CHERRY HILLS VILLAGE, Colo. — In the 123-year history of the U.S. Amateur, no one has done what Blades Brown did Tuesday.
The 16-year-old, from Nashville, Tennessee, tied the competitive course record at Colorado Golf Club, the stroke-play co-host, shooting an 8-under 64 with four bogeys. He finished at 7 under following 36 holes, tying for medalist honors. Brown is the youngest in the history of the U.S. Amateur to win medalist honors.
“It’s up there,” he said of the accomplishment, “just because this is my first U.S. Am. I was told the U.S. Am is like one level down from the U.S. Open. To be able to shoot 8 under here is awesome. It really gives me confidence in my game and my practice.”
U.S. Amateur: Photos
Brown tied with Sampson Zheng, who earlier this year won the U.S. Amateur Four-Ball title. Zheng shot 1-under 70 at Cherry Hills on Tuesday after an opening 6-under 66 at Colorado Golf Club.
“There were definitely some nerves going off the tee,” Zheng said. “I knew I was the leader and I had the chance to be medalist. But the goal from the start was to win, so I feel like I handled myself pretty well out there. I didn’t back off from any tough shots, I didn’t back off from any tough holes, and I stayed process really well, step by step, I took it one at a time, just fairways and greens, and then stayed out of trouble for the most part.”
Also tying for medalist honors was Jackson Buchanan, who birdied his final three holes at Colorado Golf Club to tie Brown and Zheng.
Stroke play is a little different than match play, I think it proves the best player,” Buchanan said. “Two days is obviously not much but I think stroke play proves the best player. Once you get to match play everyone here is so good. It doesn’t matter if you are [seeds] 64 or 1.”
That trio will be the top three seeds in the Round of 64, which is set to begin at 11 a.m. ET Wednesday. Additionally, there won’t be a playoff because exactly 64 players made the cut, which was even-par. However, that doesn’t mean there weren’t some big names heading home early.
Some, like 2022 semifinalist Dylan Menante and 2023 Western Amateur semifinalist Andrew Goodman, made the cut on the number.
When match play seeds are determined, they’ll be posted here.