The 72nd U.S. Junior Amateur Championship is set to be contested at the historic Inverness Club in Toledo, Ohio. The field consists of 156 competitors who will play 36 holes of stroke play after which the field will be trimmed to the low 64 scorers for match play.. The 36-hole championship match is set for Saturday, July 20. The following is statistical and biographical information on the field:
Oldest Competitors: Oscar Maxfield (18, born 7-23-00), Christian Castillo (18, born 8-2-00), Mason Domecq (18, born 8-5-00), Ben Cooper (18, born 8-8-00), James Song (18, born 8-17-00), Jack Castiglia (18, born 8-18-00), Max Coutsolioutsos (18, born 8-29-00), William Mouw (18, born 9-5-00), Holden Wisener (18, born 9-6-00), Austin Greaser (18, born 9-9-00), Josh Bartels (18, born 9-11-00)
Youngest Competitors: Aidan Gutierrez (13, born 3-14-06), Leonardo Vieira (14, born 12-29-04), Luca Cimoroni (14, born 10-22-04), Thomas Morrison (14, born 8-11-04), Gaven Lane (15, born 6-16-04), Jeevan Sihota (15, born 3-23-04), Sam Renner (15, born 2-13-04), Luke Potter (15, born 2-4-04)
Average Age of Field: 17.08
U.S. States Represented – There are 38 states represented in the 2019 U.S. Junior Amateur: California (15), Texas (11), Florida (9), North Carolina (7), Ohio (6), Georgia (5), Washington (5), Maryland (4), Tennessee (4), Virginia (4), Alabama (3), Arizona (3), Indiana (3), Kentucky (3), Massachusetts (3), Minnesota (3), New York (3), Pennsylvania (3), South Carolina (3), Colorado (2), Iowa (2), Louisiana (2), Michigan (2), New Jersey (2), Oregon (2), Utah (2), Arkansas (1), Hawaii (1), Idaho (1), Illinois (1), Kansas (1), Maine (1), Missouri (1), Nebraska (1), Nevada (1), North Dakota (1), Oklahoma (1) and Wisconsin (1).
International – There are 15 countries represented in the 2019 U.S. Junior Amateur: United States (123), Canada (8), Australia (5), Japan (4), People’s Republic of China (3), Republic of Korea (3), England (2), Chinese Taipei (1), Republic of Ireland (1), Northern Ireland (1), the Philippines (1), Scotland (1), Switzerland (1), Thailand (1) and Venezuela (1).
USGA Champions (1): Michael Thorbjornsen (2018 Junior Amateur)
Players in Field with Most Junior Amateur Appearances (2019 included): James Song (4), Jake Beber-Frankel (3), Akshay Bhatia (3), Ricky Castillo (3), James Imai (3), Alvin Kwak (3), Yuki Moriyama (3), Joseph Pagdin (3), Thomas Ponder (3)
Played in 2018 U.S. Junior Amateur (26): Jake Beber-Frankel, Akshay Bhatia, John (Jack) Blair, Ricky Castillo, Kelly Chinn, Kyle Chung, Canon Claycomb, Nathan Han, James Imai, Palmer Jackson, Jolo Timothy Magcalayo, Clay Merchent, Yuki Moriyama, William Mouw, Joseph Pagdin, Thomas Ponder, Deven Ramachandran, Brett Roberts, Jenson Rogenes, James Song, Dillon Stewart, Michael Thorbjornsen, Karl Vilips, Robin Williams, Kento Yamawaki, Seongyoung (Terry) Yoon
Played in 2017 U.S. Junior Amateur (9): Jake Beber-Frankel, Akshay Bhatia, Ricky Castillo, Alvin Kwak, Connery Meyer, Yuki Moriyama, Joseph Pagdin, Thomas Ponder, James Song
Played in 2016 U.S. Junior Amateur (7): Austin Barbin, Trey Fessler, Yuxin Lin, Garrett Martin, James Song, Alex Vogelsong, Jack Wall
Played in 2015 U.S. Junior Amateur (2): James Imai, Alvin Kwak
Played in 2019 U.S. Open (1): Michael Thorbjornsen
Played in 2018 U.S. Amateur (13): Jake Beber-Frankel, Akshay Bhatia, Michael Brennan, James Imai, Palmer Jackson, Gaven Lane, William Mouw, Ian Siebers, James Song, Preston Summerhays, Michael Thorbjornsen, Jackson Van Paris, Alex Vogelsong
Played in 2017 U.S. Amateur (4): Ricky Castillo, Canon Claycomb, Clay Merchent, Karl Vilips
Played in 2016 U.S. Amateur (2): James Song, Karl Vilips
Played in 2015 U.S. Amateur (1): Ricky Castillo
Played in 2019 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball (3): Michael Brennan, Jack Townsend, Jack Wall
Played in 2017 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball (1): Akshay Bhatia
Played in 2019 U.S. Open Sectional Qualifying (12): Austin Barbin, Akshay Bhatia, Ricky Castillo, Canon Claycomb, George Duangmanee, Austin Greaser, Garrett Martin, Drew Miller, Maxwell Moldovan, Drew Salyers, Karl Vilips, Jack Wall
Jake Beber-Frankel, 17, of Miami, Fla., is competing in his third consecutive U.S. Junior Amateur. Beber-Frankel, who advanced to the Round of 16 in 2017 and the Round of 64 in 2018, also played in last year’s U.S. Amateur at Pebble Beach. He tied for sixth in the 2018 Florida Class 1A high school championship as a member of the Ransom Everglades High team. He tied for fourth in the 2019 Florida Boys Junior (ages 16-18). His father David has directed several successful studio films, including “The Devil Wears Prada” and “Marley & Me,” while his mother owns a Miami advertising agency. His grandfather, Max, was the executive editor of the New York Times. His twin sister, Phoebe, competed in three Class 1A girls’ high school state championships, with her best finish a tie for fifth in 2016.
Akshay Bhatia, 17, of Wake Forest, N.C., was the runner-up to Michael Thorbjornsen in the 2018 U.S. Junior Amateur at Baltusrol Golf Club. He also advanced to match play in the last year’s U.S. Amateur at Pebble Beach. In 2019, Bhatia won the Jones Cup Invitational and the Dustin Johnson World Junior. He also made his PGA Tour debut at the Valspar Championship and tied for 42nd in his first Korn Ferry Tour event. In 2018, he captured his second consecutive Boys Junior PGA, the Junior Invitational at Sage Valley and the Polo Golf Junior Classic. Bhatia, whose sister Rhea was a member of the Queens University of Charlotte women’s golf team, aced the 17th hole at Pinehurst No. 2 when he was age 12.
Cade Breitenstine, 18, of Akron, Ohio, is competing in his first USGA championship. Breitenstine, who will attend Kent State University in the fall, tied for 11th in the 2017 Ohio Division I state championship and helped Green High finished third. His high school teammate Maxwell Moldovan is also in the U.S. Junior Amateur field. Breitenstine, who twice won the Tom Holzer AJGA Junior (2017, 2018), was third in this year’s Memorial Junior at Ohio State’s Scarlet Course. He tied for eighth in the 2018 Western Junior. His father, Stuart, was an All-America gymnast at the University of Iowa.
Michael Brennan, 17, of Leesburg, Va., qualified for last year’s U.S. Amateur at Pebble Beach and competed in this year’s U.S. Amateur Four-Ball. Brennan, who attends both Tuscarora High and the Academies of Loudoun (engineering & technology), claimed the 106th VSGA Amateur on June 28 with a 1-up victory in the 36-hole final. Brennan, who won the 2018 Virginia Class 5A state title, also posted an eight-stroke victory in the Scotty Roberson Memorial. In 2018, he became the first player since Deane Beman in 1963 to win consecutive Middle Atlantic Amateurs and captured the Dustin Johnson World Junior. He is also a member of his high school basketball team.
Ricky Castillo, 18, of Yorba Linda, Calif., is competing in his third consecutive U.S. Junior Amateur and advanced to the Round of 16 in both 2017 and 2018. Castillo was the youngest player (age 14) in the 2015 U.S. Amateur and reached the Round of 32 in 2017 at Riviera Country Club. He recently completed his senior year at Valencia High School and will attend the University of Florida in the fall. Castillo was a quarterfinalist and stroke-play medalist in the 2019 North and South Amateur in June and was third in the Junior Invitational at Sage Valley. His brother, Derek, who plays at Cal State-Fullerton, tied for 10th in the 2019 Big West Conference Championship and competed in the 2013 U.S. Junior Amateur and 2014 U.S. Amateur.
Kelly Chinn, 16, of Great Falls, Va., was medalist (66-67) and advanced to the Round of 32 in last year’s U.S. Junior Amateur at Baltusrol Golf Club. He helped Langley High School win its second consecutive Virginia Class 6A state title this year and was runner-up after winning the individual state crown in 2018. He earned all-state recognition and was chosen to the Washington Post All-Met first team for the second straight year. Chinn won the Middle Atlantic Junior PGA in a three-way playoff on July 2 and tied for third in the Justin Thomas Junior on April 21. His father, Colin, is a rear admiral in the U.S. Navy who serves as Joint Staff surgeon at the Pentagon and is the chief medical advisor to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.