PGA Professional Nieporte snags final U.S. Open qualifying spot
PGA Professional Nieporte snags final U.S. Open qualifying spot

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Zack Fischer, 23, outlasted PGA Tour winner Ryan Palmer after a nine-hole playoff to earn a spot in the U.S. Open.(Getty Images)

By Associated Press

DALLAS (AP) -- PGA Professional John Nieporte grabbed the final qualifying spot for next week's U.S. Open on Tuesday by holing an 8-foot birdie putt on the first hole of a playoff to defeat 15-year-old David Snyder.

Nieporte, the head professional at Trump International Golf Club in West Palm Beach, Fla., had to return to the Florida qualifer with Snyder on Tuesday after darkness forced the suspension of play on Monday.

Journeyman professional Zack Fischer had to play 63 holes of qualifying to make his first U.S. Open. Fischer, 23, a former player at the University of Texas-Arlington who plays mini-tours, began his journey with an 18-hole local qualifier in May, followed by a 36-hole qualifier at Lakewood Country Club on Monday. He was tied with three-time PGA Tour winner Ryan Palmer for the last spot, and they went eight holes of a playoff until it was too dark to continue. Fischer made birdie on the first hole Tuesday morning to get a spot at Merion next week. The field now is at 150 players. Six more will come from the world ranking Sunday and then the alternate list. ©2013 by STATS LLC and Associated Press.

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