Haack Leads Trio Of Players To U.S. Amateur Championship

Lakewood, Wash. –U.S. Amateur qualifying took place today, as 78 players competed at the RMG Club at Oakbrook for three coveted spots into the U.S. Amateur Championship, which will be held at Cherry Hills Country Club in Cherry Hills Village, Colo. from August 13-19. After playing 36 holes in near perfect conditions, Mike Haack of Bellevue, Wash., Jarrett Foote of Woodinville, Wash., and Jarred Bossio of Olympia, Wash. separated themselves from a packed field to earn spots into the championship proper.

Haack, who also qualified for the U.S. Amateur in 1998 as a freshman in college, put together two strong rounds, starting with a 3-under-par 67 in the morning round that included six birdies to only three bogeys. If not for back-to-back bogeys on 17 and 18, Haack’s round would have been even more sparkling. “My game is getting better,” said Haack at the end of the day. “I’m finally feeling like I can play.” His strong play continued into the afternoon round, as he rattled off five more birdies against only two bogeys for another 3-under-par 67. Haack’s 6-under-par 134 finish was more than enough to secure his second trip to the U.S. Amateur.
When asked about his approach this time around, Haack pointed to the experience he’s built up over the last fourteen years. “Last time, I was overwhelmed,” he said. “I feel like I’ve learned how to actually play golf and the knowledge I’ve gained will definitely help.”
Foote, a soon-to-be junior on the Washington State University men’s golf team who will be making his first trip to the U.S. Amateur, also posted a 3-under-par 67 in the morning round to put himself in prime position. After a quick birdie on the par-4 10th hole, his first hole of the day, Foote made eight pars in a row for a 1-under-par 34 turn. “I played solid and really did not get into too much trouble,” he said about his play today.
The back nine was a bit more colorful, as Foote carded four more birdies to only two bogeys en route to the 67. In the afternoon round, two bogeys on the front nine dropped him to 2-under-par through six holes, but even-par golf the rest of the way was all he needed as he punched his ticket. “I’m pretty excited,” Foote said after his spot was secured. “This is the best day for my golf game. It’s a big step for me and I’m just going to enjoy it.”
The most impressive performance of the day, however, may have come from Bossio. Just five days removed from surrendering a three-stroke, final round lead at the Pacific Coast Amateur, Bossio played inspired golf to capture the third qualifying spot. “I just tried to take the positives away from it (leading after three rounds at the Pacific Coast) and forget about the rest,” he said, when asked if it was difficult to recover. “I knew I was playing well.” After a 1-over-par 71 in the morning, he had to make up ground on a pack of leaders that included Haack and Foote, and he delivered with four birdies in the afternoon en route to a 2-under-par 68 and a 1-under-par 139 total.
“This was a good ball-striking day and I was fortunate to hit it really well,” he said about his round. Bossio will be making his second appearance at the U.S. Amateur after competing in 2010 at Chambers Bay in University Place, Wash. “This will be my last amateur event so I’m just going to enjoy it, have fun, and feed off the experience.”
Kyle Cornett of Mill Creek, Wash. outlasted Spencer Weiss of Sammamish, Wash. in a 3-hole playoff for first and second alternate, after each finished the qualifier at even-par 140.
This year marks the 112th U.S. Amateur Championship, the oldest golf championship in the United States, being only one day older than the U.S. Open. Aside from an eight-year period when it was stroke play (1965-1972), the U.S. Amateur has been a match-play championship. The U.S. Amateur’s storied history includes such past champions as Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Phil Mickelson, and Tiger Woods, to name a few. Last year, Kelly Kraft of Denton, Texas etched his name on the Havemeyer Trophy with a 2-up victory over Patrick Cantlay of Los Alamitos, Calif., at Erin Hills in Wisconsin.
Entries for the 2012 U.S. Amateur Championship were open to players (no age limit) with a USGA Handicap Index not exceeding 2.4. Cherry Hills Country Club, hosting its ninth USGA championship, will be set up at roughly 7,432 yards and will play to a par of 35-36–71 for the championship. Sectional qualifying, played over 36 holes, was held from July 14 to August 1. A total of 46 golfers are fully exempt from qualifying, based on past performances in USGA events or by being among the Top 50 points leaders in the World Amateur Golf Ranking. That list of exempted players includes 2011 Pacific Northwest Men’s Amateur Champion, Zac Blair of Ogden, Utah, and 2012 Washington State Men’s Amateur Champion, Chris Williams of Moscow, Idaho who recently took over the No. 1 ranking in the World Amateur Golf Ranking.
For final results, please visit www.thewsga.org.
The U.S. Amateur is one of 13 national championships conducted annually by the United States Golf Association (USGA), 10 of which are strictly for amateurs. The Washington State Golf Association (WSGA) is the local representative of the USGA and conducts this qualifier for the United States Amateur Championship.
Since 1922, the WSGA has been conducting the state’s amateur golf championships. Today, it is one of the largest amateur golf associations in the United States. Serving over 80,000 members, 600 member golf clubs and 270 golf courses throughout the state of Washington and Northern Idaho, the WSGA works to continually expand the game of golf to people of all backgrounds.
The WSGA is a non-profit association governed by volunteer, amateur golfers. WSGA members pay an annual membership fee, through their club, to belong to the Association. In addition, the WSGA serves as a statewide representative of the USGA and works closely with other allied associations within the golf industry for the betterment of the game.
For more information about the 14 amateur championships conducted by the WSGA each year, visit www.thewsga.org.
U.S. Amateur Qualifier
RMG Club at Oakbrook Golf Course

6,518 yards, Par 70

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