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Pan & Long Share Lead in After Round 1 of Stroke-Play Qualifying at U.S. Publinx
Jace Long and Cheng-Tsung Pan fired 4-under 67s to share the lead after one round of stroke-play qualifying in the U.S. Amateur Public Links at Soldier Hollow Golf Course in Midway, Utah.
Long, a 22-year-old from Dixon, Mo., carded eight birdie and four bogeys Monday, while Pan, a 20-year-old from Taipei who attends the University of Washington, had five birdies and a bogey. They were only two of the 17 players to break par at Soldier Hollow.
"I hit the ball well yesterday in my practice round and got into a comfort zone on the golf course," Long told the USGA's Michael Trostel on Monday. "I tried to give myself as many opportunities as possible."
Pan took advantage of the par-3s; he birdied the fifth, seventh and 12th. "Overall, I hit a lot of good shots on the par-3s," he said. "Two of them I put within 4 feet and the other was about 15 feet away."
James Erkenbeck shot a 68 and was a stroke behind after the first round. The senior at New Mexico in Albuquerque is familiar with playing golf in high elevation; Soldier Hollow sits at 5,500 feet above sea level. "I feel very comfortable out here while I see some of the other guys guessing," he said.
"All the things that come with the altitude - it's not just distance, it's controlling your trajectory and spin too - it all makes a big difference."
Local favorite, 34-year-old Dan Horner, who won the 2008 Utah State Amateur at Soldier Hollow's Silver Course, opened with a 69.
The second and final round of stroke-play qualifying will take place Tuesday, with the low 64 players advancing to match play. The 36-hole championship match will take place Saturday.
For more information, visit http://www.usga.org/ChampEventScoringIndex.aspx?eid=17179869204&year=2012&id=21474844458. For live scoring, visit http://www.usga.org/ChampEventScore.aspx?id=17179869204&year=2012&type=stroke.