Pepperdine's McCarthy scores big win at NCGA Match Play
Josh McCarthy (NCGA photo)
Josh McCarthy (NCGA photo)

Six of Josh McCarthy’s Pepperdine teammates were on the opposite coast to start the week – competing at the U.S. Amateur at Pinehurst. McCarthy made it farther in match play than anyone, winning the NCGA Match Play at Spyglass Hill in Pebble Beach, Calif. It’s one of the most coveted titles in Northern California, and one that McCarthy has always had his eye on.

Just chalk up another major summer win for the Waves, and let the countdown continue to the season.

McCarthy was a decorated junior in Northern California, but this is his first NCGA title. He is the first medalist to go wire-to-wire since Maverick McNealy, who now plays professionally, did it in 2015.

“This win is really important to me, everything this event means” said McCarthy, who closed things out by holing out a pitch shot for birdie on the 31st hole. “I’ve always hoped to win it. Growing up, you see the age groups ahead of you and the guys who’ve won it. It’s something I’ve always aspired to.”

McCarthy defeated Toby Briggs by a 7-and-5 margin on a chilly 36-hole day at Spyglass. Despite being defeated, Briggs – who hails from England and plays collegiately for the University of San Francisco – was happy to see Spyglass for the first time and get in some tournament experience.

“Can you complain? This week was about getting in some reps before the season,” Briggs said. “I’d wanted to see where my game was.”

McCarthy father John caddied for him for the week. Looking ahead, McCarthy still has his senior season left. After that, he plans on turning professional.

“I’m thinking I’ll possibly turn pro next June,” McCarthy said. “It depends on how the year goes.”

Information from the USGA used in this report

Results: NCGA Match Play
WinCAJoshua McCarthyDanville, CA400
Runner-upEnglandToby BriggsEngland260
SemifinalsCAChase SienkiewiczCarmichael, CA160
SemifinalsCANicholas CaputoHollister, CA160
QuarterfinalsCAIan DahlCarmel, CA120

View full results for NCGA Match Play


The oldest of the NCGA’s major events, the Amateur Match Play Championship, dates back to 1903 when it was first played at San Rafael GC. Varying formats have been used over the 100+ years of competition but today the tournament is 36 holes of stroke-play qualifying, followed by a 32-person seeded match play bracket. Pre-qualifying required for non-exempt players. Players must have a handicap index of 5.4 or less.

View Complete Tournament Information

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