Top 10 storylines: Vogel wins U.S. Pub-Links
30 Dec 2012
by Golfweek

see also: T.J. Vogel Rankings

T.J. Vogel
T.J. Vogel

By Ron Balicki, Golfweek

There were plenty of good stories that came out of amateur golf this past season, exciting, happy endings as well as disappointing, heart-breaking endings.

From Steven Fox winning the U.S. Amateur, to Nathan Smith capturing a record fourth U.S. Mid-Amateur to a 14-year-old from China qualifying for next year’s Masters -- and a whole lot more along the way.

I’ve been covering amateur golf at just about every level for some 30 years and it seems each year provides its own share of interesting stories, whether in victory or defeat.

Golfweek's Top 10 Stories of 2012
  • No. 10: Guan wins Asian Am | Read
  • No. 9: Peter Williamson's Summer | Read
  • No. 8 Rhys Pugh's Comeback | Read
  • No. 7: Chris Williams' Western Am run | Read
  • No. 6: Daan Huizing wins Lytham Trophy | Read
  • No. 5: USA dominates World Am Team | Read
  • No. 4: T.J. Vogel wins U.S. Public Links | Read
  • No. 3: Alan Dunbar wins British Amateur | Read
  • No. 2: Nathan Smith wins 4th U.S. Mid-Am | Read
  • No. 1: Steven Fox wins thrilling U.S. Am | Read
Compiling a list of the best of them for 2012 was difficult, but here is a list of my top 10:

No. 4: T.J. Vogel, from Cooper City, Fla. and a senior at Florida, made the most impressive statement of his young amateur career when he defeated fellow Floridian Kevin Aylwin 12 and 10 in the scheduled 36-hole final and captured the U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship at Soldier Hollow Golf Club in Midway, Utah.

So impressive was Vogel that he never lost a hole and was 10-up after the morning session’s first 18 holes. Just how good was Vogel playing? Consider that Aylwin sank a pair of 20-foot putts and had a chip-in and was still 10-down through the morning.

“I had that feeling today,” Vogel said afterward. “I can’t tell you why, I just knew I was going to play well. There was just no way (he felt) I was going to lose.”

And to win in the manner in which he did, Vogel simply said, “This isn’t real.”

Yes, T.J., it was and so to is the invitation to compete in the 2013 Masters that goes along with the victory.

The final score marked the second largest margin of victory in USGA competition in a 36-hole final next to the 12-and-11 marks set by C.B. Macdonald in the first U.S. Amateur Championship in 1895 and matched by Jim Sorenson in the 1995 U.S. Amateur Public Links.

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