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NSW golfers perform well in US Amateur events

Nathan Barbieri is destined for a rise in the World Amateur Ranking. (Photo: Golf NSW / David Tease)
21 year old, Nathan Barbieri, from the Monash Country Club in Sydney and Concord Golf Club’s 13 year old Sophie Yip have both produced outstanding results in amateur events in the USA in the last few days.

In Sammamish in the suburbs of Seattle in Washington State Barbieri finished one shot from the winner Corey Madey of Oregon at the Sahalee Players Championship after both players were tied playing the final hole.

The Sahalee Players Championship is a significant event on the US amateur calendar, several past and present PGA Tour players having won the event previously, the venue having also played host to one of golf's major championships in the past.  

Madey hit a magnificent approach to the par 5 18th and two putted for birdie while Barbieri pulled his second left of the green and could only par.

Barbieri, a member of the NSW Interstate side, has been in the US over the past month or so playing events during the North American summer and after finishing 3rd at the Rice Planters Amateur in South Carolina at his last start and 9th at the Monroe Invitational in New York he was one of the form players in the field despite his low world ranking.

Min Woo Lee, who finished runner-up in the same event last year, was the next best of the Australians but some six shots behind Barbieri. Lee has been playing events on the Korean PGA Tour in recent weeks, making the cut in two, but will now focus on amateur events in the US ahead of the US Amateur in August.

Both Barbieri and Lee will attend the Golf Australia golfing school in Houston this week ahead of further amateur events.

13-year old Yip was a member of the Gladys Hay wining NSW Women’s team at the recent Australian Interstate Series and earlier this week finished 6th at her qualifying venue for the US Amateur Championship to gain a start in women’s golf’s most significant amateur event.

Sophie Yip - courtesy of Golf NSW

The diminutive Yip recorded a round of 71 at Woodburn in Oregon to be one of six qualifiers from 70 participants at the Oregon Golf Association course there.

Yip’s day did not start out well with her father locking the keys in the boot of the car but she was able to make her tee time (just) and now has a start at the US Women’s Amateur Championship in Nashville in Tennessee beginning on August 6th.

Yip defeated Portland State rising senior Tara Finigan in a playoff to claim the final spot.



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