HIGHLAND PARK, Ill. – Rising University of Arkansas senior and All-American Mateo Fernandez de Oliveira had a pair of wins on Friday to advance to the semifinals at the 120th Western Amateur Championship, played at Exmoor Country Club.
Fernandez de Oliveira, ranked #29 by the World Amateur Golf Ranking, cruised to a 6&4 win over Yuxin Lin (#49 WAGR) in the Round of 16. He then took down Cole Sherwood (#22 WAGR) 3&1 in the quarterfinals.
After 72 holes of golf through three days and tying for fourth after stroke play, Fernandez de Oliveira defeated Lin, a rising senior with the Florida Gators in the morning Round of 16. Lin won the opening hole, but Fernandez de Oliveira squared the match by winning the second. The Razorback won holes 4 and 5 for a 2-Up lead. Lin cut his deficit in half by winning hole #7. Fernandez de Oliveira answered by winning the 8th hole to regain a 2-Up lead. He then won holes 11, 12, 13 and 14 to secure the 6&4 win.
In the afternoon quarterfinal, Fernandez de Oliveira squared off with Sherwood, who was a first team All-America with Vanderbilt last season. Fernandez de Oliveira started the match by winning holes 1, 2 and 4 for a quick 3-Up lead. Sherwood won his first hole with a birdie on hole 10. Fernandez de Oliveira bounced back with wins on holes 12 and 14 for a 4-Up lead. Sherwood rallied by winning the 15th and 16th holes to cut his deficit in half. However, Fernandez de Oliveira’s birdie putt on 17 was conceded to win the hole and clinch the match, 3&1.
Fernandez de Oliveira will face Travis Vick (#15 WAGR) in the semifinal Saturday morning. The winner will then play for the championship Saturday afternoon. Please check the Western Amateur website for the GOLF Channel links for each round.
Mateo is the lone international player left in the field.
Mateo will look to be the second Razorback to win the Western Open, joining 2011 winner Ethan Tracy.