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What You Need to Know About the U.S. Amateur Playoff
15 Aug 2017
by Kevin Cassidy of AmateurGolf.com

see also: U.S. Amateur Golf Championship, Pebble Beach Golf Links

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Riviera's 10th hole is where it will all start<br>(Golf Channel photo)
Riviera's 10th hole is where it will all start
(Golf Channel photo)
PACIFIC PALISADES, CA (August 15, 2017) - After two rounds of qualifying at Riviera and Bel-Air CC, the top 312 amateurs in the world will be cut down to 64 in the U.S. Amateur Championship.

Before match play starts however, the hole-by-hole playoff for the final spots in match play, one of the most exciting parts of the tournament, must be played. The single-elimination playoff for the final provides the players on the cut line with their last chance to make it to match play.

From the Tournament Scoreboard: Where will the cut fall and who will make it? Click below


Players competing in the playoff will play the first playoff hole and wait to at the green until all players have completed the hole. The lowest scores will advance to the next hole, and so on, until the playoff field is cut down to the number of spots available.

With such a large field of the top amateurs, there is guaranteed to be plenty of golfers around the cut line. At the 1988 U.S. Amateur in Hot Springs, VA, 31 amateurs were in a playoff for 8 spots! Weeding the field down is so entertaining to watch because none of these passionate amateurs want to let go of their spot in match play.

This year the playoff will be even more entertaining, as we have 13 of the top amateurs and proven professional talents battling for the final eight spots. The playoff will include Braden Thornberry, a top 5 finisher at FedEx St. Jude Classic; Scottie Scheffler, low amateur at the 2017 U.S. Open; Harry Ellis, 2017 British Amateur Champion; and Derek Bard, the 2016 U.S. Amateur runner-up.

Playoff Participants

69-75--144 Scottie Scheffler, Dallas TX
74-70--144 Joey Vrzich, El Cajon, CA
72-72--144 Jacob Solomon, Auburn, AL
72-72--144 Braden Thornberry, Olive Branch, MS
73-71--144 Brendon Jelley, Tulsa, OK
71-73--144 Doc Redman, Raleigh, NC
74-70--144 David Kocher, Charlotte, NC
68-76--144 Chun An Yu, Chinese Taipei
73-71--144 Matt Oshrine, Baltimore, MD
73-71--144 Harry Ellis, England
72-72--144 Chris Crisologo, Canada
73-71--144 Billy Walthouse, Longmeadow, MA
72-72--144 Derek Bard, New Hartford, NY

Besides having such a talented field in the playoff, the iconic holes being played will add a lot of strategy and drama to the event. The players will tee off at 7:30 AM on the 10th hole, a driveable par-4, some call the best par-4 in golf. Whether players try to drive the green or lay up on could be the most important decision they make all week.

Hitting a driver might seem like an easy choice, but the hole location will be the biggest factor in the player's choice. 312 of the top amateurs in the world were unable to make an eagle on the heavily bunkered 310-yard 10th with the pin tucked in the back-right portion of the green. But if the pin is moved to the front-left for the playoff, the hole will be a lot more accessible.

Players who advance from the 10th will go on to the difficult 192-yard 14th, where par is usually an acceptable score. From there the players will go on to another of the most iconic holes in golf, the 18th at Riviera. With a match play spot on the line walking up the 18th fairway with the clubhouse in the background and the gallery surrounding the green, it will surely send goosebumps up the competitor’s spine.

Check out highlights from the playoff on AmateurGolf.com.
ABOUT THE U.S. Amateur

The U.S. Amateur, the oldest USGA championship, was first played in 1895 at Newport Golf Club in Rhode Island. The event, which has no age restriction, is open to those with a Handicap Index of 2.4 or lower. It is one of 13 national championships conducted annually by the USGA, 10 of which are strictly for amateurs. It is the pre-eminent amateur competition in the world. Applications are typically placed online, starting the third week in April at www.usga.org.

View Complete Tournament Information

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