Six male and three female golfers from Washington are set to compete in this year’s U.S. Mid-Amateur and Women’s Mid-Amateur Championships.
Both championships will take place from September 25-30, 2021, with Sankaty Head Golf Club in Sankaty, Mass., hosting the men and the Berkeley Hall Club in Bluffton, S.C. the women.
In the 264 player field for the men, Jacob Koppenberg of Bellingham, will be a favorite to watch as he is fresh off a victory at last month’s Washington Mid-Amateur winning by a six shot margin.
Out of 132 player field for the women, local eyes will be on reigning Washington Women’s Mid-Amateur champion Jaqueline Bendrick of Mercer Island.
Meet the competitors:
Jacob Koppenberg (Bellingham)
Koppenberg, the reigning champion of the Washington Men’s Mid-Amateur, played collegiately at Western Washington University, where he twice was named NCAA All-American. He has qualified for 10 national championships, including five U.S. Amateurs, and two U.S. Mid-Amateurs, making it to the quarterfinals in 2019. Also in 2019, he was a semifinalist in the PNGA Men’s Amateur. His only other state title was winning the 2016 Washington Champion of Champions.
Brendon Shibley (Puyallup)
Shibley is a registered nurse with the MultiCare Health System, and previously was an EMT with the South Bend, Ind. Fire Department. He played golf for Holy Cross College in Indiana, and worked briefly as an assistant golf professional in Scottsdale, Ariz. before regaining his amateur status. Shibley earned a spot by co-medaling in last month’s qualifier at Canterwood Golf & Country Club, shooting an even-par 72.
Daniel Campbell (Bellingham)
Co-medaling at the Canterwood qualifier last month alongside Shibley is Campbell, a graduate from the University of the Fraser Valley (in B.C.), where he played for the men’s golf team. He was twice named the school’s Male Athlete of the Year (2018, 2020), and still holds the team record for most individual wins with nine. Campbell is also coming off an impressive performance at this year’s Washington Men’s Mid-Amateur championship finishing T-4.
Luke Easterly (Sammamish)
Easterly played college golf at the University of Portland. He and his brother Jake finished third in the 2014 Washington Men’s Four-Ball. Now a mortgage consultant, Easterly earned a spot in the championship by qualifying last month at Canterwood.
Arnell Garza (Kennewick)
Garza, a 2004 U.S. Amateur Public Links competitor and former U.S. Air Force serviceman, qualified for the U.S. Mid-Amateur by shooting a 2-under 70 at Portland Golf Club in Portland, Ore. Garza has played on the Gateway Tour and worked as an assistant professional at a club in Arizona. He is also a gold medalist, winning the 2006 CISM World Military Championship in Ireland. He now works as an investigator for Washington’s Department of Children, Youth and Families.
Taylor Klopp (Vancouver)
Klopp qualified for the U.S. Mid-Amateur after shooting 70 and tying for medalist honors in the August qualifier at Portland Golf Club in Portland, Ore. He played college golf at Linfield University where he was the Northwest Conference Player of the Year in 2015 and a two-time All-America Scholar.
Jacqueline Bendrick (Mercer Island)
Bendrick, a two-time All-Southern Conference honoree at Furman University, is the reigning Washington Women’s Mid-Amateur champion. She won the 2015 Parent-Child Championship, playing alongside her father Terry, and was runner up at this year’s PNGA Women’s Mid-Amateur. Bendrick works as a neuroscience research associate at a bioscience research institute in Seattle.
Victoria Fallgren (Spokane)
Fallgren is a three-time Washington Women’s Mid-Amateur champion (2017, 2018, 2020) and has been named the WA Golf Women’s Mid-Amateur player of the year three times (2017, 2018, 2020). After playing four years at Gonzaga, she became an assistant golf coach for the university, now entering her 9th year as a coach. She has also qualified for three U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links and two U.S. Women’s Amateurs.
Hana Ku (Seattle)
A former player at Princeton University, Ku was just the eighth player in Ivy League history to earn four All-Ivy League honors. Now, Ku works as a data scientist at Amazon. She qualified for this year’s championship by shooting a 78 at Portland Golf Club in Portland, Ore.