- Golfer Benefits
NORTON, Massachusetts – Five golfers will represent Massachusetts at the U.S. Junior Amateur Championship next week, bringing the Bay State’s top golfers under age 19 to Bandon Dunes Golf Resort in Bandon, Oregon. That group includes Sudbury’s Weston Jones (Charter Oak Country Club), Beverly’s Aidan LeBlanc (MIAA), Wellesley’s John Broderick (Dedham Country & Polo Club), Fitchburg’s Patrick Ginnity (Oak Hill Country Club) and Swampscott’s Aiden Emmerich (Kernwood Country Club).
The championship begins Monday and will take place on the Bandon Dunes and Bandon Trails Courses.
Jones, LeBlanc, Broderick and Ginnity advanced to the championship in qualifying last month at Oak Hill Country Club. Emmerich earned his spot through qualifying at Rockaway Hunting Club in Lawrence, New York, after recovering from a 3-over start.
Jones, who was one of three co-medalists at Oak Hill, will make his second appearance in the U.S. Junior Amateur. The rising sophomore on the Rutgers University men’s golf team qualified for the championship in 2021 but missed the cut for match play. Fellow medalist LeBlanc, a rising senior at Beverly High School, will make his U.S. Junior Amateur debut.
Close behind Jones and LeBlanc in qualifying was Broderick, an incoming freshman on the Vanderbilt University golf team. The former Belmont Hill standout returns to the championship after advancing to match play last year and defeating William Sides, 3&2, in the Round of 64. Broderick was eliminated after falling to eventual runner-up Colen Trolio in the Round of 32.
Incoming Michigan State University freshman Emmerich is also heading back to the U.S. Junior Amateur for the second time after playing in the first two rounds of stroke play last year. Emmerich, Broderick and Jones are three of 33 golfers in the field who are coming back to the championship after competing in 2021.
Ginnity will play in the championship for the first time ahead of beginning his senior year at St. Bernard’s High School in the fall.
Monday, July 25 – First round, stroke play, 18 holes
Tuesday, July 26 – Second round, stroke play, 18 holes
Wednesday, July 27 – Round of 64, match play
Thursday, July 28 – Round of 32 and Round of 16, match play
Friday, July 29 – Quarterfinal and semifinal rounds, match play*
Saturday, July 30 – Championship match, 36 holes**
*TV: Golf Channel, 3-5 p.m. (Semifinals only)
**TV: Golf Channel, 3-5 p.m.
Massachusetts’ representatives head into the championship with plenty of success to their names already this summer.
In the Massachusetts Amateur Championship earlier this month, Broderick and Emmerich reached match play after managing the challenging course at Concord Country Club. Both advanced to the Round of 32 without a playoff, and Emmerich reached the Round of 16 with a defeat of Sean Fitzpatrick before falling to his older brother, Christian Emmerich, by just one stroke.
Jones finished as the third-best amateur golfer in the Massachusetts Open Championship in June, tying for 12th overall with an even-par 210 at Longmeadow Country Club.
After making improvements between this season and last season and having the results to show for it, Emmerich feels he’s prepared to make a deeper run in this year’s U.S. Junior Amateur.
“I’d say I’m definitely better this year,” Emmerich said. “I’m having a pretty decent year, better than last year, so I’m feeling confident going into it. I’ve gained a few yards and I think that will help. Last year, that was kind of my problem and I’ve gotten a little better putter.”
Broderick said that following a tough defeat to former professional Jake Shuman in the Mass Amateur, he’s looking forward to the U.S. Junior Amateur and other junior events that remain this season.
“I kind of had a heartbreaking first match,” he said. “But I can build on that. That’s honestly one of my first matches that I actually played well in and lost, which is a good experience to learn. And now it’s kind of the homestretch of my junior golf, but it’s also fun where you’re playing against kids your own age again and hopefully you can have some good results.”
Broderick also looks forward to the once-in-a-lifetime chance to play at Bandon Dunes and take another crack at the U.S. Junior Amateur.
“First of all, playing Bandon, most people can never get that opportunity,” he said. “I think it’s like a bucket list for all of us to be able to play in the tournament because the U.S. Junior is even more bucket list. And for me, I’m going in with the attitude that I can compete in that tournament. Last year, I lost the second round to a great player and it was a good learning experience, I got beaten pretty good but I went in with the wrong attitude. I think this year, if you get to match play, anything can happen, so I’m just really excited for it.”
View this post on Instagram
The field has an average age of 16.8 years, with 12-year-old Pierson Huyck as the youngest competitor and 18-year-old William Love as the oldest. Huyck is the youngest competitor in the history of the championship. More than half of competitors in the field are 17 or 18 years old.
A total of 37 states and 25 countries are represented in the field. Massachusetts ranks 12th out of all states with five golfers in the championship.
The field also includes several of the world’s top junior golfers, including nine in the top 150 of the World Amateur Golf Ranking®. The highest ranked golfer in the championship is No. 20 Wenyi Ding. 2021 U.S. Junior Amateur Champion Nicholas Dunlap, who is ranked No. 109, is also in the field as he attempts to defend his title.
There are 18 Drive, Chip and Putt finalists in the field, including winners Jaden Dumdumaya (2022), Jay Leng Jr. (2015) and Treed Huang (2014). There are also 10 golfers who played in the 2021 U.S. Amateur Championship, including Jones.
The U.S. Junior Amateur was first contested in 1948, designed to determine who the best junior golfer under the age of 18 was in the United States. The first edition of the championship was held at the University of Michigan Golf Course, with Dean Lind of Rockford, Illinois emerging victorious.
The championship underwent significant change in 2016 when the USGA changed the age limit to 19 years instead of 18 for the 2017 U.S. Junior Amateur and beyond. Beginning in 2017, the U.S. Junior Amateur Champion also receives an exemption for the following year’s U.S. Open Championship.
Notable winners of the event include Tiger Woods (1991, 1992, 1993) and Jordan Spieth (2009, 2011), who are the only competitors to win the event more than once, as well as David Duval, Gary Koch, Hunter Mahan, Johnny Miller, Mason Rudolph and Kevin Tway. The 2021 victor at The Country Club of North Carolina was Dunlap, a Northport, Alabama native who will head to the University of Alabama men’s golf team this fall.
The 2022 winner will receive a gold medal, custody of the U.S. Junior Amateur Trophy for one year, exemption into future U.S. Junior Amateurs if age-eligible, exemption into the 2022 and 2023 U.S. Amateur Championships, and an exemption into the 2023 U.S. Open at The Los Angeles Country Club.
Bandon Dunes is hosting the U.S. Junior Amateur Championship for the first time, though it is the eighth USGA championship to be hosted at the seaside golf resort. When the championship begins, Bandon Dunes will become the first golf course to have hosted eight different USGA championships on its greens. Prior to the 2022 U.S. Junior Amateur, the most recent USGA championship hosted at Bandon Dunes was the 2020 U.S. Amateur.
The U.S. Junior Amateur has been hosted in Oregon three times, including the 1993 Championship at Waverly Country Club, where young up-and-comer Tiger Woods captured his third consecutive title in the event. Most recently, the U.S. Junior Amateur was held in Oregon in 2000, when Matthew Rosenfeld came away with the crown at Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club.
Next up for Bandon Dunes is the 2023 U.S. Senior Women’s Open.
Visit MassGolf.org and follow @PlayMassGolf on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube for the latest information on Mass Golf competitors, championships and events. To join the conversation, use the hashtag #MassGolf.