A Chehalis product will soon be teeing off with the top golfers in the world.
Brady Calkins, a 2013 W.F. West High School graduate, qualified for the U.S. Open on Monday evening by tying for first at the Bend, Oregon, qualifier at Pronghorn Resort.
“It’s a dream come true,” Calkins told NBC Golf on Monday evening. “I’ve been a pro since I was 19. I’m 27 now. This is my first time getting through something like this, so I’m pretty excited.”
Calkins shot a 68 in each round of the 36-hole tournament to finish in a tie with Isaiah Salinda of San Francisco.
“It makes it all worth it,” he said. “I’m excited to go play with the big boys.”
The 122nd U.S. Open is scheduled for June 16-19 at The Country Club, which was founded in 1882 in Brookline, Mass. It’s one of the oldest country clubs in the United States and was one of the five clubs that founded the United State Golf Association. This will be the fourth time the course has hosted the U.S. Open.
The field features 156 players — 65 of whom qualify through local and then final qualifying tournaments, like the one Calkins won on Monday. More than 8,000 players entered local qualifiers in 2022, with 871 advancing to the one-day, 36-hole final qualifiers on what the USGA calls “golf’s longest day.”
The other 91 U.S. Open spots are filled by professionals with exemptions based on their credentials, like having won a major tournament in the last five years or having a certain amount of FedEx Cup points.
Calkins, 27, has been playing professionally since he was 19. He spent a year after high school playing for Community Colleges of Spokane and winning an NWAC championship and he’s been on the Dakotas Tour — a nine-week summer series with 18 events — since 2018, winning Player of the Year and leading the earning list in 2018, 2019 and 2020 and finishing second in 2021.
On Monday, playing at the par-72 Pronghorn Resort, Calkins got better as the tournament progressed. He shot an even-par 36 on the first nine holes, with four birdies and four bogeys, then birdied four holes on the back nine to hit the halfway point at four-under. He notched an eagle on the par-5 eighth hole on his second trip around the course and finished eight-under par.