U.S. Open Sectional Qualifying Ends

June 7, 2005
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  • U.S. Open Sectional Scores
  • Former USA Walker Cupper Nallen Earns Spot

  • Far Hills, N.J. - Two-time PGA Tour winner J.P. Hayes shot 13-under-par 129 to lead 22 players who earned places in the field of the 2005 U.S. Open through 36-hole sectional qualifying in Rockville, Md.

    A total of 83 players, at 16 sectional sites including internationals in and , have qualified for the 2005 U.S. Open at Pinehurst Resort (No.2 Course) in the Village of Pinehurst, N.C., from June 16-19.  , who won in 2001 and 2004, is the defending champion.

    Brandt Snedeker, who won the 2003 U.S. Amateur Public Links, advanced out of the Rockville, Md., sectional. (USGA Photo Archives)

    While the entire field of 156 players did not complete play Monday, Hayes did, shooting an 8-under-par 62 bogey-free round on the South Course of Woodmont Country Club.   He followed with a 5-under-par 67 on the North Course to earn the qualifying medal.

    "It was great to get off to a good start with this thing, especially when you don't know how fatigue is going to come into it as a factor as the day goes on," said , who will be making his fourth U.S. Open appearance. "It's nice not to have to go super low in the afternoon. I hit the ball as good as I have in many years."

    Threatening weather forced suspension of play late Monday with nine players still on the course.  A nine-way playoff at 7-under-par 135 for the final five places was completed Tuesday.

    Following were and amateur of Tifton, Ga., at 11-under-par 131. 

    At Rockville, followed his morning 73 on the North Course with an 11-under par 59 on the South Course to finish at 132.  , the 1995 PGA champion, made the Pinehurst field by shooting 134.  , , Rocco Mediate, , and advanced at 133.   Driscoll was the runner-up 2000 U.S. Amateur and Snedeker won the 2003 U.S. Amateur Public Links.

    In addition to , amateurs of City, Ala., and of University Place, Wash., also qualified.   , who was a college All-American at Auburn, was a member of the 2003 USA Walker Cup and the champion 2004 USA World Amateur team.   , a 2005 All-American at Pepperdine, finished second, in a playoff, for the individual title at the recently completed NCAA Championships in nearby .   All three amateurs will be participating in their first U.S. Open.

    Among those not qualifying at Rockville were 55-year-old Tom Kite, the 1992 U.S. Open champion, who shot  73-67-140, and 1998 Masters champion Mark O'Meara, who shot 70-72-140.  Kite was vying to compete in his 32 nd consecutive and 34 th Open overall.   He played in every Open from 1974-2004.

    Derek Brown of Walnut Grove, N.C., earned the qualifying medal at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta, Ga., shooting 9-under-par 131 (65-66).  Six spots were determined at that site, which began Monday but was completed Tuesday because of weather.

    Others gaining a place in the field of 156 players at the Open were Jason Gore (133), Casey Wittenberg (133), who was the runner-up at the 2003 U.S. Amateur, Aaron Barber (134), Scott Parel (134) and 1997 U.S. Amateur champion Matt Kuchar (135).

    Kuchar won a three-way, two-hole playoff to earn the sixth and final qualifying spot over of Fresno, Calif. and of Boca Raton, Fla.

    At Old Memorial Golf Club in Tampa, Fla., advancing were Lee Rinker at 69-67--136 and Nick Gilliam (67-72) and Josh McCumber (69-70), the nephew of former PGA Tour player Mark McCumber, at 139.

    Tom Pernice, Jr. shot 70-69-139 to take the sole place from Hallbrook Country Club in Kansas City, Mo., where weather delayed play for nearly two hours.

    The U.S. Open is one of 13 national championships conducted annually by the United States Golf Association.  Entries are open to any professional and to amateurs with USGA Handicap Indexes not exceeding 1.4.

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