Californians Sahith Theegala of Pepperdine and Ricky Castillo of Florida have been named finalists for the 2020 Ben Hogan Award along with John Augenstein of Vanderbilt.
The award recognizes the best year-long performance in college and amateur golf.
“On behalf of the Hogan Trophy Award Foundation, I would like to congratulate John, Ricky and Sahith on being named finalists for the most prestigious award in men’s college and amateur golf,” Ben Hogan Award Chairman Harold Muckleroy said.
“While the college golf season may have been shortened, the accomplishments of these three men over a nine-month period stand tall. We’d like to thank our esteemed selection committee for their hard work in selecting three deserving finalists among a field of outstanding contenders.”
Even though most of the Spring season in college golf was canceled by the Coronavirus pandemic, Theegala has been in the news lately by being named a finalist for the Haksins Award as player of the year in college golf, and being selected to the All-West Region team by the Golf Coaches Association of America.
Theegala, who sat out the 2018-19 season for the Waves because of a left wrist injury, is a senior from Chino who won the Alister MacKenzie Invitational and the Southwestern Invitational this season to give him four victories in his college career.
Those were two of Theegala’s six top-10 results for the Waves during the 2019-20 season.
Theegala, who was ranked No. l in the nation in the Golfweek/Sagarin Men’s Rankings and led Pepperdine to the top of the men’s team rankings before the college season ended, is ranked No. 3 in the World Amateur Golf Ranking and No. 4 in the Golfweek/AmateurGolf.com World Amateur Ranking.
In amateur tournaments, Theegala won the 2019 Southern California Golf Association Championship and the 2020 Master of the Amateurs in Australia, finished second in the 2019 Sahalee Players Amateur and reached the match play portion of the U.S. Amateur and Western Amateur.
Castillo (pictured), a freshman from Yorba Linda, captured the Sea Best Invitational and the Florida Gators Invitational during the college season, and also won the 2019 Yorba Linda City Championship and the 2018 Rancho Santa Margarita Amateur Championship.
In addition, Castillo was medalist in the 2019 North and South Amateur and reached the quarterfinals before losing, advanced to the semifinals of the Western Amateur before being defeated, and tied for ninth in the 2020 Amateur of Amateurs in Australia.
Castillo was ninth in the college rankings and is second in both the World Amateur Golf Ranking and the Golfweek/Sagarin ranking.
“It is a real honor to be a finalist for one of the most prestigious awards in amateur golf,” said Castillo, who was selected to the All-South Region team. “I am so excited that I am able to represent the Gators.”
Augenstein, a senior from Owensboro, Ky., captured the Desert Mountain Intercollegiate and had two other top five finishes, including a runner-up showing at the Nike Golf Collegiate for the Commodores.
As an amateur, he lost to Andy Ogeltree in the final of the U.S. Amateur Championship, and helped lead Team USA to victory in the 2019 Walker Cup with a 2-1-1 record. He is second in the Golfstat college rankings, ninth in the Golfweek/Amateur Golf.com World Amateur Ranking and17th in the World Amateur Golf Ranking.
Previous winners of the Ben Hogan Award include Jon Rahm, Patrick Cantlay, Rickie Fowler, Ricky Barnes, Matt Every, Doug Ghim, Bill Haas, Chris Kirk, Hunter Mahan, Maverick McNealy, Ryan Moore, Patrick Rodgers, Kyle Stanley, Nick Taylor, D.J. Trahan, Peter Uihlein and Viktor Hovland.