Category: USGA Qualifiers

USGA Announces Amateur Championship Qualifying Modifications

Changes to U.S. Amateur, U.S. Women’s Amateur, U.S. Junior Amateur and U.S. Girls’ Junior qualifying will be introduced in 2024

In an effort to continuously enhance and evolve the competitor experience, the USGA is announcing significant modifications to its amateur championship qualifying model for the first time in more than 20 years. These changes, which will take effect for the organization’s four premier amateur championships beginning in 2024, will allow the events to retain their openness while ensuring that high-caliber players are provided ample opportunity to earn a spot in the field and that qualifying can be conducted at the highest level among growing entries and field sizes.

“The openness and aspirational nature of our championships is a defining characteristic of USGA championships,” said Brent Paladino, senior director, Championship Administration. “As the number of entries and qualifying sites have continued to increase on a yearly basis, we looked at ways to evolve our structure to ensure the long-term sustainability of qualifying without excessively burdening Allied Golf Associations (AGAs) and host clubs. These revisions will provide players with additional pathways to our championships through traditional qualifying, expanded exemption categories and performance in state, AGA, regional and national amateur championships.”

In 2022, the USGA accepted 44,737 total entries and collaborated with AGAs to conduct a combined 678 qualifiers across 15 championships.

The most significant revisions for 2024 are to the U.S. Amateur, which will move from a one-stage, 36-hole qualifying format to a two-stage qualifying format with 45 18-hole local qualifying sites and 19 18-hole final qualifying sites. Other adjustments include:

  • Exemptions for state, AGA, regional and national amateur champions based on established criteria and historical WAGR event power rankings;
  • Expansion of World Amateur Golf Ranking® (WAGR) exemption category to top 100 ranked players (previously 50);
  • Establishment of local exemptions, which include top finishers in USGA championships, state/AGA amateur championships and top 600 WAGR players.

Changes to the other championships’ qualifying structures are outlined below:

U.S. Women’s Amateur 

  • Modest reduction in qualifying sites through the establishment of geographic rotations;
  • Exemptions for state, AGA, regional and national amateur champions based on established criteria and historical WAGR event power rankings;
  • Expansion of WAGR exemption category to top 50 players (previously 25).


U.S. Junior Amateur / U.S. Girls’ Junior 

  • Alignment of qualifying structure to encourage AGAs to conduct joint or concurrent qualifying;
  • Exemptions for state, AGA, regional and national junior amateur champions based on established criteria and historical WAGR event power rankings;
  • U.S. Junior Am expansion of WAGR age-filtered exemption category to top 100 (previously 85);
  • U.S. Girls’ Junior expansion of WAGR age-filtered exemption category to top 50 (previously 40).

There will also be a lowering of Handicap Index® limits across all four championships and modifications to the performance policy that will be announced later. Determinations on the individual state, AGA, regional and national championships that will be part of the 2024 exemption criteria will be published prior to the release of entries for the respective championship.

The modifications will result in a net reduction of 94 qualifying sites, while providing more opportunities for players to earn a spot in a USGA championship through expanded exemptions, state/AGA amateur championships and traditional qualifying.

Entries for 2024 USGA amateur championships will open next spring. The 2024 U.S. Amateur will be held at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minn.; the 2024 U.S. Women’s Amateur will be held at Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa, Okla.; while the 2024 Junior Amateur will be held at Oakland Hills Country Club in Bloomfield Hills, Mich.; and the 2024 Girls’ Junior will be played at El Caballero Country Club in Tarzana, Calif.

Canfield, Combs advance to 2022 U.S. Mid-Amateur

David Combs (above left) and Michael Canfield (above right) are headed to a USGA Championship for the first time in their careers. After qualifying for the 2022 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship, hosted by Geneva Golf and Country Club, Combs and Canfield will travel to Erin Hills Golf Course in Wisconsin come early September. 

Canfield had to sit and wait for the rest of the field to finish after turning in his three-under round of 68 early in the day. The wait was worth it, but there was still work to be done.

Canfield joined Combs and two others in a four-player playoff to decide the qualifiers and alternates. With a par on the first and second holes, Canfield and Combs shook hands and congratulated each other as first-time USGA Championship qualifiers. 

It was a special moment for the two qualifiers. Full of excitement, Canfield hopped into the cart, after taping in and called his family. 

“I made it,” Canfield said. 

The feeling of qualifying for a USGA Championship is like no other. Only 18-holes to qualify makes it important to get off to a strong start.

“I haven’t played in a qualifier in a while, so early in the round I had to put myself in the position to go get it,” said Combs. 

At the turn, Combs was sitting at even par and three shots back. Birdies on 10 and 11 put Combs one shot back of Canfield. Combs made a putt off the green on 17 for birdie to tie Canfield and sneak into the playoff. 

Tying Combs and Canfield at three-under, Ryan Horner earned 1st Alternate honors after making a bogey on the second playoff hole. Horner had it going early in his round, but a bogey on the 17th hole sent him into the playoff. 

The 2nd Alternate honors went to Charlie Hoyle, who rounded out the four-way tie for first place. Hoyle’s impressive four-under start through his first four holes gave him an early edge. Late bogeys on 15, 16 and the first playoff hole put Hoyle in the 2nd Alternate position. 

On August 8-9, the IGA is conducting the 57th Iowa Senior Women’s Amateur Championship. Lake Panorama Golf Course in Panora is hosting the historic championship. Use our live scoring feature to follow the leaderboard next week.

U.S. Mid-Am Qualifier
T1. Michael Canfield -3 68 *Qualifier*
T1. David Combs -3 68 *Qualifier*
3. Ryan Horner -3 68 *1st Alternate*
4. Charlie Hoyle -3 68 *2nd Alternate*

Three advance to U.S. Amateur from Davenport CC qualifier

Dennis Bull (above right) did it again. Bull, a 2021 U.S. Amateur qualifier, repeated the same success this year at Davenport Country Club, a Golf Digest Top-100 course. Now heading to The Ridgewood Country Club and Arcola Country Club (New Jersey), Bull reflected on his rare accomplishment.

“Qualifying two-times in a row is awesome,” Bull said. “I’m old, I looked at Gary (Ellis) on the range today and said, ‘Is everyone getting younger or are we getting older’. It feels good, and I love this golf course.”

The former Iowa Amateur Champion fired a five-under 65 in round one and followed it up with a one-under 69 to conclude his day with a one-shot victory. Bull earned his 2020 Iowa Amateur title at this very course. Having many successful days in Davenport, Bull shares how he has managed to play this course at such a high level.

“Today was soft and gettable if you were in control of your ball,” Bull said. “You have to be precise when hitting the greens. I think it is a golf course that kind of separates good ball strikers. Ironically, I shot 65 and a 69 in the first two rounds during that Iowa Am.”

There are many emotions that you feel during a 36-hole day, and Notre Dame’s, Angelo Marcon (above middle) battled through them. The San Francisco native grabbed the second qualifier spot with a five-under tally.

“I wasn’t really feeling the same during that second round,” Marcon said. “I was a little off and kind of rushing things a little bit. Pops was on the bag, and he did everything he could to calm me down and say, ‘Hey you are still in this’.”

His father’s advice worked. The duo made birdie on 18 to get back into the race and proceeded to card a three-under back-nine to earn the second qualifying spot. The first-time USGA Championship qualifier had the 2022 U.S. Amateur Championship marked on his calendar.

“I knew I would be there, I just had to prove it first,” Marcon said.  

Gunnar Broin (above left) will be joining Bull and Marcon in New Jersey after taking the third and final spot out of Davenport. Broin made a clutch birdie on his final hole to break out of a tie and earn the final spot alone.

Jack Dudeck was our first alternate with a three-under total. Dudek posted rounds of 68 and 69 to give himself a chance. Aksel Moe was our second alternate after winning the four-player playoff.

The 2022 U.S. Amateur Championship will be held at The Ridgewood Country Club and Arcola Country Club in Paramus, New Jersey. The championship will take place August 15th through the 21st and will be available on Peacock and Golf Channel.

Check out the standings after the first round of the 98th Iowa Women’s Amateur Championship, held at Cedar Rapids Country Club. The race is close after round one, follow the rest of the championship on Tuesday and Wednesday using our live scoring feature.  

U.S. Amateur Qualifier
Dennis Bull -6 65-69=134 *Medalist*
Angelo Marcon -5 65-70=135 *Qualifier*
Gunnar Broin -4 65-71=136 *Qualifier*
Jack Dudeck -3 68-69=137 *1st Alternate*
Aksel Moe -2 68-70=138 *2nd Alternate*

Holck punches ticket to 2022 U.S. Senior Amateur, Three advance to U.S. Women’s Senior Amateur

Curtis Holck (above) will travel to The Kittansett Club in Marion, Massachusetts for the 2022 U.S. Senior Amateur Championship. Holck fired a three-under round of 69 to earn medalist honors at the U.S. Senior Amateur Qualifier at Hyperion Field Club in Johnston. 

Totaling five birdies gave Holck the advantage over the field. Allen Peake, of Macon, Georgia, was close behind, but after a clutch birdie on the 17th, Holck only needed a bogey to win the qualifier. 

“I didn’t know exactly where I stood, but Levi (Slings – caddie) told me that a birdie would be good,” Holck said. “I was hot in the middle of my round and got it to four-under. Levi was a big help because he plays out here and he knows the greens. I trusted him.”

Peake carded a two-under round to earn the first alternate spot. He was able to get into contention with an eagle on 15 and a birdie on the final hole. Peake’s last-minute effort fell short of Holck’s impressive performance. 

A playoff between Sam Billmeyer and Dave Gaer was needed to decide the second alternate position. After defeating Billmeyer in a playoff, Gaer earned the second alternate spot into the U.S. Senior Amateur Championship. 


Laura Leszczynski (above middle) and Rose Kubesheski (above right) share co-medalist honors at the U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur Qualifier held at Hyperion Field Club in Johnston. Leszczynski repeated the success she had during last year’s qualifier.

“It feels good – It feels really good,” Leszczynski said. “To go to my second U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur in a row is a great accomplishment.”

Kubesheski is headed to her fifth USGA Championship. This was her second time qualifying for the U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur Championship since 2017, and she couldn’t be happier. 

“I am not sure how many more opportunities I will have to qualify for a USGA Championship, so this one means a lot,” Kubesheski said. 

Robin Webb (above left) earned the third qualifying position with a 12-over round. Webb will join Kubesheski and Leszczynski on a trip to Alaska for the 2022 U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur Championship, held at Anchorage Golf Course. Michelle Klein was the first alternate and Olivia Iturbe earned second alternate. 

U.S. Senior Amateur Qualifier
Curtis Holck -3 69 (Medalist)
Allen Peake -2 70 (1st Alternate)
Dave Gaer -1 71 (2nd Alternate)


U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur Qualifier
Laura Leszczynski +7 79 (Co-Medalist)
Rose Kubesheski +7 79 (Co-Medalist)
Robin Webb +12 84 (Qualifier)
Michelle Klein +15 87 (1st Alternate)
Olivia Iturbe +16 88 (2nd Alternate)

Two advance to U.S. Junior Amateur from Otter Creek GC qualifier

Following qualifying out of Otter Creek Golf Course in Ankeny, Nate Stevens (right) and Michael Takacs are headed to Bandon Dunes Golf Resort for the USGA Junior Amateur Championship, July 25-30. Stevens fired an impressive 64 (-7) to earn medalist honors and Takacs conquered a three-person playoff to seal the second qualifying spot.

Stevens, of Northfield, MN, carded a 33 on the front nine with three birdies and he caught fire as he turned to the back nine, recording four-straight birdies on holes 10, 11, 12 and 13. Stevens posted a 31 and took medalist honors by five shots.

“I hit driver on all the par fours and fives, it was pretty open” Stevens said. “I was expecting the wind to blow a little more to toughen it up a little, but it didn’t. I was able to free-wheel it a little and hit driver everywhere so that was nice.”

Even with a rain delay pausing his red-hot round, Stevens did not let that affect him. He made pars on 17 and 18 to secure the win and his spot in the 2022 USGA Junior Amateur Championship.

“I just finished up on 16 (prior to the delay) and I was the only guy in my group to finish it before the delay,” Stevens said . “When we got back out there, I just took a couple practice swings and just belted a driver on 17. Every bone in my back cracked, but we made it through.”

Takacs (left), of Iowa City, began his round with a clean 35 that included a birdie on the 8th hole. As the round went on, Takacs continued to stay at one-under par, but he knew he needed to snag another birdie.

“I thought four-under par was going to do it,” Takacs said. “I was just thinking when you make a birdie you have to make another one. You can’t be satisfied with one birdie.”

On the 18th hole, Takacs made birdie to get him to two-under par right before the horn blew for the delay. This birdie pushed Takacs into a playoff with Davis Wotnosky, of Wake Forest, NC, and Brock Snyder, of Ames.

“I finished right as they were blowing the horn.,” Takacs said. “I had a long wait for everyone to finish and also the thunderstorm to clear through. I wanted to keep the ball in play during the playoff and just give myself a chance.”

That he did, Takacs made a four-foot tester to save par and earn the second qualifying spot on the first playoff hole.

Wotnosky was able to take the 1st Alternate honors with a bogey on the first playoff. Snyder earned 2nd Alternate honors.

Nate Stevens – 64

Michael Takacs – 69

1st Alternate
Davis Wotnosky – 69

2nd Alternate
Brock Snyder – 69

Several with Iowa ties chase U.S. Open dream

The challenge of qualifying for the U.S. Open awaits several players as they compete in the final U.S. Open qualifying round. The players named below are attempting to qualify for the 122nd U.S. Open to be played at The Country Club in Brookline, Mass. on June 16-19. Final qualifying results and links are listed below.

Rockville, Md. Woodmont Country Club
Chris Baker, Iowa State University Graduate
Charles Jahn, University of Iowa Graduate

Jupiter, Fl. – The Club at Admiral’s Cove
Gene Elliott, Norwalk

Columbus, Ohio – Wedgewood Golf and Country Club / Kinsale Golf and Fitness Club
Sean McCarty, Solon
Jack Lundin, Sioux Falls, SD. (Qualified at Blue Top Ridge in May)
Alex Schaake, University of Iowa Graduate
Tommy Vining, Ankeny

Springfield, Ohio – Springfield Country Club
Troy Merritt, Osage (born)
Timothy Lim, Drake University
Mac McClear, University of Iowa
Carson Schaake, University of Iowa Graduate
Connor Peck, Ankeny!&tab=results

Bend, Oregon – Pronghorn
Jeff Swegle, West Des Moines!&tab=results

College players nab spots into Final Qualifying for U.S. Open

From left – Mac McClear, Jack Lundin and Garrett Tighe.

Warm, windy and tough conditions were the story of the day at Monday’s U.S. Open Local Qualifier held at Blue Top Ridge at Riverside Casino and Golf Resort.

With only five scores at par or better, it was safe to say the day was simply that of survive and advance at a course that usually sees buckets of birdies during the annual Iowa Open in recent years.

Those passing the test and advancing to Final Qualifying for the U.S. Open included University of Missouri’s Jack Lundin (-3) and a pair for University of Iowa players, Mac McClear (-3) and Garrett Tighe (-2). Lundin’s round included four birdies, an eagle and an uncharacteristic triple bogey. McClear made five birdes against just two bogeys, while Tighe added five birdies (including three in a row to start his back nine holes) and two bogeys as well.

Earning alternate positions included Blaine Buhr (1st) and Zach Steffen (2nd).

Click here for full results

2022 IGA, USGA Qualifying Schedule announced

The 2022 IGA Championship calendar has been released. The schedule includes a tremendous lineup of IGA Member Clubs that will serve as host sites for next year’s IGA championships.

In 2022, the Iowa Amateur will be conducted at Crow Valley Golf Club (pictured above) in Davenport, July 18-20. This coming year will mark the third time the Iowa Amateur will be hosted by the club, previously hosting in 1990 (Brad Klapprott) and 2004 (Nate Dunn). The club has also been the site of many other IGA Championships and USGA Qualifiers including the Iowa Senior Amateur (2020), Iowa Cup Matches (2019) and IGA Match Play (2016). The John N. Cochran designed layout will be sure to test the best players from around the state from tee to green.

The Iowa Women’s Amateur is set to be played at Cedar Rapids Country Club, July 25-27. Cedar Rapids Country Club has hosted a total of six previous Iowa Women’s Amateurs and 10 Iowa Amateurs. The course, as many know, hosted the 2019 U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur Championship and was honored as the IGA 18-Hole Course of the Year that same season. Designed in 1915 by the internationally renowned architect Donald Ross, and immaculately restored by famed “Ross Restorer” Ron Prichard beginning in 2011, the course at Cedar Rapids Country Club has been called one of the prettiest pieces of land in the Midwest.

The men’s and women’s IGA Match Play Championships will return for the third time to Talons Golf (formally Talons of Tuscany) in Ankeny, June 28-July 1. Talons Golf, is a privately-owned course routed between beautiful rock walled streams and covered bridges. In 2020, the men’s and women’s IGA Match Play Championships were held at Talons Golf for the first time, when 2020 Men’s Player of the Year Connor Peck and IGA veteran Leanne Smith took home the hardware. In 2021, Smith repeated as champion of the event and Joe Palmer captured the title in historic fashion. As a popular venue for this event, many players, both men and women, will look to add their name to the list of IGA Match Play champions.

In 2022, Ames Golf & Country Club will host the Iowa Senior Amateur. The dates of the championship will be Monday-Wednesday, August 22-24. Ames G&CC last hosted the Iowa Senior Amateur in 2016, when Gene Elliott took home the crown over ‘newcomer’ Jay Gregory. The club also hosted the event in 2003, when Dan Naughton claimed victory.

The Iowa Wife-Husband Championship is set to return to Sunnyside Country Club in Waterloo. The championship is set for Sept. 16-18. The tournament will remain a 3-day format in which couples choose to play their two rounds on Friday & Saturday, Friday & Sunday or Saturday & Sunday.

The Herman Sani Tournament will return August 12-14, to Norwalk’s Echo Valley Country Club in 2022. Since 2013 the event has rotated between Echo Valley Country Club and Hyperion Field Club and continues to feature the state’s best amateur and professional golfers vying for the trophy. The 2021 edition of The Sani was slated to be held at Echo Valley CC, but due to anticipated course projects at Echo Valley CC, Hyperion Field Club agreed to host, with Echo Valley CC hosting in 2022.

In addition to those championships already listed, the IGA will conduct events at the following venues – Spencer Golf & Country Club (Iowa Mid-Amateur – May 20-21), Coldwater Golf Links (IGA Four-Ball – May 6-7), Fort Dodge Country Club (IGA Senior Match Play – June 1-3), Pella Golf & Country Club (Iowa Women’s Forever 39 Match Play – June 8-9), Veenker Memorial Golf Course (IGA Women’s Four-Ball – June 16-17) , Jester Park Golf Course in Granger (Father/Son, Parent/Child – June 18-19), Finkbine Golf Course (Iowa Junior & Girls’ Junior Amateur – June 20-22), Elmcrest Country Club (IGA Women’s Club Team – Aug. 15), Lake Panorama National Resort (Iowa Senior Women’s Amateur – Aug. 8-9) and The Preserve on Rathbun Lake (IGA Club Team – Oct. 3).

The IGA Women’s Mid-Am Series events, IGA Member Play Day(s) and Iowa Cup dates and locations will be announced at a later time. Those updates can be found by checking back to this release.

The IGA will also conduct and administer several USGA Qualifiers throughout the state in 2022. Here are the sites for this year’s qualifying events:
Blue Top Ridge at Riverside Casino and Golf Resort, Riverside – U.S. Open Local Qualifier – May 9
Otter Creek Golf Course, Ankeny – U.S. Junior Amateur Qualifier – June 6
Hyperion Field Club, Johnston – U.S. Senior Amateur Qualifier – July 12
Hyperion Field Club, Johnston – U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur Qualifier – July 12
Davenport Country Club, Davenport – U.S. Amateur Qualifier – July 25
Geneva Golf & Country Club, Muscatine – U.S. Mid-Amateur Qualifier – Aug. 1

Entries to all IGA Championships will be available in March. Entries will be available for USGA Championships at a later date, which will be determined by the USGA and announced on their website.

Gladson/Dunn, Brown/Mechling earn spots into 2022 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball

From left – Nate Dunn, Marc Gladson, Jon Brown and Ethan Mechling.

Marc Gladson, of Cedar Rapids, and Nate Dunn, of Marion, took home the medalist honors and a trip to Birmingham, Alabama, for the 2022 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championship. Gladson and Dunn fired an impressive 12-under round of 60 at Blue Top Ridge Golf Course in Riverside and were medalists of qualifier by three shots on Monday. 

The duo started off red-hot with three birdies and an eagle in their first five holes. Dunn knocked in another eagle on the seventh hole, making the team seven-under through seven holes. With a birdie on the ninth hole, Gladson and Dunn closed out the front nine with an eight-under scorecard.

Another quick start for Gladson and Dunn began the back nine. Gladson’s birdie on the 11th hole gave him a boost of confidence and he made his second eagle of the day on the 12th hole. At this point, Gladson and Dunn were 11-under after 12 holes, but a cool stretch on holes 13 through 16 opened the door for the second-place finishers, Ethan Mechling (Des Moines) and Jon Brown (Adel) to make a run. 

Mechling and Brown made up three shots in that stretch of holes, but it was not enough to overcome Gladson and Dunn’s round. Although they did not earn medalist honors, Brown and Mechling still came away with the second qualifying spot into the 2022 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championship. 

In a four-team playoff, Aaron Ahrendsen and Joshua Manske came away with first alternate honors after making eagle on the first playoff hole. Benton Weinberg and Jake Rowe will be the second alternate after birding the third playoff hole. 

U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Qualifying
1. Marc Gladson + Nate Dunn -12 60 *Qualifier
2. Ethan Mechling + Jon Brown -9 63 *Qualifier
T3. Aaron Ahrendsen + Joshua Manske -7 65 1st Alternate
T3. Benton Weinberg + Jake Rowe -7 65 2nd Alternate

Iowa’s Bull teams up with Price to qualify for U.S. Amateur Four-Ball

Norwalk’s Dennis Bull (right) and Andrew Price (left), of Lake Bluff, Illinois, qualified for the U.S. Amateur Four-Ball earlier this week at Aurora Country Club in Aurora, Illinois. Bull and Price went low and fired a nine-under 63 to win the qualifier by one shot over Skylar Le Vine, of Morton Grove, Illinois, and Chicago’s Ben Johnson. 

Carding a three-under front nine, Bull and Price knew that they needed to go lower because Johnson and Le Vine were already five-under with an eagle on hole seven. A birdie on number 10 started their race up the leaderboard. On 12 and 13, they made birdies and were tied with Johnson and Le Vine. 

Johnson and Le Vine birdied hole 15 to take their lead back, but Bull and Price did not stop pilling on birdies. In the last three holes, Bull and Price made birdies on each hole and took over the tournament. The red-hot duo posted a six-under 30 on their back nine to earn medalist honors. 

The top-two spots qualify for the 2022 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball, so we will see Johnson and Le Vine at the Country Club of Birmingham, Alabama alongside Price and Bull. There was a four-way tie for third place at seven-under par. Davenport’s Dusty Drenth teamed up with Michael Fastert, of Wheeling, Illinois, and scored a 65, but missed it by one shot.

The 2022 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championship will take place in Alabama on May 14-18, and will be hosted by the Country Club of Birmingham. 

U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Qualifier:
1. Andrew Price/Dennis Bull -9 63 – Qualifier
2. Skylar Le Vine/Ben Johnson -8 64 – Qualifier
T3. Josh Kirkham/John Stillman -7 65 – 1st Alternate
T3. Dusty Drenth/Michael Fastert -7 65 – 2nd Alternate
T3. Andrew Kross/Josh Dupont -7 65
T3. Mike O’Connell/Ryan Anetsberger -7 65

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