Path to U.S. Mid-Am Championship goes through Suffolk

Published 9:46 pm Friday, July 25, 2014

Cedar Point Country Club hosted the 18-hole U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship sectional qualifier on Thursday that saw James Gallagher of Yorktown and Scott Shingler of Haymarket advance.

The top two scorers in the United States Golf Association event made the cut for the U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship, which is open to competitors ages 25 and over by Sept. 6 with a USGA Handicap Index not exceeding 3.4.

Cedar Point’s director of golf T.J. Young was pleased with how the event proceeded, noting the players loved it.

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“They were very complimentary of the golf course,” he said. “The challenge was obviously there. Only two players broke 70,” and that was from a pool of 31 players on the par-72 course.

Gallagher, 55, and Shingler, 42, each shot 5-under-par 67. Alternates, who could play in the national championship if a qualified player pulls out, included Dave Pulk of Williamsburg and Steve Serrao of Midlothian who each shot 2-under-par 70.

“We had a two and a half hour rain delay, but other than that, everything went great,” Young said.

The fact that the USGA event was held at Cedar Point was somewhat significant, given that it is not a routine occurrence.

“That’s the first one we’ve had here in a very long time,” Young said. “I don’t know when the last one was, to be honest with you.”

He gave his take on why Cedar Point might have been chosen to play host.

“The (Virginia State Golf Association) works with the USGA to find locations that would be good for that type of qualifier, and we have a very good working relationship with the VSGA,” Young said.

He said the VSGA enjoys having its tournaments at Cedar Point, and “we’re going to potentially host the VSGA Mid-Am Championship next year.”

In the meantime, the U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship will be held Sept. 6-11 at Saucon Valley Country Club in Bethlehem, Pa.