Bob Patton doesn't believe Long Cove Club has to be tricked up to provide a great test of golf.
The Pete Dye creation will have another chance to prove its mettle May 12 when it plays host to 90 golfers for a U.S. Open local qualifier. Patton, the club's director of golf, said the setup will be fair to allow a decent pace, but tough enough to identify the best players for the five spots advancing to sectional qualifying.
"The idea is not to make it as long as possible and put the hole locations in the toughest spots," Patton said. "...You don't want them out there for 5 1/2 hours. We're pretty confident Long Cove is a good test and a fair test, pretty much from our championship markers."
Patton said 14 holes would play from the championship tees and the other four would be moved up just slightly for the qualifier, which is run by the S.C. Golf Association.
The U.S. Golf Association announced the local qualifiers on Friday. Long Cove most recently held a local qualifier in 2008. PGA Tour player Scott Piercy was medalist with a score of 69.
The 18-hole qualifiers are held at 111 sites in 42 states between May 2 and May 19.
"The U.S. Open's local and sectional qualifying process is the most democratic in that every amateur golfer who meets the USGA Handicap Index requirement can compete for a spot in the championship field," Daniel B. Burton, USGA vice president and championship committee chairman, said in a release. "Two-tiered U.S. Open qualifying could not be conducted without the tremendous partnership and expertise provided by state and regional golf associations, and we are grateful for their continued support."
The five qualifiers advance to sectional qualifying, where players compete for a spot in the final field for the U.S. Open, which will be held June 12 through June 15 in North Carolina at Pinehurst No. 2.
The Lowcountry has hosted numerous Open qualifiers in the past. Beaufort's Secession Golf Club hosted its most recent U.S. Open qualifier in 2013. In 2012, a qualifier was held at Colleton River Plantation's Dye Course.
Colleton River's Dye Course also will host the 2015 U.S. Junior, which was last held in the area in 1979 at Moss Creek.
Long Cove has hosted USGA events in the past, including the 1991 U.S. Mid-Amateur and the 2003 Women's Mid-Am.
Spectators are welcome to watch the local qualifier at Long Cove Club with tee times beginning at 7:30 a.m. Carts will not be available.