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Brink starts well in U.S. Amateur Championships
Manteca resident Will Brink turned in a solid 1-over 71 in the first round of the U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship in Virginia on Monday. - photo by JONAMAR JACINTO

Will Brink is holding his own against some of the nation’s top amateur golfers.

After one round, the recent East Union High graduate is inside 64-man cut line to advance to the match play stage of the 88th U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship held this week at the 7,022-yard, par-70 Laurel Hill Golf Club in Lorton, Va.

The sweet-swinging lefty from Manteca ended strong in the opening round of the stroke-play qualifier, finishing 1-over while in an 11-way tie for 39th place. Brink struggled at the start, taking a bogey on the first hole before double-bogeying the 518-yard, par-5 sixth to put himself 3-over. Back-to-back birdies on 12 and 13 helped right the ship, and he walked off the back nine with a confidence-boosting 1-under 34.

San Diegan Eric Sugimoto, who is entering his sophomore season for the University of the Pacific, has a two-stroke lead with his record-tying 7-under 63. He started hot with five birdies on the front nine.

Stroke play resumes today, with the low 64 scorers moving on. Match play begins Wednesday, and the 36-hole championship is scheduled for Saturday.