12 USGA Champions Among 312 Players in 115th U.S. Amateur Field
August 12, 2015 | Far Hills, N.J.
By Ron Driscoll, USGA
Philip Barbaree, 17, of Shreveport, La., who recently captured the U.S. Junior Amateur Championship, is the newest of the 12 USGA champions in the field of the 115th U.S. Amateur Championship, which begins on Monday, Aug. 17, at Olympia Fields (Ill.) Country Club. Barbaree will begin play at 1:40 p.m. CDT on the first hole of the North Course, along with Eugene Hong, of Sanford, Fla.; and Josh Lorenzetti, of Blythewood, S.C.
Groupings and starting times for Rounds 1 and 2 of stroke play were announced on Wednesday for the U.S. Amateur, the oldest golf championship in the country. It is being contested for the first time at Olympia Fields, where the North and South Courses will be used for 36 holes of stroke-play qualifying on Monday and Tuesday, Aug, 17-18, with the North Course hosting the six rounds of match play that will determine the champion.
A total of 312 players will begin play on Monday, with the field being narrowed to 64 players for the match-play bracket, starting on Wednesday, Aug. 19. The championship will conclude with a 36-hole final on Sunday, Aug. 23. Live coverage will be available on usga.org and Fox Sports beginning on Aug. 19.
Barbaree, 17, defeated Andrew Orischak, 16, of Hilton Head Island, S.C., on July 25, rebounding from 5 holes down to prevail in 37 holes. Orischak, who is one of nine USGA championship runners-up in the U.S. Amateur field, will begin play at 8:20 a.m. Monday, from the first hole of the South Course, along with Jack Wallace, of Beverly, N.J.; and Peter Jones, of Owatonna, Minn.
Jon Rahm, of Spain, the No. 1 player in the World Amateur Golf Ranking™, will begin play at 8 a.m. CDT on the 10th hole of the North Course at Olympia Fields, which has hosted two U.S. Opens: in 1928 (won by Johnny Farrell, who prevailed in 36 playoff holes over Bob Jones), and in 2003 (won by Jim Furyk, by three strokes over Stephen Leaney). Rahm, a rising senior at Arizona State University, was the low individual in the 2014 World Amateur Team Championship in Japan, where he broke Jack Nicklaus’ 72-hole scoring record. Rahm will be joined by fellow competitors Robert Salomon, of Marina, Calif.; and Ben Wolcott, of Dickson, Miss.
Twenty-three of the top 25 players in the World Ranking are competing at Olympia Fields, including the five players – Maverick McNealy, Lee McCoy, Hunter Stewart, Bryson DeChambeau and Beau Hossler – who were named earlier this week to the USA Walker Cup Team. The rest of the 10-player team, which will take on Great Britain and Ireland on Sept. 12-13 at Royal Lytham and St. Annes in Lancashire, England, will be announced at the conclusion of the championship.
Defending U.S. Amateur champion Gunn Yang, 21, of the Republic of Korea, will begin play from the first hole of the North Course at 8:10 a.m., along with Benjamin Griffin, of Chapel Hill, N.C.; and Chris Babcock, of Shoreline, Wash. Yang defeated Corey Conners, 2 and 1, in the 2014 final at Atlanta Athletic Club. Yang, who was 15 months removed from back surgery when he captured the Havemeyer Trophy, is one of 13 players in the field who competed in this year’s U.S. Open at Chambers Bay, and one of three who competed in The Open Championship, conducted by The R&A, at St. Andrews.
Jordan Niebrugge, of Mequon, Wis., the 2013 U.S. Amateur Public Links champion, was the low amateur at St. Andrews, posting the lowest 72-hole by an amateur in the championship’s 144-year history (11-under 277). Niebrugge will begin play at 12:30 p.m. on Monday from the 10th hole of the South Course, joined by Jimmy Jones of Tampa, Fla., son of three-time LPGA Tour winner Dawn Coe-Jones; and Garett Reband, of Fort Worth, Texas.
Ron Driscoll is the manager of editorial services for the USGA. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.