US Amateur Championship: Highlights and Impressions of Round 2
The 119th US Amateur Championship is being held at the Pinehurst Resort. Players battle on the legendary Course No. 2 and the recently redesigned Course No. 4.
We are spending the first part of the week in and around the property. Here’s a highlight of our time at Round 2 of stroke play and our impressions of the courses.
Round 2 Highlights
The US Amateur Championship consists of 2 rounds of stroke play on both courses. 312 players compete for 64 spots of Match Play competition.
Over the duration of the first 2 days, Course No. 2 played far tougher than No. 4. The Donald Ross masterpiece showed it’s teeth on several occasions, especially as the wind picked up, tossing errant approach shots in all directions.
Brandon Wu is the leader in the clubhouse after 2 rounds, following up a blistering 65 (a course record on No. 4) with a hard-fought 72 on No. 2 in Round 2. Other notable players to make it through to Match Play include:
- Stewart Hagestad: 2016 Mid-Amateur Champ and first amateur to qualify for 3 straight US Opens
- Alex Fitzpatrick: Quarterfinalist in 2018 US Amateur and brother to PGA Tour player Matthew Fitzpatrick
- Brad Dalke: former University of Oklahoma golfer, runner-up in 2016 US Amateur
- Akshay Bhatia: Wake Forest, NC native and former #1 ranked junior amateur
- Devon Bling: runner up in last year’s US Amateur Championship
At the conclusion of stroke play, 27 players were tied and headed to a playoff for the final 3 spots in Match Play.
Each of the courses hosting the tournament is unique. Course No. 2, hardly needing an introduction is long, playing at 7, 555 yards and par 70. Course No. 4 recently got a redesign by the renowned Gil Hanse and is also a solid test of golf skill.
Course No. 2 played the toughest during both rounds of stroke play. Wayward tee shots wound up in wiregrass and approach shots that flew just the slightest offline found the collection areas, just as Donald Ross would want it.
Hanse’s design of No. 4 incorporates rolling hills, gnarly bunkers, and undulating greens into a breathtaking landscape. The views around the course, especially the back 9, are incredible.
The US Amateur is an amazing event and an awesome way to see the game’s up-and-coming players. Having it held on 2 courses at Pinehurst is a nod to the Championship’s history and a glimpse at its future. Very fitting.
Be sure to check out the rest of the tournament.