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George Mason golf’s Eric Edwards earns alternate status for U.S. Amateur

An impressive opening round boosted George Mason golfer Eric Edwards to a strong finish at a U.S. Amateur sectional qualifier.

george masonMason’s rising senior golfer finished third after shooting a 5-under 139 (67-72) on Monday at The Resort at Glade Springs. In finishing third, Edwards earned second alternate status for the 117th U.S. Amateur Championship next month in California. He qualified and played at the U.S. Amateur last year for the first time but will have to wait and see if any spots open up this year.

He was just one stroke behind leaders Ashton Poole and Connor Creasy, who both shot 6-under for the 36-hole tournament. Poole, a redshirt sophomore at the University of Virginia, defeated Creasy, an incoming freshman at Wake Forest, in a four-hole playoff to qualify for the U.S. Amateur. Creasy earned first alternate status.

“All in all, a terrific 36 holes of golf,” Mason assistant coach Don Kelly said. “Eric has made a real commitment to working on his game this summer. His dedication and hard work is showing through and will propel him to success this season.”

Edwards, a native of Salisbury, N.C., started the day shooting a superb 5-under 67, which was the second-lowest round of the day. He made six birdies and just one bogey. He bookended his opening round with birdies on the first two and last two holes. His birdie on the par-5 18th hole, the longest hole on the course at 549 yards, placed him in second place heading into the second round.

He got off to another strong start to begin the second round. He eagled the par-4 first hole and then birdied two of the next three holes to shoot up to 9-under. But he wouldn’t make a birdie after that and fell into trouble on the back nine. Still at 8-under heading into the 13th hole, he made bogeys on three of the next four holes and finished with a respectable even par-72 for the round.

Edwards will now gear up for his final collegiate season. The two-time Atlantic 10 All-Conference selection hopes to build off a strong junior season in which he won his first collegiate tournament and set the school record in single-season scoring average (71.7).