Viktor Hovland (USGA photo)
After a year in which he ascended to the pinnacle of both amateur and college golf, Viktor Hovland
of Norway is the AmateurGolf.com Men's Player of the Year.
The AmateurGolf.com Men's Player of the Year is awarded based on a point system earned through performance in major amateur events throughout the course of the year. The year, the 21-year-old Hovland outpointed Collin Morikawa of California to earn the award.
Players of the Year
When the year started, Hovland had never won a tournament outside of his native Norway. Now, he is the holder of the most important trophy in amateur golf, after steamrolling the field
in the U.S. Amateur at Pebble Beach in August.
Hovland tied a record for the fewest number of holes played en route to the title (104), and the only time he was forced to play the 18th hole was in his 36-hole final match, which he won convincingly, 6 and 5, over Devon Bling. Along the way he made more history, becoming the first player in 40 years to win consecutive matches in the U.S. Amateur by at least 7 holes, registering 7 and 6 wins in the third and fourth match play rounds.
He also became the first player from Norway to win the U.S. Amateur.
Hovland must have traveled more than any other amateur golfer this year, registering high finishes all over the world.
He nearly pulled off an amazing double, finishing as the runner-up in the European Amateur in the Netherlands, falling just one shot short of the winner Nicolai Hojgaard of Denmark.
In the British Amateur in Scotland, Hovland made a run to the Final 16 at Royal Aberdeen Golf Club.
He also finished 8th individually while leading Norway to a 5th place finish at the World Amateur Team Championship (Eisenhower Trophy) in Ireland.
Late in the year, Hovland traveled to Sydney to compete in the Australian Open, where he finished 13th in a field of top professionals.
In the United States, Hovland was a member of one of the most successful college teams in history, anchoring an Oklahoma State team that won 10 times (7 in a row) and their 11th national championship in front of a raucous home crowd
at Karsten Creek Golf Club.
He was a First-Team GCAA All-American as a sophomore, and picked up his first college win
at the Valspar Collegiate in Florida in March. His second win came in the fall at the Royal Oaks Intercollegiate in Dallas.
Hovland put his name high on the leaderboard of nearly every other college event in which he played. He was the runner-up in the Lamkin San Diego Classic and the Amer Ari Invitational in Hawaii, finished third in the Aggie Invitational and the Querencia Cabo Collegiate in Mexico, and was fourth in the Prestige at PGA West.
He also had top-seven finishes in the NCAA Midwest Regional, the Olympia Fields/Fighting Illini Invitational, and the Big 12 Championship. He finished 11th individually in the NCAA Championships.
Final POY Points Standings, 2018
As the year ended, Hovland and his Oklahoma State Cowboys remained the consensus #1
team in college golf.
Finishing as the runner-up to Hovland was Collin Morikawa of La Cañada Flintridge, Calif., who took the #2 spot for the second straight year. Justin Suh of San Jose, Calif, the Northeast Amateur champion, was third. The Players Amateur champion John Augenstein (Owensboro, Ky.) and last year's AGC Player-of-the-Year Braden Thornberry (Olive Branch, Miss.) rounded out the top five.
Porter Cup champion Thomas Walsh (High Point, N.C.) and Master of the Amateurs champ David Micheluzzi of Australia took the next two spots, followed by Chun An Yu (Chinese Taipei), Matthew Wolff (Agoura Hills, Calif.) and Andy Zhang (China).
Golfweek/AmateurGolf.com World Rankings
| Complete 2018 Points List (2747 players)