Alex Smalley is U.S Amateur medalist winner, top-seed
Alex Smalley blasts out of the 12th hole on the South Course <br>(USGA Photo)
Alex Smalley blasts out of the 12th hole on the South Course
(USGA Photo)

BLOOMFIELD HILLS, MI (August 16, 2016) -- Playing on the more difficult Oakland Hills Country Club South Course in the second round didn't phase Alex Smalley as he followed up his first day 5-under 65 with a 2-under 70 to finish 7-under and earn medalist honors at the U.S. Amateur. Smalley will be the top-seed when the Round of 64 begins on Wednesday.

The 7-under 133 posted by Smalley matched the second lowest qualifying score in tournament history. Smalley tied Brett Coletta's mark from a year ago and finished one-stroke behind Hank Kim (1994), Gregor Main (2011) and Bobby Wyatt (2012).

“I’m kind of shaking a little bit, still. I'm not sure what to feel,” Smalley told reporters following his round. “This is my first U.S. Amateur, so it's kind of cool taking home medalist. Medalist is nice, but we've still got a lot more golf to go.”

Heavy rains soaked the course during the morning wave but by the time Smalley took to the course the rains had gone leaving soft conditions. The Duke sophomore jumped out to a quick start with birdies on two of his first three holes and after a third on No. 8 he had reached 8-under. Following a par on the 9th Smalley turned in 3-under 32.

Smalley got a little lower, as he reached 9-under with another birdie on the 10th before giving his first stroke back on No. 12. Three holes later Smalley carded his final birdie of the day to return to 9-under. From there Smalley held on as he carded two bogeys on the way in.

“I just got off to a good start, had three birdies on the front nine, and then just kind of kept it going,” Smalley said. “Again, I didn't miss very many greens today. I think I only missed a couple. I just hit the ball solid all the way around.”

Finishing in second place, one-stroke behind Smalley were first round leader Dawson Armstrong and Gavin Hall. Both players played in the morning rain on the South Course Tuesday and finished 6-under.

Armstrong, a junior at Lipscomb, put together an even-par 70 during his second round, after posting a dazzling 6-under 64 on Monday. Beginning on the 10th hole Armstrong birdied his first hole moving to 7-under and then parred the next ten. Birdies on Nos. 2 and 4 brought him to 9-under but three bogeys to close derailed his medalist hopes.

“I'm not a serious historian about courses and players that won at those courses, but I've seen some of the players that have won here, some of the tournaments that have been played. The players that have won here are very highly renowned players. It's a privilege to get to keep on going and still have a chance to be in the likes of Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, just great players. It's a real honor," said Armstrong.

Texas senior Gavin Hall carded a 1-under 69 in his second round. Hall, coming off a 5-under 65 at the North Course, started on the back nine and birdied No. 12 to reach 6-under. Following a run of pars Hall quickly moved to 8-under thanks to an eagle on the par-5 2nd hole. However, bogeys on 4 and 6 dropped him one- stroke behind Smalley.

The round of the qualifying stage was posted on Tuesday by Davis Riley. Playing on the North Course, Riley rebounded from a 3-over 73 to shoot a 7- under 63 and tie the competitive course record initially set by Matt Kuchar. Riley put together a bogey-free round that included seven birdies, all coming in a seven hole stretch from Nos. 2-13. The Alabama sophomore rocketed up the leaderboard and finished tied fourth at 4-under.

“It’s definitely in the top couple for sure,” said Riley of his round. “I had a 58 at my home course that has to be up there, but definitely in the top two or three rounds I've played in a while.”

The 142-stroke cut matches the lowest of all-time, previously done in 2011 at Erin Hills.


-Derek Bard
-Philip Barbaree
-Sean Crocker
-Cameron Davis
-Harrison Endycott
-Nick Hardy
-Rico Hoey
-Cheng Jin
-Robert MacIntyre
-Corey Pereira
-Antoine Rozner
-Nathan Smith
-Fred Wedel

-The USGA contributed to this story

Results: U.S. Amateur
WinAustraliaCurtis LuckAustralia2000
Runner-upTXBrad DalkeMcKinney, TX1500
SemifinalsMINick CarlsonHamilton, MI1000
SemifinalsCAJonah TexeiraPorter Ranch, CA1000
QuarterfinalsINDylan MeyerEvansville, IN700

View full results for U.S. Amateur

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 14 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 in the spring at www.usga.org.

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