Yip on fire in U.S.

CAMERON MAXWELL -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 11:07 AM ET

For Calgary's Ryan Yip, the dangling carrot is getting bigger and bigger with every win.

The 21-year-old golfer, who played his way into today's semifinal at the U.S. Amateur, knows full-well exemptions into next year's Masters, the U.S. Open and the British Open are the reward if he can win the tournament.

But looking ahead is the farthest thing from Yip's mind as he prepares for today's match against American John Kelly, who hails from St. Louis.

"It's been brought up quite a bit but really I'm just going to focus on staying in the present moment and keep on hitting good golf shots," said the Kent State University senior..

That's just what he's been doing this week at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minn., where Yip has every facet of his game in high gear.

"Everything's going pretty good, I mean I'm putting it well, I'm chipping it well and I'm hitting it well, so it's all going good," said Yip, who plays out of Bearspaw in Calgary.

Yesterday Yip beat American Billy Horschel 1-up in his morning match with a 40-ft. birdie putt on 18, then downed England's Oliver Fisher 4 and 3 in the quarter-finals, paving the way for his match in today's semi.

When he steps onto the long, 7,473 yard course today, it'll be the furthest Yip, a sports management student, has gone in the Amateur after getting eliminated in the quarters last year but that experience, he said, has been a huge asset for this year's event.

"I was able to learn from last year's mistakes and have that for this year's tournament," said Yip, who lost in the semis at this year's Canadian Amateur.

"I've been thinking well. Mentally my game's been really good, so hopefully I can keep playing well."

Of note is the fact the course is the longest ever for a U.S. Amateur and, with rain and wet conditions, Yip said it's playing longer that 7,473 yards.

Yip is one of four players remaining from the 64 who started the tournament.


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