A pair of high school seniors took down some of the game’s best amateurs and won the 4th U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championship on Wednesday.
Eighteen-year-olds Cole Hammer and Garrett Barber downed Marc Dull and Chip Brooke 4 and 3 in the 18-hole final at Jupiter Hills Golf Club in Tequesta, Fla.
Hammer, who played in the 2015 U.S. Open as a 15-year-old, and Barber dominated the event. They trailed for only two holes throughout their five matches and 71 holes.
“Growing up watching U.S. Opens and U.S. Amateurs on TV, I just knew being a USGA champion is something that I desperately wanted,” Hammer said. “To finally do it, it feels incredible. It feels as good, if not better, than I thought it would. And especially being able to do it with Garrett.”
Hammer and Barber were 1 up three holes into the final and then won the 8th and 10th to push their lead to 3 up. An eagle on the 601-yard par-5 13th boosted their lead to 4 up, and they halved the next two holes to close the match.
The eagle on 13 was set up by a Barber four-iron from 235 yards, which he stuck to three feet.
“Cole didn’t want me to hit four-iron,” Barber said. “He didn’t think I could get it there. I was like, ‘I got it.’ So I hit it hard, hit pretty much a perfect shot. It was a crazy shot.”
Hammer, who is from Houston, will play collegiately at Texas next season, and Barber, who is from Stuart, Fla., is headed to LSU.
One of the runners-up, Dull, was recently in the news for winning the Florida Mid-Am — but for the wrong reasons. The player he beat alleged that Dull’s caddie assaulted him in the parking lot during a rain delay and he ultimately withdrew.