Scottsdale software friends Brian Blanchard and Sam Engel win US Amateur 4-Ball Championship

FLOURTOWN, Pa. (AP) — Scottsdale, Arizona, software friends Brian Blanchard and Sam Engel won the U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championship on Wednesday at Philadelphia Cricket Club's Wissahickon Course, beating Tennessee teenagers Blades Brown and Jackson Herrington 2 up.

“It’s why we grind,” Blanchard said. “It’s why we’re out there after work until it gets dark, grinding all day."

The 31-year-old Blanchard is a software engineer, while the 29-year-old Engel is an account executive who is starting a software company. Engel is the first left-hander to win the event and the 10th to take a USGA title.

“It’s hard to qualify for USGA championships, and if you don’t have your best, best stuff, you go home,” Engel said.” There’s a lot of really great players. We brought it this week.”

The 17-year-old Brown, from Nashville, is a rising high school junior who made the cut this month in the PGA Tour’s Myrtle Beach Classic. The 18-year-old Herrington, from Dickson, is an incoming freshman at the University of Tennessee. He's also a left-hander.

Blanchard made a 30-foot birdie putt on the par-4 13th hole, and Engel — a former Cal State Northridge player, hit a a 52-degree wedge from 125 yards to a foot for a conceded birdie on No. 14 and a 2-up lead. Brown and Herrington won the par-4 17th with a birdie to stay alive, and Team Software wrapped it up with a birdie on the par-4 18th.

In the semifinals Wednesday morning, Blanchard and Engel edged Floridians Will Davenport and Mike Smith 1 up, and Brown and Herrington beat Furman University teammates Trey Diehl and Mac Scott 4 and 3.


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