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LONGMEADOW, Massachusetts – A hot and steamy morning gave way to severe afternoon storms at U.S. Amateur Qualifying on Tuesday. At 3:59 p.m. play was suspended at Longmeadow CC, and after an hour-plus of heavy rain, play was officially called for the day. Play is set to resume on Wednesday morning at 9 a.m.
With two spots to the U.S. Amateur Championship at Oakmont Country Club on the line, Xavier Marcoux (Nashawtuc CC) and Ryan Kohler (Chesterfield, NH) are in position to earn those spots on Wednesday. Marcoux, who attends Rutgers, leads all players at 6-under (Thru 7) with Kohler just a stroke behind at 5-under (Thru 9*).
Both players are familiar with success in New England. Marcoux won the 2019 New England Amateur Championship at The Quechee Club (Quechee, VT) while Kohler most recently won the 2020 New Hampshire Mid-Amateur Championship at Lake Winnipesaukee GC (New Durham, NH).
One shot back of Kohler is Bo Andrews (Raleigh, NC), an assistant coach for the University of Tennessee men’s golf team. Andrews is at 4-under thru 7* and will look to repeat his performance on the front nine when he shot a bogey-free 33 in the morning’s first round.
Rounding out the group of players under-par at the time of play being suspended are Andrew O’Leary (Walpole CC) [2-under Thru 13*]; Kyle Slechta (Naperville, IL) [2-under Thru 11]; Robert Leopold (Coventry, RI) [2-under Thru 8]; and Alan Smith (Crumpin-Fox Club) [1-under, Thru 9*].
Following the first round of play Tuesday morning, Marcoux led all players with a 5-under-par 65. Marcoux got off to a solid start, making birdie on his first two holes (10 & 11) en route to shooting an opening-nine 31. Shooting 66s and one shot back of Marcoux was Kohler and Andrews. Alan Smith shot a 67 in the morning to put himself in the mix as well.
As round two began in the afternoon, the skies started to darken. And at 3:59 p.m. play was suspended due to dangerous weather in the area. Play will resume at 9 a.m. on Wednesday and this story will be updated following the completion of play.
— Mass Golf (@PlayMassGolf) July 6, 2021
Qualifying was also held Tuesday at Crestwood CC (Rehoboth, MA) and conducted by the RIGA. Lightning in the area suspended play for the day at Crestwood. Play will resume at 7:30 a.m. in Rehoboth.
The U.S. Amateur is widely regarded as one of the most prestigious championships in golf. It is the oldest USGA Championship and was created in 1895. Since the inaugural event, the U.S. Amateur has enjoyed an illustrious history of great champions, including Bob Jones, Phil Mickelson, Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer and Tiger Woods.
In 1930, Jones completed his Grand Slam by winning the U.S. Amateur at Merion Golf Club in Ardmore, Pennslyvania. Woods, in 1996, became the first to win three consecutive Amateur titles.
This year’s event will be the 121st of its kind and will be contested at Oakmont CC from August 9-15 in Oakmont, Pennsylvania. The last USGA Championship held at Oakmont was the 2016 U.S. Open won by Dustin Johnson. Longue Vue Club in Verona, Pennsylvania, will serve as the stroke-play co-host venue.
The field will include 312 players, 57 of which are exempt into the Championship Proper. Michael Thorbjornsen (Wellesley CC) is on the list of Currently Exempt Players thanks to his play at the 2020 U.S. Amateur, where he advanced to the quarterfinals.
Longmeadow Country Club was organized in 1922 when it assembled several parcels of land and engaged Donald Ross. Ross transformed a special corner of land that was formerly part of the Native American Agawam Plantation. His use of horse-drawn shapers allowed him to create complex aprons and putting surfaces.
Next year, the club will celebrate its centennial year by hosting the Massachusetts Open, just as Oak Hill Country Club did this year. It will be the fourth Mass Open hosted at Longmeadow. Previous champions of the Mass Open at Longmeadow: Ellsworth Vines (1946), Dan Quigley (1982), and Geoffrey Sisk (2002).
The course plays to a par of 70 over 6,756 yards. It features two par-5s that differ by a staggering 118 yards. The third hole is 601 yards on the scorecard and plays as a true three-shot hole for most. The 10th hole plays at 483 yards and yielded the most birdies of any hole on T Tuesday.
The finisher at Longmeadow CC is a 393-yard par-4, protected by a bunker short of the green.
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