BALL GROUND -- Etowah product Anders Albertson may have just missed the cut, but there was plenty to be gained from his two-round performance at the US Open sectional qualifying tournament Monday at Hawks Ridge.
Albertson fired a 7-under par 137 to finish in a tie for seventh in the 67-player tournament that sent four players and two alternates to the US Open at Pebble Beach later this month.
“I’m pretty happy,” Albertson said. “I left a few out there, but it was fun to put something together after a slow start and feel like we were somewhat in it on the back nine.”
An even par-72 in his first round put Albertson in an early hole.
His three birdies on the front nine were a good start, but a trio of bogeys on the back undid that progress.
His second round began on the back nine, where the former Georgia Tech standout flipped the script, making birdie on the 14th hole before an eagle putt on 18 sent him to the front at minus-3.
“I played well on the front nine in the morning,” Albertson said. “I just hit a few bad tee shots on the second nine of the morning. That really put us behind. We hit a few more fairways out here, and that lets you hit with some scoring irons. It just gives you a few more chances.”
Despite playing the last of 36 holes in the summer heat, Albertson also showed improvement his second time through the front nine.
He birdied the fifth and seventh holes for the second time in the tournament while adding birdies on the first and third holes to get back into contention.
“Thankfully, it’s not the first time I’ve done that in heat,” said Albertson, who last played a sectional qualifier eight years ago. “We got to use carts for the caddies , so we had food and water. I got to use some experience today from other tournaments. I think it helped.”
As he continues his rookie season on the PGA Tour, Albertson said he will be looking to use the positives from the qualifying tournament.
He made the cut in five of his first six events, but has missed the cut in 10 of his last 11. He last played May 12, at the Byron Nelson, and after testing the work he has done in the interim, he hopes it carries over to next week’s RBC Canadian Open.
“(Monday) was more putting to use what I’ve been working on the last couple weeks,” he said. “It was nice to put it under some tournament pressure. I know I need to hit a few more fairways, but hopefully I can put it to use this week.”