May 11, 2022

Competition corner

PROFESSIONALS: Clancy Waugh has been on a nice little roll for himself as he navigates his way through the wide world of professional golf. The Wake Forest graduate and son of PGA of America chief executive Seth Waugh shot 71 at Southampton Golf Club on Long Island to get through a U.S. Open local qualifier. That success came on the heels of what he did in Joburg, South Africa: Posting scores of 70-72-71-67, Clancy, with Seth on the bag, finished T-4 at Heron Banks Golf and River Estate to earn his way through the Sunshine Tour Qualifying Tournament. He will be playing in South Africa later this spring and this summer, though that is on hold until he sees how he fares at the upcoming U.S. Final Qualifying, which could lead to a spot in the U.S. Open at The Country Club (June 16-19). What helped set some of this in motion was Waugh’s first win on the Minor League Golf Tour back in early March . . . . . With the season just about over for those who want to head elsewhere for their summer competition, Jimmy Hervol of Hopkinton is second on the Minor League Golf Tour money list. With tournaments held pretty much on a daily basis, Hervol totaled $14,866.

U.S. OPEN TRACKING: The road to possible inclusion in the field at The Country Club continues to move along. At that site in Southampton, Nick Maccario of Waltham and Lucas Spahl of Dudley each shot 70 to breeze through. Brad Tilley of Easton, Conn., was among those to fall short . . . . . In Oxford, Conn., conditions were tough and scores were high as Cody Paladino of Connecticut earned medalist honors with 73 and a couple of New England collegians – Caleb Manuel of UConn and Nick Cummings of Boston College – hung tough with 74s to make it through to final qualifying. Manuel is from Topsham, Maine, Cummings from Weston. Max Theoradakis of Danbury, Conn., former UConn standout Zach Zaback, and Matt Downes of Longmeadow were among those who failed to advance . . . . . Pretty stout field at Kirkbrae in Lincoln, R.I., for five spots that went to co-medalists at 69, Thomas McCormick of Warwick, R.I., and Fletcher Babcock of Danielson, Conn., those at 71, Hervol and Bryson Richards of Plainfield, Vt., and to Matt Baran (72) of Osterville. Patrick Frodigh of Westwood won a playoff to earn first alternate . . . . . At Pinewild CC in Pinehurst, N.C., Brendan Hunter of Nashua, N.H., shot 73 and missed the chance to get in through a playoff by one shot . . . . . In Ponte Vedra, Fla., Dru Love, son of Davis, shot 72 and earned first alternate status. Among those who came up short at that site were former PGA Tour winners Derek Lamley (73) and Frank Lickliter (79) and Chris Solomon (82) of the “No Laying Up” crew . . . . . Former collegiate standout Norman Xiong, who is still just 23, shot 70 and got through the qualifier in Palm Desert, Calif. Patrick Cantlay’s younger brother, Nick, posted 71 to earn first alternate status . . . . . There was a wild one at Forest Creek GC in Round Rock, Texas, where Parker Coody made not one, but two aces and it’s a good thing he did. The second one came at his 17th hole, the 190-yard, par-3 eighth, and got him to 4-under. When he bogeyed the next hole to finish at 3-under, he just avoided the playoff that took place at 2-under. There, Taylor Funk, son of Fred, survived the 7-for-3 longjam and will move on to Final Qualifying. Coody, whose grandfather, Charles Coody, won the 1971 Masters, had also aced the 160-yard, par-3 17th, his eighth hole . . . . . In Wheaton, Ill., James Imai of Brookline shot 77 and failed to make it through.

U.S. WOMEN’S OPEN TRACKING: Some notable names failed to get through a 36-hole qualifier in St. Louis for the U.S. Women’s Open, which will be contest June 2-5 at Pine Needles in Southern Pines, N.C. – Maria Stassi, who shot 75-69; Emma Talley, 75-70; Christina Kim, 73-74; Mariah Stackhouse, 73-74 . . . . . In Hockley, Texas, Annie Park was medalist at 138 and Cheyenne was a stroke behind to easily qualify . . . . . Bobbi Stricker, daughter of Steve, shot 79-84 and failed to get through at a site in Chaska, Minn. . . . . . The qualifying continues throughout the country, including at Worcester Country Club Thursday where one spot is available to a field of 38.

AMATEURS: Molly Smith warmed up for her U.S. Women’s Open Qualifying challenge Thursday by teaming with her father, Phil, to shoot 67 then take a three-way playoff and win the annual Mass Golf Stone Cup, a mixed-four-ball championship. The Smiths play their golf out of Vesper Country Club, as does Tracy Martin, who teamed with James Pleat of Granite Links GC to also 67 where they were joined in the playoff by Doug Clapp (Old Sandwich GC) and Pam Kuong (Charles River CC). Things ended at Andover CC when the Smiths made birdie at the second playoff hole to successfully defend their 2021 title. Posting 68 and missing the playoff by one were Shannon Johnson and Matt Parziale, the formidable duo out of Thorny Lea GC, and Anina Ku of Granite Links GC and Oliver Cordeiro of Belmont CC . . . . . There’s no shortage of New England golfers to root for when the U.S. Amateur Four-ball Championship gets under way at the Country Club of Birmingham (Ala.) gets under next Monday. At least 14 teams include competitors with New England ties. There will be two days of four-ball stroke play, then the field will be cut to the low 32 teams for match play.