TRUCKEE, Calif. – Scottie Scheffler, 17, of Dallas, and Davis Riley, 16, of Hattiesburg, Miss., each won a pair of matches on Friday to advance to Saturday’s 36-hole championship match of the 2013 U.S. Junior Amateur Championship at the 7,740-yard, par-72 Martis Camp Club. The final is scheduled to begin at 7 a.m. PDT.
Scheffler, the third seed, who is playing in his fourth U.S. Junior Amateur, accounted for 13 birdies and an eagle in 34 holes of competition on Friday. He dispatched Doug Ghim, 17, of Arlington Heights, Ill., 6 and 4, in the semifinal round. Scheffler also defeated P.J. Samiere, 17, of Kailua, Hawaii, 3 and 2, in the quarterfinals. Earlier in the day, Scheffler finished off his third-round opponent, Justin Suh, of San Jose, Calif., in a match suspended due to weather, by winning with a bogey on the 19th hole.
I haven’t been putting good since the beginning of the week, said Scheffler, who reached the Round of 32 at last year’s Junior Amateur. Even in the first round [of match play] I didn’t putt well. I just cashed in on my opportunities.
The U.S. Junior Amateur is one of 13 national championships conducted annually by the United States Golf Association, 10 of which are strictly for amateurs.
Scheffler, the sixth native Texan to reach the U.S. Junior Amateur final since 1999, joining players such as Hunter Mahan and Jordan Spieth, captured six of the last seven holes to wrap up his semifinal match. Scheffler won with pars on holes 8 and 9, as Ghim found the greenside bunker at the par-3 eighth and got into trouble when he hit it left on the par-4 ninth. Scheffler then eagled the 10th hole when his 3-wood carried 275 yards and nestled 10 feet from the hole.
I didn’t really play bad, said Ghim, who defeated second-seeded Cameron Young, 16, of Scarborough, N.Y., in the quarterfinals, 4 and 3, after barely advancing through 36-hole stroke-play qualifying earlier in the week. I made a few mistakes on eight and nine. Then he goes and eagles on me on 10. There was a lot on the line. He just got the best of me today.
Scheffler, who claimed the Texas state high school championship for the second consecutive year in June, was still 3-up on the inward nine when he converted a 15-foot downhill birdie putt on No. 12, after Ghim had forced the issue by hitting his tee shot 8 feet below the hole. After another birdie on No. 13, Scheffler fired a 9-iron to tap-in range at the 178-yard, par-3 14th to end the match.
Riley, the fifth seed, defeated John Augenstein, 15, of Owensboro, Ky., 4 and 3, in his semifinal. Riley captured three consecutive holes (Nos. 8, 9 and 10) with two birdies and a par. He struck a 5-iron approach to 10 feet to set up the first birdie on the par-3 eighth and added the second on the 642-yard, par-5 10th by getting up and down after his 4-iron came to rest in front of the green.
I’ve been playing some really consistent golf, said Riley, who reached the Round of 32 at last year’s Junior Amateur, where he lost to 2010 champion and eventual runner-up Jim Liu. I’m hitting fairways and greens, making a few putts here and there, and letting the opponent make the mistake. So far that strategy has been working and hopefully I can take this play into tomorrow.
In the quarterfinals, Riley registered a 4-and-2 decision against Zecheng Dou, 16, of the People’s Republic of China. He eagled the par-4 12th by holing a 9-iron from 148 yards to highlight his round. Riley built a 3-up advantage on the outward nine with birdies at holes 3, 6 and 7, converting a 10-footer for birdie on the par-5 seventh.
Augenstein, who is listed at No. 5,400 in the current World Amateur Golf Ranking, was the surprise of the championship. He defeated Liu, this year’s stroke-play medalist, in the second round and also was victorious in the quarterfinals against eighth-seeded Sam Horsfield, this year’s Florida State Amateur champion who advanced to the Round of 16 at last week’s U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship. Both matches went 20 holes.
It’s the best tournament I’ve ever played in, said an emotional Augenstein, the youngest player remaining in the draw, who was playing in his first USGA championship. I know how much I can play. I can’t wait to come back next year.
Brian DePasquale is a manager of championship communications for the USGA. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
TRUCKEE, Calif. – Results of Friday's suspended third-round matches at the 2013 U.S. Junior Amateur Championship, played at 7,740-yard, par-72 Martis Camp Club.
Round of 16
Scottie Scheffler, Dallas, Texas (139) def. Justin Suh, San Jose, Calif. (149), 19 holes
P.J. Samiere, Kailua, Hawaii (146) def. Nick Heinen, Edmond, Okla. (148), 3 and 1
TRUCKEE, Calif. – Results of Friday’s quarterfinal round of match play at the 2013 U.S. Junior Amateur Championship, played at 7,740-yard, par-72 Martis Camp Club.
John Augenstein, Owensboro, Ky. (147) def. Sam Horsfield, England (141), 20 holes
Davis Riley, Hattiesburg, Miss. (140) def. Zecheng Dou, People's Republic of China (150), 4 and 2
Doug Ghim, Arlington Heights, Ill. (150) def. Cameron Young, Scarborough, N.Y. (138), 4 and 3
Scottie Scheffler, Dallas, Texas (139) def. P.J. Samiere, Kailua, Hawaii (146), 3 and 2
TRUCKEE, Calif. – Results of Friday’s semifinal round of match play at the 2013 U.S. Junior Amateur Championship, played at 7,740-yard, par-72 Martis Camp Club.
Davis Riley, Hattiesburg, Miss. (140) def. John Augenstein, Owensboro, Ky. (147), 4 and 3
Scottie Scheffler, Dallas, Texas (139) def. Doug Ghim, Arlington Heights, Ill. (150), 6 and 4
TRUCKEE, Calif. – Pairing for Saturday’s championship round of match play at the 2013 U.S. Junior Amateur Championship, played at 7,740-yard, par-72 Martis Camp Club.
Championship Round (36 holes)
7 a.m. -- Scottie Scheffler, Dallas, Texas (139) vs. Davis Riley, Hattiesburg, Miss. (140)