Gordon Sargent, 20, of Birmingham, Ala., Michael Thorbjornsen, 21, of Wellesley, Mass. and David Ford, 20, of Peachtree Corners, Ga., have earned places on the 2023 USA Walker Cup Team as the top Americans in the World Amateur Golf Ranking®/WAGR® as of June 21. The trio is ranked No. 1, 2 and 3 respectively. They will compete against Great Britain and Ireland in the 49th Walker Cup Match on Sept. 2-3 at the Old Course in St. Andrews, Scotland.
“Gordon, Michael and David are fantastic additions to the team,” said Mike McCoy, captain of the USA Team. “Not only have all three of these young men had impressive seasons, resulting in these automatic selections, but they are future stars of our game who bring immense talent, enthusiasm and camaraderie to the team. Having them included in the experience at the Old Course is something I am very much looking forward to both personally and as team captain.”
Sargent made the cut in last week’s U.S. Open and went on to earn low-amateur honors with a T39 finish. He was also voted Southeastern Conference Player of the Year as a sophomore at Vanderbilt University in 2022-23. He posted eight top-5 finishes, including fifth in the SEC Championship and a tie for seventh in the NCAA Auburn Regional. Sargent won the 2022 NCAA individual title in a playoff and received the Phil Mickelson Award as the nation’s top freshman. He helped the USA win a bronze medal at last year’s World Amateur Team Championship in Paris, France.
Thorbjornsen played in his third U.S. Open this year after earning medalist honors at the Summit, N.J., final qualifier. He was voted Pac-12 Conference Golfer of the Year and won the conference title as a junior at Stanford University in 2022-23. He registered eight top-10 finishes, including a tie for fifth in the NCAA Las Vegas Regional. Thorbjornsen became the second-youngest player (age 17) since World War II to make the 36-hole cut in the U.S. Open and finished 79th in 2019. Thorbjornsen, the 2018 U.S. Junior Amateur champion, helped the USA win a bronze medal in last year’s World Amateur Team Championship in Paris, France.
Ford was named first-team All-American (GCAA and Golfweek) and voted ACC Player of the Year as a sophomore at the University of North Carolina in 2022-23. He was also selected to this year’s Palmer Cup team and was recognized as both a Haskins Award finalist and Hogan Award semifinalist. Ford won the 2022 Southern Amateur Championship at Sea Island Golf Club in St. Simons Island, Ga.
McCoy, the 2013 U.S. Mid-Amateur champion, has competed in 65 USGA championships, including 20 U.S. Amateurs, and was a member of the 2015 USA Walker Cup Team at Royal Lytham & St Annes Golf Club in England. McCoy, of Des Moines, Iowa, was also low amateur in both the 2014 and 2015 U.S. Senior Opens, tying the record for lowest 72-hole score by an amateur (282) at Del Paso Country Club in 2015.
The USGA’s International Team Selection working group (ITS) will name a second set of additional players to the 10-member team in late July and will name the final selections to the team and alternates immediately following the U.S. Amateur Championship. The winner of the 2023 U.S. Amateur, set to take place Aug. 14-20 at Cherry Hills Country Club in Colorado, and the recipient of the 2023 McCormack Medal, should they be American, will earn the final automatic spots onto the team.
The Walker Cup Match is a 10-man amateur team competition between the USA and Great Britain and Ireland. The Old Course has hosted eight previous Walker Cups, more than any other venue, most recently in 1975, when the USA defeated GB&I, 15½-8½, led by future U.S. Open champions Jerry Pate and Curtis Strange.