StoneRidge Golf Club teaching professional Chris Peterson fell short in his attempt to qualify for next week’s U.S. Open after tying for 20th place in Monday’s 36-hole sectional qualifier at Old Wason Country Club in St. Louis. Former PGA Tour player Jay Don Blake posted a 3-under total of 139 to capture medalist honors and Mackenzie Hughes earned the other U.S. Open invite after prevailing in a playoff with fellow runner-up Travis Johns.
Peterson, a Stillwater resident, was not the only player with Minnesota ties competing in the St. Louis sectional qualifier. Roseville native Stephen Bidne was in the hunt after shooting an opening-round 72, but followed with a 75 in the second round to finish five
shots out of the playoff. Arguably the top player in the Minnesota Section PGA over the past two decades, Don Berry finished in a tie for 15th with a score of 150. The head professional at Edinburgh USA in Brooklyn Park, Berry qualified for the 1992 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach. Chaska amateur Jon Dutoit also finished in 15th place at 150 on Monday.
A total of 13 sectional qualifiers — 11 in the United States and one each in England and Japan — are held to fill 57 spots for next week’s U.S. Open at Merion Golf Club.
Nearly 10,000 players tried to qualify for this year’s championship, which requires a USGA Handicap Index of 1.4 or less to enter. Peterson advanced to sectional qualifying with a fourth-place finish in a local qualifier at Oak Ridge Country Club on May 13.
This will not be Peterson’s only opportunity to play in one of professional golf’s four majors as he will also compete in the PGA Professional National Championship at Sunriver Resort in Oregon on June 23-26. Each of the top 20 finishers in this tournament will earn a spot in the PGA Championship that will be conducted at Oak Hill Country Club in Rochester, N.Y.
The Rosemount native, who played collegiately at Iowa State University, has also been helping out coach Nate Schwarz and the Stillwater girls’ golf team that will be competing at state next week.
Peterson started working with the team members while stuck indoors earlier this spring and was also slated to work with the Ponies on Wednesday as part of a tune-up for next week.
l StoneRidge will also be hosting a TaylorMade demo day on Saturday from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. on the range. Everyone is invited to check out the latest clubs and equipment from TaylorMade.
Oak Glen turning 30
Oak Glen Golf Course in Stillwater is turning 30 this summer and the club is celebrating with special rates and a demo day on the driving range on Friday, June 21. The popular course will offer 18 holes with cart for $30 on the championship course and the same rate for a walking foursome on the executive course. The course is already accepting tee times and the rates are good all day.
The demo day will be held on the driving range from noon-3 p.m. and trade-ins will be accepted on the spot.
Carpenter, Scanlon advance
Two Stillwater Area High School grads are among the list of qualifiers for the 35th MGA Players’ Championship at Interlachen Country Club in Edina on June 24-26. Hudson Carpenter, who plays out of Stillwater Country Club and will be a junior at South Dakota State University this fall, shot a 2-over 73 to finish second to earn his spot in the field at the qualifier held at Gross National in St. Paul on May 21. In the same event, Stillwater assistant boys’ golf coach Kyle Scanlon, who plays out of Dellwood Hills Golf Club, finished third with a 74 to join the list of five qualifiers from Gross National.
The Player’s Championship is a 64-player, single-elimination match play tournament.
Sleiter notches ace
Cathy Sleiter of Stillwater notched a hole-in-one while playing golf at Superior National on May 26. Sleiter used a 7-iron to ace the par-3 sixth hole on the Canyon nine.
Contact Stuart Groskreutz at [email protected]