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updated: 6/12/2018 3:19 PM

Ghim among local golfers awaiting U.S. Open challenge

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  • Following his outstanding play at the Masters, Doug Ghim of Arlington Heights will play in this week's U.S. Open golf tournament at New York's Shinnecock Hills.

    Following his outstanding play at the Masters, Doug Ghim of Arlington Heights will play in this week's U.S. Open golf tournament at New York's Shinnecock Hills.
    Associated Press

 
 

The 118th U.S. Open tees off Thursday at New York's Shinnecock Hills course with the usual mix of Chicago players among the 156 starters. This year it's a little different, however, because two of the local hopefuls are amateurs.

For Arlington Heights resident Doug Ghim, it'll be his last event before turning pro. He got into his first U.S. Open the same way he got into his first Masters in April. Both spots were earned by his runner-up finish in last fall's U.S. Amateur, and Ghim needed to maintain his amateur status to take advantage of the invite to Shinnecock.

Ghim did well in the Masters. He was only amateur to make the cut, finishing in a tie for 50th place and making three eagles along the way to earn some crystal souvenirs. Once his last putt drops at Shinnecock Hills, Ghim will shift his focus to playing for money.

Thanks to his sterling record as an amateur -- he won the Ben Hogan Award as the nation's best collegiate player in his senior season at Texas -- Ghim already has been awarded sponsor's exemptions to three PGA Tour events: next week's Travelers Championship in Hartford, Connecticut; the Quicken Loans Invitational in Potomac, Maryland, the following week; and the John Deere Classic in downstate Silvis next month.

Ryan Lumsden, who just completed his junior season at Northwestern, also will play in the U.S. Open as an amateur. Lumsden, from Scotland, survived the sectional qualifying tournament in Columbus, Ohio. He has another year of collegiate eligibility remaining.

Dylan Meyer, who concluded his collegiate eligibility at Illinois, qualified for the U.S. Open with a second-place finish in the Springfield, Ohio, sectional. The U.S. Open will be Meyer's pro debut, and he also has secured sponsor invites to play at Harford and Potomac.

Meyer will join his former Illini teammate, Nick Hardy, at Hartford. Hardy didn't attempt to qualify for the U.S. Open, a championship he played twice as an amateur. He made his pro debut at last week's Rust-Oleum Championship, a Web.com Tour stop at Ivanhoe Club, and earned $3,070 with a tie for 33rd place.

Hardy, a Northbrook native, has invites to play in Illinois' other Web.com event -- the Lincoln Land Championship in Springfield -- and the PGA Tour's John Deere Classic in Silvis, Illinois. He also was made the cut at TPC Deere Run in 2017.

Radix Cup on tap

The Radix Cup matches between the stars of the Chicago District Golf Association and the Illinois PGA will be played for the 57th time Wednesday at Oak Park Country Club in River Forest.

While the CDGA's amateur stars won last year's competition 10-8, that team will have eight Radix Cup rookies in its 12-man lineup this time. The CDGA two veterans are Taylorville's Dave Ryan, who is making his 15th appearance, and Bloomington's Todd Mitchell (14 appearances).

The IPGA also has a notable Radix veteran. Medinah teaching pro Rich Dukelow has played in the matches 12 times, counting both his time as an amateur and a professional.

There will be six better ball matches, the first going off at 12:45 p.m. Though the IPGA owns a commanding 35-19-2 lead in the series, the teams are 4-4 in matches played over the past eight years.

Here and there

• The 85th playing of the Illinois Women's State Amateur concludes on Thursday at Aldeen in Rockford.

• Chicago's qualifying round for the first U.S. Senior Women's Open will be played on Monday at Conway Farms in Lake Forest. Thirty-three players will battle for five berths in the championship proper July 12-15 at Chicago Golf Club.

• The 101st Western Golf Association Junior Championship begins its four-day run on Monday at Evanston Golf Club in Skokie. William Mouw of Chino, California, is the defending champion. Past titlists include PGA Tour mainstays Ricky Fowler, Jim Furyk and Hunter Mahan.

• The Golf Scene, hosted by Steve Kashul, celebrated its 25th year on Sunday in its first show of this season. It's the longest-airing golf show in the nation.

• Entries are still available for the Blackberry Oaks Amateur, June 23-24 in Bristol.

• For more golf news, visit lenziehmongolf.com. Len can be contacted by email at lenziehm@gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter @ZiehmLen and check out his posts at Facebook.com/lenziehmongolf.

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