CINCINNATI - A few tweaks here and there, and Jared Hammons feels he belongs.
The Marietta High School graduate played three rounds in the Ohio Amateur before missing the cut for today's final round at Coldstream Country Club. Hammons, who will enter his sophomore season at Miami (Ohio) University in the fall, turned in rounds of 76, 74 and 77 for a three day total of 14-over par 227.
The top 40 and ties advanced, making the cut line at 224.
Times file photo
In this Times file photo from the summer of 2009, golfer Jared Hammons competes in a Mid-Ohio Valley Junior Golf Association event at Arrowhead Pines Golf Course. Hammons, a Marietta High graduate, competed in the Ohio Amateur this week, barely missing the cut for today’s final round.
"On Wednesday, I felt if I posted a 150 I would be below the cut and I ended up doing that," Hammons said. "I haven't played many double-cut tournaments, so I was just trying to shoot the best score I could today.
"Obviously, these are not scores I expect of myself, but I do feel like I am close to where I need to be. I just need to tidy up some things. Overall, it was a decent week, but not what I wanted."
Leading the field for the final round is 17-year-old Cincinnati resident Will Grimmer at 6-under 207. The Mariemont High School senior-to-be is striving to become the second youngest winner in the 108 years of the Ohio Amateur. He owns a three-stroke lead.
The youngest Ohio Amateur champion is Ohio State senior Michael Bernard, who was just 16 when he won by five shots at Kirtland Country Club in 2010.
Lurking in the shadows at 3-under 210 are defending champion Andrew Dorn and Tim Crouch. Dorn played at Coastal Carolina and Crouch is a former Florida Southern golfer.
The only other golfer under par is Springfield's Clark Engle at 1-under 212. The best round of the day of 68 was turned in by Boo Timko of Girard.
Wednesday's cut featured the top 60 and ties. Hammons cleared the cut line by one stroke, while fellow Marietta High School graduate Nick Huggins barely missed qualifying after finishing at 12-over 154 (75-79).
Hammons will turn right around and compete in a U.S. Amateur qualifier Monday in Dayton, Ohio.
"It's 36 holes in one day," Hammons said. "It will be tough. I have several teammates playing so we will be jockeying for position."
Hammons is already looking forward to possibly playing in his second Ohio Amateur next year when Zanesville Country Club serves as host site.
"I've played that course a lot of times, so I'm excited," Hammons said. "I like my chances for next year."
The Associated Press contributed to this story