HILTON HEAD, S.C. (WSAV) – For some golfers, the journey to a major championship appearance runs through Hilton Head Island. With five spots available for next week’s U.S. Open Championship, more than 50 golfers took on the Long Cove Golf Club course at the USGA’s Final Qualifying event.
“I’m excited for the opportunity for PGA Tour players to play the course,” Bob Patton, head golf professional at the club, explained. “We’ve had high-level competitions here, but we’ve never had PGA Tour players like this in a competition.”
According to Patton, golfers gave rave reviews of the course designed by Pete Dye.
“Arguably one of the great designers of all time gave us a gem of a golf course and, at the end of the day at a golf tournament, you want a quality golf course that is going to challenge the players,” Patton added. “We feel like we have that and I think others would agree.”
After the two rounds of play, four of the five spots had been filled by John Huh, Sam Ryder, J.J. Spaun, and Wilson Furr. The final spot was one by Akshay Bhatia in a three-way playoff over Zack Sucher, and Ben Martin.
All five newly-qualified golfers will have some new fans cheering them on next week at Torrey Pines in La Jolla, California.
“It’d be nice if one person who came through our qualifier does well at the tournament,” Patton explained. “It gives us someone to follow and pull for. Everyone has their favorite players and, someone who got there through here, it’d be exciting for them to do well and play well at the championship.”