Squires

Austin Squires from Union, Kentucky, walks to the first tee on Course No. 2 at the 2019 U.S. Amateur Championship at the Pinehurst Resort and Country Club. 

John Augenstein, 21, of Owensboro, Ky., posted victories over Akshay Bhatia and Ricky Castillo, the No. 5 and No. 9 players in the World Amateur Golf Ranking (WAGR), respectively, on Thursday to advance to the quarterfinals of the 119th U.S. Amateur Championship at Pinehurst Resort & Country Club.

Augenstein, 21, a senior at Vanderbilt University and No. 38 in the WAGR, reeled off birdies on holes 6-8 of the renowned Course No. 2 at Pinehurst to seize control in his 3-and-2 morning victory over Bhatia, the runner-up in the 2018 U.S. Junior Amateur and the highest-ranked played left in the field. In the afternoon, Augenstein built a 4-up lead over Castillo, and after an eagle-birdie-birdie blitz by Castillo brought him within one hole, the players tied the final six holes with pars.

“I just tried to stay in the moment and understand that I’m still winning the match,” said Augenstein. “[Castillo] still has to win two holes to beat me, and as long as he doesn’t do that, I’m going to win. I think in match play, everybody is going to go on a run. I think you expect it, and that way you’re not surprised when it happens.”

Fellow Kentuckian Austin Squires, of Union, joined Augenstein in the quarterfinals as the No. 64 seed. Squires, who topped No. 1 seed and world No. 11 Brandon Wu in the Round of 64 on Wednesday, edged Stefano Mazzoli, of Italy, in 19 holes and held off John Pak, of Scotch Plains, N.J., 2 up, on Thursday to reach the quarterfinals for the second consecutive year.

“Just to be in the position last year was pretty cool, but to be back here again, I know what I’m up against, and ready to get after it [on Friday],” said Squires, a recent graduate of the University of Cincinnati. “John [Pak] is one of my best friends in amateur golf. I knew what I was up against today when I played against him. I just got in a zone early and then kind of tried to coast, but he didn’t let me coast.”

Squires set up a quarterfinal matchup against the youngest player left in the field, 17-year-old Cohen Trolio, of West Point, Miss. Trolio ousted Blake Wagoner, of Cornelius, N.C., 2 and 1, in the morning and rode six birdies to a 5-and-4 win over Alex Fitzpatrick, of England, in the afternoon. Fitzpatrick was a quarterfinalist in 2018 and was vying to join his brother, Matthew, for whom Alex caddied in his 2013 U.S. Amateur victory.

Another Mississippian, Andy Ogletree, of Little Rock, joined Trolio in the quarterfinals with a 19-hole win over Maxwell Moldovan in the morning and a 5-and-4 triumph over Blake Hathcoat in the afternoon. Ogletree, 21, a senior at Georgia Tech, will take on Spencer Ralston, of Gainesville, Ga., and the University of Georgia, who ousted Julien Sale, of France, and Parker Coody, of Plano, Texas.

Twin brothers Parker and Pierceson Coody were seeking to join their grandfather, 1971 Masters champion Charles Coody, who reached the semifinals of the U.S. Amateur on Pinehurst No. 2 in 1962. But No. 12 seed Ralston eliminated Parker, 6 and 5, and No. 46 seed William Holcomb V, of Crockett, Tenn., ousted Pierceson, 2 and 1.

Augenstein will face Palmer Jackson, 18, of Murrysville, Pa., who went to the 18th hole in both matches, but defeated Jacob Solomon, 1 up, and Isaiah Salinda, 2 up.

The final quarterfinal matchup will feature Holcomb and Karl Vilips, 18, of Australia, who posted matching 3-and-1 wins over Steven Fisk, of Stockbridge, Ga., and Brad Dalke, of Norman, Okla., the 2016 runner-up in this championship.

The quarterfinal round will be contested starting at 2:30 p.m. on Friday

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Comments that violate any of the rules above are subject to removal by staff.

Thank you for Reading!

Please purchase a subscription to continue reading. Subscribe today and support local community journalism.

Digital Only Subscriptions

Thank you for visiting ThePilot.com and supporting award-winning community journalism. Not everyone wants to have a newspaper delivered to their home, but they want to keep up with the latest news in Moore County. Click here to gain digital-only access and support local journalism.

Starting at
$1.07 for 1 day

Connect Print Subscription to Digital Access

Thank you for visiting ThePilot.com. Your Pilot subscription entitles you to unlimited digital access. Simply log in. From the home page, click on Subscription Services. Then click on "Pilot All Access Print Subscribers." It should show your phone number . If so, click "Sign Up." After a few seconds, it will take you back to the home page. Log out, then log back in. You're set! For any problems, call our customer service number at 910-693-2487 or 693-2488.

Free access for current print subscribers