Defending champ Kim still alive at Women's Amateur
CARMEL, Ind. » Amanda Blumenherst, who led Duke to its third straight NCAA golf championship in May, beat her college and Curtis Cup teammate Jennie Lee 5 and 4 in the quarterfinals of the U.S. Women's Amateur yesterday.
Blumenherst, the Division I player of the year, advanced to today's semifinals at Crooked Stick Golf Club against 15-year-old defending champion and Hilo native Kimberly Kim, who beat South Korea's Jennifer Song in 21 holes.
Kim, trying to become the first repeat winner in 11 years, won her match against Song with a 25-foot putt.
"It felt like 50 yards," she said. "I guess I just got lucky on that hole. ... At first, I thought it was too low. Then it went in and I thought, 'Thank God.'"
Blumenherst, who grew up in Fort Wayne, Ind., and lives in Scottsdale, Ariz., was cheered on by about 15 family members. She birdied two of the first three holes, increased her lead to 6-up with a 30-foot birdie putt on the 12th hole and was 5-under par when the match ended two holes later.
It was the third straight quarterfinal loss in the tournament for Lee, who was born in South Korea and lives in Henderson, Nev.
In other quarterfinals, Maria Jose Uribe of Colombia, who will be a freshman at UCLA in the fall, beat 2008 Duke recruit Mina Harigae of Monterey, Calif., 5 and 4; and 15-year-old Ha Na Jang of South Korea scored a 5 and 4 win over 12-year-old Alexis Thompson of Coral Springs, Fla., the youngest player to get this far in the 107-year history of the tournament.
"I hit some really ugly shots," Thompson said. "I was pretty frustrated. I just don't know what happened to me. I really don't."
Jang shot a 33 on the front nine to take control of the match.
"She didn't make a mistake out there," Thompson said. "I'm really happy how far I made it. I wish I would have won today's match, but I knew I was going to have an off-round sooner or later."
U.S. Women's Amateur Championship
At Carmel, Ind.
Quarterfinals, par 72
Maria Jose Uribe, Colombia, def. Mina Harigae, Monterey, Calif., 5 and 4.
Ha Na Jang, South Korea, def. Alexis Thompson, Coral Springs, Fla., 5 and 4.
Amanda Blumenherst, Scottsdale, Ariz. def. Jennie Lee, Henderson, Nev., 5 and 4.
Kimberly Kim, Hilo, Hawaii, def. Jennifer Song, South Korea, 21 holes.