Nittany Lion Miller headed to U.S. Open at Shinnecock Hills

Nittany Lion alumnus makes debut on PGA Canada’s Mackenzie Tour June 7

Penn State alumnus and Nittany Lion men's golf student-athlete Cole Miller, class of 2018, placed third at the Woodmont Country Club U.S. Open Sectional Qualifier on June 4, 2018. Miller will be one of 156 individuals eligible to compete for the 118th U.S. Open Championship at Shinnecock Hills, Southampton, New York. Credit: Penn StateCreative Commons

ROCKVILLE, Md. — Penn State men’s golf alumnus Cole Miller will compete in the 118th U.S. Open at Shinnecock Hills Golf Club after claiming third place with a 5-under 139 at the section qualifier at the Woodmont Country Club. The U.S. Open sectional qualifier at the Woodmont Country Club advanced four individuals to the U.S. Open in Southampton, New York Thursday to Sunday, June 14-17.

“This is like a dream come true for me to be able to play in the U.S. Open,” said Miller, who makes his debut on PGA Canada’s Mackenzie Tour June 7. “For me to play well in the sectional leading into my first professional event on the MacKenzie Tour, it’s just icing on the cake. I wasn’t expecting the U.S. Open to be my second professional event.”

Miller, a 2018 All-Big Ten selection and four-time all-Northeast Region honoree, hit his approach shot on his final hole within 18 inches of the cup, where he knocked it in for a his fifth birdie of the day.

The U.S. Open grants 76 exemptions for a total field of 156. Miller finished with the top score by an amateur at this U.S. Open Qualifying event.

“After I hit my approach on 18, I knew I was close, because my mom kept checking her phone, so I realized if I could come in with that number, I could secure a spot. My caddy told me to make my two best swings and I followed my tee shot with a nice wedge from the middle of the fairway. Then I had a tap-in birdie to give myself a cushion.”

From New Tripoli, Pennsylvania, Miller was locked in a tie for seventh place after the first round with a 2-under 70. Going 3-under in the second round, he flipped a first-round bogey on the 9th hole to a birdie on his second pass and took advantage of the same on No. 18 in the same manner. A 2018 Penn State graduate, Miller finished with a 3-under 69, tied with four others for the second-lowest second round score.

Fox and FS1 will split television coverage of the first and second rounds of the U.S. Open on Thursday and Friday, June 14 and 15. The third round Saturday and Sunday’s final round will both be broadcast by Fox with additional coverage of featured groups and holes on and the U.S. Open app.

Penn State teammate Ryan Davis (Berkeley Heights, New Jersey) will serve as a second alternate after a 138 total at the Canoe Brook Country Club sectional qualifier in Summit, New Jersey. Davis tied for the third-lowest score after his first round with a 3-under 67, tallying five birdies on the club’s south course. He added three more birdies on the north course in his second round for a 71.

NIttany Lion assistant men’s golf coach T.J. Howe, who played for the Nittany Lions from 20-2011 also competed at the Woodmont Country Club sectional qualifier. He matched Miller’s 69 in the second round and finished the event with a 142 total in a tie for fifth place.

Penn State was last represented at the U.S. Open by All-Americans Kevin Foley and Howe in 2016. Howe was a first alternate for the 2017 U.S. Open at Erin Hills.

For the latest updates on the team follow @PennStateMGolf on Twitter, “like” the Penn State Men's Golf page on Facebook, and follow head coach Greg Nye on Instagram @CoachNyePSU. 

Last Updated June 15, 2018