Western Am: Flanagan medals as 7-for-1 playoff sets Sweet 16
Angus Flanagan (L) takes medalist honors (Western GA)
Angus Flanagan (L) takes medalist honors (Western GA)

Angus Flanagan (Woking, England) shot a 6-under 66 at famed Crooked Stick Golf Club to finish 72 holes at 11 under par and earn medalist honors at the 118th Western Amateur Championship.

Flanagan, who recently completed his junior year at the University of Minnesota, came into the week with a good run of form that saw him win the Minnesota State Open, and then got to play in the PGA Tour's 3M Open in Minnesota last week.

His 66 was the low round of stroke play qualifying, matching the score shot by Spencer Tibbits (Vancouver, Wash.) in the second round, but it came under the pressure of the strong field all jockeying to finish in the top 16 players who will advance to the match play phase of one of golf's most grueling events.

Texas A&M's Sam Bennett (Madisonville, Texas) was poised to be the medalist but bogeyed two holes coming in to fall one shot behind Flanagan. But the main job was done, and Bennett had the added satisfaction of being the only player in the field to break par all four rounds at the difficult major championship venue.

Matthias Schmid of Germany and the University of Louisville was another shot back at 9 under.

Andy Ogletree (Little Rock, Miss.), who will be defending his U.S. Amateur title at Bandon Dunes, is safely through to match play as the fourth seed.

University of Florida teammates Ricky Castillo (Yorba Linda, Calif.) and Joseph Pagdin (Sheffield, England) also comfortably made the Sweet 16.

Turk Pettit (Sugar Grove, N.C.) of Clemson, who shared the 36-hole lead, struggled to a 75 in the morning round on Thursday but still advanced. The other 36-hole co-leader Kyle Hogan (Cypress, Texas) of Texas Tech wasn't as fortunate.

Other Sweet 16ers included Alabama commit Alexander Yang (Carlsbad, Calif.), Rasmus Neergaard-Petersen (Oklahoma State/Denmark), Pierceson Coody (University of Texas/Plano, Texas), Davis Thompson (University of Georgia/St. Simons Island, Ga.), Harrison Ott (Vanderbilt/Brookfield, Wisc.), Trey Winstead (LSU/Baton Rouge, La.), University of Virginia commit George Duangmanee (Fairfax, Va.), and Connor Creasy (University of Georgia/Abingdon, Va.).

Seven players -- including the 2018 Western Amateur champion Cole Hammer -- were tied at even par for the 16th and final Sweet 16 spot, and headed to their 37th hole of the day to start a 7-for-1 playoff.

Austin Hitt (University of North Carolina/Longwood, Fla.) emerged from the playoff as the winner and will face Flanagan in the first round of match play on Friday.

Two rounds of match play will pare the field down to the final four, with two more matches including the championship final on Saturday.

Results: Western Amateur
WinnerTXPierceson CoodyPlano, TX150071-71-73-69=284
Runner-upDenmarkRasmus Neergaard-PetersenDenmark120071-67-73-72=283
SemifinalsCARicky CastilloYorba Linda, CA90071-68-70-72=281
SemifinalsVAGeorge DuangmaneeFairfax, VA90072-71-69-73=285
QuarterfinalsMSAndy OgletreeLittle Rock, MS70070-68-75-67=280

View full results for Western Amateur

ABOUT THE Western Amateur

Invitational event, and the most important tournament in American amateur golf outside of the U.S. Amateur. With a grueling schedule, it's quite possibly the hardest amateur tournament to win.

156 invited players come from across the globe to play one of the toughest formats in amateur golf. The tournament starts with 18 holes of stroke play on Tuesday and Wednesday after which the field is cut to the low 44 scores and ties. Thursday it's a long day of 36 holes of stroke play to determine the “Sweet Sixteen” who compete at Match Play on Friday and Saturday (two matches each day if you're going to the finals) to decide the champion.

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