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Players to Watch at the 2019 U.S. Mid-Amateur
The 264-player field for the 39th U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship is set, and players will tee it up at Colorado Golf Club and CommonGround Golf Club as stroke play qualifying begins on Saturday.

Related: Pairings and tee times: U.S. Mid-Amateur
Related: FINAL: U.S. Mid-Amateur qualifying roundup

Here is a look at some of the key players to watch:

Derek Busby
Derek Busby
Derek Busby, 35, of Ruston, La., has competed in four U.S. Mid-Amateurs, reaching the Round of 16 twice (2016, 2018), and eight USGA championships. He and Stewart Hagestad reached the Round of 16 in this year’s U.S. Amateur Four-Ball at Bandon Dunes. On Aug. 11, he defeated Gregory Berthelot in a playoff to win the Louisiana Mid-Amateur, and he also finished second behind champion Mike Finster in the Gasparilla Invitational.

Joseph Deraney
Joseph Deraney
Joseph Deraney, 36, of Tupelo, Miss., won the Canadian Mid-Amateur for the second consecutive year and the 2019 Mississippi Amateur Championship, earning him Mississippi Golf Association Player of the Year honors for 2019. He also won the 2018 Timuquana Cup and Carlton Woods Invitational, as well as the 2016 and 2017 Kentucky Mid-Amateur Championships. Deraney, a stay-at-home father, has competed in four USGA championships. His wife, Sarah, is a radiologist and is affiliated with the Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Stewart Hagestad
Stewart Hagestad
Stewart Hagestad, 28, of Newport Beach, Calif., won the 2016 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship by rallying to defeat Scott Harvey in 37 holes, and advanced to the semifinals in 2018 at Charlotte (N.C.) Country Club. He was a member of the victorious 2017 and 2019 USA Walker Cup Teams and won a gold medal in the Mixed Team competition of this year’s Pan American Games in Lima, Peru. Hagestad, who became the second-youngest Mid-Amateur champion, produced the largest comeback victory (4 down with 5 holes to play) since a 36-hole final was introduced in 2001. Hagestad, who advanced to match play in the 2018 and 2019 U.S. Amateurs, has played in the last three U.S. Opens and was the low amateur in the 2017 Masters Tournament, becoming the first invited U.S. Mid-Amateur champion to make the 36-hole cut He has competed in 19 USGA championships.

Scott Harvey
Scott Harvey
Scott Harvey, 41, of Greensboro, N.C., has competed in 31 USGA championships, including 11 U.S. Mid-Amateurs. He won the 2014 U.S. Mid-Amateur at Saucon Valley Country Club in Bethlehem, Pa., and was the runner-up to Stewart Hagestad in 2016. Harvey, a property manager, has a 20-9 match-play Mid-Amateur record and was a member of the 2015 USA Walker Cup Team. In May, he won the U.S. Amateur Four-Ball with partner Todd Mitchell at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort and the George C. Thomas Invitational at The Los Angeles Country Club for the fourth consecutive year. In 2017, Harvey qualified for his first U.S. Open at Erin Hills.

Reid Hatley
Reid Hatley
Reid Hatley, 38, of Hayden Lake, Idaho, won the Washington Amateur Championship earlier this summer. Last year he won the Washington State Mid-Amateur and followed it up with a win at the Pacific Northwest Mid-Amateur. He finished fifth in the Mexican Amateur after finishing tied for sixth in 2018. Hatley has been named the Pacific Northwest Men’s Mid-Amateur Player of the Year the past four years (2015-18).

Tim Hogarth
Tim Hogarth
Tim Hogarth, 53, of Northridge, Calif., has competed in 15 U.S. Mid-Amateurs and 31 USGA championships. He won the 1996 U.S. Amateur Public Links title and was runner-up to Nathan Smith in the 2010 U.S. Mid-Amateur. Hogarth, a health food broker, has played in eight U.S. Amateurs and three U.S. Senior Opens (2017, 2018, 2019). He is a three-time Southern California Golf Association Player of the Year. Hogarth, who was born in Hawaii and played collegiately at California State University-Northridge, participates in Muay Thai, a form of kickboxing.

Drew Kittleson
Drew Kittleson
Drew Kittleson, 30, of Scottsdale, Ariz., was the runner-up to Danny Lee in the 2008 U.S. Amateur at Pinehurst No. 2. Kittleson, who was reinstated as an amateur four years ago, is a sales manager for a kitchen and bathroom remodeling company. He is competing in his first U.S. Mid-Amateur and eighth USGA championship. Kittleson, who competed in the 2009 Masters and U.S. Open, reached the quarterfinals of the 2005 U.S. Junior Amateur.

Jake Koppenberg
Jake Koppenberg
Jake Koppenberg, 32, of Bellingham, Wash., is a volunteer assistant golf coach at his alma mater, Western Washington University and helped the program claim the 2019 Great Northwest Athletic Conference title. Koppenberg, a PNGA Amateur semifinalist who advanced to match play in last year’s U.S. Mid-Amateur, works in business development for a communications services company. He has competed in four U.S. Amateurs, advancing to the Round of 32 in 2008, when he lost to Rickie Fowler. Koppenberg was a two-time All-American and twice GNAC Player of the Year as a collegian.

Related: Kittleson's return to the U.S. Am born of a bet with buddies

Lukas Michel
Lukas Michel
Lukas Michel, 25, of Australia, is that nation's top-ranked mid-amateur and comes into his first USGA event at No. 5 in the AmateurGolf.com Mid-Amateur Rankings. He has compiled an impressive record in Australia, finishing T6 in the Master of the Amateurs and fourth in the Avondale Amateur Medal. Last year he had top-five finishes in the Dunes Medal, the Federal Open Amateur, and the South Australia Amateur.

Michael Muehr
Michael Muehr
Michael Muehr, 47, of McLean, Va., is competing in his eighth U.S. Mid-Amateur and 19th USGA championship. He is a two-time Crump Cup champion and also won the Middle Atlantic Amateur twice. Muehr, who works as a financial advisor, advanced to the quarterfinals in the 2016 U.S. Mid-Amateur and was also a quarterfinalist in 2011. He was diagnosed with melanoma in 2003 and is the founder of Golf Pros Beating Cancer, a charitable foundation in Virginia. Muehr, who underwent successful treatment and surgery, previously has competed on the PGA Tour and Web.com Tour before regaining his amateur status in 2007.

Brad Nurski
Brad Nurski
Brad Nurski, 40, of St. Joseph, Mo., was the runner-up to Scott Harvey, whom he shared medalist with in the 2014 U.S. Mid-Amateur. He was also the Crump Cup runner-up in 2018. He has played in 15 USGA championships. Nurski, who also has reached match play twice in the U.S. Amateur Four-Ball with partner Skip Berkmeyer, works as a conductor and switchman for Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) Railway. The left-hander has won three Missouri Golf Association State Amateur titles. He also captured this year’s MGA Stroke Play in a three-way playoff and was runner-up in the MGA Amateur.

Kevin O’Connell
Kevin O’Connell
Kevin O’Connell, 31, of Jacksonville, Fla., defeated Brett Boner, 4 and 3, to win the 2018 U.S. Mid-Amateur and earn an exemption into this year’s U.S. Open at Pebble Beach. O’Connell, who is originally from Cary, N.C., has competed in seven USGA championships, including this year’s U.S. Amateur at Pinehurst Nos. 2 and 4. O’Connell, who once worked for a club manufacturer, earned All-America honors at the University of North Carolina. In 2008, he was named Atlantic Coast Conference freshman of the year. This year, he owns three top-10 finishes, including a tie for third in the George L. Coleman Invitational at Seminole Golf Club.

Sam O’Dell
Sam O’Dell
Sam O’Dell, 41, of Hurricane, W.Va., advanced to the quarterfinals of the 2018 U.S. Mid-Amateur and the Round of 16 the previous year. He has a family and cosmetic dentistry practice and graduated from the West Virginia University School of Dentistry in 2005. O’Dell, who has competed in 10 USGA championships, including five U.S. Mid-Amateurs, has won four state amateur and five state mid-amateur championships. O’Dell earned all-conference and all-academic recognition at Marshall University.

Matt Parziale
Matt Parziale
Matt Parziale, 32, of Brockton, Mass., won the 2017 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship by defeating Josh Nichols, 8 and 6, at Capital City Club’s Crabapple Course. Parziale became the first Mid-Amateur champion to earn a full exemption into the following year’s U.S. Open. His margin of victory also matched the third-largest in championship history. A former firefighter who now works for an insurance brokerage firm, Parziale shared low-amateur honors with Luis Gagne in the 2018 U.S. Open. He has played in 15 USGA championships, including this year’s U.S. Open at Pebble Beach. In 2019, he tied for fifth in the Porter Cup and reached the quarterfinals of Massachusetts State Amateur.

Garrett Rank
Garrett Rank
Garrett Rank, 32, of Canada, is entering his four season as a full-time National Hockey League referee after working two seasons in the American Hockey League. Rank won the 117th Western Amateur on Aug. 3, defeating Daniel Wetterich, 3 and 2, in the 18-hole final. He became the first Canadian to win the championship in 42 years and the first mid-amateur to win the title since 1997. Rank, who overcame a cancer scare at age 23, has competed in 18 USGA championships, including the 2018 U.S. Open at Shinnecock Hills. A runner-up to Nathan Smith in the 2012 U.S. Mid-Amateur, Rank finished second in the Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur on Aug. 23, one stroke behind defending champion Joseph Deraney. He is a three-time champion of that event.

Joey Savoie
Joey Savoie
Joey Savoie, 25, of Canada, is the youngest player in the U.S. Mid-Amateur field. He has played in five U.S. Amateurs, including this year at Pinehurst Nos. 2 and 4, and represented his country in the 2018 World Amateur Team Championship. In 2019, he reached the quarterfinals of the North and South Amateur, advanced to match play in the Australian Amateur and played in the Pan American Games and RBC Canadian Open. He was a Division II All-America at St. Leo University before earning All-Conference USA recognition at Middle Tennessee State University.

Andres Schonbaum
Andres Schonbaum
Andres Schonbaum, 28, of Argentina, advanced to the quarterfinal round of the 2018 U.S. Mid-Amateur at Charlotte (N.C.) Country Club. He lost to eventual champion Kevin O’Connell in 19 holes after defeating 2018 champion Matt Parziale in the Round of 64. Schonbaum was second in this year’s George L. Coleman Invitational at Seminole Golf Club, one stroke behind winner Scott Harvey. He tied for 33rd in the Latin American Amateur in the Dominican Republic after tying for 19th the previous year. Schonbaum, who is an insurance broker, led Jacksonville State (Ala.) University to the 2011 Ohio Valley Conference Championship.

Nathan Smith
Nathan Smith
Nathan Smith, 41, of Pittsburgh, Pa., is a four-time U.S. Mid-Amateur champion (2003, 2009, 2010, 2012). Smith, who is tied for second in career Mid-Amateur match-play wins (34) behind Jerry Courville Jr.’s 36, also won the 2015 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball title with partner Todd White. A member of three USA Walker Cup Teams (2009, 2011, 2013), Smith works as an investment advisor. He has played in 45 USGA championships, including 14 U.S. Mid-Amateurs. Smith, who has won two Pennsylvania Amateurs, has been inducted into Western Pennsylvania Golf and Allegheny College halls of fame.

Related: The AmateurGolf.com Mid-Amateur Rankings

- The USGA contributed to this article.

Results: U.S. Mid-Amateur
WinAustraliaLukas MichelAustralia1000
Runner-upMSJoseph DeraneyBelden, MS700
SemifinalsTXJason SchultzAllen, TX500
SemifinalsNYStewart HagestadNew York City, NY500
QuarterfinalsArgentinaAndres SchonbaumArgentina400

View full results for U.S. Mid-Amateur

ABOUT THE U.S. Mid-Amateur

The U.S. Mid-Amateur originated in 1981 for the amateur golfer of at least 25 years of age, the purpose of which to provide a formal national championship for the post-college player. 264 players begin the championship with two rounds of sroke play qualifying held at two courses, after which the low 64 (with a playoff if necessary to get the exact number) advance to single elimination match play.

View Complete Tournament Information

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