Hammer, Hiller Lead U.S. Am Stroke Play

Cole Hammer of Houston continued his brilliant play, sharing medalist honors with Daniel Hiller of New Zealand in stroke-play qualifying in the 118th United States Amateur Championship at Pebble Beach Golf Links and Spyglass Hill Golf Course in Pebble Beach.

Hiller shot 67-70—137, 6-under-par, and entered the 64-player match-play field as the top seed, while the 18-year-old Hammer (pictured) finished at 69-68—137, and Andrew Aligood of St. John’s, Fla., was third at 71-67—138.

“Just really started controlling my iron shots really well,” said Hammer, who has won the Azalea Amateur, the U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championship and the coveted Western Amateur this year.

“Distance control with my wedges and all my iron shots, playing different shots has become really a strength in my game. I’ve really kind of turned the putter on this year and I’m seeing the lines and kind of matching the line with the speed really well.”

Michael Thorbjornsen of Wellesley, Mass., totaled 70-69—139 to tie for fourth with William Gordon of Davidson, N.C., who finished at 69-70—139, while Justin Suh of San Jose was sixth at 71-69—140.

Shintaro Ban of San Jose posted a score of 71-70—141 to tie for seventh with Ian Siebers of Bellevue, Wash., who wound up at 73-68—141, and Noah Goodwin of Corinth, Texas, who came in at 72-69—141.

Stewart Hagestad of Newport Beach carded a score of 76-66—142 to tie for 10th with John Augensetin (72-70—142) of Owensboro, Ky., Akshay Bhatia (70-72—142) of Wake Forest, N.C.), Alex Scott (70-72—142) of Traverse City, Mich., Austin Squires of Union, Ky., (70-72—142), Jack Rhea of Jonesborough, Tenn., (73-69–142), Cameron Sisk (70-72—142) of El Cajon, Dylan Perry (74-68—142) of Australia and Logan Lowe (75-67—142) of Grass Valley.

Jacob Bergeron of Slidell, La., shot 73-74–147 and then earned the final spot in the match-play field by surviving a playoff with 23 other players.

For complete results and match play pairings, visit http://www.usga.org/content/usga/home-page/championships/2018/u-s–amateur.html#!scoring

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