Carmel, Ind. – Virginia freshman men’s golfer George Duangmanee (Fairfax, Va.) used a big comeback to pull off a stunning win at the 118th Western Amateur Championship to advance to Saturday’s semifinal round of match play at Crooked Stick Golf Club. During two rounds of match play competition on Friday, he beat two players currently ranked in the top 25 of the World Amateur Golf Rankings
During Friday morning’s round of 16, Duangmanee defeated Louisville’s Matthias Schmid of Maxhuette, Germany, 2 and 1. Schmid is ranked as the No. 25 player in the WAGR rankings.
Things got more dramatic for Duangmanee during the afternoon’s quarterfinal matches. Trailing 5 down through six, Duangmanee, the 208th-ranked player, won seven of the last 12 holes to defeat Davis Thompson in 19. Thompson, a senior at Georgia and the fourth-ranked player in the world, was the medalist at last year’s tournament.
“Honestly, I was almost ready to go home because he was playing insane golf,” Duangmanee said. “But I stayed patient and waited for my opportunities to come, and I capitalized on them. That win gave me a lot of confidence going into (Saturday), but I have to be patient and worry only about myself.”
Duangmanee will play Pierceson Coody, of Plano, Texas, in Saturday’s semifinals. Coody, a sophomore at Texas, beat Connor Creasy, of Abingdon, Virginia, 5 and 4 in the quarters. Rasmus Neergaard-Petersen, of Copenhagen, Denmark, and a junior at Oklahoma State, earned a date with Castillo in the semis after defeating Austin Hitt, of Longwood, Florida, 2 and 1.
The semifinals will start at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday, with the championship match scheduled for Saturday afternoon. The winner will hoist the George R. Thorne Trophy.