Three Tigers Qualify for U.S. Amateur Match Play

by Will Stafford (@WillStaffordLSU)
Three Tigers Qualify for U.S. Amateur Match Play

LOS ANGELES – The coveted Havemeyer Trophy is still up for grabs for three LSU Tigers as sophomores Sam Burns and Nathan Jeansonne and freshman Philip Barbaree each finished Tuesday’s second round of stroke play among the Top 64 advancing to match play at the 117th United States Amateur Championship.

Burns advanced to match play at the U.S. Amateur for the third time in his career, while Jeansonne and Barbaree both qualified for the first time at this year’s championship being held at Riviera Country Club.

With the complete Round of 64 seedings still yet to be determined, Jeansonne is set to face Charleston Southern’s Arthur Griffin on Wednesday at 11:20 a.m. CT, while Burns battles Australian Shae Wools-Cobb at 1:40 p.m. CT and Barbaree rounds out the trio against Florida’s Will Zalatoris at 2:30 p.m. CT.

Barbaree was the top Tiger in 36 holes of stroke-play qualifying after cracking the Top 10 in a seven-way tie for eighth place at 2-under par in a field of 312 of the world’s leading amateur golfers. After opening up with a score of 1-under par 69 at Bel-Air Country Club on Monday, he matched that effort with a 1-under 69 at Riviera Country Club on Tuesday to finish at 2-under 138 in qualifying.

Burns, the No. 5 seed in match play as a junior golfer in 2014 and the No. 29 seed a year ago en route to the second round, got back to even-par in the second round as he carded a brilliant 2-under 68 at Bel-Air Country Club after opening the championship with a 2-over 72 at Riviera in the first round. Burns was among 10 players in the field finishing at even-par in 36 holes of stroke-play qualifying.

The 2017 NCAA Division I Jack Nicklaus National Player of the Year, Burns has taken another step toward the Havemeyer Trophy while also solidifying his bid to tee it up for the United States at the Walker Cup this year.

Jeansonne, who was the first Tiger to hit the course in the second round, also broke par with a 1-under 69 at Bel-Air Country Club to climb into a tie for 35th place overall and claim a spot in match play for the first time in his career. He moved nearly 60 spots up the leaderboard after opening with a 3-over 73 at Riviera on Monday to finish at 2-over 142 for 36 holes.

LSU’s Class of 2017 signee and incoming freshman Jacob Bergeron of Slidell, Louisiana, finished just one shot off the cutline at 5-over par in qualifying as he followed a 2-over 72 Bel-Air Country Club on Monday with his 3-over 73 at Riviera on Tuesday. Sophomore All-American Luis Gagne, a 2016 U.S. Amateur Quarterfinalist, finished at 9-over par in his return to the championship.