CLE ELUM, Wa. – U.S. Open sectional qualifying is set to commence at Tumble Creek Club in on Monday, June 8 as 50 players will look to earn one of the three available spots at this qualifier to advance to the 2015 U.S. Open Championship.
The U.S. Open will be visiting the Pacific Northwest for the first time in its 115-year history as Chambers Bay in University Place, Wash. hosts the historic championship June 18-21.
Tee times for this 36-hole qualifier begin at 7:30 a.m. on the first and 10th tees.
The qualifier will be conducted by the Washington State Golf Association (WSGA), the statewide representative of the United States Golf Association (USGA).
Among the names to watch for at Tumble Creek is University of Washington standout Cheng-Tsung Pan. Coming off an impressive performance in the NCAA Division I national championship, where he finished runner-up, Pan was the medalist at the U.S. Open local qualifier held last month at The Home Course in DuPont, Wash. A former No. 1-ranked amateur in the world, Pan has played in two U.S. Opens, qualifying for the 2013 U.S. Open with the sectional qualifier held that year at Tumble Creek as well. He also qualified for the 2014 British Open.
Other players to watch are:
*Olympia, Wash. native and 2013 Washington State Amateur and 2013 Pacific Northwest Men’s Amateur champion, Cameron Peck, who also won the 2008 U.S. Junior Amateur.
* James Lepp of British Columbia, the 2005 NCAA Division I individual champion and 2005 Pacific Northwest Golf Association Player of the Year.
* Casey Martin, head coach of the University of Oregon men’s golf team, medalist in a 2012 U.S. Open sectional qualifier and T23 finisher in the 1998 U.S. Open (Martin suffers from Klippel-Trenaunay-Weber syndrome, and uses a cart in competition).
* Brent Zepp, Chambers Bay PGA Head Professional, who will attempt to qualify to play in the national championship on his home course.
* Carl Jonson of Bainbridge Island, Wash. the 2014 WSGA Men’s Player of the Year and winner of the 2014 Northwest Open Invitational.
* Darren Black, PGA Head Professional at Seattle’s Rainier Golf & Country Club, who earlier was co-medalist in the U.S. Open local qualifier at Wine Valley Golf Club in Walla Walla, Wash., and last month won the Washington Open Invitational .
Also in the field are Brien Davis, of Peoria, Ill., nephew of Portland native and 2004 U.S. Senior Open champion Peter Jacobsen; and Spencer Tibbits, 16, of Vancouver, Wash., who won the 2014 Class 3A state championship as a sophomore, and had captured the Washington Junior Golf Association state title at age 10.
The 2015 U.S. Open will have a field of 156 competitors, 74 of which are exempt from qualifying. Sixteen players recently qualified through two international sectional qualifying locations in Japan and England on May 25, and the remainder of the field will come from the 10 sectional qualifying locations being held around the U.S. on June 8.
The USGA accepted 9,882 entries for this year’s U.S. Open, the most entries ever accepted for a U.S. Open held on the West Coast, and second most overall, just behind last year’s record number of 10,127 entries. To be eligible, players may be either a professional, or an amateur with a handicap index of 1.4 or less.
A Tom Doak design, Tumble Creek Club opened in 2005 and has since been named one of the top private courses in the U.S. by Golf Digest. Tumble Creek has previously hosted U.S. Open sectional qualifying in 2009 and 2013.