Mark Strickland of Mukilteo, Wash. shot rounds of 72-68 during today’s 36-hole qualifier to earn medalist honors in qualifying for the 2014 U.S. Amateur Championship, to be held August 11-17 at the Atlanta Athletic Club in Johns Creek, Ga.
Today’s qualifier was held at Suncadia Resort’s Tumble Creek Club in Cle Elum, Wash. The Washington State Golf Association (WSGA) is the local representative of the United States Golf Association (USGA) and conducted this qualifier for the U.S. Amateur Championship.
Along with Strickland, also qualifying were Andrew Kennedy of Redmond, Wash. and James Fahy of Vancouver, B.C. Fahy won the third available spot by sinking a 5-foot birdie putt on the fourth hole of a playoff against Tyler Matthews of Bellevue, Wash.
Strickland, who just finished his senior year playing for the Western Washington University men’s golf team, shot a 2-over par 72 on the par-70 Tom Doak-designed Tumble Creek, but in the afternoon round he strung together four birdies, with his lone hiccup of the day being a double-bogey coming on the long par-4 10th hole.
This year marks the 114th U.S. Amateur Championship, the oldest golf championship in the United States, being just 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, Matt Fitzpatrick of England defeated Oliver Goss of Australia in the final match, 4 and 3, at The Country Club in Brookline, Mass.
The U.S. Amateur is one of 13 national championships conducted annually by the USGA, 10 of which are strictly for amateurs.