VIDEO: Eight Players Remain at the 117th U.S. Amateur
Chun An Yu pitches to the diabolical 10th green on his way to a quarterfinal berth <br>(USGA photo)
Chun An Yu pitches to the diabolical 10th green on his way to a quarterfinal berth
(USGA photo)

PACIFIC PALISADES, CA (August 17, 2017) - On a day that began with 32 players still in the mix for the 117th U.S. Amateur Championship at Riviera, only 8 will return to the course Friday to play on.

Two rounds of matches were played Thursday, as the big names started to knock each other out, and the margin between winning and losing continued to narrow.

Related: U.S. Amateur Round of 32 Match Play Report

The eight that remain include five Americans, and one each from Scotland, Australia and Chinese Taipei.

Round of 16 Highlights

Doug Ghim of Arlington Heights, IL and the University of Texas beat Joey Vrzich of El Cajon, CA to make the quarterfinals. The Pacific Coast Amateur champion is no stranger to deep runs at USGA events; Ghim was a semifinalist in the 2013 U.S. Junior and a finalist in the 2014 U.S. Public Links Championship. He hopes to join his fellow Texas Longhorn Sophia Schubert as USGA Champions, as Schubert won the U.S. Women's Amateur just last week.

Travis Smyth is trying to follow in his countryman's footsteps and win back-to-back U.S. Amateur titles for Australia. Curtis Luck won the championship last year at Oakland Hills on the way the #1 World Ranking, and with consecutive wins over Braden Thornberry and Will Zalatoris, two of America's best, Smyth is in the right form to do it.

Theo Humphrey and his father/caddie Tom
Theo Humphrey and his father/caddie Tom
(USGA photo)
Rising Vanderbilt senior Theo Humphrey of Greenwich, CT advanced to the quarterfinals with a 4&3 win over Noah Norton of Chico, CA. Golfweek reports about Humphrey's growth that took him from a combustible freshman lacking confidence and discipline to a player with a heightened self-belief and expectations of himself.

"I love to see the growth he’s had," Vanderbilt coach Scott Limbaugh told Golfweek. "Everybody used to just think he was kind of a wilder player, and he’s just not anymore. He’s a guy who understands who he is as a player; he’s still an emotional player but he’s learned to make all of that work for him." "I think the biggest thing is confidence in my game, in what I’m doing,” Humphrey said. “I feel like the last few months I’ve stepped up on the golf course and expected to do well. I think in the past I had hoped to."

Connor Syme of Scotland had the shot of the day, a pitch in at the 18th hole to win his Round of 16 match against Kristoffer Ventura of Norway. Syme was the only amateur to get into the British Open through Final Qualifying, and he surely will be back in Southern California in three weeks' time for the Walker Cup Matches.

The quarterfinal matches will be played Friday afternoon, with the semifinals following on Saturday and the 36-hole final on Sunday.

Quarterfinal Matches

Connor Syme, Scotland v. Doug Ghim, Arlington Heights, IL
Theo Humphrey, Greenwich, CT v. Chun An Yu, Chinese Taipei
Dawson Armstrong, Brentwood, TN v. Mark Lawrence, Jr., Richmond, VA
Doc Redman, Raleigh, NC v. Travis Smyth, Australia

Related: TV Times and Schedule of Play

ABOUT THE U.S. Amateur

The U.S. Amateur, the oldest USGA championship, was first played in 1895 at Newport Golf Club in Rhode Island. The event, which has no age restriction, is open to those with a Handicap Index of 2.4 or lower. It is one of 14 national championships conducted annually by the USGA, 10 of which are strictly for amateurs. It is the pre-eminent amateur competition in the world. Applications are typically placed online in the spring at www.usga.org.

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