PINEHURST, N.C. — Amateur Neal Shipley is locked in a tight race for low amateur honors at the 2024 U.S. Open. But through 10 holes of his third round, the Ohio State product seemed to have that race locked up.

With five birdies in his first 10 holes, Shipley’s wedge into the par-4 13th green spun back off the front of the green. The first nuisance in an annoying sequence of events that would soon follow.

From almost 25 yards, Shipley placed his club behind the ball while on upslope and alerted rules officials after the ball appeared to move, resulting in a one-shot penalty. Shipley, rules officials, and playing partner Aaron Rai reviewed the incident and confirmed the ruling with video afterwards. afterwards. Under Rule 9.4, Shipley was assessed a one-shot penalty

According to the USGA:

“In preparing to make the stroke, Neal set the club down behind the ball and then adjusted the club when the ball then moved. Because the ball had been at rest for some time and then moved immediately after he adjusted his club, it is virtually certain that he caused the ball to move.”

Shipley chipped up on to the fringe, and took two strokes for a bogey turned double bogey. A frustrating episode means Shipley now comes into Sunday tied with amateur Luke Clanton at four-over.

Speaking to media after his round, Shipley was dissapointed, but handled the frustrating situation with an incredible amount of acceptance and class.

“Making the assumption that my club was what caused it to move is a fair assesement. Honestly, I don’t think I caused it to move, but it doesn’t really matter what I think. It’s a tough one to swallow, but that’s golf. You have to move on.”

A frustrating moment that many others would’ve let boil over, but Shipley handled it better than most. And earned some fans along the way.

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