BY SPNW Staff 12:36PM 02/24/2015

2 state courses chosen for U.S. Open qualifiers

The U.S. Golf Association Tuesday said two state courses, The Home Course (Dupont) hosting May 11 and Wine Valley Golf Club in Walla Walla hosting May 12, are among 111 local qualifying sites for the 2015 U.S Open, set for June 18-21 at Chambers Bay in University Place.

Open to all professionals and amateurs with a handicap 1.4 or lower, the 18-hole local qualifiers represent the first step in making the U.S. Open. The top scorers advance to play in sectional qualifiers, which take place June 8 in a 36-hole format at 10 courses around the country. For the 11th year in a row, Japan and England will host international sectional qualifying, scheduled May 25.

“U.S. Open local qualifying represents the start of an exciting two-tiered process in which thousands of golfers from around the world, both professional and amateur, pursue a place in this year’s field at Chambers Bay and the opportunity to compete for our national championship,” said Diana Murphy, USGA vice president and championship committee chairman.

Last year, the USGA accepted a record 10,127 entries for the U.S. Open at Pinehurst No. 2 in NC., surpassing the 9,860 mark set the previous year for the U.S. Open at Merion Golf Club in Ardmore, PA.

Ken Venturi and Orville Moody are the only golfers to win it after surviving local and sectional qualifiers. Venturi won in 1964 at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda MD., while Moody won in 1969 at Champions Golf Club in Cypress Creek, TX.

In 2014, 24 players made it through local and sectional qualifiers to play in the 156-player field at Pinehurst No. 2.

Online registration for the 2015 U.S. Open starts here the first week of March.