DALY CITY, Calif. — The round-of-16 matches were completed this morning at Lake Merced Golf Club in Daly City, Calif.
Pete Fernandez Jr. was the first one through to the quarterfinals, knocking off the No. 1 seed Satch Herrmann 3-and-2. The match was neck-and-neck through 11 holes when Fernandez won three out of the next four holes to take a commanding 3-up lead with three to play. A halve on the 16th was good enough to advance the recent UC Irvine graduate into the quarterfinals.
Fernandez will face Shotaro Ban of San Jose, who advanced in 19 holes against his California Berkeley teammate Keelan Kilpatrick. Ban was 2-down in his match with two holes to play after making a bogey on the 15th and failing to convert a good look at birdie on 16.
“I was thinking I have to finish birdie-birdie,” said Ban. “I play with him (Kilpatrick) all the time and he’s such a solid player I knew he was going to wrap it up if I didn’t.”
Ban didn’t make two birdies but, to his surprise, his two pars were good enough to force a playoff hole. The Cal Bears went to the par-4 10th hole where Ban would hit first and piped his tee shot down the middle. Kilpatrick hit his drive well right and could only advance his second shot 30 yards. With Ban safely on the green in two shots, Kilpatrick hit his 3rd shot to about 20 feet from the pin. Ban lagged up close and Kilpatrick’s putt just missed on the high side. Kilpatrick became the second Cal Bear to be eliminated by Ban so far, Ben Doyle was the first.
“It was a little awkward, and it’s tough now that I beat both of them,” said Ban of playing with his teammates. “It sucks to have all four of us in the same bracket but that’s just the way it is.”
Ban is the last standing of the Berkeley players as KK Limbhasut was defeated 2-and-1 by San Jose Spartan, Cody Blick. Blick proved extremely tough to beat. Although Limbhaust was 1-up through five holes, Blick would play his final 12 holes four-under par without losing a hole or making a bogey. Blick will now face Stanford golfer Franklin Huang of Poway.
The match between No. 3 seed Puwit Anupansuebsai and Ramie Sprinkling came to the final hole all-square. Puwit, an impressive 15-year old from Thailand, had to lay up on the par-5 18th hole, opening the door for Sprinkling. After a good drive in the fairway, Sprinkling decided to go for the green in two from 238 yards. Playing severely uphill, Sprinkling needed all he could muster out of his 3-wood. Sprinkling would pull it off to near perfection, landing his shot just short of the green to kill its momentum and allow it to trickle on to the front to 20 feet for eagle.
Though his eagle putt didn’t fall, Sprinkling forced Puwit to make his 15-foot birdie putt to halve the hole. Puwit’s putt just slid by the hole on the high side and his California Amateur chances came to an end. Nonetheless, Puwit put on quite a show for the many college coaches following him and will no doubt be a name to follow for many years to come.
The remaining matches are as follows: recent U.S. Open contestant Jake Knapp vs. Memorial Amateur champion Joshua Sedano and Ramie Sprinkling of Camarillo, Calif. vs. James Holley of Chatsworth, Calif.
Quarterfinal matches will begin tomorrow at 7:30 a.m. followed by the semifinals matches beginning at 1 p.m.