slices of pizza. Crawford was selected to the All-SEC team playing for the University of Arkansas.

Dylan Crowley, 21, of Glen Cove, N.Y., followed a 78 with a 64 to grab one of four qualifying spots for the 2014 APL at Bethpage State Park in Farmingdale, N.Y.

Chris Davis, 26, of Glendora, Calif., chipped in for eagle on the final hole of qualifying to make the field for the 2012 APL.

Ben-Marvin Egel, 21, of Germany, won the Big Ten’s 2013 Sportsmanship Award while playing for Purdue University.

Edward Figueroa, 20, of Naples, Fla., competed in the PGA Tour’s 2013 Puerto Rico Open, missing the cut with rounds of 76-73—149.

Brett Furutani, 30, of Hilo, Hawaii, is a pharmacist. He defeated his dentist and five-time APL participant, Chris Igawa, in a four-hole playoff in the Hilo qualifier to earn a spot in the 2014 APL field. Furutani had a dental appointment with Igawa the following day.

Donald Gabrelcik, 17, of Trinity, Fla., has caddied for his little brother in the U.S. Kids golf tournaments over the past three years.  Gabrelcik has also volunteered at the Valspar Championship at Innisbrook as a standard bearer.

Michael Gellerman, 21, lives in Sterling, Kan., about an hour west of Newton. He is a senior at the University of Oklahoma. In April 2014, he won the Wyoming Cowboy Classic becoming the first Sooner to win an individual title in three years. He is a three-time Kansas high school champion while playing at Sterling H.S. (2008, 2009, 2011) and was a member of the school’s choir for more than a decade.

Michael Greene, 26, lives in Overland Park, Kan., about 170 miles northeast of Newton. He grabbed the only available spot in the Kansas City qualifier finishing as medalist at 138, four strokes ahead of the nearest competitor.

Thomas Halla, 46, of Colgate, Wis., played in his first APL in 1988 at Jackson Hole (Wyo.) Golf and Tennis Club. He has been paired with his son, Charlie, in the final grouping of two Wisconsin state championships and recently took up curling.

Chase Hanna, 19, lives in Leawood, Kan., about 170 miles northeast of Sand Creek Station. Several of his family members, including his father, William, and grandparents, David and Olive Hanna, grew up in Newton. Hanna has played Sand Creek Station dozens of times. He is a sophomore at the University of Kansas, where he was a member of the golf team and notched two top-10 finishes in 2013-14. In 2013, he won the Kansas Amateur and Kansas Junior Amateur – the first player to accomplish that feat since 1961. While playing at Shawnee Mission East High School in Prairie Village, Kansas, Hanna won 12 tournaments. He holds the course record at three different golf courses, Meadowbrook Golf Club (64), in Prairie Village, Kansas; Eagle Bend Golf Course (64), in Lawrence, Kansas; and Meridian Hills Country Club (63), in Indianapolis. In 2012, Hanna spent a week in Haiti working with orphans under the care of The Global Orphan Project.

Kyle Henning, 22, of Brookfield, Wis., advanced to the quarterfinals of the 2013 APL at Laurel Hill Golf Club in Lorton, Va. Henning graduated Summa Cum Laude, was an Academic All-American and was the Male Athlete of the Year in 2014 at Valparaiso University.

Ben Hogenkamp, 22, of Minster, Ohio, served as a P.J. Boatwright Intern for the United States Golf Association in 2013. During that summer, Hogenkamp worked for the Miami Valley Golf Association at Beavercreek Golf Club – the same course where he ended up qualifying for the 2014 APL. Hogenkamp is also the son of a funeral home director and he lived upstairs in the funeral home for the first 14 years of his life.

Sam Horsfield, 17, of England, won the Florida State Amateur by 11 strokes in 2013. He once played in a putting competition with Ian Poulter, Graeme McDowell, Justin Rose and Henrik Stenson. Poulter has mentioned Horsfield in several of his Tweets. He lost in the third round of the 2013 APL.

Richard Kim, 22, of Los Angeles, Calif., made a 45-foot birdie putt on the ninth hole to shoot 29 on the first nine of his second round at the 2014 APL qualifier at Los Serranos Golf and Country Club in Chino Hills, Calif. He uses quarters from the 1960s to mark his golf ball because the “60s” give him a good number to aim for.

Sean Knapp, 51, of Oakmont, Pa., advanced to the third round of the 2013 APL. He lost to Tiger Woods in 1995 U.S. Amateur, was a semi-finalist in the 2008 and 2010 U.S. Mid-Amateur and was a member of winning USGA State Team from Pennsylvania in 2009 and 2012. Knapp was the best man in four-time U.S. Mid-Amateur champion Nathan Smith's wedding. He was also an All-State basketball player in Pennsylvania in 1980.

Dylan Kornberg, 20, of Tucson, Az., shot a 27 on the first nine of his first round of qualifying for the 2014 APL at Aguila Golf Course in Phoenix.

Bret Lawrence, 37, of Bethlehem, Conn., has visited all 50 states. His final state to cross off the list was Hawaii in 2003.

Philip Lee, 28, of Nashville, Tenn., is dating Kylene Pulley, an assistant pro at the Golf Club of Tennessee who has played in 3 WAPL championships, one U.S. Women’s Amateur and the 2012 U.S. Women’s Open.

Brandon Matthews, 19, of Dupont, Pa., was a quarterfinalist in the 2013 U.S. Amateur at The Country Club (Brookline).

Andrew McCain, 20, of New Port Richey, Fla., was a downhill ski racer. His younger brother, Matthew, has Down syndrome and Andrew credits Matthew as being a real inspiration to him. Andrew has also played with Lee Janzen and lived in Brisbane, Australia for more than three years.

Ross Miller, 21, of Maple Grove, Minn., has raised money for several cancer charities by playing 24 consecutive hours of golf one day each year.

Ted Moon, 21, of Lilburn, Ga., speaks both Korean and English fluently. He made his first hole-in-one last week on July 5 while playing with his father and uncle.

Jordan Niebrugge, 20, of Mequon, Wis., is the defending APL champion. He defeated Michael Kim, 1 up, in the 36-hole final at Laurel Hill Golf Club in Lorton, Va. In addition to winning the APL, Niebrugge won the Wisconsin State Amateur and the Wisconsin State Match Play Championship in 2013. On July 13, he finished T-27 in the PGA Tour’s John Deere Classic shooting a 10-under 274 over 72 holes.

John Oda, 18, of Honolulu, Hawaii, broke the Hawaii State Amateur Championship 36-hole record by six strokes in 2013. He played in the PGA Tour’s Sony Open in 2012 and 2014, missing the cut on both occasions. Oda also plays the ukulele.

Easton Paxton, 15, of Riverton, Wyo., won the Wyoming State Match Play Championship and advanced to U.S. Open sectional qualifying in 2014. Paxton’s mother passed away on July 17, 2013, after a long battle with brain cancer.

Calvin Pearson, 22, of South Africa, attends Wichita State University. He is originally from Durban, South Africa and calls his greatest golf thrill advancing to the quarterfinals of the South African Amateur.

Trent Peterson, 27, of Eagan, Minn., works the night shift as a Registered Nurse for Allina Health in Minnesota. He was a finalist for the 2009 Byron Nelson Award while playing at South Dakota State University.

Garren Poirier, 33, of Killington, Vt., started his own photography business in 2006. He grew up in a U.S. Army family and lived in seven states and three countries as a child. After college, Poirier stopped playing the game for four years before picking it back up in 2005.

Rohan Ramnath, 21, of Weston, Fla., was born in India and now is a junior at Harvard University where he won his first collegiate event this past year.

Garrett Rank, 26, of Canada, was the stroke-play medalist at the 2013 APL. Rank finished runner-up to Nathan Smith in the 2012 U.S. Mid-Amateur. He notched a second place finish in the 2014 Players Amateur on Sunday, July 13 and immediately hopped on a plane to be at Sand Creek Station for his 8:20 a.m. starting time on Monday, July 14 in the APL. Rank works as a minor league hockey referee during the winter and is a cancer survivor.

Matt Record, 22, of Carlsbad, Calif., won the state championship all four years at Chaparral High School in Arizona (2007-10) and added another national championship at South Mountain Community College in 2012. He had emergency surgery on his throat this past winter.

Devaughn Robinson, 25, of The Bahamas, is one of eight children.

Kyle Rodes, 19, of Plymouth, Mich., credits his participation in competitive golf to breaking his femur in 8th grade, which led to three knee surgeries.

Matthew Rushton, 19, of South Africa, was born in Durban, South Africa and began playing golf at age 10 in India.

Nick Tremps, 21, of Williamsburg, Va., broke his arm playing basketball when he was 12 years old and, with the cast on, won two golf tournaments.

Jon Veneziano, 42, of Mount Dora, Fla., was a semifinalist in the 1988 U.S. Junior Amateur and was a member of the Florida squad that finished runner-up in the 2010 USGA State Team Championship. Veneziano shot 59 in a 2002 tournament at Country Club of Mount Dora (Fla.) and was elected into the University of Hartford Athletics Hall of Fame.

John Wright, 46, of Aurora, Ill., played Augusta National Golf Club two weeks before the 2014 Masters and met Tiger Woods as he was coming out of the clubhouse. Wright has two children, Kate, 14, and Will, 4, and just started a new career in Insurance sales.

 

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