7 Advance at Bethpage for US Open Sectional
FARMINGDALE, N.Y. (May 14, 2015) - Seven qualified at Bethpage State Park Golf Course (Red Course) at the U.S. Open Local Qualifying Round, making them one step closer to Chambers Bay.
Perfect conditions met the competitors today, which made way for some spectacular golf for the star-studded field that carded some great scores indicative of the talent the Met Area offers.
Because of the intense winter conditions, the 4th hole was not played. Because of this, Bethpage played to a par 67 at 6,950 yards and only 17 holes for a starting field of 120 players.
Kevin Ausserlechner of West Harrison, N.Y. commanded the field on the front nine, making the turn at 4-under, with two birdies and an eagle on the 5th hole and finished with an impressive 5-under 62 after 17 holes earning him medalist honors. Ausserlechner used to work out of Century Country Club and is very excited to make another appearance at a U.S. Open Sectional Qualifier hosted by a course that he holds so near to his heart.
Since last year’s qualifier, Ausserlechner has made some adjustments to his game.
“I definitely focused a lot on driving the ball. [Last year] I wasn’t driving as well as I typically do so I spent a lot of time in the off-season practicing with the driver and really worked hard around the greens - it really paid off today.”
Close behind, Matthew Dobyns of Lake Success, N.Y. qualified with another impressive score of 4-under 63. Dobyns competed in last year’s U.S. Open at Pinehurst and is excited to take the next step towards a second experience.
“Playing in the Open last year was a career goal - I enjoyed it tremendously - so it would be a dream to go back and try it again. I missed the cut last year by a stroke…so I have more confidence that I can play on that level and really make it count.”
In one of the last groups of the day, Matthew Sita of Glen Cove, N.Y. grabbed another qualifying spot with another tremendous 4-under 63. The PGA Professional at Old Westbury had a phenomenal round of golf with a total of seven birdies. One stroke behind was two-time Met Open Champion Mark Brown of Oyster Bay, N.Y. who finished at a 3-under 64. Brown played in the 2012 PGA Championship and will look for his shot at another National Championship when he heads to a sectional qualifying round.
Having finished the afternoon with a 2-under 65, Michael Furci of Sayville, N.Y,. waited around all day to find out if he’d be forced into a playoff. In the end, his score stood ground and he will advance to a sectional qualifier. In the final group of the day, John Igoe of the Republic of Ireland clinched the last spot with a 2-under 65, forcing a playoff for the last qualifying spot for the three players with scores of 1-under 66.
After a lip-out birdie putt on the first playoff hole, a par on the 3rd playoff hole was what it took for Tyler Jaramillo of New York, N.Y. to earn the last qualifying spot.
Amateurs Johnny Schob of Huntington, N.Y. and Sean Cavanaugh of Encino, Calif. received first and second alternate (respectively). Schob is a two-time Junior Club Champion at Winged Foot Golf Club and has participated in the Tuxedo Autumn Invitational in 2014.