For Max Marsico, it’s one tournament down, one to go in his hunt to qualify for the 2022 U.S. Open. Marsico was the low medalist in the 2022 U.S. Open First Stage Qualifying event held on April 26, 2022, at the CasaBlanca Golf Club in Mesquite. Also qualifying were Jackson Parrish (66), Max Brenchley (67, qualifier on first playoff hole) and Jack Trent (67, qualifier on third playoff hole). –Bill Bowman, Las Vegas Golf Insider staff
For the day, Marsico had eight birdies and no bogeys en route to a two-shot victory.
The 30-year-old Marsico, who played his prep golf at The Meadows High School, will now begin a juggling act for the next few months. He won a Q-School qualifier for the PGA Tour Canada season earlier this year and will have to slide his final U.S. Open qualifier event in between tournaments in Canada.
In the Mesquite event, Marsico fired an eight-under-par 64 including birdies on his first two holes to beat a field of 70 golfers. Jackson Parrish finished second with a 66 and earned the right to move on along with Max Brenchley and Jack Trent who were in a four-way tie for third after posting 67s but moved on via a playoff. Brandon Lee and Carson Lundell are in the alternate spots.
“It was a very good round,” Marsico said. “My goal was just to get through this and get to the sectional qualifier.”
“I drove it really well and took advantage of the par 5s,” he said. “I had two good eagle looks and another birdie was an up-and-down. Other than that, I just played solid except for a few iron shots where I left myself 30-35 feet and I took two putts and just moved on to the next hole.”
Now comes the juggling part of his schedule.
As a member of PGA Tour Canada, he earned the right to play in all 11 of the tour’s summer events. He said he hopes to play in all of them but his U.S. Open sectional qualifier will determine if that happens.
“If I qualify for the U.S. Open, I may skip one of the events and go to Brookline (the site of the U.S. Open on June 16-19) a few days early to check out the course,” he said. “That would be a good problem to have.”
During the round at CasaBlanca he hoped to strike quickly.
“I wanted to make as many birdies early in the round as I could before wind picked up,” he said. “You can certainly do more with calm conditions and I took advantage of that.”
Now, he’s focusing on his next step in the chase for a spot in the U.S. Open.
“It’s one more 36-hole qualifier,” Marsico said. “That qualifier is 36 in one day. If I can get through that, I’m going to the U.S. Open.”
And he’s already got a game-plan in mind for giving himself the best chance to move on.
“I’m almost 100 percent sure I’m going to Texas for that final qualifier,” he said. “A majority of the qualifiers (around the U.S) are on June 6 but that’s the day after the first event in Canada. So, I’m probably going to Texas which is two weeks earlier than the others. There will be a lot of PGA Tour pros at that one trying to qualify and this one will probably have seven to 15 players that qualify. And with a lot of Tour pros in the field it’s certainly going to be a challenge.”
2022 U.S. Open First Stage Qualifying
CasaBlanca GC in Mesquite
Max Marsico, 64, low medalist
Jackson Parrish, 66, qualifier
Max Brenchley, 67, qualifier on first playoff hole
Jack Trent, 67, qualifier on third playoff hole
Brandon Lee, 67, first alternate
Carson Lundell, 67, second alternate