Fernandez, Tank Prepare For U.S. Amateur
AMES, Iowa –Iowa State All-American golfer Scott Fernandez has literally been on the go since his record-setting sophomore season ended in May. Fresh off a third-place finish at the European Amateur this weekend, Fernandez will jump the pond to the United States to compete in the prestigious U.S. Amateur at The Country Club in Brookline, Mass., Aug. 12-18.
Fernandez won’t get the chance for a practice round before he tees off, but he will have the comfort of a familiar face alongside him when he begins the stroke play portion of the event. Iowa State head coach Andrew Tank will serve as Fernandez’ caddy in the event and the duo will have the opportunity to work together before school starts on Aug. 26.
“This will be a unique opportunity for me this week,” Tank said. “Most of the coaching I do is in the team environment, so you are spreading your time among multiple players. So to be able to focus on Scott individually and helping him out at such a prestigious event is something I am really looking forward to.”
Tank has caddied in his share of tournaments, looping a couple of times for players in PGA Tour events. This will definitely rank up there as one of his greatest highlights.
The Country Club needs no introduction to golf enthusiasts. It’s hosted three U.S. Opens, including the 1913 Open where a 20-year-old amateur named Francis Ouimet shocked the world by defeating established professionals Harry Vardon and Ted Ray. The seminal moment in golf history is credited for popularizing the sport in the United States.
In recent history, The Country Club was also the host of the 1999 Ryder Cup where the U.S. team staged its dramatic come-from-behind victory on the final day.
All competitors will play 36 holes of stroke play on Aug. 12-13 and the top 64 players will advance on to the match play portion of the tournament, Aug. 14-18.
A native of Granada, Spain, Fernandez earned an exemption to the U.S. Amateur by ranking in the top-50 in the World Amateur Golf Rankings. The junior currently ranks as the 28th-best amateur in the world.
After earning second-team All-America honors and All-Big 12 First-Team accolades in 2012-13, Fernandez competed in the Palmer Cup in June. The 2013 Iowa State Male Athlete of the Year is one of the most decorated ISU golfers in school history.
“He’s been playing so well and he had a great opportunity to play in the Palmer Cup,” Tank said. “He played great in the British Amateur and European Amateur. I look forward to helping him out at the U.S. Amateur.”
Fernandez joins teammate Zach Steffen as Cyclones to play in USGA national events this summer. Steffen, a senior from Des Moines, qualified for the USGA Publinks.