Men’s Amateur Golf

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Nick Masuda
Gunn Yang poses with the Havemeyer Trophy after outlasting Corey Conners to win the 114th U.S. Amateur at Atlanta Athletic Club.
Gunn Yang poses with the Havemeyer Trophy after outlasting Corey Conners to win the 114th U.S. Amateur at Atlanta Athletic Club.

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. – Ryan Donovan believes in tough love, and Gunn Yang needed a firm kick in the behind as he struggled to shake his deep funk after back surgery took him away from his teammates at San Diego State, as well as from the golf course, his sanctuary.

Donovan broke some bad news to the 20-year-old at the beginning of the spring collegiate season: The 12-year head coach with the Aztecs was taking away his scholarship.

"He's on zero money right now," Donovan said. "It's a motivation. He's a guy that feeds off of that stuff ...

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Cassie Stein
Team Canada head coach Derek Ingram during the championship match of the 2014 U.S. Amateur.
Team Canada head coach Derek Ingram during the championship match of the 2014 U.S. Amateur.

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. – As a kid growing up in rural Winnipeg, Derek Ingram was told he was never good enough or was too young to join his family at the golf course.

He practiced with an old wooden-shafted club at the playground until he improved. He wanted to be the next Jim Doyle, the only Manitoban to win the Canadian Amateur at the time.

Ingram was in love with the game.

After returning home from a stint at a junior college in the United States, Ingram thought he was going to go to pharmaceutical school and not become a golf ...

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Golfweek Staff
Gunn Yang (top) and Corey Conners will face off in Sunday's U.S. Amateur final.
Gunn Yang (top) and Corey Conners will face off in Sunday's U.S. Amateur final.

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. – In Sunday's finale at the U.S. Amateur, virtual unknown Gunn Yang never trailed 2013 semifinalist Corey Conners in a closely contested 2-and-1 win.

San Diego State's Yang earned a 1-up lead in the morning 18, with Kent State product Conners quickly squaring things up on the first hole of the final 18 at Atlanta Athletic Club – but Yang opened a 2-up lead down the stretch and held on.

Recap the highlights right here!

• • •

Hole No. 35: Par 3, 207 yards

Again, both players find the green. Yang thinks his putt is good but it ...

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Nick Masuda
Gunn Yang at No. 10 during the finals at the 2014 U.S. Amateur at the Atlanta Athletic Club. He leads after 18 holes, 1 up, over Corey Conners.
Gunn Yang at No. 10 during the finals at the 2014 U.S. Amateur at the Atlanta Athletic Club. He leads after 18 holes, 1 up, over Corey Conners.

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. – Corey Conners ended the first 18 holes of the U.S. Amateur's 36-hole final match with a birdie, but will head to a hour-long break 1 down against Gunn Yang.

Yang controlled the front nine, winning the opening two holes and then making the turn with a 32-foot birdie bomb on No. 9 to go 2 up.

Despite Yang's length advantage off the tee, Conners managed to fight back by taking advantage of Atlanta Athletic Club's par-5s on the back nine, winning both No. 12 and 18 with birdies. The Canadian swung the momentum ...

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August 16, 2014 | 3:55 p.m.

Predictions: 2014 U.S. Amateur final

Golfweek Staff
Gunn Yang (top) and Corey Conners will face off in Sunday's U.S. Amateur final.
Gunn Yang (top) and Corey Conners will face off in Sunday's U.S. Amateur final.

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. – It was a thrilling Saturday at the Atlanta Athletic Club, with Gunn Yang winning in sudden death, and Corey Conners holding on despite a water ball on his final hole.

Yang and Gunn will face off in Sunday's 36-hole final at the 114th U.S. Amateur starting at 9 a.m., with the restart scheduled for 2:20 p.m.

Conners was a semifinalist in 2013, while this is Yang's first-ever USGA event.

• • •

Championship Match: Gunn Yang vs. Corey Conners, 9:00 a.m. (2:20 p.m. for final 18)

HOW THEY GOT THERE ...

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Cassie Stein
Corey Conners (left) celebrates his U.S. Amateur semifinals victory with his caddie Taylor Pendrith.
Corey Conners (left) celebrates his U.S. Amateur semifinals victory with his caddie Taylor Pendrith.

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. – Last year, Corey Conners fell one match short of the U.S. Amateur finale.

“It did sting quite a bit. I still tried to keep my head up and be proud of making it to the semis,” Conners said. “… There was a little more motivation this year, I guess.”

At the 114th playing of the world's toughest amateur championship, Conners wasn’t going to let this opportunity slip away again. The 22-year-old Canadian advanced to the championship match after winning a hard-fought battle against Denny McCarthy, 1 up.

Conners, just like he had in four of ...

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Nick Masuda
Gunn Yang celebrates his 19-hole victory over Frederick Wedel (left) with his caddie Richard Grice. Yang advances to Sunday's final at the U.S. Amateur, facing Corey Conners at 9 a.m.
Gunn Yang celebrates his 19-hole victory over Frederick Wedel (left) with his caddie Richard Grice. Yang advances to Sunday's final at the U.S. Amateur, facing Corey Conners at 9 a.m.

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. – Gunn Yang has earned a spot in the 2015 U.S. Open at Chambers Bay. He's also secured a likely invitation to next year's Masters.

The San Diego State sophomore is also one half of Sunday morning's U.S. Amateur championship match with Corey Conners after knocking off Frederick Wedel in 19 holes on Saturday.

The one thing he doesn't have? A spot in the Aztecs' first lineup when the fall collegiate season begins at the Southwestern Intercollegiate on Sept. 8.

Coach Ryan Donovan will make the unlikely U.S. Amateur finalist qualify ...

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Nick Masuda
Gunn Yang (top) and Corey Conners will face off in Sunday's U.S. Amateur final.
Gunn Yang (top) and Corey Conners will face off in Sunday's U.S. Amateur final.

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. – Gunn Yang birdied the par-4 10th hole – his 19th of the day – to punch the first ticket into Sunday's championship match at the 114th U.S. Amateur at the Atlanta Athletic Club.

After losing the 18th hole to Frederick Wedel, Yang bombed a driver off the first playoff hole to wedge length, stuck it to 4 feet and drained the putt, earning berths into the 2015 Masters and U.S. Open in the process.

Yang will face Corey Conners in Sunday's final, with the Canadian defeating Denny McCarthy, 1 up, to set up an all-international ...

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Adam Schupak
Corey Conners defeated Zachary Olsen, 2 and 1, in the U.S. Amateur quarterfinals on Friday at the Atlanta Athletic Club.
Corey Conners defeated Zachary Olsen, 2 and 1, in the U.S. Amateur quarterfinals on Friday at the Atlanta Athletic Club.

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. – A year ago, Canadian National team coach Derek Ingram gathered his crew to watch the final round of the 2003 Masters.

“I wanted our guys to know we can do that, too,” he said.

No need to remind Ontario native Corey Conners of Mike Weir’s 6-foot putt on the 72nd hole to get into a playoff. It is a moment burned into his memory, even if he couldn’t bear to watch it.

“I was so excited, I ran out of the room,” Conners, now 22, said. “I was sitting on the steps and I heard ...

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Nick Masuda
Frederick Wedel (left) beat Nathan Smith, 4 and 3, in the U.S. Amateur quarterfinals, while Gunn Yang won 2 up against Cameron Young.
Frederick Wedel (left) beat Nathan Smith, 4 and 3, in the U.S. Amateur quarterfinals, while Gunn Yang won 2 up against Cameron Young.

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. – When Gunn Yang and Frederick Wedel tee off in the semifinals of the 114th U.S. Amateur on Saturday morning, they'll have more in common than meets the eye.

Sure, they both kick back on the beaches along Southern California's beautiful coast, Yang in San Diego, and Wedel in Malibu.

They both would star in this week's edition of "Who Are These Guys Anyways?" – with Wedel starting the week ranked No. 619 in the World Amateur Golf Ranking and Yang farther down at No. 776.

But it is something that is not physically at ...

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August 15, 2014 | 7 p.m.

Predictions: U.S. Amateur semifinals

Cassie Stein
The 2014 U.S. Amateur semifinalists are set (clockwise, upper left): Frederick Wedel, Gunn Yang, Denny McCarthy and Corey Conners.
The 2014 U.S. Amateur semifinalists are set (clockwise, upper left): Frederick Wedel, Gunn Yang, Denny McCarthy and Corey Conners.

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. – And then there were four. The semifinalists are set for the 114th U.S. Amateur Championship at Atlanta Athletic Club.

Here are some things you need to know:

• The average age of the four semifinalists is 20.5.

• The average World Amateur Golf Ranking is 368.75. Denny McCarthy is ranked lowest at No. 36, while Gunn Yang is highest at No. 776.

• The USGA has set up the course each day at approximately 7,305 yards at Atlanta Athletic Club’s Highlands course.

And now for our predictions for Saturday at the U.S. Amateur:

• • •

Match ...

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Cassie Stein
Denny McCarthy, right, and his brother/caddie Ryan, during the quarterfinals of the U.S. Amateur at Atlanta Athletic Club.
Denny McCarthy, right, and his brother/caddie Ryan, during the quarterfinals of the U.S. Amateur at Atlanta Athletic Club.

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. – There’s no shortage of support for Denny McCarthy at the U.S. Amateur.

At the beginning of the week, it was McCarthy's immediate family – his mother, father and three siblings – in attendance after making the roughly 10-hour trek from Rockville, Md. During his quarterfinal victory over Roman Robledo Friday, his gallery also included four more relatives from Maryland and two of McCarthy’s closest golf buddies.

“I definitely felt the support,” said McCarthy. “It definitely took a little off me, just seeing them helped me relax before the round and get some smiles and laughs ...

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Cassie Stein
Frederick Wedel won his match Thursday afternoon against Jimmy Mullen, 2 and 1, to advance to the quarterfinals of the U.S. Amateur.
Frederick Wedel won his match Thursday afternoon against Jimmy Mullen, 2 and 1, to advance to the quarterfinals of the U.S. Amateur.

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. – Can Frederick Wedel’s dream run in his first U.S. Amateur Championship continue?

His week started off with a bang as he made the first hole-in-one of his young career during one of his practice rounds on Atlanta Athletic Club’s Riverside course – the companion course for the 114th U.S. Amateur stroke-play rounds.

His luck has continued into competition.

Things became interesting after the first round of stroke play, as he had to get a new caddie and has had a different one over the last couple of days, too.

“I told Brent (Babbit, his ...

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August 14, 2014 | 9:06 p.m.

Predictions: U.S. Amateur quarterfinals

Golfweek Staff
The U.S. Amateur quarterfinals are set for Friday at Atlanta Athletic Club.
The U.S. Amateur quarterfinals are set for Friday at Atlanta Athletic Club.

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. – The 114th U.S. Amateur Championship is dwindling down.

To start the day Thursday, we had 32 players left. Now there are just 8.

A few notes for thought:

• The average age of the eight quarterfinalists is 22. Nathan Smith is the oldest at 36, while Cameron Young is the youngest at 17.

• There are six Americans left in the field. Corey Conners hails from Canada and Gunn Yang was born in Korea, and now attends San Diego State.

• Nathan Smith is the only player left to have won one or more USGA titles.

Here are some ...

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Cassie Stein
Denny McCarthy advanced to the quarterfinals after defeating Eli Cole, 1 up, at the U.S. Amateur.
Denny McCarthy advanced to the quarterfinals after defeating Eli Cole, 1 up, at the U.S. Amateur.

JOHNS CREEK, Ga. – Denny McCarthy is usually a player that gets off to a quick start in match play.

Thursday afternoon, he saved his best stuff for last.

McCarthy uncharacteristically fell behind early as his Round-of-16 opponent, Eli Cole of Los Angeles, won three of the first five holes. But McCarthy heated up late, making his move on Atlanta Athletic Club’s most demanding holes, Nos. 14-18, and ultimately punching his quarterfinals ticket with a 1-up victory.

“The last couple (of) holes . . . it's a blur to me now,” said McCarthy, a Rockville, Md., native.

After going 3 down through ...

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