38th U.S. Mid-Amateur: Get to Know the Field
September 19, 2018 | Charlotte, N.C.
By Brian DePasquale, USGA
Among the 264 golfers in the 2018 U.S. Mid-Amateur field, there are:
Oldest Competitors: Dave Ryan (64, born 3-27-54), Randal Lewis (61, born 5-8-57), Curtis Skinner (61, born 6-21-57), Craig Steinberg (60, born 3-10-58)
Youngest Competitors: Luke Waggoner (25, born 8-1-93), Zac Lewis (25, born 6-3-93), Stephen Behr (25, born 4-20-93), Ben Warnquist (25, born 3-26-93), Tony Albano Jr. (25, born 3-20-93)
Average Age of Field: 36.60
U.S. States Represented – There are 40 states and the District of Columbia represented in the 2018 U.S. Mid-Amateur: California (31), Florida (19), North Carolina (19), Texas (18), Georgia (12), Illinois (12), New York (12), Ohio (9), Arizona (8), Pennsylvania (8), Virginia (8), Michigan (7), Iowa (6), Missouri (6), Connecticut (5), Maryland (5), Massachusetts (5), New Jersey (5), Colorado (4), Indiana (4), Kentucky (4), Louisiana (4), Minnesota (4), South Carolina (4), Tennessee (4), Utah (4), Washington (4), Oregon (3), Alabama (2), Idaho (2), Mississippi (2), Nebraska (2), Nevada (2), New Hampshire (2), Oklahoma (2), West Virginia (2), Wisconsin (2), Kansas (1), Maine (1), South Dakota (1) and District of Columbia (1).
International – There are eight countries represented in the 2018 U.S. Mid-Amateur: United States (256), Canada (2), Argentina (1), Bahamas (1), Belgium (1), England (1), Germany (1) and Wales (1).
USGA Champions (11): Stewart Hagestad (2016 U.S. Mid-Amateur), Scott Harvey (2014 U.S. Mid-Amateur), Sean Knapp (2017 U.S. Senior Amateur), Randal Lewis (2011 U.S. Mid-Amateur), Michael McCoy (2013 U.S. Mid-Amateur), Matt Parziale (2017 U.S. Mid-Amateur), Dave Ryan (2016 U.S. Senior Amateur), Sammy Schmitz (2015 U.S. Mid-Amateur), Nathan Smith (2003, 2009, 2010, 2012 U.S. Mid-Amateur; 2015 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball), Jeff Wilson (2018 U.S. Senior Amateur), Steve Wilson (2008 U.S. Mid-Amateur)
USGA Runners-Up (13): Sherrill Britt (2015 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball), Chip Brooke (2018 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball), Kenny Cook (2011 U.S. Mid-Amateur), Marc Dull (2015 U.S. Mid-Amateur, 2018 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball), Scott Harvey (2016 U.S. Mid-Amateur), Sean Knapp (2018 U.S. Senior Amateur), Randal Lewis (1996 U.S. Mid-Amateur), Todd Mitchell (2008 U.S. Mid-Amateur), Josh Nichols (2017 U.S. Mid-Amateur), Brad Nurski (2014 U.S. Mid-Amateur), Curtis Skinner (2012 U.S. Senior Amateur), Matthew Sughrue (2016 U.S. Senior Amateur), Ben Warnquist (2016 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball).
Players in Field with Most U.S. Mid-Amateur Appearances (2018 included) – Michael McCoy (20), Sean Knapp (17), Randal Lewis (16), Gene Elliott (14), Nathan Smith (14), Craig Steinberg (12), Jeff Wilson (12), Scott Harvey (11), Bryan Hoops (10), James Scorse (10).
Played in 2018 U.S. Open (2): Stewart Hagestad, Matt Parziale
Played in 2018 U.S. Senior Open (3): Sean Knapp, Michael McCoy, Jeff Wilson
Played in 2018 U.S. Amateur (20): Joe Alfieri, Stephen Behr, Darin Goldstein, Stewart Hagestad, Scott Harvey, Sean Knapp, Jacob Koppenberg, Damon Krause, Michael McCoy, Josh Nichols, Kevin O’Connell, Sam O’Dell, Matt Parziale, Dave Ryan, Corby Segal, Brad Tilley, Charles Waddell, J.R. Warthen, Jeff Wilson, Brett Young
Played in 2018 U.S. Senior Amateur (7): Gene Elliott, Sean Knapp, Michael McCoy, Dave Ryan, Matthew Sughrue, Joe Palmer, Jeff Wilson
Played in 2018 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball (30): Joe Alfieri, Danny Amundson, David Bolen, Sherrill Britt, Chip Brooke, Derek Busby, Don Carpenter, Patrick Christovich, Kenny Cook, David Denham, Marc Dull, Darin Goldstein, Keith Guest, Scott Harvey, Daniel Hurley, Josh Irving, Sean Knapp, Michael Martin, Jamie Miller, Todd Mitchell, David Noll Jr., Brad Nurski, Sean Rowen, Scott Shingler, Nathan Smith, Scott Strickland, Brad Tilley, Brett Viboch, Ben Warnquist, Justin Young
Past Walker Cup competitors (5): Nick Cassini, Stewart Hagestad, Scott Harvey, Michael McCoy, Nathan Smith
Ian Albrecht, 29, of Sonoma, Calif., is the head coach of the football and golf teams at The Branson School. Albrecht, who was a wide receiver at the University of California-Berkeley from 2007-2009 and was teammates with NFL All-Pro receiver DeSean Jackson, started the school’s eight-man football team from the ground level in 2016. Albrecht, who earned all-metro and all-league honors in football and golf as a scholastic athlete, is competing in his first USGA championship.
Joe Alfieri, 49, of Lutz, Fla., has competed in 18 USGA championships and reached the Round of 32 in four of five U.S. Mid-Amateurs played (2013, 2015, 2016, 2017). Alfieri is a reinstated amateur who played on the Nationwide Tour (now Web.com Tour) from 2005 to 2007, notching six top-25 finishes. Alfieri, who is a vice president of a graphic design services company, has won the Florida State Match Play, Mid-Amateur and Four-Ball championships.
Scott Anderson, 36, of Columbus, Ohio, reached the quarterfinals in last year’s U.S. Mid-Amateur. Anderson, who is employed as a master club fitter and was a competitive downhill ski racer until age 16, competed on professional tours for five years before regaining his amateur status in 2012. Anderson, who won the 2016 Ohio Mid-Amateur, led Ohio State to the 2004 Big Ten Conference title and earned all-Big Ten honors. He also qualified for the 2001 U.S. Amateur.
Stephan Behr, 25, of Atlanta, Ga., earned his undergraduate degree in accounting from Clemson University and became a risk consultant for Ernst & Young. Although he was a second-team All-American and a first-team All-Atlantic Coast Conference selection for the Tigers in 2016, Behr chose not to turn professional. Behr, who became the first Clemson player to receive the Byron Nelson Award, has competed in two USGA championships (2010 U.S. Junior Amateur, 2018 U.S. Amateur). His father, Steve, is the head golf professional at Florence (S.C.) Country Club.
Nick Biesecker, 42, of Staunton, Va., is the managing director for a sports agency that represents golfers on all professional tours, including Jhonattan Vegas, Lexi Thompson and Paul Goydos. Bisecker, who played at West Davidson (N.C.) High School and Southern Methodist University, has won three Virginia State Mid-Amateurs. He has competed in three USGA championships, including two U.S. Mid-Amateurs. Biesecker advanced to the Round of 16 in the 2011 U.S. Mid-Amateur at Shadow Hawk Golf Club.
Brett Boner, 44, of Charlotte, N.C., qualified for his second U.S. Mid-Amateur by carding a 67 to earn medalist honors in the Blue Bell, Pa., sectional. Boner, whose brother-in-law, Stephen Woodward, is also in the field, advanced to match play in the 2016 Mid-Amateur. Boner, a financial advisor who is a member at Carolina Golf Club, this year’s stroke play co-host course, and Woodward, qualified as team for the 2016 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball at Winged Foot Golf Club. Boner won his second Charlotte City Amateur by one stroke at Charlotte Country Club on Aug. 26.
Stefan Brewer, 28, of Charlotte, N.C., advanced to his first U.S. Mid-Amateur through the Monroe, N.C., sectional qualifier. He competed in the 2012 U.S. Amateur and was a two-time All-Colonial Athletic Association selection and three-time NCAA regional qualifier at UNC-Wilmington. Brewer, who was chosen 2010 CAA Rookie of the Year, led nearby Providence High School to four consecutive Class 4A regional crowns. He works as a real estate broker.
Ryan Brimley, 27, of Herriman, Utah, has competed in three U.S. Mid-Amateurs and advanced to match play in 2015. Brimley, who is an assets manager for a construction company, captured the 2015 Utah Mid-Amateur title. Brimley, who was first-team all-state in both golf and basketball in high school, went on to play college basketball at Southern Utah University, where he averaged 9.4 points as a senior.
Sherrill Britt, 53, of West End, N.C., teamed with partner Greg Earnhardt as the runners-up in the 2015 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball at The Olympic Club. Britt has played in seven USGA championships and reached match play in last year’s U.S. Mid-Amateur. Britt, who is a self-employed home building contractor, was influenced by Peggy Kirk Bell, the USGA’s Bob Jones Award recipient in 1990.
Buck Brittain, 51, of Tazewell, Va., is a general district court judge in Virginia’s 29th District. He earned his B.S. in computer science from Virginia Tech and a J.D. from the University of Richmond prior to serving 18 years as a firm attorney. Brittain, who competed in the 2012 USGA Men’s State Team Championship, won the 2017 Senior Open of Virginia and was runner-up in the 2012 Virginia State Amateur.
Don Carpenter, 47, of Athens, Ga., is a certified public account who works for the University of Georgia’s internal auditing division. Carpenter, who served on a U.S. Navy destroyer (USS Moosbrugger) for four years, from 1990-94, played as a collegian at Florida State. He spent five years competing professionally on the Hooters Tour before regaining his amateur status in 2010. He and partner Keith Guest advanced to match play in this year’s U.S. Amateur Four-Ball.
Nick Cassini, 39, of Roswell, Ga., is the son of Igor Cassini, a former columnist for the Hearst newspaper chain, and the nephew of Oleg Cassini, a famous fashion designer. Cassini, who was a member of the 2001 USA Walker Cup Team, regained his amateur status in October 2017 after playing professionally on the Nationwide (now Web.com) and Hooters tours. He was a first-team All-American and Southeastern Conference player of the year at the University of Georgia and helped the Bulldogs win the 1999 NCAA Championship.
Patrick Christovich, 40, of New Orleans, La., has competed in 14 USGA championship and four U.S. Mid-Amateurs. He advanced to the quarterfinals in 2014 and reached match play in 2012 and 2013. Christovich, a realtor, had advanced with partner Garrett Rank to at least the quarterfinals in three consecutive U.S. Amateur Four-Balls. He has claimed four Louisiana Mid-Amateur titles and been runner-up three times. In 2012, Christovich also won the Louisiana State Amateur.
Claudio Consul, 35, of Germany, is playing in his third consecutive U.S. Mid-Amateur and advanced to the Round of 16 in 2016. Consul, who competed against 2014 U.S. Open champion Martin Kaymer as a junior golfer, earned his doctorate in engineering from the University of Oxford in England. In 2018, he advanced to the Round of 32 in the Amateur Championship, conducted by The R&A. He won the 2002 German Amateur, 2004 Italian Amateur and 2016 European Mid-Amateur.
Kenny Cook, 38, of Noblesville, Ind., was the runner-up to Randal Lewis in the 2011 U.S. Mid-Amateur. Cook, who works as a consultant, has reached match play in all five Mid-Amateurs in which he has played. He has competed in 14 USGA championships, including four U.S. Amateurs. His wife, Lisa, has played in three U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateurs (2011, 2013, 2014).
Tyler Crawford, 45, of Indio, Calif., reached the quarterfinals in last year’s U.S. Mid-Amateur. He combined for 10 birdies in 25 holes played in the Rounds of 32 and 16 to advance in the match-play bracket. Crawford has competed in eight USGA championship, including six U.S. Mid-Amateurs. Crawford, who works as a real estate private equity lender, earned first-team All-Southeastern Conference honors at Mississippi State University in 1994.
Robert Davidge, 34, of Columbus, Ohio, comes from a family of athletes. His father, Bill, played hockey at Ohio State University, worked as a coach and NHL scout, and has been a broadcaster for the NHL’s Columbus Blue Jackets. His late mother, LeAnn, was a standout tennis athlete and coach and is a member of Ohio State’s athletic hall of fame. Davidge, whose grandfather, Bob, was a receiver on the Ohio State football team from 1950-1952, is a financial planner who is competing in his first USGA championship.
Marc Dull, 32, of Winter Haven, Fla., was the 2015 U.S. Mid-Amateur runner-up to Sammy Schmitz. Dull, who is a caddie at Streamsong (Fla.) Resort and owns a lawn service company, also reached the finals of the 2018 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball with partner Chip Brooke, losing to Cole Hammer and Garrett Barber, 4 and 3. Dull and Brooke also reached the U.S. Amateur Four-Ball semifinals the previous year. Dull, who has played in eight USGA championships, is the great grandson of two-time U.S. Senior Amateur champion Dexter Daniels.
Barry Dyche, 42, of Charlotte, N.C., won the 2015 Charlotte City Amateur at Charlotte Country Club by two strokes with a 54-hole score of 5-under 208. Dyche, who lost to Justin Thomas in the Round of 64 in the 2012 U.S. Amateur, has competed in two U.S. Mid-Amateurs (2011, 2012). Dyche, who works in finance for an investment company, played at Florida State University from 1994-97.
Kenny Ebalo, 35, of Las Vegas, Nev., has competed in five USGA championships, including two U.S. Mid-Amateurs (2013, 2014). Ebalo, who is an insurance broker and specializes in employee benefits, managed PGA Tour player Ryan Moore, a three-time USGA champion, from 2011-15. Ebalo, who has caddied for U.S. Open champions Gary Player and Lee Janzen, serves on the boards of the Nevada State Golf Association and Southern Nevada Junior Golf Association.
Gene Elliott, 56, of West Des Moines, Iowa, has competed in 30 USGA championships and 13 U.S. Mid-Amateurs. Elliott, who has reached match play in 12 of 13 U.S. Mid-Amateurs played, won this year’s Golfweek Senior National Match Play and the George C. Thomas Senior Invitational. He also finished third in the 2018 Seniors Amateur, conducted by The R&A. Elliott, who was a 2006 U.S. Mid-Amateur quarterfinalist, owns a sanitation and street equipment company, and underwent open-heart surgery in 2000. He was inducted into the Iowa Golf Hall of Fame in 2012.
Danny Evelyn, 30, of Charlotte, N.C., qualified for his first USGA championship with a 66 to earn medalist honors at the Snow Hill, N.C., sectional. His brother, Matt, also advanced to this year’s field in a Colorado qualifier. Danny, who is a sales representative for a healthcare group, helped Florida Southern University claim the 2010 NCAA Division II title and was an all-region and all-conference selection.
Matt Evelyn, 33, of Denver, Colo., qualified for his first USGA championship through the Lone Tree, Colo., sectional. His brother, Danny, was the medalist in a North Carolina qualifier and will also play in this year’s U.S. Mid-Amateur. Matt, who studied finance at the University of Florida, works as an employee benefits consultant. Matt’s high school teammate, Robbie Wight, is also in the field. They attended Cardinal Newman High just a few years ahead of two-time U.S. Open champion Brooks Koepka.
Anthony Fowler, 31, of Chicago, Ill., is an associate professor in the University of Chicago’s Harris School of Public Policy. Fowler, who qualified for his first USGA championship, teaches and conducts research on elections, the political process and data science. Fowler, who competed at the Division III level for Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), has a Ph.D. in political science from Harvard University. He grew up in San Diego, Calif. and played junior golf against PGA Tour standouts Rickie Fowler, Kevin Chappell and Jamie Lovemark.
Stewart Hagestad, 27, of Newport Beach, Calif., won the 2016 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship by defeating Scott Harvey in 37 holes and was a member of the winning 2017 USA Walker Cup Team. Hagestad, who became the second-youngest Mid-Amateur champion, produced the largest comeback victory (4 down with 5 holes to play) since a 36-hole final was introduced in 2001. Hagestad, who advanced to the Round of 16 in this year’s U.S. Amateur at Pebble Beach (Calif.) Golf Links, has played in two U.S. Opens (2017, 2018) and was the low amateur in the 2017 Masters Tournament, tying for 36th.
Mark Harrell, 33, of Lookout Mountain, Ga., advanced to the semifinals in the 2017 U.S. Mid-Amateur. Harrell, who has competed in eight USGA championships, missed the 36-hole cut by one stroke in the 2007 U.S. Open at Oakmont (Pa.) Country Club and was the medalist in the 2007 U.S. Amateur Public Links. Harrell, who also competed in three U.S. Amateurs from 2005-2007, is the chief financial officer for a logistics company. He played on the 2007-2008 University at Alabama team with Hunter Hamrick and Michael Thompson, the runner-up in the 2007 U.S. Amateur and 2012 U.S. Open.
Scott Harvey, 40, of Greensboro, N.C., has competed in 28 USGA championships, including 10 U.S. Mid-Amateurs. He won the 2014 U.S. Mid-Amateur at Saucon Valley Country Club in Bethlehem, Pa., and was the runner-up to Stewart Hagestad in 2016. Harvey, a property manager, has a 20-9 match-play Mid-Amateur record. He has reached match play in four U.S. Amateur Four-Balls with partner Todd Mitchell and was a member of the 2015 USA Walker Cup Team. In 2017, Harvey qualified for his first U.S. Open at Erin Hills.
Ben Hayes, 30, of Jacksonville, Fla., is a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy who pilots a P-8A Poseidon aircraft and is a weapons and tactics instructor for Maritime Patrol and Reconnaissance. Hayes, who is competing in his first USGA championship, won the Armed Forces Championship by eight strokes in 2017. He was a two-time all-region and All-Patriot League selection at the U.S. Naval Academy.
Tony Hejna, 50, of Cleveland, Ohio, was chosen in the third round of the 1986 National Hockey League Draft by the St. Louis Blues. Hejna, who was a two-time captain and scored 123 career points as a collegian at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), won the Turner Cup in his lone season with the IHL’s Peoria Rivermen but then retired due to multiple back surgeries. Hejna, who works in banking, has played in six USGA championships and four U.S. Mid-Amateurs.
Daniel Hurley, 33, of Washington, D.C., was one of three players to qualify from the Carlisle, Pa., sectional after making two birdies over his last four holes to post a 2-under 69. Hurley, who works as a management consultant, is the brother of PGA Tour player Billy Hurley, who won the 2016 Quicken Loans National and was a member of the 2005 USA Walker Cup Team. Daniel, who competed in the 2011 U.S. Mid-Amateur, was an all-conference selection at George Mason University.
Joshua Irving, 31, of Dallas, Texas, is competing in his fifth consecutive U.S. Mid-Amateur and has advanced to the quarterfinals three times (2015, 2016, 2017). Irving, who has played in seven USGA championships, also reached match play with partner Will Osborne in the 2017 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball. Irving, who works as a state manager for a company that imports vodka, is a two-time state player of the year. He was a two-time captain of the Stephen F. Austin University team.
Cole Isban, 33, of Charlotte, N.C., advanced to his first U.S. Mid-Amateur through the Monroe, N.C., sectional qualifier. Isban earned All-Midwest Region and All-Big East Conference recognition at the University of Notre Dame from 2003-2007. He competed in three U.S. Amateurs (2004-2006) and advanced to match play in two Western Amateurs (2004, 2005). Isban is a product leader for a company that develops hydraulic technologies and automated process systems for food and beverage, industrial, and power and energy markets.
Taylor Klopp, 25, of Portland, Ore., qualified for his first USGA championship by earning co-medalist honors with a 68 in the Lake Oswego, Ore., sectional. His fiancée, Caroline Inglis, is in her first full year on the LPGA Tour. Inglis, who played at the University of Oregon and won the 2015 Pac-12 Conference title, competed in the 2016 U.S. Women’s Open. Klopp, a construction materials supplier, played at Division III Linfield College and was chosen 2015 Northwest Conference player of the year.
Sean Knapp, 56, of Oakmont, Pa., won the 2017 U.S. Senior Amateur and was the runner-up to Jeff Wilson in 2018. Knapp, who caddied at Oakmont Country Club, has competed in 46 USGA championships, including 16 U.S. Mid-Amateurs. He advanced to the semifinals in 2008 and 2010. Knapp lost to eventual champion Tiger Woods in the Round of 16 of the 1995 U.S. Amateur and tied for 60th in the 2012 U.S. Senior Open. Knapp, who is a 14-time Western Pennsylvania Golf Association Player of the Year, is a member of the Indiana University of Pennsylvania athletic hall of fame.
Jacob Koppenberg, 31, of Bellingham, Wash., is a volunteer assistant golf coach at his alma mater, Western Washington University, and works in business development for a communications services company. He has competed in four U.S. Amateurs, advancing to the Round of 32 in 2008, when he lost to Rickie Fowler. Koppenberg was a two-time All-American and twice Great Northwest Athletic Conference Player of the Year as a collegian.
Congratulations to Jacob Rohde, Jacob Koppenberg, Michael Strickland and Reid Hatley on advancing to the #USMidAm Championship after today's @USGA qualifier at @TumbleCreekClub.— Washington State Golf Association (WSGA) (@theWSGA) August 24, 2018
📰 | https://t.co/TiRSJqgXv6 pic.twitter.com/pIPiUw7fGR
Randal Lewis, 61, of Alma, Mich., has competed in 32 USGA championships and 15 U.S. Mid-Amateurs. He became the oldest winner (age 54) in U.S. Mid-Amateur history by defeating Kenny Cook, 3 and 2, at Shadow Hawk Golf Club in 2011. Lewis, who has a 21-9 match-play Mid-Amateur record, was named the Michigan Golf Association’s Player of the Decade for the 1990s and was inducted in the Michigan Golf Hall of Fame in 2009. He has also played in nine U.S. Amateurs and two U.S. Senior Opens.
Matthew Mattare, 32, of Jersey City, N.J., has competed in four U.S. Mid-Amateurs. He qualified through sectional play when he holed a 123-yard gap wedge for eagle on the first playoff hole. Mattare reached the quarterfinals of the 2012 U.S. Mid-Amateur, his first USGA championship, and was the medalist the following year. Mattare, who works as a financial advisor, advanced to the Round of 16 in 2014 at Saucon Valley Country Club, where his father, Gene, is the general manager and director of golf. Saucon Valley will host the 2022 U.S. Senior Open, its eighth USGA championship.
Michael McCoy, 56, of Des Moines, Iowa, has competed in 56 USGA championships, including 19 U.S. Mid-Amateurs. He was the low amateur in the 2014 and 2015 U.S. Senior Opens and in 2013 was the second-oldest winner of the U.S. Mid-Amateur when he defeated Bill Williamson, 8 and 6, in the 36-hole final at the Country Club of Birmingham (Ala.). McCoy, who owns a 27-13 match-play Mid-Amateur record, advanced to the semifinals in this year’s U.S. Senior Amateur. A member of the 2015 USA Walker Cup Team, McCoy works in the insurance business and is a member of the Iowa Golf Hall of Fame.
Todd Mitchell, 40, of Bloomington, Ill., has competed in 27 USGA championships and eight U.S. Mid-Amateurs. He was the 2008 U.S. Mid-Amateur runner-up to Steve Wilson and advanced to the quarterfinals in 2013. Mitchell, who works as an insurance agent and did not play college golf, was a shortstop at Illinois State University and was chosen in the 14th round of the 1999 Major League Baseball Draft by the New York Yankees. He and his partner, Scott Harvey, have advanced to match play in four consecutive U.S. Amateur Four-Balls, including the semifinals in 2015 at The Olympic Club.
Kevin Moore, 36, of Athens, Ga., is an associate professor of mathematics education at the University of Georgia. He received a National Science Foundation grant to study the increase of quantitative reasoning in the teaching and learning of mathematics. Moore, who shot a 66, his lowest competitive round, to earn co-medalist in the Watchung, N.J. sectional, played at the University of Akron from 2002-2004. He competed in the 1999 U.S. Junior Amateur.
Josh Nichols, 27, of Apex, N.C., was the runner-up to Matt Parziale in the 2017 U.S. Mid-Amateur at Capital City Club’s Crabapple Course. Nichols, who was competing in his second consecutive Mid-Amateur, works as a wedding caterer. In 2017, he won the Carolinas Open and Triad Amateur, while finishing fifth in the North Carolina Amateur. Nichols is a 2013 Appalachian State graduate, where he was a four-year member of the golf team.
Brad Nurski, 39, of St. Joseph, Mo., was the runner-up to Scott Harvey and shared medalist honors in the 2014 U.S. Mid-Amateur. He has played in 14 USGA championships and advanced to the Round of 16 in last year’s Mid-Amateur. Nurski, who also reached match play in the 2018 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball with partner Skip Berkmeyer, works as a conductor and switchman for Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) Railway. In 2018, he claimed his third Missouri Golf Association State Amateur title.
Kevin O’Connell, 30, of Cary, N.C., has competed in four USGA championships, including this year’s U.S. Amateur at Pebble Beach Golf Links and advancing to match play in the 2016 U.S. Mid-Amateur. O’Connell, who works for a club manufacturer, earned All-America and All-Atlantic Conference honors at the University of North Carolina. O’Connell, who was the 2008 ACC rookie of the year, has had a solid summer He tied for sixth in the Porter Cup, tied for fourth in the Carolinas Mid-Amateur and tied for third in the North Carolina Mid-Amateur at Ballantyne Country Club in Charlotte, N.C., on Sept. 9.
Sam O’Dell, 40, of Hurricane, W.Va., has a family and cosmetic dentistry practice. He graduated from the West Virginia University School of Dentistry in 2005. O’Dell, who has competed in nine USGA championships, including four U.S. Mid-Amateurs, has won four state amateur and five state mid-amateur championships. O’Dell, who earned all-conference and all-academic recognition at Marshall University, reached the Round of 16 in last year’s U.S. Mid-Amateur.
Jeffrey Osberg, 34, of Bryn Mawr, Pa., has played in eight USGA championships, including four U.S. Mid-Amateurs. Osberg, a certified public accountant, advanced to match play in the 2012 U.S. Amateur and was two strokes behind medalist Bobby Wyatt. Osberg is a two-time Golf Association of Philadelphia player of the year and won the 2014 Philadelphia Amateur. Osberg, who has endured two back surgeries, was a member of Guilford College’s 2005 NCAA Division III championship team.
Matt Parziale, 31, of Brockton, Mass., won the 2017 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship by defeating Josh Nichols, 8 and 6, at Capital City Club. Parziale became the first Mid-Amateur champion to earn a full exemption into the following year’s U.S. Open. His margin of victory matched the third-largest in championship history. Parziale, a firefighter with the Brockton Fire Department, and Luis Gagne were the low amateurs in the 2018 U.S. Open, tying for 48th at Shinnecock Hills Golf Club. Parziale, who was reinstated as an amateur five years ago and has played in 11 USGA championships, competed in the 2018 Masters and reached the quarterfinals of this year’s Massachusetts State Amateur.
Kevin Quinn, 52, of Needham, Mass., has competed in 18 USGA championships, including seven U.S. Mid-Amateurs. Quinn, who works in commercial real estate, captured the 1999 Massachusetts Open title and won the 2002 New England Amateur 36 years after his father, Fran Sr., claimed the same title. His brother, Fran Jr., competes on the PGA Tour Champions. He has won four Nationwide Tour and two Asian Tour events and played in four U.S. Opens.
Jay Reynolds, 35, of Austin, Texas, is a tour manager for musician and singer/songwriter Monte Montgomery and American punk rock band NOFX and manages vacation rental properties. Reynolds, who is also an international knot-throwing champion, has competed in seven USGA championships. Reynolds, who was a college teammate of PGA Tour player Spencer Levin at New Mexico, advanced to match play in the 2003 U.S. Amateur and two U.S. Amateur Public Links (2003, 2004).
Jerry Richardson Jr., 33, of Cary, N.C., is competing in his second USGA championship and first since advancing to match play in the 2002 U.S. Junior Amateur. Richardson, who earned All-Atlantic Coast Conference honors at North Carolina State University, won the 2005 and 2007 North Carolina State Amateurs. He played the professional mini-tour circuit for five years and tied for 49th in the PGA Tour’s 2010 Wyndham Championship. Richardson regained his amateur status in 2014.
Devaughn Robinson, 30, of The Bahamas, is a mechanical designer for an analytical instruments company. He advanced to the Round of 16 in last year’s U.S. Mid-Amateur and has competed in three Latin America Amateur Championships. Robinson, who played in the 2014 U.S. Amateur Public Links and won the 2016 Bahamas Amateur, was an All-Southwestern Athletic Conference selection at Texas Southern University. He recorded three top-10 finishes in the SWAC Championship and shared runner-up honors in 2009.
Dave Ryan, 64, of Taylorville, Ill., is the oldest player in the 2018 U.S. Mid-Amateur field. He won the 2016 U.S. Senior Amateur Championship and advanced to this year’s Round of 16. On his way to the title, he recorded the first double eagle in championship history when he made a hole-in-one on a par 4 in his Round-of-16 match against Paul Simson. Ryan, who is a six-time Illinois State Senior Player of the Year, has competed in 25 USGA championships. Ryan, who has reached match play in two Mid-Amateurs (1998, 2015), has played in four U.S. Senior Opens and made the 36-hole cut in 2015 at Del Paso Country Club.
Kyler Sauer, 27, of Valencia, Calif., is a firefighter for the city of Burbank. Sauer, who competed in the 2013 U.S. Amateur, played on the Mackenzie Tour as a professional for a brief period before regaining his amateur status last year. Sauer was a member of the Cal State-Northridge team and was the 2014 Big West Conference runner-up. His father, Rich, spent two years in the Milwaukee Brewers’ minor league system as a pitcher/first baseman.
Sammy Schmitz, 38, of Farmington, Minn., won the 2015 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship. Schmitz recorded the second known ace on a par 4 in USGA championship history when he holed his tee shot on No. 15 at John’s Island Club’s West Course in the championship match. Schmitz, who works as a manufacturer’s representative, has competed in eight USGA championships, including five U.S. Mid-Amateurs.
Corby Segal, 47, of Santa Clarita, Calif., is a PGA Tour caddie who is currently working with Brandon Hagy but has also carried for Brandt Jobe, Woody Austin and Briny Baird. Segal, who advanced to the Round of 16 in last year’s U.S. Mid-Amateur, has competed in 12 USGA championships. Segal, a 2012 U.S. Mid-Amateur quarterfinalist, won the 2016 Southern California Golf Association Mid-Amateur when he made an 18-foot par putt on the final hole.
Scott Shingler, 46, of Haymarket, Va., has competed in 10 USGA championship, including three U.S. Mid-Amateurs. Shingler, who works as a dental assistant and reached match play in the 2013 Mid-Amateur, won the 2011 Virginia State Amateur and 2010 Virginia State Mid-Amateur. Shingler, a reinstated amateur who competed on the Golden Bear Tour and is a three-time Virginia State Golf Association player of the year, played his college golf at George Mason.
Lewis Simon, 25, of Torrance, Calif., is a clinical research coordinator at UCLA Health and is working on his master’s thesis in applied epidemiology at Cal State-Northridge. He plans to pursue a Ph.D. and a career in the prevention and treatment of diseases. Simon, who is competing in his first USGA championship, received All-California Collegiate Athletic Association honors at UC-San Diego in 2013-2014 before serving one year as an assistant coach. He earned his B.S. in cognitive science and psychology.
Nathan Smith, 40, of Pittsburgh, Pa., is a four-time U.S. Mid-Amateur champion (2003, 2009, 2010, 2012). Smith, who is tied for second in career Mid-Amateur match-play wins (34) behind Jerry Courville Jr.’s 36 victories, also won the 2015 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball title with partner Todd White. A member of three USA Walker Cup Teams (2009, 2011, 2013), Smith works as an investment advisor. He has played in 43 USGA championships, including 13 U.S. Mid-Amateurs. In 2015, he was inducted into the Western Pennsylvania Golf Hall of Fame and has won two Pennsylvania State Amateurs.
Craig Steinberg, 60, of Agoura Hills, Calif., qualified for his 12th U.S. Mid-Amateur and first since 2001 while on vacation in Hawaii. He shot a 71 at Leilehua Golf Course in Wahiawa to secure the lone spot in the sectional. Steinberg, who has competed in 25 USGA championships, including two U.S. Senior Opens, has advanced to the Mid-Amateur semifinals twice (1988, 1999). Steinberg has degrees in optometry and law and has combined the two disciplines in his career. In addition to owning his own optometry practice, Steinberg serves as general counsel for the American Optometric Society and American Board of Clinical Optometry.
Scott Strickland, 36, of Birmingham, Mich., is competing in his fourth consecutive U.S. Mid-Amateur. He advanced to the semifinals of the 2016 Mid-Amateur, losing to eventual champion Stewart Hagestad at Stonewall Links. Strickland, a wealth advisor, won the 2018 Golf Association of Michigan Mid-Amateur with a birdie-birdie finish on Aug. 30. Strickland, who also won the 2013 GAM Amateur, caddied for Australian Harrison Endycott during the 2016 U.S. Amateur, which was played at Oakland Hills Country Club, Strickland’s home course.
Matt Sughrue, 59, of Arlington, Va., has competed in 16 USGA championships, including seven U.S. Mid-Amateurs. He was the runner-up to Dave Ryan in the 2016 U.S. Senior Amateur and advanced to match play this year. Sughrue tied for fourth in the 2018 Seniors Amateur, conducted by The R&A. An insurance professional for more than 25 years, Sughrue changed course and earned a master’s degree in human development and marriage & family therapy from Virginia Tech in 2012. Sughrue now works as a marriage and family therapist and performance coach for athletes, including golfers, swimmers and baseball players.
Dan Sullivan, 51, of Pasadena, Calif., has advanced to the semifinals in two consecutive U.S. Mid-Amateurs (2016, 2017). He has competed in 10 USGA championships, including seven Mid-Amateurs. Sullivan, who works as a real estate lender, also advanced to the Round of 16 in the 2009 U.S. Amateur Public Links. He reached the Round of 16 in this year’s California State Amateur and won the 2017 Southern California Golf Association Mid-Amateur. His, wife, Lindsay, is a vice president with Fox Sports and its regional networks.
Bradford Tilley, 35, of Easton, Conn., advanced to the quarterfinals and was the medalist while competing in his first U.S. Mid-Amateur last year. He has played in six USGA championships, including four U.S. Amateurs. Tilley, who has founded tech start-up companies, including one that rates caddies and another that handles social gifting, competed on professional tours for eight years before regaining his amateur status. He was a member of the University of Virginia team from 2003-2006.
Jon Veneziano, 47, of Mount Dora, Fla., qualified for his eighth U.S. Mid-Amateur after shooting 68 to earn medalist honors in the Brooksville, Fla., sectional. Veneziano, who has competed in 21 USGA championships, followed Jerry Kelly and Tim Petrovic, who each tied for second in the 2018 U.S. Senior Open at The Broadmoor, into the University of Hartford’s athletic hall of fame. Veneziano, who earned All-America honors as a collegian in 1993, is a vice president for a financial services firm.
J.R. Warthen, 38, of Pismo Beach, Calif., has been a caddie at both Pebble Beach (Calif.) Golf Links and Spyglass Hill Golf Course for three years. He played at San Diego State University from 2002-2006, and was later featured on Golf Channel’s Big Break Mesquite. Warthen, who advanced to match play in the 2006 U.S. Mid-Amateur and was reinstated as an amateur in 2016, became an avid bodyboarder/ bodysurfer and surf videographer when he was 15 and went on to create a film titled, “Adolescence,” which was released in 1999.
Chad Wilfong, 37, of Charlotte, N.C., advanced to the Round of 32 in last year’s U.S. Mid-Amateur, his first USGA championship. Wilfong, a financial consultant who was reinstated as an amateur in August 2016, played in 23 tournaments on the Web.com Tour from 2003-2006. His best finish was a tie for ninth in the 2005 Wichita Open, where he posted an eagle and double eagle over the final five holes. Wilfong, who also played on the Hooters and eGolf tours, earned All-America and All-Atlantic Coast Conference honors at Wake Forest in 2003. He won two Class 2A state titles while at East Davidson High School.
Jeff Wilson, 55, of Fairfield, Calif., is the general sales manager at an automobile dealership. He abandoned a professional golfer’s life, bouncing around mini-tours, for a more stable career path. Wilson, who was reinstated as an amateur in 1997, won the 2018 U.S. Senior Amateur on Aug. 30, a 2-and-1 victory over defending champion Sean Knapp. He tied for 31st in this year’s U.S. Senior Open at The Broadmoor and became the second player to earn low-amateur honors in both the U.S. Open and U.S. Senior Open, joining Marvin “Vinny” Giles III. Wilson, who was low amateur in the 2000 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach (Calif.) Golf Links, has competed in 31 USGA championships and 11 U.S. Mid-Amateurs.
Steve Wilson, 48, of Ocean Springs, Miss., won the 2008 U.S. Mid-Amateur by defeating Todd Mitchell, 5 and 4, in the final at Milwaukee Country Club in River Hills, Wis. He advanced to the Mid-Amateur quarterfinals the following year in defense of his title. Wilson, a gas station owner, has played in 13 USGA championships, including eight U.S. Mid-Amateurs.
Brad Wohlers, 26, of Vadnais Heights, Minn., is competing in his first USGA championship after earning co-medalist in the Stillwater, Minn., sectional on Aug. 14. He was the first alternate in U.S. Amateur qualifying three weeks earlier when he double bogeyed the 36th hole to miss by one stroke. Wohlers, who owns an indoor golf facility, competed in golf and hockey as a Division III athlete at the University of Wisconsin-Stout. He is a hockey referee/linesman on the NCAA, USA and high school levels.
Stephen Woodard, 45, of Charlotte, N.C., is competing in his first U.S. Mid-Amateur and grew up at Charlotte Country Club, where his parents are still members. His brother-in-law, Brett Boner, is also in the Mid-Amateur field. Woodard, who won on the Canadian PGA Tour, toiled for 11 years on several professional tours, including eGolf, Tarheel and Gateway. Woodard, who qualified for the 2006 U.S. Open, regaining his amateur status in 2009. He works as a commercial real estate broker and is on the board of The First Tee of Greater Charlotte.
Brian DePasquale is a manager of championship communications for the USGA. Email him at email@example.com.