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One of the biggest perks of winning the U.S. Amateur is automatic exemption into three of the four major championships the following year, those being the Masters, the U.S. Open, and The Open Championship. And reigning U.S. Amateur champion Sam Bennett has certainly made the most of those exemptions thus far, although this week’s U.S. Open will be his last as he forfeited his spot at The Open by turning pro last month.

In his debut appearance at Augusta National back in April, the 23-year-old tied for 16th, easily taking low amateur honors. And that was despite shooting 76-74 on the weekend. Bennett opened that week with a pair of 68s, making him the first amateur to shoot two rounds in the 60s at the Masters since 1961.

Along those same lines, the Texas A&M product is continuing to make history at Los Angeles Country Club.

In fact, Sam Bennett has achieved a feat no reigning U.S. Amateur champion has ever accomplished at America’s national championship.

Sam Bennett is the only reigning U.S. Amateur champion to ever start a U.S. Open with two rounds in the 60s


Tiger Woods’ 5 Most Unbreakable Records

The list of U.S. Amateur champions features some of the most successful golfers in the history of the sport, most notably Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods.

But of every U.S. Amateur champion of all time, none have ever done what Sam Bennett just accomplished at the U.S. Open on Friday.

After opening his week on the par-70 layout at LACC with a 3-under round of 67, Bennett followed it up with a 2-under 68 in the second round, making him the first-ever reigning U.S. Amateur champion to start a U.S. Open with consecutive rounds in the 60s.

Tiger Woods remains the only player to ever win the U.S. Amateur three consecutive times, taking the title in 1994, 1995, and 1996. In the three U.S. Open appearances that came from those wins, Woods’ first two rounds were 74-85 in 1995 at Shinnecock Hills, 76-69 in 1996 at Oakland Hills, and 74-67 in 1997 at Congressional.

As for Jack Nicklaus, who won the U.S. Amateur in 1959 and 1961, he went 71-71 to kick off the 1960 U.S. Open at Cherry Hills en route to a second-place finish. In 1962, the Golden Bear shot 72-70 in his first two rounds at Oakmont. Nicklaus, of course, went on to win that U.S. Open, marking his first professional victory and the first of his record 18 major championships.

Whether Sam Bennett can win this year’s U.S. Open remains to be seen. But he’s certainly off to a great start.