In the Grove City Sectional for the USGA Amateur Championship on August 1, three players–Dave Brown, C.G. Mercatoris, and Dave DeNunzio–tied at 139. They played off for two spots in a hole-by-hole competition, sudden death, in other words.
All three parred the first hole, a short par four.
On the second, DeNunzio was in the best shape after two shots. Following a drive in the right rough, DeNunzio’s second was about 30 feet from the hole. Brown was long and left in greenside rough, and Mercatoris was on the fringe about 60 feet away. Brown pitched to about ten feet, Mercatoris’ approach putt was six feet, and DeNunzio was about three feet. Brown and Mercatoris holed their putts leaving DeNunzio missed with a short putt that he missed to lose the playoff.
Due to the withdrawal of an exempt player, DeNunzio get into the field on Monday, so he will be headed to the Amateur along with his two playoff competitors–Dave Brown and C.G. Meratoris. This is the first time a sectional alternate from this area has gotten into the Amateur in recent memory. Others from Western Pennsylvania in the Amateur are Nathan Smith, Adam Hofmann, and Jim Markovitz. Six players are the most in the Amateur since nine played in 2003 when the Championship was held at Oakmont with Pittsburgh Field Club being used for the stroke play portion.
The Amateur begins on August 22-23 at Erin Hills GC and Blue Mound CC, near Milwaukee with two rounds of stroke play qualifying.