No. 64 Seed Lee, Kansan Gellerman Advance at APL July 15, 2014 By Mike Trostel, USGA

No. 64 seed Joshua Lee (left) upset co-medalist Zane Thomas in the first round. (USGA/Chris Keane)

NEWTON, Kan. – Joshua Lee didn’t want to sweat out extra holes again. Thanks to a two-putt from 30 feet on the 18th hole, he didn’t have to.

A day after Lee survived an 11-for-7 playoff by chipping in on the third playoff hole to claim the final spot in match play, he advanced to the second round by defeating co-medalist Zane Thomas, 1 up, in the 2014 U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship (APL) at the 7,365-yard, par-71 Sand Creek Station Golf Course.

The APL is one of 13 individual national championships conducted annually by the United States Golf Association, 10 of which are strictly for amateurs.

Wednesday was filled with drama, as six of the first seven matches were decided on the 18th hole. And for the third consecutive year, starting as the top seed did not translate to match-play success. Thomas led 2 up through 13 holes, but bogeys at 14 and 17, as well as a drive out of bounds on 16, doomed the 20-year-old Las Vegas resident.

Anybody out here can beat anyone else on a given day, said Lee, 19, of Fleming Island, Fla. That’s what made yesterday so scary in the playoff, but it’s what makes this championship so exciting.

The other three co-medalists , Doug Ghim, of Arlington Heights, Ill., Rico Hoey, of Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., and Byron Meth, of San Diego, never trailed during their wins on Wednesday.

Jordan Niebrugge, the No. 52 seed, dispatched Zecheng Dou,of the People’s Republic of China, 4 and 2, in a rematch of their quarterfinal duel in 2013, when Niebrugge won, 1 up. With usual match play concessions, the defending champion made six birdies and no bogeys over 16 holes.

I hit a lot of fairways and a lot of greens and kept the pressure on him, said Niebrugge, 20, a junior at Oklahoma State. That’s how I want to play in match play.

The only Kansan to make match play, Michael Gellerman, of Sterling, lost the second hole of his match against Trent Peterson, of Eagan, Minn., but proceeded to birdie his next three holes en route to a 5-and-4 win. In total, Gellerman birdied seven of 14 holes with usual match play concessions.

Gellerman, 21, a senior at the University of Oklahoma, is playing his second national championship in his home state in the past three months. In May, the NCAA Division I Golf Championship was conducted at Prairie Dunes Country Club in Hutchinson, just 30 minutes from his family’s house.

I was excited to say the least, said Gellerman, upon hearing that the Public Links was coming to Newton. It’s always good to get some home cooking and sleep in your own bed.

My dad loves [Sand Creek Station]. Being only an hour away, we would always come over. I’ve probably played 50 rounds out here – maybe more than everybody else combined.

Other winners on Wednesday included 2013 APL medalist Garrett Rank, of Canada; 2011 U.S. Junior Amateur runner-up Chelso Barrett, of Surry, N.H.; and a pair of 43 year olds – Jon Veneziano, of Mount Dora, Fla., and Jess Bonneau, of Houston.

The 32 players who advanced will play their second-round matches on Thursday morning, beginning at 7 a.m. CDT. The winners will advance to the third round, which is scheduled to begin at 12:30 p.m. CDT. The 36-hole championship final is set for Saturday.

Michael Trostel is the senior curator/historian at the USGA Museum. Email him at mtrostel@usga.org.


Newton, Kan. – Results from Wednesday’s first round of match play at the 2014 U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship being held at 7,365-yard, par-71 Sand Creek Station Golf Course.

Joshua Lee, Fleming Island, Fla. (147) def. Zane Thomas, Las Vegas, Nev. (134), 1 up

Cody McManus, Phoenix, Ariz. (144) def. Alexander Dombrowski, Gaylord, Mich. (143), 1 up

Robert Geibel, Pembroke Pines, Fla. (140) def. Andrew McCain, Tarpon Springs, Fla. (146), 2 up

Michael Colgate, Sarasota, Fla. (141) def. Ben-Marvin Egel, Germany (146), 1 up

Cash Wilkerson, Spring, Texas (146) def. Thomas Strandemo, Fargo, N.D. (138), 1 up

Jon Veneziano, Mount Dora, Fla. (145) def. Rigel Fernandes, India (142), 2 and 1

Patrick Beyhan, Albuquerque, N.M. (146) def. Kolton Crawford, Mansfield, Texas (138), 1 up

Michael Gellerman, Sterling, Kan. (145) def. Trent Peterson, Eagan, Minn. (142), 5 and 4

Doug Ghim, Arlington Heights, Ill. (134) def. Ted Moon, Lilburn, Ga. (147), 3 and 2

Brandon Kida, Layton, Utah (143) def. Chris Korte, Littleton, Colo. (144), 3 and 2

Jordan Niebrugge, Mequon, Wis. (146) def. Zecheng Dou, People's Republic of China (140), 4 and 2

Easton Paxton, Riverton, Wyo. (141) def. Steven Delmar, Gaithersburg, Md. (145), 1 up

Sam Saunders, Albuquerque, N.M. (136) def. Sean Carlon, Albuquerque, N.M. (147), 3 and 2

Gavin Green, Malaysia (142) def. Herbie Aikens, Pembroke, Mass. (144), 2 and 1

John Oda, Honolulu, Hawaii (140) def. Jacob Stockl, Clark, N.J. (146), 4 and 3

Chelso Barrett, Surry, N.H. (145) def. Jonathan Woo, Singapore (142), 2 and 1

Rico Hoey, Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. (134) def. Paul McClure, Mobile, Ala. (147), 4 and 2

Scott Wolfes, St. Simons Island, Ga. (143) def. Nathan Clark, Charlotte, Mich. (144), 20 holes

Matt Record, Scottsdale, Ariz. (146) def. Austin Smotherman, Loomis, Calif. (140), 1 up

Kevin Reilly, Oviedo, Fla. (141) def. Ryann Ree, Redondo Beach, Calif. (146), 2 up

Charlie Danielson, Osceola, Wis. (138) def. Aaron Flores, San Antonio, Texas (147), 6 and 5

Joshua Baskins, Redding, Calif. (145) def. Davis Hangyerei Chung, Las Cruces, N.M. (142), 2 and 1

Jess Bonneau, Houston, Texas (146) def. Thomas Lim, Eugene, Ore. (140), 1 up

Ryan Tetrault, Orange, Calif. (145) def. Issei Tanabe, Japan (142), 3 and 2

Byron Meth, San Diego, Calif. (134) def. Vinnie Murphy, Edgewood, Wash. (147), 19 holes

Eric Kline, Ponca City, Okla. (144) def. Nick Eberhardt, Fort Mill, S.C. (143), 3 and 2

Ben Hogenkamp, Minster, Ohio (140) def. Sean Knapp, Oakmont, Pa. (146), 5 and 4

Garrett Rank, Canada (141) def. Kyle Henning, Brookfield, Wis. (146), 5 and 4

Sam Horsfield, England (137) def. Andrej Bevins, Elk Grove, Calif. (147), 2 and 1

Bryson Dechambeau, Clovis, Calif. (142) def. Chase Johnson, Barberton, Ohio (145), 5 and 4

Tyler McDaniel, Manchester, Ky. (146) def. Colton Staggs, Tulsa, Okla. (140), 2 and 1

David Mills, Evansville, Ind. (142) def. Jonathan De Los Reyes, Sacramento, Calif. (145), 19 holes


Newton, Kan. – Pairings and starting times for Thursday’s second round of match play at the 2014 U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship being held at 7,365-yard, par-71 Sand Creek Station Golf Course. All times CDT. (Note: Third round of match play to be played Thursday afternoon)

Upper Bracket

7:00 am - Joshua Lee, Fleming Island, Fla. (147) vs. Cody McManus, Phoenix, Ariz. (144)

7:10 am - Robert Geibel, Pembroke Pines, Fla. (140) vs. Michael Colgate, Sarasota, Fla. (141)

7:20 am - Cash Wilkerson, Spring, Texas (146) vs. Jon Veneziano, Mount Dora, Fla. (145)

7:30 am - Patrick Beyhan, Albuquerque, N.M. (146) vs. Michael Gellerman, Sterling, Kan. (145)

7:40 am - Doug Ghim, Arlington Heights, Ill. (134) vs. Brandon Kida, Layton, Utah (143)

7:50 am - Jordan Niebrugge, Mequon, Wis. (146) vs. Easton Paxton, Riverton, Wyo. (141)

8:00 am - Sam Saunders, Albuquerque, N.M. (136) vs. Gavin Green, Malaysia (142)

8:10 am - John Oda, Honolulu, Hawaii (140) vs. Chelso Barrett, Surry, N.H. (145)

Lower Bracket

8:20 am - Rico Hoey, Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. (134) vs. Scott Wolfes, St. Simons Island, Ga. (143)

8:30 am - Matt Record, Scottsdale, Ariz. (146) vs. Kevin Reilly, Oviedo, Fla. (141)

8:40 am - Charlie Danielson, Osceola, Wis. (138) vs. Joshua Baskins, Redding, Calif. (145)

8:50 am - Jess Bonneau, Houston, Texas (146) vs. Ryan Tetrault, Orange, Calif. (145)

9:00 am - Byron Meth, San Diego, Calif. (134) vs. Eric Kline, Ponca City, Okla. (144)

9:10 am - Ben Hogenkamp, Minster, Ohio (140) vs. Garrett Rank, Canada (141)

9:20 am - Sam Horsfield, England (137) vs. Bryson Dechambeau, Clovis, Calif. (142)

9:30 am - Tyler McDaniel, Manchester, Ky. (146) vs. David Mills, Evansville, Ind. (142)