John Augenstein’s US Amateur Championship run didn’t end on the 18th hole at Pinehurst No. 2. It ended one hole prior, when his opponent Georgia Tech Yellow Jacket, Andy Ogletree, made a par putt on the 181 yard par-3, where Augie made double bogey, closing the match 2&1.
It was a rare experience for Augenstein, the Vanderbilt Senior and 38th ranked amateur golfer in the world. Over the previous week, that included seven rounds of golf, plus two on Sunday for a total of 112 holes, Augie led for an astounding 79 of them. When combined to include holes that he was tied with his opponent, it jumps to 91 holes.
That’s 71% of holes played where he was up on his opponents, and 89% of the holes played where he did not trail. He was hotter than a match head... or maybe the weather on Sunday, when the temperatures peaked at 92 degrees, and the humidity was thick enough that some spectators used a scuba regulator to breathe. Okay, I made that last part up.
But to support that Augenstein played out of his mind during the six match play rounds, let’s take a look at his record.
Round of 64: Led 8 of the 14 holes; Tied for 6
Round of 32: Led 12 of the 16; Tied for 4
Round of 16: Led 16 of 18; Tied for 2
Quarters: Led 9 of 13; Tied for 3
Semis: Led 11 of 16; Tied for 4
Championship Match (36 hole event): Led 31 of 35; Tied for 2.
That means, of the five rounds leading up to the championship match, only one match went the full 18 holes, and he never trailed in that round!
The only thing better than his golf game last week was his lettuce. Look at that flow.
In the Championship Match, Augenstein was 4-Up thru 11 (they played the first 18 at Pinehurst No. 4), and ended that round at 2-up. He vacillated between one and two up thru the 28 hole when Ogletree decided to pull out his standard issue Georgia Tech protractor and abacus and chip away at the lead.
Ogletree won the 29th, 31st, and 32nd holes before finally winning the 35th to close out Augenstein.
Winning the US Am earns the champion a spot on the US Walker Cup Team, an invite to play in the US Open and the Masters, where he will play with the previous year’s champion- The Big Cat.
Augie missed out on the Major invites, but he did earn a spot on the Walker Cup. It will be the best collection of Amateur Golfers between the US, Britain, and Ireland. It will be contested the second week of September at Royal Liverpool Golf Club in England.