Tennessee golfer Oliver Goss lost in the finals of the 113th U.S. Amateur Championship on Sunday, falling 4 and 3 to Englishman Matt Fitzpatrick. But despite falling short at The Country Club in Brookline, Mass., Goss’ run to the 36-hole finals will do plenty to vault the future of the 19-year-old from Australia.
Goss earned an exemption into next year’s U.S. Open and likely an invitation to the 2014 Masters.
“I’ve definitely got a couple weeks that I’ll keep open in my schedule,” Goss said. “If someone told me at the start of the week I was going to have the opportunity to play the Masters and the U.S. Open next year, I’d be speechless. I wouldn’t be able to believe it.
“I was there (the Masters) this year after a college tournament we got Monday tickets to the practice round and it was golf heaven. It’s the greatest thing I’ve ever seen,” he said. “I stood there, and I was like, how do they play under this kind of pressure and with the difficulty of the golf course. But I’m really excited to be able to play there next year.”
Fitzpatrick became the event’s first English champion since 1911. The 18-year-old soon-to-be Northwestern freshman is the first foreigner to win any major USGA event at The Country Club.
“It’s fantastic and it’s nice to be the first (in) a while,” Fitzpatrick said. “I guess it’s great to go down in history. That’s sort of what everyone wants in golf, wants to achieve. ... It’s just fantastic, and I feel great.”
Fitzpatrick never trailed in the final 18 holes of the day. In the first 18, the golfers went back-and-forth, as neither led by more than one hole. Goss held a 1 up lead on two different occasions over the course of four holes but was down a hole headed into the final 18. He immediately tied the match back up on the 19th hole of the day (hole 1) with a par, but Fitzpatrick took the lead for good on the 20th hole and took a two-stroke lead on the 21st hole as Goss went through a 3 over stretch during those holes. Goss also lost back-to-back holes to close out the match as he made bogey on the 32nd and 33rd holes of the day.
“Matt (Fitzpatrick) played great, he put on one of the greatest displays of putting this morning I’ve seen,” Goss said.
Goss and the UT golf team will begin their 2013-14 season with the Carpet Capital Collegiate on Sept. 6 in Dalton, Ga.