62nd Northeast Amateur Invitational Takes Center Stage June 19-22

After winning the 2023 Northeast Amateur Invitational, Nick Dunlap went on to win the U.S. Amateur in August then he won the American Express, a PGA Tour event, in January on a sponsor exemption, becoming the first amateur to win a PGA Tour event since Phil Mickelson won the Tucson Open in 1991.

RUMFORD, Rhode Island – Plenty of big names have played at the Northeast Amateur Invitational at Wannamoisett Country Club.

Winners have included Ben Crenshaw, John Cook, Hal Sutton, David Duval, Luke Donald, Dustin Johnson and Collin Morikawa. Scottie Scheffler played in it four times and Tiger Woods and Justin Rose teed off in the event once each, but they didn’t finish on top.

On the other hand, Garrett May won the Northeast Amateur in 2019 and then turned pro out of Baylor University that year. In his career, he’s made only five of 16 cuts on the PGA Tour and pocketed just $14,261.

Caleb Surratt, 19, finished second last year and then was drafted to LIV Golf in January joining Legion XIII captained by Jon Rahm featuring team mates Tyrell Hatton and Kieran Vincent.

Ben Tuthill, who has been the tournament chair for 11 years, said Scheffler’s success on the PGA Tour surprised him.

“Not taking anything away from him,” Tuthill said. “He was a great amateur player, but never would you look at him and say, ‘Boy, he is going to be that dominant on Tour one day.’”

On the other hand, Tuthill believes Stewart Jolly, who won as a rising LSU senior in 2014, is selling insurance now.

“We’ve kind of covered it all,” Tuthill said. “You have the best players in the world and then you have guys that have to find a real job a few years later.”

Throughout its prestigious 62 year history Northeast Amateur Invitational has hosted most of the biggest names in golf when they were rising amateurs.

But they can still say they played in the Northeast Amateur or even won it.

The 62nd Northeast Amateur will be held June 19-22 at Wannamoisett, a 1914 Donald Ross design. It is the second of seven events in the Elite Amateur Series. Points leaders can earn exemptions into PGA Tour and USGA events. Nick Dunlap, last year’s Northeast champ, finished second in the series in 2023.

Dunlap won’t be back at Wannamoisett because he’s turned pro. Dunlap won the U.S. Amateur last August and then he captured the American Express, a PGA Tour event, in January on a sponsor exemption. He became the first amateur to win a PGA Tour event since Phil Mickelson won the Tucson Open in 1991. The following week, Dunlap turned pro during his sophomore year at the University of Alabama.

The business community in Rhode Island plays a crucial financial and sponsorship role in the success of the Northeast Amateur Invitational.

Jackson Koivun and Gordon Sargent head this year’s field of 92 players. Koivun led Auburn to its first NCAA championship and became the only player to win the Jack Nicklaus Award as the top Division 1 player, the Ben Hogan Award as amateur of the year and the Phil Mickelson Award as the top freshman in the same year.

Gordon Sargent, a three-time All-American at Vanderbilt, is also scheduled to play. He became the first player to earn a full PGA Tour card at the PGA Tour University Accelerated program, but he chose to return to college for his senior year.

Todd White, of Spartansburg, S.C., winner of the 1990 Northeast Amateur and the 2023 U.S. Senior Amateur at age 55, is also in the field.

Three Rhode Islanders, Tyler Cooke of Providence, Bobby Leopold of Coventry and Jarry Dessel of Barrington, are scheduled to play. So are five golfers from Massachusetts, Ryan Downes of Longmeadow, James Imai of Brookline, Joseph Lenane of Dedham, Matt Parziale of Brockton and Ricky Stimets of Osterville.

The field features players from 10 countries and five golfers who were named first-team All-America.

The 62nd edition of the Northeast Amateur Invitational is June 19-22 at Wannamoisett Country Club in Rumford, Rhode Island.

Wannamoisett, host of the 1931 PGA Championship, plays to a par of 69. The lightning fast greens and the many bunkers keep the college players from scoring too low on the course which plays 6,901 yards from the tips.

“The challenge with this course, to have a championship like we have, is making it difficult enough because we can’t make it any longer,” Tuthill said. “All these players hit the ball a mile. It’s a pitch and putt. The defense of the course is firm and fast greens and we need wind and rough.”

The 62nd Northeast Amateur Invitational field is loaded with 8 of the top 10 players in world rankings from the 102 contestants. Spectators are welcomed and admission is free.


(PHOTOS: The Back of the Range)

Bill Doyle brings 45 years of professional sports writing experience to New England dot Golf. His resume includes 40 years as a sports writer for the Worcester Telegram & Gazette where he wrote a Sunday golf column and covered professional and amateur golf. He also wrote about all four of the major professional sports teams in the Boston area, mostly about the Boston Celtics, as well as college and local sports. Working for the newspaper in the city where Worcester Country Club hosted the inaugural Ryder Cup in 1927, Doyle covered the improbable comeback of the U.S. team at the 1999 Ryder Cup at The Country Club in Brookline. He also covered the 1988 U.S. Open at TCC, the 2001 and 2017 U.S. Senior Open championships at Salem Country Club, the U.S. Women’s Open championships at The Orchards in South Hadley in 2004 and at Newport Country Club in 2006, the PGA Tour stops at Pleasant Valley Country Club in Sutton for nearly 20 years and at TPC River Highlands in Cromwell, Connecticut, for several years; and every PGA Tour event at TPC Boston in Norton from the inaugural event in 2003. He will provide regular contributions ranging from interviews, travel, lifestyle, real estate, commentary and special assignments. Bill can be reached at bcdoyle15@charter.net.

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