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Kyle Williams

Kyle Williams takes a practice swing before hitting his pitch shot on the 11th hole at Old Macdonald on Monday. 

BANDON — Throughout his 13-year NFL career, Kyle Williams only played golf a few months of the year.

“When we would go to training camp in mid-July, I would put the clubs away until March,” he said.

Now that he’s retired from his career, which included being selected to six Pro Bowls, he’s changing that.

“I’m looking forward to playing more,” he said.

Williams hopes to play two more days at Bandon Dunes. He and partner Gregory Berthelot won their first match in the U.S. Four-Ball Championship on Monday, beating Hillsdale College teammates Andrew Grayson and Liam Purslowe 4 and 3.

Gregory Berthelot lines up Monday. Berthelot and partner Kyle Williams beat Andrew Grayson and Liam Purslowe 4 and 3 on Monday, but lost their…

“I think we played well,” Berthelot said. “We started hot.”

They won five of the first seven holes with birdies and led comfortably the rest of the way, finally clinching the match with a par on No. 15 when Grayson’s birdie putt lipped out.

Williams said while they played well, the match wasn’t easy.

They’re all tough,” he said. “At the end of the day, it’s about surviving and moving on.”

The No. 1 seeds failed to do that Monday. So did the runners-up from last year and another side that made the semifinals last spring.

The 16 winning sides were scheduled to be back on the Old Macdonald course Tuesday morning for the second round, with the quarterfinals scheduled for the afternoon. The semifinals and championship match are Wednesday.

Williams and Berthelot had one of the shorter matches Monday, but not the shortest. Brothers-in-law Bobby Leopold and Tyler Cooke, their opponent in the round of 16 Tuesday, beat Jonas Mikals and Dustin Hall 7 and 5, winning seven of eight holes starting at No. 3.

Meanwhile, two matches went to extra holes. Brothers Hunter and Ryder Epson squared their match against John Kozlowski and Trey Rath with a par on 18 and won it with a birdie on the 19th hole.

And Brandon Cigna and Ben Warnquist outlasted Jack Wall and Brendan Hansen in a match that went 21 holes. Cigna and Warnquist, the 2017 runners-up, won with a birdie on the third extra hole.

Two of the three pairs that shared medalist honors after the two rounds of qualifying advanced to the round of 16. Matthew McCarty and Derek Ackerman beat Eric Pattenaude and Adam Graham 3 and 1 and Troy Vannucci and Vince Kwon topped M. Tyler McKeever and Steven Groover 1-up.

But Derek Abel and Christopher Wheeler, who were given the No. 1 overall seed, fell to Andrew Noto and James Fuselier 3 and 2.

Last year’s runners-up, Chip Brooke and Marc Dull, were beaten by East Carolina teammates Logan Shuping and Blake Taylor 4 and 2.

And Sam Tidd and Carson Barry, who helped their Idaho high school to three straight state titles and reached the semifinals of last year’s tournament, lost perhaps the most competitive match of the day 1-up to Taylor Wood and Andrew Medley.

Oregon State golfer Carson Barry watches a putt roll toward the hole on the 14th hole Monday. Barry and his partner, Sam Tidd, lost their matc…

Wood and Medley had finished one shot out of sharing medalist honors, while Tidd and Barry were part of a playoff with seven teams for the final four spots in the bracket Monday morning — they earned their spot when Barry eagled the second playoff hole (No. 6) by sinking a 62-foot putt.

But even though Wood and Medley were 12-under and Tidd and Barry 6-under in qualifying, they were just about equal in their match.

“We had to play great to beat them,” Wood said. “It’s not the first match we wanted.”

“You needed to make birdie to win a hole,” Medley added.

Wood and Taylor had to shoot 8-under to win the match, finally prevailing when Barry’s birdie putt on 18 slid just past the hole and Medley made his 3-footer for par.

“It felt good to make a putt at the end,” Medley said. “That was fun.”

“These guys probably beat 85 percent of the teams out there today,” Wood said.

Barry and Tidd said they played well, despite the loss.

“That’s probably the best we played of the three days,” Barry said.

He chipped in for birdie on the fourth hole and had an eagle putt on the 17th that would have squared the match lip out, while Tidd made a slippery birdie putt on No. 14 to match a birdie by Medley.

The turning point in the match came when Barry missed a short birdie putt after Medley made one when both had great approaches on the 13th hole. That put Medley and Wood in front and they led the rest of the way.

Medley and Wood have played in the event before, but not as teammates.

Medley’s teammate two years ago, Ken Tanigawa, won the Senior PGA Championship on Sunday.

“This is my third one of these,” Wood said. “And it’s the first time I haven’t lost in the first round of match play.”

They joined Williams and Berthelot in the second round.

Berthelot met Williams when he was in high school and Williams was an All-American at LSU and struck up a strong friendship that continues.

“I was practicing to play (competitive) golf and he was practicing for fun and games,” Berthelot said.

On Monday, they were good enough to move into the round of 16.

Monday's Results

BANDON, Ore. – Results from Monday's first round of match play at the 2019 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championship, played at the 7,024-yard, par-71 Bandon Dunes Golf Resort (Old Macdonald Course).

Round of 32

(Upper Bracket)

Logan Shuping, Salisbury, N.C. & Blake Taylor, Wilmington, N.C. (133) def. Chip Brooke, Altamonte Springs, Fla. & Marc Dull, Winter Haven, Fla. (132), 4 and 2

Kyle Williams, Ruston, La. & Gregory Berthelot, Baton Rouge, La. (131) def. Andrew Grayson, Medina, Ohio & Liam Purslowe, Australia (134), 4 and 3

Bobby Leopold, Coventry, R.I. & Tyler Cooke, Warwick, R.I. (131) def. Jonas Mikals, Truckee, Calif. & Dustin Hall, Sparks, Nev. (134), 7 and 6

Jason Anthony, Fairfield, Calif. & Randy Haag, Orinda, Calif. (132) def. Ben Fisher, Germantown, Tenn. & Matt Mitchell, Oakland, Tenn. (133), 1 up

Devon Hopkins, Jacksonville Beach, Fla. & Matt Kleinrock, Jacksonville, Fla. (134) def. Nicolas Osterburg, Indianapolis, Ind. & Oliver Mast, Fortville, Ind. (129), 1 up

Hunter Epson, Long Beach, Calif. & Ryder Epson, Long Beach, Calif. (132) def. Jack Kozlowski, Columbus, Ohio & Trey Rath, Powell, Ohio (133), 19 holes

Taylor Wood, Coto de Caza, Calif. & Andrew Medley, Scottsdale, Ariz. (129) def. Sam Tidd, Meridian, Idaho & Carson Barry, Eagle, Idaho (135), 1 up

Andrew Noto, Metairie, La. & James Fuselier, New Orleans, La. (135) def. Derek Abel, Dallas, Texas & Christopher Wheeler, Addison, Texas (128), 3 and 2

(Lower Bracket)

Matthew McCarty, Scottsdale, Ariz. & Derek Ackerman, Santa Clara, Calif. (128) def. Eric Pattenaude, Canada & Adam Graham, Canada (135), 3 and 1

Cullen Brasfield, La Quinta, Calif. & Tyler Moore, Escondido, Calif. (133) def. John Sajevic, Fremont, Neb. & Andrew Sajevic, Omaha, Neb. (132), 2 and 1

Todd Mitchell, Bloomington, Ill. & Scott Harvey, Kernersville, N.C. (131) def. Ralph Blasey, Bethesda, Md. & Alex Nianouris, Raleigh, N.C. (134), 2 and 1

Brandon Cigna, Arlington, Va. & Ben Warnquist, Olney, Md. (134) def. Jack Wall, Brielle, N.J. & Brendan Hansen, Spring Lake, N.J. (131), 21 holes

Troy Vannucci, Marlton, N.J. & Vince Kwon, Marlton, N.J. (128) def. M. Tyler McKeever, Atlanta, Ga. & Steven Groover, Birmingham, Ala. (135), 1 up

John Faulk, Lake Charles, La. & Matt Nicholas, Lake Charles, La. (133) def. Dustin Groves, Charlottesville, Va. & Jordan Utley, Richmond, Va. (132), 4 and 3

Derek Busby, Ruston, La. & Stewart Hagestad, Newport Beach, Calif. (130) def. Robert Lutomski, Simpsonville, S.C. & Weston Bell, Piedmont, S.C. (134), 1 up

Matt Parziale, Brockton, Mass. & Herbie Aikens, Kingston, Mass. (134) def. Aidan Tran, Fresno, Calif. & Jackson Lake, Clovis, Calif. (132), 3 and 2

Coming Soon: Get in the game with our Prep Sports Newsletter

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Sports Editor John Gunther can be reached at 541-269-1222, ext. 241, or by email at john.gunther@theworldlink.com. Follow him on Twitter: @jguntherworld.

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