As if the U.S. Open needed any additional story lines, it may have received its best one yet Monday.
Casey Martin, the former Stanford golfer and current Oregon golf coach, qualified for the Open at the Olympic Club on June 14-17 by winning the sectional qualifier in Creswell, Ore., by one shot.
Martin’s only other appearance in a major came in 1998, when Olympic last hosted the event. Martin created a firestorm when he successfully sued the PGA Tour to use a cart in competition due to a birth defect that makes it hard for him to walk. He wound up finishing 23rd in ’98.
Martin was one of more than 900 golfers who teed it up across the country Monday in hopes of nailing down one of 58 spots up for grabs. And he wasn’t the only player with Bay Area ties to move on.
Stanford sophomore Cameron Wilson won the sectional in Summitt, N.J., to lock up a tee time in the Open. Wilson, a native of Rowayton, Conn., finished the 36 holes in 6-under-par 136.
Former Cal golfer Charlie Wi, who finished second at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am in February, qualified for the Open by winning the qualifier in Columbus, Ohio, by three shots. Wi, who has earned more than $1 million in 14 PGA Tour events this season, shot a 9-under 132 over the 36 holes.
Other notable players who will tee it up in San Francisco are Davis Love III, Kevin Streelman, D.A. Points, Steve Marino, Tim Herron and Rod Pampling.
Rain pushed back the sectional in Memphis until today.