Gordon Sargent Jun 18, 2023; Los Angeles, California, USA; Gordon Sargent prepares to putt on the 18th green during the final round of the U.S. Open golf tournament at Los Angeles Country Club. Mandatory Credit: Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports

While Wyndham Clark came away from Los Angeles Country Club as U.S. Open champion, he was not the only player honored in the victory ceremony. Vanderbilt’s Gordon Sargent won the tournament’s Low Amateur medal.

This was despite a bad break that came closer to something one might see on an episode of Candid Camera or Punk’d than the U.S. Open.

Sargent came to the final hole on Sunday at three-over par. He faced a short putt for par on the last hole and seemed to hit it straight in the middle of the hole. Only, as the ball was on its way to the bottom of the cup, the back of the hole channeled its inner Dikembe Mutombo, sending the ball out. 

Putts appearing to drop into the hole only to pop out aren’t uncommon. But those are almost putts that are going in on one of the edges, traveling way too fast or both. This was neither.

The USGA’s explanation said that the issue was with one of the golfers in the group ahead of Sargent’s — either Ryan Gerard or Mackenzie Hughes.

“A member of the group ahead inadvertently adjusted the hole liner when removing the flagstick. Unfortunately, we were not informed of any damage. It has since been adjusted back into place,” the statement said, H/T Gabrielle Herzig, Sports Illustrated.

Viewers, meanwhile, were miffed.

Longtime fans of golf no doubt thought of Joe Daley when this first happened. In the fourth round of PGA Tour Qualifying School in 2000, Daley had a putt miss in a similar fashion on the 18th hole. Daley ended up missing out on his tour card — by one shot.

Fortunately for Sargent, the stakes weren’t quite as high in this one. He was an amateur, so he didn’t lose any money with his unlucky break. And his finishing score of four-over was still well clear of Ben Carr, the next-best amateur who finished at 13-over. So, Sargent never had to sweat getting to join the likes of Scottie Scheffler, Phil Mickelson, Fred Couples, Jack Nicklaus and of course, Bobby Jones and Francis Ouimet as low amateurs at the U.S. Open.

Still, we couldn’t blame him for feeling frustrated in that moment.

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