PACIFIC PALISADES (August 19, 2017) - Doug Ghim
(Arlington Heights, IL) and Doc Redman
(Raleigh, NC) will play for the 117th U.S. Amateur Championship on Sunday, after narrow semifinal wins at Riviera Country Club.
For the first time since 2012, all four semifinalists in the U.S. Amateur were American college players, and it will be a Texas Longhorn and a Clemson Tiger playing for the Havemeyer Trophy in the 36-hole final.
Ghim took control of his match with Theo Humphrey
(Greenwich, CT) with a birdie on the par-three 6th and the shot of the day, a pitch-in eagle from far below the green on the driveable par-four 8th. Another eagle at the par-five 11th pushed the lead to three holes, and a par at 12 put Ghim four up with six holes to play.
Ghim made bogeys on each of the par threes on the back nine, 14 and 16, to allow Humphrey to get within two holes with two to play, but a par at 17 was enough for Ghim to close out the match 2&1.
It has been a family affair all
week for the Ghims (USGA photo)
Ghim is relying on the experience gained from making deep runs in USGA events before, as a semifinalist in the 2013 U.S. Junior and a finalist in the 2014 U.S. Public Links Championship. He has seemed to find comfort level the deeper he goes into these championships, while others feel the mounting pressure.
"A lot of people think that it gets harder and harder the closer you get [to the end]," said Ghim to Fox Sports, "but I just think it gets a little bit easier, because you've put yourself in position, and you can leave with your head held high making it so far. So it kind of frees me up to go out and just play golf... There's going to be nerves for sure, there's a lot on the line, but if you're not feeling nervous you're probably at home watching. I'm excited for the opportunity."
By making it to the final match, Ghim and Redman will be exempt into the 2018 U.S. Open and British Open, and will traditionally receive an invitation to the 2018 Masters Tournament.
Ghim wore a Masters hat on Saturday, perhaps as a motivator for himself or, perhaps as a way of putting into Humphrey's mind how high the stakes were. In match play, the mental game is as important as the physical, maybe more so.
Doc Redman (L) and Mark Lawrence after
a great semifinal match (USGA photo)
Redman ended a tight match against Mark Lawrence, Jr.
(Richmond, VA) by making par on the difficult closing hole at Riviera and winning 1 up.
Redman won three straight holes to go two up through five, and maintained the lead through the 15th. Standing on the 16th tee 2 up with a chance to close the door on Lawrence, Redman instead flared an iron that led to a bogey, then watched as Lawrence rolled in a 30-foot bomb for eagle to send the match to the 18th all square.
After seeing his lead vanish, Redman calmly split the fairway and hit a 9-iron on the front fringe, 20 feet under the hole. Lawrence put himself in a tough spot on the back fringe and rolled his slick downhill putt right next to Redman's ball. Redman's two putt forced Lawrence to make his par putt, and when it stayed out Redman was on to the final.
Redman set a Clemson freshman record with eight top 10s last season. This summer, he tied for sixth at the Northeast Amateur, shared 10th at the Southern Amateur and was runner-up to Norman Xiong
at the Western Amateur.
He won three out of four matches at the Western Amateur (it took Xiong 22 holes
to beat him in the final), and with his five match streak this week, Redman has now won eight of his last nine matches in two of the biggest championships in amateur golf. Surely the Walker Cup captain Spider Miller must be taking notice.
"It’s one of the things I always think about," Redman said about his goal of making the Walker Cup
next month at Los Angeles Country Club. "I’m just trying to play the best I can, and hopefully Spider and the committee, whoever that is, thinks I deserve it. At the end of the day I’ve done the best I can. It’s out of my control now."
If Ghim wins the final match, it will be the first time that the reigning men’s and women’s U.S. Amateur champions will have attended the same college. Ghim's fellow Texas Longhorn Sophia Schubert
won the U.S. Women's Amateur last week.
If Redman wins the final, he will join Edoardo Molinari (2005) and Steven Fox (2012) as the only champions to make it to match play through a playoff. Redman survived the 13-for-8 playoff
early Wednesday morning, getting up-and-down for par at the famed par-four 10th at Riviera to advance.
Sunday's 36-hole championship match will begin at 7:45 AM local (Pacific) time.
Final Match of the 117th U.S. Amateur Championship
, Arlington Heights, IL v. Doc Redman
, Raleigh, NC
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
which has no age restriction, is open to
with a Handicap Index of 2.4 or lower. It is
of 14 national championships conducted
annually by the USGA, 10 of which are
for amateurs. It is the pre-eminent
competition in the world.
Applications are typically placed online in the spring
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