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Walker Cup Team Filled Out
The 2011 USA Walker Cup Team is now complete with the appointment of the final three players. The United States Golf Association's International Team Selection Committee has named the final threesome of Blayne Barber, 21, Lake City, Fla.; Kelly Kraft, 22, Denton, Texas; and Jordan Spieth, 18, Dallas, Texas.
Kraft is the newly crowned U.S. Amateur champion, while Spieth is the 2009 and 2011 U.S. Junior Amateur champion. Barber, the No. 13-ranked amateur in the world and a junior at Auburn University, has earned 12 top-10s in the last two years and helped lead the United States to victory over Team Europe at the 2011 Palmer Cup, finishing with a 2-1-1 record.
"I set my goal a few years ago to make this team and I just tried to work towards that," Barber told the Auburn Tigers website. "I'm very, very excited to have this opportunity to represent my country and the people of Auburn."
Kraft found out about his appointment soon after securing his U.S. Amateur title. “(USA Team Captain Jim Holtgrieve) walked up to me on the green and told me, ‘See ya in Scotland.’ And I was like, ‘Wow.’ I didn't know what to say. I just won the tournament and then they told me this. I about had a heart attack.”
Previously named to the team were Patrick Cantlay, 19, Los Alamitos, Calif., who finished runner-up in the U.S. Amateur to Kraft; Harris English, 22, Thomasville, Ga.; Russell Henley, 22, Macon, Ga.; Patrick Rodgers, 18, Avon, Ind.; Nathan Smith, 33, Pittsburgh, Pa.; Chris Williams, 20, Moscow, Idaho; and Peter Uihlein, 21, Orlando, Fla.
The 10 players will compete against 10 amateurs representing Great Britain and Ireland September 10-11 at Royal Aberdeen Golf Club in Aberdeen, Scotland. Andrew Yun, 20, of Chandler, Ariz., is the first alternate.
The captain of the USA Team is Jim Holtgrieve, 63, of St. Louis, Mo., who was a playing member of the 1979, '81 and '83 USA teams, as well as the 1981 U.S. Mid-Amateur champion.
The biennial Walker Cup Match consists of 18 singles matches and eight foursomes (alternate-shot) matches over the competition's two days. The USA Team has won the last three matches and leads the series overall, 34-7-1.
For more information, visit www.usga.org.