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ANDOVER, Massachusetts – Three more Massachusetts golfers punched their ticket to the 119th U.S. Amateur Championship on Wednesday at Andover Country Club, increasing the number of Bay State golfers in next month’s Championship Proper field to nine. Medalist Xavier Marcoux, of Concord, who fired a day-best 7-under 137 in the 36-hole qualifier, joins Andover’s Brett Krekorian and Manchester’s Nick Maccario to complete Wednesday’s Bay State sweep. With their placement atop the leaderboard, all three competitors qualified for their first USGA Championship.
The trio will join Massachusetts residents Steven DiLisio, Jacob Zaranek, Davis Chatfield and Christian Emmerich, all of whom qualified on Monday at respective qualifiers in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, while both Matt Parziale and Michael Thorbjornsen earned entrance into the Championship Proper via exemptions from previous USGA performance.
Marcoux took the top spot on the leaderboard with rounds of 69-68-137 while Krekorian fired a 5-under 139 after rounds of 71 and 68 respectively. Maccario, the reigning Massachusetts Four-Ball champion, shot a 68 in his morning round Wednesday and after carding an even-par 72 in his afternoon round, defeated California’s Spencer Soosman in a one-hole playoff to capture the final qualifying spot.
The 18-year old Marcoux, a recent graduate of Florida’s Montverde Academy, had missed qualifying for the U.S. Junior Amateur Championship and the U.S. Open sectional stage by one stroke apiece to date this year, and wasn’t going to let that happen a third time, as he tallied nine birdies over his two rounds to finish at 7-under 137, a two-stroke margin over the next closest competitor.
“Qualifying for the Amateur is just amazing,” said Marcoux, who has signed his national letter of intent to compete on the Rutgers University Men’s Golf team this fall. “Me going into college next year and being able to play the [Amateur], where all the top college players will be, will be a good test to see how I stack up against the rest of the college fields.”
In the morning round, Marcoux carded a 3-under 69, combining two birdies on his front nine with three additional birdies on his back nine to finish one stroke behind the leaders at the midway point.
“I got some really good breaks on my first 18 and I felt that I was able to take advantage of them, minimizing the mistakes and that’s basically what kept me in it,” said Marcoux upon receiving his USGA medal.
He added, “On the second 18, I knew I probably had to shoot at least 3-under again and I stayed patient, took my holes where I had good putts and converted a couple early, then figured the rest out.
In his second 18, he birdied the first hole starting from Andover’s 10th, made three more birdies on his way in and shot nothing less than par to build on his first round performance.
Similar to Marcoux, both Brett Krekorian, a recent graduate of South Carolina’s Limestone College, and Nick Maccario, who plays out of Bradford Country Club, also qualified for their first USGA Championship with their performances Wednesday.
“It’s pretty cool. I feel like in three of the last four years, I have been in the mix [at U.S. Amateur qualifying] and today, I thought I would have to shoot a seven or eight under in the second half to hang on, but it worked out in my favor, “ said Krekorian, who was playing in his hometown. “I made a couple of nice up and downs late and was able to hold on.”
Maccario, who was tied atop the leaderboard following his 4-under 68 morning round, had two bogeys and a double on his final nine of the afternoon to fall down into a tie for third with Soosman, a rising senior at the University of Texas who medaled in the same event two years ago at Andover. On Andover’s 10th hole, which was used as the first playoff hole, Maccario used an eight iron from the rough to four or five feet, then knocked in the left to right putt to secure the final qualifying spot.
“It was awesome. I love Andover,” said the 27-year following his round. “To play in a USGA event, all the guys I grew up playing with in Mass. have played in them and I have just been waiting for my turn, which is fine, and to get it done is an unreal feeling.”
Weston’s Nicholas Cummings, who will play at Boston College beginning this fall, netted second alternate positioning.
Wednesday’s U.S. Amateur qualifier at Andover Country Club was the second held in Massachusetts this week and the 38th of 96 36-hole qualifiers held across North America during the month of July. Two additional U.S. Amateur qualifiers are being conducted across New England on Monday, July 15 at Ledges Golf Club (Maine) and Ridgewood Country Club (Conn.), respectively.
Mass Golf will provide coverage of its Massachusetts competitors competing in the 119th U.S. Amateur Championship at Pinehurst Resort and Country Club from August 12-18. Course No. 2 and Course No. 4 will be the two courses in play for this year’s edition of the U.S. Amateur. Visit MassGolf.org and follow @PlayMassGolf on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for the latest information. To join the conversation, use the hashtags #MassGolf and #USAmateur