Erin, Wis. – Gregor Main, 22, of Danville, Calif., earned medalist honors by tying for the lowest 36-hole stroke-play qualifying score in U.S. Amateur Championship history Wednesday with a 10-under-par 132.
The one bogey was a three-putt but the other greens I’ve missed I got it up and down, Main said. I got a new-found confidence in my putting and my short game this week. I’ve been smoking my driver. I had a real good week of preparation with my short-game coach back at home. I found it the past few days.
Main, who was a three-time All-American at UCLA, shot a bogey-free 5-under-par 67 at the par-72, 7,760-yard Erin Hills course. On Monday, he had shared the first-round lead with a 5-under-par 65 at the par-70, 6,622-yard Blue Mound Golf and Country Club course. He left UCLA after the 2011 college season and plans to compete in PGA Tour qualifying, which will be held later this year.
The goal is get into match play, which it is for everyone in the field, Main said. In match play anything can happen. The 64th seed can win. It’s nice to get the medalist spot. I am trying to make that Walker Cup Team, so I am trying to play my best every chance I get.
Main tied the previous low 36-hole score of 132 (12 under par) shot by Hank Kim in 1994 at TPC Sawgrass (Stadium and Valley Courses) in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.
Blake Biddle, 19, of St. Charles, Ill., a UNLV player, was two strokes behind Main at 8-under-par 134.
Sixteen-year-old Beau Hossler of Mission Viejo, Calif., and collegiate players Blayne Barber, 21, of Lake City, Fla.; Ben Geyer, 19, of Arbuckle, Calif.; and 2011 USA Walker Cup player Russell Henley, 22, of Macon, Ga.; shot 7-under-par 135. USA Walker Cup selection Patrick Rodgers, 19, of Avon, Ind., followed at 136.
Defending champion and 2009 and 2011 USA Walker Cup Team member Peter Uihlein, 21, of Orlando, Fla., easily advanced to match play at 5-under 137.
All but one of the seven current USA Walker Cup players advanced to match play including: Chris Williams, 20, of Moscow, Idaho, at 139, Harris English, 22, of Thomasville, Ga., and Patrick Cantlay, 19, of Los Alamitos, Calif., at 140.
The other USA Walker Cup player, Nathan Smith, 33, of Pittsburgh, Pa., was in a 20-for-4 playoff at even-par 142.
Great Britain and Ireland’s Walker Cup Team had three of four players advance: Tom Lewis, 20, and Jack Senior, 23, of England and Michael Stewart, 21, of Scotland. England’s Stiggy Hodgson, 20, did not make the final 64.
Corbin Mills (139), who won the 2011 U.S. Amateur Public Links and Jordan Spieth (137), who won the 2009 and 2011 U.S. Junior Amateur, also qualified for match play.
The second round resumed at 7:30 a.m. at Blue Mound but fog delayed the resumption at Erin Hills until 8:55 a.m. The first round of match play will begin at 3 p.m. CDT.
The second round was suspended due to darkness on Tuesday evening after a 3-hour, 40-minute weather delay in the morning.
The 2011 U.S. Amateur Championship consists of 36 holes of stroke play followed by six rounds of match play, with the championship scheduled to conclude with a 36-hole final on Sunday.
The U.S. Amateur is one of 13 national championships conducted annually by the United States Golf Association, 10 of which are strictly for amateurs.