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Golf: Semifinals set in Western Amateur at Beverly Country Club

Northbrook's Nick Hardy follows through an approach shot as caddie Eric Markus looks Friday during Western Amateur match play Beverly

Northbrook's Nick Hardy follows through on an approach shot as caddie Eric Markus looks on Friday during Western Amateur match play at the Beverly Country Club. | Patrick Donohue/WGA

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Updated: August 2, 2014 4:20PM



There will be an Illinois vs. Texas match in the semifinals Saturday at the Western Amateur.

It just won’t be the match local golf fans likely hoped would materialize at Beverly Country Club.

Northbrook’s Nick Hardy held up his end, needing just 28 holes to beat both of his opponents Friday. But stroke-play medalist and top seed Doug Ghim, of Arlington Heights, lost 1 down in 19 holes in his quarterfinal Friday afternoon.

Instead of meeting Ghim in a local battle, Hardy — an incoming freshman at Illinois — will play Texas sophomore Beau Hossler in the first semifinal at 7:30 a.m. Saturday. Xander Schauffele and Brian Campbell, the latter an Illinois senior who was one of three Illini to reach the Sweet Sixteen, will meet in the other semifinal at 7:45 a.m. The 18-hole championship match will be played in the afternoon.

Hardy won 13 of his 28 holes Friday, making 10 birdies and finishing both of his matches on the 14th green. He beat Australia’s Geoff Drakeford 6 and 4 in the morning and Scottie Scheffler — another Texas player — 5 and 4 in the afternoon.

“I treated it hole by hole,” said Hardy, who was the runner-up at the Western Junior at Flossmoor Country Club in June. “I didn’t look too far ahead of myself and stayed in the moment. That’s what helped me (Friday).”

After beating Cheng-Tsung Pan 3 and 2 in the morning Friday, Hossler engaged in an epic duel with Ghim. Neither player led by more than one hole, and the two combined for 10 birdies on the back nine. Hossler finally earned the win against his future Texas teammate with a par on the first extra hole, the par-3 10th.

“We both made and missed our fair share of opportunities,” Hossler said. “He hit some miraculous shots; I hit a couple of miraculous shots as well. Obviously, it was a hell of a match. I’m real excited about myself, obviously, for moving on to (Saturday), and then for him as well because he’ll be a big asset to our team next year.”

Hardy said after his match it would have been fun to play against Ghim. The two have competed against one another for the better part of a decade, but the last time they played match play was in 2010 at an Illinois Junior Golf Association tournament in Mundelein.

Hardy and Hossler have no history, and Hossler said his approach won’t change when he faces the local favorite.

“It doesn’t matter who I’m playing,” Hossler said. “I’m just going to go out and try to make a lot of birdies.”



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