This morning the greatest amateur golf event in the world begins in Denver, Colorado. More than three hundred (312) players compete for two days in Stroke Play competition on Cherry Hills and Common Ground golf courses, and the top 64 advance to a Match Play competition starting on Wednesday, all at Cherry Hills.
Four Huskies are part of this year’s field: Chris Williams, Cheng-Tsung Pan, Gerrit Chambers, and Tyler Salsbury. You can follow all the results at www.usamateur.com.
Chris Williams enters the tournament as the #1-ranked amateur in the world, following his record-breaking victory at the Western Amateur. Following the US Amateur the R and A will name this year’s Mark McCormack award winner that goes to the world’s top amateur (Nick Taylor won in 2010). So all top-ranked players are hoping for a big week for many reasons, including the exemptions into the US Open and British Opens that come with the McCormack award.
After a bit of a blog hiatus we are back. A staff change and lots of other things put the blog on the back burner, but now with an exciting summer wrapping up and another season on the horizon we are back with full enthusiasm. Let me start by saying that if there is ever any content you would be interested in seeing here please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
Here is a quick update on what’s been happening:
- Dan Potter was hired as our new Assistant Coach. I’ll tell you more about him in the coming weeks. He deserves a full post if you ask me.
- We won the NCAA Regionals and finished 5th at the NCAA Championships at Riviera, losing to Texas in the quarterfinals. Thanks to everyone for following our team on the Road to Riviera. We have now finished in the top 10 at the NCAAs in seven of the last nine years and are more resolved than ever to bring home the big one.
- After spending most of the summer ranked #2 in the World Amateur Rankings, Chris Williams spent last week at #1. It appears he is back to #4 this week, but I’m thinking a great Western Amateur and US Amateur will have him back on top.
- Speaking of the US Amateur… Four Huskies are playing so far: Williams, Pan, G. Chambers, and incoming freshmen Tyler Salsbury. Coach Thurmond will be on the bag for Pan at Cherry Hills so look out!
- Chris Williams was named First Team All-American and Pan was Second Team All-American. These guys are ridiculously good.
- Charlie Hughes was named All-American Scholar. Charlie is ridiculously smart and disciplined.
- All of the guys have had some really good results this summer in tournaments. I give special recognition to Chris and Pan for several very good finishes and to incoming freshmen Jonathan Sanders and Tyler Salsbury for some solid play in amateur events. They could bring in some instant offense.
In the coming weeks we’ll get you up to speed on our schedule, new staff, new players, and the start of our season. Thanks for following and Go Huskies! I promise I’ll add some more pictures and interesting stuff in upcoming posts when I know how to do it. -Matt
|Husky Golf Fans:
Asked for one quick comment on something their mothers did to influenc their golf careers and the boys said this:
“My mom walked every tournament round she possibly could with me. She is always the first person to start looking for my ball when it is lost and she is always the last person to stop looking. Go Husky Moms!”
“My mom sacrificed her time to be at every junior tournament to support my dream. I always new my mom would support me even if I failed.”
“I have a lot of memories traveling to tournaments with my mom. My first year at Junior Worlds, we went to the Cheesecake Factory four nights in a row….found what we liked and stuck with it!”
“My mom rarely asks how I played, instead she asks if I am happy and healthy.”
“My ma would wake up at the crack of dawn to make be breakfast then she would drive me 130 miles to Spokane to play in one day junior tournaments. She did this my whole junior career every summer driving me all across the Pacific Northwest for junior events.”
“My golf game wouldn’t be where it is today without my Mom. For years I watched her engage in tasks as a perfectionist with the highest standards. She’d put in a full effort to do a great job for its own sake, not for some reward after. I’ve tried to approach my practice and my golf game in the same manner.”
“Among the many other things she did at every step in my career, my Mom told me I should smile more when I win.”
“At every tournament she came to, when I finished my round she’d say, ‘you were definitely the most handsome boy I saw out there today.’ ”
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Husky Golf Fans:
Today was an incredible day at our practice facility at Washington National. Our two greens were lightning fast and firm. The rough was up, and Mt. Rainier gleamed in the distance. We came away with sunburns, several quality club throws, and sharpened wedge play.
I set up a 36 hole putting course, but after the Coach won the first tournament the guys demanded another tournament and this time a trio of the guys came out on top. So we played 72 holes of a putting tourney. We’ve been working hard on our strokes, speed control, and the way we see putts. I’m stressing that we need to putt with our eyes and really connect with the green and our line. I’m seeing improvement.
For almost a decade now our signature wedge training is a competition called WedgeMan. It’s a 100 shot challenge with a variety of shots and very demanding standards. The course was tough today and Pan edged Chris by just a point at 48 and 47. Ty had his best WedgeMan ever at 45. I set up a couple of tough holes that challenged their mental strength as much as their skill. I was especially happy with our bunker play today—a key skill for the course in Oklahoma.
We talked about the expected conditions of the course and some of the shots we’ll need to be ready for. I talked more shop, but those secrets can’t be put out there on the worldwide web!
The weekend should be a nice break after lots of practice and studying this week.
Check out this link and make sure you join us on the Road to Riviera! On the site you’ll be able to sign-up for timely email updates as we prepare for Regionals in Oklahoma.
Here’s an example of our most-recent update:
|Husky Golf Fans:
Husky golfers get access to many great facilities around Seattle to sharpen their skills. On Thursday, we were at Broadmoor CC – just a mile away from campus.
If the video will not play after clicking on it, go here to watch it on YouTube
Previously, we announced where we will play for Regionals, and who the team will be. You can view the past updates here.
The ASU Thunderbird Invitational reminded us of just how awesome our alumni have been, coming out to watch us play and continuing the support of our program. With a lot of former players living in the Phoenix area it was great to see so many Husky Legends out watching. Darren Wallace, Nick Taylor, Richard Lee and Brock Mackenzie all made it out to support. Darren, Nick and Richard were all a bit disappointed that the magic from the 2010 season at the ASU Karsten Course didn’t continue but we want to thank them for their support. Here is an update of a few alumni playing some good golf.
Nick Taylor: Back in the headlines this week, Nick won the 2011-2012 All-American Tour Championship at Southern Dunes Golf Club in the Phoenix area. The event was a 64 man Match Play event and to go along with his pay check he receives an exemption into the Nationwide Tour’s BMW Charity Pro-Am May 17th-20th at The Carolina Country Club in Spartanburg, South Carolina. Here is the link to the All-American Tour Website.
Richard Lee: After some time to relax Richard will be playing a few weeks in a row on Tour starting with the Valero Texas Open April 19-22 in San Antonio Texas. It was great to see Richie this week and we are looking forward to watching him play the next few weeks.
The Masters itself is a tradition for all golfers. Husky Golf has another tradition, our Masters Challenge. Each year we get together early in Masters week and select our teams and compete against each other to crown our Champion. After a blind draw for seeding, the entire field is selected in a Round Robin format. Each person adds their finishes of their top three players to create their score. And of course the Champion holds claim to the Green Jacket.
The Masters Challenge is steeped in a tradition of Great Champions.
John Wise (2007)
This years picking was pressure packed and not without some controversial selections. Phil Mickelson went 11th with players like Jason Day, Bubba Watson and Sergio Garcia being selected before Phil. Defending Champion Chris Williams is feeling confident once again selecting Lee Westwood before one of the top choices Rory McIlroy. Scott ‘Pro’ Alexander even selected Fred Couples in the 3rd round choosing off pure gut instinct ahead of players like Y.E. Yang, Martin Kaymer and Ian Poulter.
As tradition has it, after the selections are made grades are given. Ty and Willy have gained the respect with their choices while Pan and Alex seem to be destined for ‘Cinderella’ performances.
DON’T FORGET: This week we are competing at the ASU Thunderbird Invitational in Phoenix. Updates for both the ASU Thunderbird and the Masters Challenge will come thru Twitter @UW_MGolf. Follow along.