TCU golfers fall short at U.S. amateur

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    Four TCU golfers and one TCU alumnus failed to make the cut Tuesday at the 105th U.S. Amateur Championship at the Merion Golf Club in Ardmore, Pa. Two freshmen, Jon McLean and Jesse Speirs, and two sophomores, Franklin Corpening and James Sacheck, made up the TCU-record four qualifiers. 2005 graduate J.J. Killeen also qualified for the tournament.

    Head men’s golf coach Bill Montigel said his golfers played well in a field that included the world’s best amateurs.

    He said the four Frogs will be able to build on their involvement in the difficult and prestigious U.S. Amateur.

    “I think it was a great tournament,” Montigel said. “They were really playing tough and I think it was a great learning experience for those guys that played here.”

    Montigel said the TCU participants created a lot of positive exposure for TCU golf.

    “I think it gives a lot of credibility to our program when the golf world and the community sees we have four returning golfers that played in this tournament,” Montigel said.

    Speirs came closest to making the 64-player cut in a field of 312 golfers. He finished at eight-over-par after 36 holes, two strokes above the final cut.

    Montigel praised Speirs play in the tournament and said Corpening rebounded well Tuesday after a tough opening day Monday.

    Sacheck said he wanted to bring his best game to the tournament, but knew that he would be able to build on performing against such fierce international competition. He said he now knows what he has to do to improve his game.

    Sacheck said he enjoyed playing at the historical and scenic Merion Golf Club. He said the course was filled with challenging holes and playing them will benefit TCU golf during the collegiate season.

    “A hard course for college won’t be anything near what we just played,” Sacheck said.

    Montigel said his golf team will be better off having had four underclassmen compete against world-class competition on such a tricky course.

    Sacheck said he relished the opportunity to play with three of his teammates in such a noteworthy tournament and is excited about the upcoming golf season based on the experience gained in the U.S. Amateur.

    The United States Golf Association accepted 7,320 entries for the tournament, and 100 36-hole sectionals were held across the country to determine the 312-player pool of competition.