It seems like Ian Holt has played The Ohio State University's Scarlet Course about 1,000 times during his career.

The 2014 Stow-Munroe Falls graduate, a rising senior at Kent State University, played on the Columbus course every year in high school since he was a four-time state qualifier.

Holt also has played that course many times as a member of the Golden Flashes.

So when he learned that a US Amateur qualifier was going to take place on the famed Scarlet Course, Holt didn't feel the least bit out of place.

"I bet I've played that course 30 times," the 21-year-old Holt said. "I feel pretty comfortable there."

That statement couldn't have been more accurate July 5.

Holt advanced to the 117th US Amateur Championship, which is scheduled to take place Aug. 14 to 20 at Riviera Country Club and Bel-Air Country Club in Pacific Palisades, Calif.

Holt, who will make his third appearance at the US Amateur Championship, shot a 1-under-par 141 (71-70).

Holt defeated 2017 Hudson graduate and future Kent State teammate Will Kurtz, who finished second with an even-par 142 (69-73). Also advancing was Dublin resident Camden Solomon, who shot a 2-over 144 (71-73).

Such an accomplishment is old hat for Holt. Nonetheless, his reputation alone didn't earn him a ticket to California.

"It doesn't get any easier," Holt said. "It was kind of stressful. You never know who is going to show up. You have to be on your game. It's only 36 holes, so you can't have one really bad hole."

Holt's knowledge of the Scarlet Course proved to be beneficial.

He was a four-time Division I state qualifier for the Bulldogs. He also shared the state title with Cleveland St. Ignatius player Beau Titsworth in 2011.

Holt guided Stow to the state tournament in the team standings twice. He finished 28th as a freshman, ninth as a junior and 10th as a senior.

Holt, who also won the Hudson Junior Invitational in 2013, is hoping for some better luck at the US Amateur Championship.

The event features 312 players and two rounds of stroke play. The top 64 golfers in stroke play advance to match play.

"Last year in stroke play, I was in a 27-man playoff for eight or nine holes," Holt said. "I lost on the last hole. The year before that, I missed match play by two or three strokes."

Despite an off-day at the NCAA Tournament, Holt had a stellar season for the Golden Flashes.

He was an All-American and was named the Mid-American Conference Player of the Year.

Holt won the Cleveland State Invitational and finished second two other times. His three-round, 54-hole total of 198 this past season is a new program record.

His record-breaking round eclipsed the 1999-2000 record of former British Open champion Ben Curtis by two strokes.

"I played pretty well," Holt said. "I had the second best scoring average in Kent State history. I play for some great coaches.

"It's not a big school, but we definitely get a lot of respect. Coach [Herb] Page has done a great job over the years. It was definitely the best decision I've ever made."

Holt recently shot a 60 during a practice round at Windmill Lakes Golf Club in Ravenna. The business management major shot 65 three times for the Flashes during his junior year.

The US Amateur Championship took place in Michigan last year and Chicago in 2015.

Holt will be making his first trip to California.

"The furthest west I've played is Arizona," Holt said. "It's going to be sweet. I know Riviera has a PGA tour event."

If Holt can crack the top 64, he will reach uncharted territory.

But a chance to compete in match play is not what Holt has in mind.

"I feel like I can win it," he said.


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