OCALA - Florida Southern's Jimmy Jones continued his busy summer of playing amateur golf here Tuesday afternoon as the Moccasin sophomore-to-be qualified for the 2015 United States Amateur Golf Championships after tying for medalist honors at a qualifier at the Ocala National Golf Club.
It is the first time that the Tampa, Fla., native has qualified for the U.S. Amateur Championships and Jones is the first Moccasin golfer to compete in the U.S. Amateur Championship since former two-time NCAA Division II National Champion Tim Crouch play in the event in both 2012 and 2013.
This year's 115th U.S. Amateur Championships is scheduled for Aug. 17-23 at Olympia Fields Country Club in Olympia Fields, Ill. The 312 golfers that advance to the U.S. Amateur will play two days (36 holes) of stroke play (Aug. 17-18) at Olympia Fields. Following completion of stroke play, the top 64 players based on score will advance to match play, which begins on Aug. 19. The second and third round of match play is scheduled for Aug. 20, while the quarterfinals will be held on Aug. 21. The semifinal round of match play will be held on Aug. 22 and the 36 hole championship match will be contested on Aug. 23. Fox Sports and Fox Sports 1 will air the match play portion of the U.S. Amateur Championships.
At the U.S. Amateur qualifier at Ocala National Golf Club that was held on Monday and Tuesday, Jones, who won the Florida State Amateur Championship on June 28 at the Golden Ocala Golf and Equestrian Club, fired a three-under par 141 for 36 holes to earn co-medalist honors with Brandon Mancheno of Jacksonville. Jones opened the qualifier by shooting a 1-over 73 in Monday's first round, before carding a 4-under 68 in Tuesday's final round to tie for medalist honors and earn one of three spots from the qualifier into the U.S. Amateur Championships.
Along with qualifying for the U.S. Amateur Championships and winning the title at the 98th Annual Florida State Amateur Championships, Jones is also scheduled to play in the 69th Florida Open Championship this weekend at Timuquana Country Club in Jacksonville and teamed with his Moccasin teammate and sophomore-to-be John Coultas (Valrico, Fla.) to finish third at last weekend's 66th Annual Florida State Four-Ball Championship after shooting rounds of 66 and 64 at Streamsong Resort. It was the second straight year that Coultas and Jones finished third in the Florida State Four-Ball Championships.
In addition, Jones, who was also runner-up at this year's Polk County Youth Villa Classic that was held at Bartow Country Club on Memorial Day weekend and earned Honorable Mention PING All-American honors as a freshman for the Mocs in 2015, is also scheduled to compete on Aug. 3-8 at the Western Amateur Championships at Rich Harvest Farms in Sugar Grove, Ill. The Western Amateur is one of the most prestigious national amateur tournaments in the country as it attracts a field of 156 players from across the world to play one of the toughest formats in amateur golf. Jones will be joined at the Western Amateur by both Coultas and fellow teammate and sophomore-to-be John VanDerLaan (Southbury, Conn.).
Along with Jones, several of his Moccasin teammates failed to qualify for the U.S. Amateur at their respective qualifying events.
Coultas, who was a First-Team All-American and the Phil Mickelson Outstanding Division II Freshman of the Year in 2015, finished tied for sixth at his qualifier at Fox Hollow Golf Club in Trinity, Fla., on July 6-7. At the qualifier, Coultas shot rounds of 71 and 73 to finish with a 136 for 36 holes. The medalist at the Fox Hollow qualifier was Tyler Hancock of Clearwater as he shot rounds of 66 and 67 for a 133 for 36 holes to earn the only qualifying spot from the event.
VanDerLaan, who was a First-Team All-American as a freshman for the Mocs in 2015, finished seventh in a qualifier last week at Shuttle Meadow Country Club in Kensington, Conn. At the qualifier at Shuttle Meadow, VanDerLaan shot rounds of 72 and 75 to finish with a 145 for 36 holes. John Jackopsic of West Hartford, Conn., was the medalist as he shot a 137 for 36 holes to earn one of two qualifying spots.
The U.S. Amateur Championships is the oldest golf championship in the country, as it is one day older than the U.S. Open. Throughout the history of the tournament, which began in 1895, the U.S. Amateur has been one of the most coveted of all amateur titles. Among the previous winners of U.S. Amateur titles are five-time champion Bobby Jones, two-time champion Jack Nicklaus, 1990 champion Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods, who is the only player to ever win the U.S. Amateur title three years in a row. Last year, Gunn Yang defeated fellow Canadian Corey Conners, 2 and 1 in 36 holes to win the title. The winner of the U.S. Amateur receives an automatic invitation to play in all of the major championships, except the PGA Championship, while the runner-up earns an invitation to play in both the Masters and U.S. Open.
Click here for complete information about the 2015 U.S. Amateur Championships
Click here for complete information on the 2015 Western Amateur Championships