Zac Blair, who grew up in Ogden and played for the BYU golf team, qualified for next week’s U.S. Open by posting the best score at his sectional qualifying tournament at Emerald Valley Golf Course in Creswell, Oregon.
The 23-year-old Blair was the only one of six Utahns playing at U.S. Open sectional events around the country Monday to successfully qualify.
Only two spots were available for the U.S. Open at the Oregon qualifier, which included 50 golfers. Blair shot a 3-under-par 69 in his first round to put himself in a tie for second and added a 68 in the afternoon round. His 137 total was four shots better than Clayton Rask, who grabbed the other slot with a 141 total.
Farmington’s Daniel Summerhays and Sandy’s Mike Weir were both trying to qualify at the sectional in Columbus, Ohio, where they had played in the Memorial Tournament over the weekend.
Summerhays, who made more than $1 million in each of the past three years but has played in just one U.S. Open (in 2010 when he missed the cut), shot a 70 in the first round, but withdrew after 11 holes in the afternoon when he was 1-over par. A score of 2-under-par (140) was needed to qualify for one of the 16 spots available.
Weir finished at 143 with rounds of 71 and 72. He played in 12 straight U.S. Opens from 1999 to 2010 before missing the next two. Last year, he finished in a tie for 28th at the U.S. Open.
Todd Miller, the youngest son of Johnny Miller and an assistant coach for the BYU golf team, failed in his bid in Daly City, California, shooting rounds of 74 and 70 to miss qualifying by seven shots.
Zach Johnson, the reigning Utah Open champion from Farmington, also had a 144 total with rounds of 73 and 71 at Daly City.Comment on this story
Lehi’s Tony Finau, who is having a solid year on the Web.com Tour, where he ranks No. 27 on the money list, put himself in contention with a first-round 68 at Springfield, Ohio. But he could only manage a 73 in the afternoon and ended up in a tie for 14th place, five shots off the qualifying score.
Blair, who is playing this year on the PGA Tour-sponsored NEC Series Latinoamerica Tour, where he ranks No. 17 on the money list, will be in the field of 156 golfers at next week’s U.S. Open at Pinehurst, N.C.