Sam Bennett, Dylan Menante reach semifinals of U.S. Amateur

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PARAMUS, N.J. — Texas A&M senior Sam Bennett took down Stewart Hagestad as he continued his march by way of a troublesome draw Friday and reached the semifinals of the U.S. Beginner.

Bennett, the No. 3 golfer on the earth newbie rating, has confronted confirmed gamers all week at Ridgewood Nation Membership, and that is not about to alter.

Subsequent up is Dylan Menante, the No. 8 newbie on the earth, who ran off 4 straight holes on the entrance 9 to beat 15-year-old Nicholas Gross, 4 and three.

Within the different quarterfinal matches, Ben Carr held off a late rally for a 2-and-1 victory over Alex Value, and Derek Hitchner superior with a 3-and-2 win over Shea Lague. Hitchner needed to survive a 15-for-11 playoff simply to succeed in match play.

Bennett, the SEC participant of the 12 months, seized management of his match in opposition to the 31-year-old Hagestad, a two-time U.S. Mid-Beginner champion, with a birdie on the 14th gap that gave him a 3-up lead. He closed out Hagestad two holes later, 3 and a couple of.

The 4 gamers Bennett have overwhelmed this week had been No. 27 or higher on the earth rating.

Theyre nice gamers, however I am a greater participant, Bennett mentioned. No. 3 within the rankings, and I really feel like I am the most effective participant. I am the canine on this race. I have been taking part in the most effective golf main as much as right here. Yesterday I used to be 10 below by way of 29. At the moment I did not fairly have it, however I obtained the job performed.

Hagestad and Bennett, who each made the minimize within the U.S. Open at Brookline earlier this summer season, had been a mixed 21 below par (together with concessions in match play) going into their quarterfinal match.

Hagestad took an early lead when Bennett made bogey on the fourth gap. That turned out to be the one gap he received. Bennett took his first lead with a bogey at No. 8. He received the eleventh with a par and his 15-foot birdie on the 14th was the pivotal second.

He is simply actually, actually good at golf, Hagestad mentioned. He is obtained a whole lot of self-belief and I feel he is obtained a superb mentality for match play … and able to go all 12 rounds from the primary tee on.

Menante helped Pepperdine to the NCAA title in 2021 and transferred to North Carolina for his senior 12 months. He received the Northeast Beginner at Wannamoisett for the second straight 12 months with a 9-shot margin.

He additionally trailed early, by 2, earlier than successful 4 straight holes — and 5 out of six — on the entrance 9, which put him accountable for the match.

Hitchner, who received the Minnesota State Beginner final 12 months, trailed for the primary time all week when he misplaced the fourth gap. That was the one gap he trailed.

Carr constructed a 4-up lead till Value received three of the subsequent 4 holes. Carr closed him out with a conceded birdie on the seventeenth gap.

The 18-hole semifinals Saturday might be adopted by the 36-hole championship match Sunday. Finalists earn an exemption into the Masters and U.S. Open, whereas the winner will get into the British Open.

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