OAKMONT, Pa. — Home-schooled sophomore Alexander Leskovansky, of Houtzdale, won the Drive, Chip and Putt regional on Saturday at the legendary Oakmont Country Club for a berth in the National Finals.
Leskovansky, who uses the Eagles Ridge Golf Course as his home course, won the boys 14-15 division in his fourth and final Drive, Chip and Putt appearance.
With the win, Leskovansky now heads to Augusta National Golf Club in Augusta, Ga. in early April.
“It was insane, truly insane,” said Leskovansky, who advanced with a score of 111 points. “I never saw this coming. I dreamed it would happen, but never really thought it would. I guess I didn’t think I was good enough, but I guess I am. It’s just incredible.
“It’s going to be very exciting until April, but very frustrating, too, because I can’t wait to get there,” he said.
Nearly 100 junior golfers competed in the regional qualifier at the nine-time host of the U.S. Open.
All the winners receive an invitation to Augusta for the finals.
Robert Gillespie, the Player Development Coordinator for the Tri-State Section PGA which conducted the qualifier, was still smiling about the day a few hours after it ended.
Eight youth golfers, four boys and four girls were crowned National Finalists at the event.
“I think it was a fantastic day with 96 kids who all came prepared to play,” Gillespie said. “It was a great day for junior golf, great day for everybody. The kids had a great day of fun, and the Oakmont staff was wonderful to us. That speaks volumes about how important this event is to Oakmont Country Club.”
Scoring at the local, subregional and regional qualifiers is based on a 25-point-per-shot basis, with each participant taking three shots per skill. Each participant accumulated points per shot in all three skills (maximum of 75 points per skill = 25 points per shot x 3). The overall winner in each age category was determined by the participant with the most points accumulated between all three skills (maximum of 225 points = 75 points per skill x 3).
Leskovansky won the event by six points, finishing the day with a 111. He scored a 34 on the drive portion, 32 in the chip portion and 45 in the putting portion.
The eight regional winners will now participate in the National Drive Chip and Putt Finals on April 5 prior to the start of the Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club.
Conducted in partnership between the Masters Tournament, the PGA of America and the USGA, Drive, Chip and Putt is a free, nationwide youth golf development program open to boys and girls, ages 7-15, in four age divisions. The three-pronged competition tests the skills essential to playing the game – accuracy in driving, chipping and putting.
The regional competition held at Oakmont Country Club (site of the 2007, 2016 and 2025 U.S. Open Championship) was one of 10 qualifiers across the United States conducted to determine the field of 80 young golfers who advance to the National Finals.
Other winners included Alex Card of Cambridge, Ontario; Jillian Burks of Paoli; Amelia Cho of Ashburn, Va.; Helen Young of Beltsville, Md.; Ryan Hooker of Oakton, Va.; Gavin Baker of Greencastle and Nicholas Werner of Wilkes-Barre.
Freelance writer Mike Dudurich contributed to this story.
Story has been edited to show that Leskovansky does live in the Moshannon Valley School District but is homeschooled.