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USADGC's Second Round Sees Extreme Rankings Shuffle


A relaxed Luke Humphries sits comfortably on the railing of hole 18 knowing he's secured the lead for the final round.

MILFORD, MI – Moving day lived up to its name during the second round of the United States Amateur Disc Golf Championship as players from the fourth, fifth, sixth card and beyond made monumental moves to reorganize the rankings heading into Sunday’s final round. If Saturday proved anything, it’s that The Toboggan shows no pity or compassion for anyone, and this event is still anyone’s to take.

Saturday’s round began with Ryan Brophy and Clint Calvin tied at the top, one ahead of a four-way tie for third place with 30+ competitors six or less off the lead. With scores as close as they were and The Toboggan being, well, The Toboggan, it’s no surprise to see such a dramatic shuffling of the order.

The lead card got off to a slow start, as the best score from the foursome through the front nine was a 2-under par thrown by Luke Humphries. Perhaps this provided motivation for the chase card and beyond, as live scoring provided them with the opportunity to see just how quickly they were climbing the ranks.

Daniel Fairhurst - From 40th to 2nd

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An understandably very happy Daniel Fairhurst talking with friends after the round.

After an opening round score of 62 (1-under par), Illinois’s Daniel Fairhurst had left himself six strokes off the lead in a 14-way tie for 40th place. When his bogey-free 53 (10-under par) suddenly appeared on the scoreboard, it sent a shock wave through the park. “That’s ridiculous!” said 2017 USADGC Champion Brandon Oleskie, who was on the course caddying for a friend having just heard the news.

He’s right, it is. In fact, the only time a USADGC score has been posted lower than 53 was during the opening round in 2015, where Baltimore’s Matthew Kashima threw a bogey-free 51 on an arguably easier version of the course. Fairhurst, stating that all he wanted to do was catch up with his Illinois buddies that had shot better opening rounds, went on an absolute tear.

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Click to view round two hole-by-hole scores.

“That was the best round I’ve ever played,” said an elated Fairhurst after the round. “I was upset after yesterday. I was lazy. I wasn’t attacking. I didn’t want to feel like that again.”

When it was all said and done, several competitors had made incredible leaps in the ranks. The entire final round chase card, for example, consists of players that weren’t even in the top ten after round one.

What cannot be ignored is the fact that, despite a lackluster front nine and all the madness happening on the cards below him, Luke Humphries kept his cool and finished strong. He ended the round with a bogey-free back nine and carded five more birdies to finish at 56 on the day (7-under par) and emerged as the overall leader of the event with one day to go.

Fairhurst, Nicholas Brown, and Clint Calvin will join Humphries on the lead card on Sunday, all three of which are tied for second place, two strokes back.

Rain Expected for Final Round

There’s no denying the forecasts. It is going to rain on Sunday. Whether or not it rains all day or just sporadically, it is only going to make an already intensely difficult course that much harder. Fortunately for the players, the tee pads here at The Toboggan have a lot of natural grip. The real issue will come down to slippery discs, soaked clothing, and all the other fun stuff that comes with disc golfing in the rain.

The lead card tees off on Sunday at 2:12pm EDT and only time will tell if they’ll be playing from under an umbrella or not. Follow the scores and updates on pdgalive.com as the race for the United States Amateur Disc Golf Championships presented by Discraft comes to a conclusion!

Comments

excellent article Matt. Would be interested in a review/comparison of past champions/top finishers to get a state-by-state ranking. It seems like Illinois produces a ridiculous amount of Amateur Champions, but would be interested to see which states are the powerhouses in this regard.

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